It seems like there are never enough hours in the day (because, frankly, there are not). That's why it's important to take advantage of the crazy age we live in with a subscription for everything and select the ones that actually make a difference.
As far as we know, no one ever looked back on their life and wished they spent more time folding laundry or walking up and down the isles of the grocery store. Life is what you make of it, and it takes discipline and planning to make room for the things that are important–spending time with loved ones, pursuing a passion that feeds your soul, and making a difference in this world for others.
That might seem like an overly heartfelt intro to a blog post about timesaving subscriptions, but when it comes down to it, that's what these are; They are a means to give you time back in your day so you can spend it on what matters!
1. Amazon Prime
First things first, Amazon Prime. If you don't already have it. Get it. If you do, you can skip ahead or read on to learn what a great decision-maker you are :)
For $12.99 per month, you can have literally anything delivered to your home within two days, for free. Depending on the item and your zip code, sometimes you have it delivered within a matter of hours via PrimePantry and PrimeNow. If you estimate about two deliveries per month, that comes to a value of about $300 per year. For $12.99 per month or $119 when you pay annually, that is a great deal, before you even consider the included streaming service, free monthly kindle download, free unlimited photo storage, free music streaming and member-only perks like access to Prime Day and discounts on things like diapers.
That’s the flat dollar value of Amazon Prime. The real reason we’ve included it on this list is that it will save you a lot of legwork taking care of errands and shopping. That time you spend searching through Bestbuy for the right cable adaptor or getting to and from the drugstore to pick up the vitamins you like is time you now have back in your day.
The Department of Labor’s most recent American Time Use Survey shows that people still spend over two and a half hours per week, on average, shopping for items they need. Three hours is the same amount of time that the Department of Health and Human Services recommends an individual exercise per week. Yes, wandering around a Target does increase your step count, but the time you’ll have for dedicated exercise will help even more.
2. Stitch Fix/Trunk Club
Unless you love to shop for clothes – in fairness, a number of us do – maintaining your wardrobe can be a true chore. Fashions change, clothes wear out, and let's be honest, body shapes fluctuate. Looking presentable and polished is a requirement of daily life, professionally and otherwise.
For keeping your wardrobe fresh, home delivery personal styling services like StitchFix and TrunkClub are lifesavers. Just fill out a questionnaire about your style, clothing requirements, and size information, and a professional stylist puts together a box of clothes for you each month – so easy! (You can often adjust the timing of how often you receive a box, if needed).
The cost of service is deducted from any purchase you make from the items sent, so if you’re finding items that you like, then the service is free. For the items that you don’t love, just send them back.
Bonus tip: For special occasions, we recommend Rent the Runway (Sorry men, currently they only provide clothes for women). You can quickly search through hundreds for dresses for the perfect outfit. Search by occasion, color, fit, and body shape and read reviews with pictures from women with your similar body type, height, and weight so you get a really clear idea of how the dress will look. You “rent” the dress, meaning they send it to you for the special occasion and then you send it back when you’re done with it. No need to worry about dry cleaning or dropping a couple hundred dollars on an outfit you’ll wear once. In terms of time and financial value, Rent The Runway is a great option.
You may be thinking, I’m a grown adult and I’m not completely fashion-blind. I can go to the store and figure this out.
No doubt! But aside from the time you spend tracking down items you like in a size that fits, you’re also spending energy and making choices. Decision fatigue is a psychological concept that explains that we have a finite amount of metal energy to devote to making decisions within a given amount of time, and as we spend that mental energy, the quality of our decision making deteriorates. It’s the reason that it's so difficult to decide where to eat after a long day at work, or why criminals get harsher sentences later in the day. It’s also the reason you shouldn’t spend your time trying to figure out what to wear. That is, if it’s not something you enjoy.
3. Rinse Repeat
Rinse is a dry cleaning and laundry delivery service that picks up, cleans, and hand delivers your clothes to your door, 7 days a week. They offer dry cleaning, wash & fold, hang dry, leather cleaning, repair services, and even donation pickup, but the service that is the best value for time and money is Rinse Repeat–an all-inclusive laundry service.
The average American household spends up to 3 hours per week dealing with laundry: Sorting, washing, folding and putting away. With Rinse Repeat, you just put your clothes in your Rinse Repeat bag, which holds 40lbs or about 4 loads of laundry, and they come and pick it up once a week. They return everything clean and neatly folded 3 days later. They do have a next-day rush option for an additional $5 fee.
The Rinse Repeat bag is what sets this service apart from others and makes it an incredible value when considering the time and money you save. You may have used Wash & Fold (sometimes called Fluff & Fold) services in the past, and know that the service can be extremely expensive. With Rinse Repeat, you just pay a flat fee each month for the bag and Rinse will wash all of the clothes that you can fit into it, rather than charging by weight as most services do. When compared to their a-la-cart Wash & Fold service (which is comparable in price to similar services), you can save up to 44% on laundry with Rinse Repeat!
You just choose your schedule – weekly or every other week – and the day of the week you’d like them to pick up your clothes and they are there. Rinse Repeat is a true time-saver! The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week to stay healthy and feeling good. With 3 hours back in your week, you’re 80% there!
4. Exercise Subscriptions
The classic gym membership is, of course, a subscription. You may be thinking -- how will that save me time? Well, technically it won’t, but according to every doctor that ever lived, exercise extends life span and quality of life, so it’s making the list!
We did the research and depending on what your interests and your favorite way to break a sweat, there is an exercise option for you.
If you prefer to work out at home, then we highly recommend a workout streaming subscription. Usually, classes are prerecorded, but if you sign up for a service like Daily Burn, you can join live classes as well. Membership is usually between $10 and $30 per month, which is about what you would pay for a drop-in yoga class.
Insider tip: If you’re not sure if you’ll like exercising at home, both Amazon and Netflix have workout content for yoga and cardio. Their selection is limited, but it’s a great way to get your feet wet if you are hesitant to dive into a full exercise subscription membership.
Another option for an in-home workout is an equipment-focused membership like Peloton for cycling or running (NordicTrack also offers similar equipment connected to classes and accessible through membership), or the Concept 2 for rowing.
If you’re someone that needs to get outdoors, the classic choice is Strava, an app for runners and cyclists. Strava tracks your exercise and helps you analyze your progress, connects you to a community, and gives you trails and challenges to complete!
We like Strava and apps like it because when exercise is tracked, you do more of it. Studies have shown that just by giving someone a pedometer they walked 27% further than without it.
Give yourself a way to access and track your favorite form of exercise and you will exercise more, and in turn, feel better. That’s an investment well worth the time and money.