From Netflix and Spotify to Graze boxes: 9 best subscription services
Whether they are offering films, music, food or fashion, subscription services can make your life that little bit better. Here's our pick of the best
Thursday 12 December 2013
This very useful service from the huge online retailer offers free next day delivery on thousands of items. Even better, Prime allows users to stream movies and borrow eBooks - so if you own a Kindle or other tablet PC, you’ll have access to over 350,000 books and 41,000 movies and TV shows.
£49 per year, amazon.com
While Blockbuster’s recent closure can be attributed to a wide range of causes, Netflix might well have been the final nail in the coffin. It's the leading provider of movies and television on demand - and the selection is only getting better, with Netflix originals (shows exclusive to the service) such as House of Cards and Orange is the New Black taking the world by storm. Watch on your laptop, tablet, mobile smart TV or games consoles with an "all you can eat" subscription for only £5.99 a month - you’ll wonder how you lived without it.
£5.99 per month, netflix.com
A nice import from the States for beauty fans, a Birchbox contains 4-5 samples of high-end products new to the market - from make up to moisturisers. You’ll never receive something you don’t want, as what you get is tailored to you, and you can cancel at any time. if you take out an 12 or 6 month subscription now, you’ll get a bonus - Birchbox are giving limited edition boxes to new customers over the festive period.
£10 a month; £90 for 12 months, birchbox.co.uk
With its huge library of tracks you can listen to on mobile, tablet and computer, Spotify's the go-to subscription site for music lovers. It lets you stream add-free music with an Internet connection or download tracks and listen offline. You can share music via social media too. The selection is pretty exhaustive - Beatles fans will be out of luck though - and if you can't find what you're looking for, it might turn up as the catalogue's growing by about 20,000 tracks a day. Led Zeppelin's just dropped, for example.
£9.99 a month, spotify.com
A Graze box can help you actually keep your new year's resolution to eat better and make sure any snacking is healthy(ish). There are hundreds of different options, from dried fruit, nuts and seeds to olives, popcorn, and mini cakes. You can find out the nutritional information about them all online, pick what you want and get them delivered them either to your work or home. Graze don’t tie you down to any sort of contract - so if you feel the need to cut back, you’ll only have to give them a couple of days notice.
£3.89 per standard box (though you currently get the first half price), graze.com
The online fashion retailer leads the way when it comes to customer service. With their excellent subscription service you get unlimited next day delivery, access to exclusive sales, the free very good asos mag 10 times a year and, best of all, if you want to return something, they'll come and collect it from you. It's clothes shopping, with none of the stress.
£9.95 a year, asos.com
Playstation Plus gives its users an ‘instant game collection’ that grows each month, as well as discounts on new games and content on the Playstation 3 and Playstation Vita. It's the closest thing to Netflix for gamers, and it’s also available on the recently released Playstation 4 - meaning you can buy the console, plug in and play.
4 a month; £40 for a year, uk.playstation.com
You probably use Skype, the world’s leading video calling service. But have you considered Skype Premium? You can set up group video chats, as well as getting free mobile and landline calls to a country of your choice. If you’ve got family abroad and a microphone on your computer, then it's a great way to keep in touch - try the group call function on New Year to do the countdown together.
From £2.99, skype.com
Are you always on an endless search for the perfect cup of coffee? Bean and Ground can help. The coffee club will send you two bags a month, sourced from all over the world, for less than a tenner. They roast the beans in the UK before packing them up and sending them to your door. It's a flexible service - you can pause it or cancel at any time.
£24 for three month. IndyBest readers can currently get 15%. Use the discount code INDY at online checkout. beanandground.co.uk
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