The holidays have begun at Amazon

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Add Amazon to the list of retailers not waiting for Black Friday to start their holiday promotions.

Amazon is offering special early holiday deals and discounts from Nov. 1-21 at In addition, the e-tail giant is providing curated gift guides in product categories including fashion, toys, electronics, home, luxury/beauty, books, and active lifestyle. Furthermore, singer/songwriter Mariah Carey is providing a curated guide of gift items she personally uses. Select items from the curated guides will be available for in-store purchase at Amazon Books and Amazon 4-Star brick-and-mortar locations.

Charity Lists, which launched during the 2018 holiday season, enable charitable organizations to create lists of needed products that customers can donate directly by shopping the lists. Other holiday shopping features include shopping via the Amazon Alexa voice assistant in Spanish language or multilingual mode, as well as the ability to ask Alexa for the top daily holiday deals. All customers can “Watch a Deal” to receive notifications on their mobile device when deals are about to go live.

And new this holiday season, customers can ask Alexa to change the topic when holiday gatherings get stressful. A customer can say, “Alexa, change the subject,” and she will provide a family-friendly topic to quell any disagreements at the dinner table. Customers can also ask Alexa to suggest games to keep guests entertained or holiday recipes. Food Network Kitchen subscribers can take a live or on-demand holiday cooking class with Food Network chefs like Bobby Flay by saying, “Alexa, show me cooking classes from Bobby Flay” to get started.