I got a letter through the post recently informing me that LOVEFILM was becoming part of the Amazon family of websites, and given that I had ordered DVDs from Amazon in the past, they were going to offer me a free 30-day trial.
To sweeten the pot even further, if I took up this offer of a free 30 day trial, I would get a £20 Amazon voucher too.
(For people who don't know me, I love books. I always have a couple of piles laying around that I haven't read yet, and that never stops me buying more...Ebooks and Kindles are for losers, baby! Anyway, you can take it as read that for £20 worth of store credit at Amazon, I'm prepared to do the sort of things that will make a whore blush.)
I read and re-read the letter, going over the small print in exacting detail to try and see where the catch was, and I couldn't see one, so I took the plunge and signed up.
There's a great selection of movies available on the site, but curiously none from Universal...it appears the two companies are in dispute about how much money each should make from the venture. You can also stream films (didn't try it given that my internet connection is 'temperamental' to say the least) or rent video games (which I also didn't bother with).
I rented two films which were dispatched to me via first class, hence very little waiting. The package they come in is easily reconfigured into the postpaid return envelope (also first class, which means you send the DVDs back more quickly and get newer ones out), and there's also a spare, standalone postpaid return envelope just in case you have a disaster with the first one.
The discs come in clear plastic sleeves, with just the discs and nothing else, so it is very much 'no frills'. Both discs were in good working order and played fine.
After watching them, I put them in the envelope, posted them back,and then subsequently cancelled my account to avoid being billed when the free trial period elapsed.
You cannot cancel your membership online, but instead must phone LOVEFILM to do so (it's a free phone number). Of course, the salesperson will try and get you to delay cancelling your account (I would expect no less), but I just stuck to my guns and cancelled it.
As promised, I got an email with a £20 Amazon voucher code in it, and not long after my phone call I got an email confirming the cancellation of my account (which I can apparently reactivate at any time online by myself, should the urge take me).
All told, it was a 'does exactly what it says on the tin' experience. All parties were as good as their word, I'm happy to report.
It's a great service, just not one I feel like taking up and subscribing to at the moment. If you are looking for a movies-by-mail service, I can certainly recommend it.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some books to order...