June 14, 2024


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Switching to Annual Subscriptions Can Really Pay Off

We all want to save money, but it’s not always obvious how to do it, considering the sheer number of digital apps and services most of us are signed up to. But from Netflix to Spotify, these monthly expenses can add up quickly.

Unless you regularly check your bank statement (and you should!), you might be paying more than you realize. Subscriptions could cover cloud storage, fitness services, console and mobile gaming, audiobooks, software, accounting services, online magazines, support for independent creators, newsletters, and more.

One trick that might save you some cash is paying more to begin with: Switching to annual payments for your digital apps and services will often cost less per month than paying 12 times over the year, and it’s something to consider if you’re able to.

Of course, there are caveats. This is only going to work if you are absolutely sure you want a whole year of a particular app and service, if you have the money upfront, and if the option to pay annually is actually available. 

Apple TV Plus gives you a discount if you pay for a year at once.

Apple via David Nield

If there is an annual payment plan, the savings can be substantial, especially across multiple accounts. Take Dropbox cloud storage, for example: The cheapest paid plan is either $12 a month or $120 a year. Go for the second option, and you’re effectively paying $10 a month, a savings of $24 over the course of the full year. Go to billing settings in Dropbox to change your subscription plan.

Apple offers some notable discounts if you commit to its digital offerings over a longer period of time. Apple TV Plus is $5 a month but $50 a year, so if you commit to an annual payment you’re saving almost $10. Apple Music costs $10 a month but $99 a year, which saves you about $21 a year. To change your subscriptions from an iPhone, go to Settings, tap your name (at the top), and then select Subscriptions.