There are two Audible subscription to choose from, but which is better? Read on to discover the differences between Audible Plus and Premium Plus.
Amazon's Audible has gone through a number of changes over the last few years. Originally, you'd pay at least $14.95/month for a subscription and receive one credit (or two, if you paid a bit more) per month, which you could redeem for audiobooks you then kept permanently.
However, you can now choose between two different Audible subscription plans, and both differ in a number of ways. In this article, we'll discuss those differences, and help you figure out which Audible subscription plan is right for you.
In late 2020, Amazon added Audible Plus as a second subscription plan. Audible Plus being a cheaper alternative to its existing model. There's also Premium Plus, which is similar (but not quite the same) as the old Audible subscription plan.
This guide will take you through the differences between the tiers, plus the pros and cons of each. Please note that the details below apply only to the US; the UK version of Audible has a slightly different system. See Audible UK's membership page for more information.
We start with Audible Plus, which is the lower tier of the new Audible, clocking in at $7.95/month (about the same as Kindle Unlimited). In exchange for the flat fee, you can stream any of the audiobooks in the Plus catalog. That's approximately 11,000 titles out of the 500,000 available in the entire Audible store.
Related: Audible Alternatives: The Best Free or Cheap Audiobook Apps
You can't download these books for keeps. So if you cancel your Plus subscription, you'll lose access to any audiobooks you were listening to.
Not every book you want will be available for streaming. In fact, it's probably a safe bet that many won't. Take a look at the Audible Plus catalog to get an idea of what's included.
At $14.95/month, Audible Premium Plus costs almost twice as much as Audible Plus. That comes, however, with a jump in audiobook availability.
As well as being able to stream all the books, podcasts, meditation tracks, etc. in the Plus catalog, you get discounted access to the offerings from the Premium Plus catalog, which comprise the remaining 450,000 or so titles. Moreover, these books tend to be the newer, hotter releases, while the Plus catalog has a lot of classics.
Related: Ways to Find the Best Books on Audible
Access comes in the form of one "free" credit per month, which you can exchange for any book in the entire Audible store, no matter how much it nominally costs. Your account will retain and store that book even if you cancel your subscription.
A higher Premium Plus tier, which costs $22.95/month, will give you two credits each month.
Which Audible plan you should choose will come down to just how much audiobook content you consume, and what kind of content it is.
If you rarely listen to audiobooks, you probably don't need a subscription at all, but that doesn't mean you'll have to pay full price. Amazon offers amazing Whispersync deals when you buy Kindle ebooks and Audible audiobooks together. For example, purchasing Holly Black's excellent YA fantasy The Cruel Prince for $8.14 reduces the audiobook to $8.99, as opposed to $35.81 without the ebook.
That's a staggering reduction: you could own both formats for less than half the price of one. It's even cheaper in the UK, where the ebook and audiobook together cost less than a third of the original Audible price.
More hardcore audiobook enthusiasts, of course, will want greater audiobook availability. That's where Audible Plus comes in.
Related: Physical Books vs. Audiobooks: Which Is Better?
A huge pro would definitely be the price, which slashes the old base price in half. However, you can't get away from the fact that the selection is relatively limited. Emphasis on relatively: obviously, 11,000 audiobooks is still a lot. But if you're after a more recent or popular audiobook, Audible Plus won't necessarily have everything you're looking for.
Premium Plus is definitely expensive (although it's the same price as the old subscription). Nevertheless, if you're a big audiobook consumer, this is the one you'll want.
For $15/month, you'll get the same streaming ability as the lower tier, as well as an audiobook to keep permanently. Effectively, you're paying an extra $7/month on top of Audible Plus in order to buy an audiobook as well.
No matter which Audible plan you pick, you'll have a great selection of audiobooks to take with you wherever you go.
On the whole, Premium Plus is probably better value for money, since you're guaranteed to get at least one audiobook a month. Bear in mind, though, the actual kind of audiobooks you're interested in. It may be that the standard Audible Plus catalog has everything you want anyway, in which case that should definitely be your first option.
Namera previously wrote for Book Riot and now covers entertainment technology for MUO, particularly relating to reading. She graduated with an English degree and is currently in law school. Hobbies include listening to true crime podcasts, reviewing books, and petting her cat Tiggy.
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