Audible Membership Review – Is it Worth It in 2021?

Audible membership is the most efficient and cost-saving way to enjoy audiobooks. The membership alone can make listening to your favorite audiobooks at your pace simplified.

Of course, you can buy any Audible audiobooks without buying any membership subscription but that will be unwise. In this article, we will learn why you should buy the membership including every other corner of Audible!

How Does Membership Work?

Audible Monthly Plan and Credits

Audible has a simple membership plan with lots of benefits for its members. Gold & Platinum are the main Audible membership types to name a few.

And all of their membership subscription plans work in a credit-based system except the Audible Escape Plan. For each credit, you will get an audiobook.

So, how does audible membership work? Well, let’s check:

Audible may come to you as a shock knowing that if you buy an audiobook outright, it may cost you as much as $40! Luckily, Audible has a subscription system to keep the cost at a minimum level.

So, I strongly recommend going for the subscription system to keep your spending in check and to get the most out of it. But you must learn how the subscription system work, right?

As soon as you open an Audible account, you will get one month trial period to have a taste. To give you an amazing experience with Audible during this trial period, you will get one audiobook of your choice. More so, there will be two Audible Originals for you!

At the end of this trial period, you will have to pick a subscription to continue. Luckily, there are plenty of subscription options to choose from depending on your need.

Out of so many options, there are 4 membership plans available (Monthly and Yearly) that may interest you most: Gold & Premium. Each plan has both monthly and yearly subscription plans.

No matter what subscription plan you pick, there will be 1 credit for each month. That means you will get 12 credits if you pick the annual subscription plan.   

Audible Membership Benefits

Buying the audiobooks directly using your credit/debit card will cost you insanely high. Only the membership plan will keep your spending in check.

Apart from improving your listening experience, there are plenty of other benefits to an Audible membership program that you will get which are subject to change anytime they want. You will get some exclusive benefits and exciting promotional offers that others won’t even know about them! Let’s have a look:

  • Author Voice

Yes, you can listen to the Author narrating their books. Imagine the intimacy you will get thinking the top author is reading the books to you! There are hundreds of thousands of audiobooks and most of them are best-sellers. Most often, the top authors narrate their books themselves.

  • Audible Originals Access

Without having a membership plan, you can’t access the Audible Original series. And this is something you don’t want to miss as an audiobook enthusiast. Apart from the membership platform, you won’t find them anywhere else.

  • Awesome Audible Credits

Each credit will get any single-volume Audible book you like. More so, you can keep your unused credits and use them later as long as your membership is active. So there is no hurry to waste them!

  • Forever Ownership

Even if you cancel the membership, you can keep your downloaded audiobooks forever. And yes, you can cancel your membership anytime you want.

  • Exchanging Audiobooks

As long as you don’t misuse it, you can exchange any audiobook if you don’t like it within 1 year. As an active member, you can simply return any audiobook if it does not satisfy your needs.

  • Membership Discounts

Active members can get up to 30% discounts on purchasing new audiobooks which are not available for non-members. Such discounts are available almost all the time.

Other Notable Benefits of Audible

Apart from the above-mentioned benefits, there are other technical benefits along with deals and discounts that you can enjoy:

  • Whispersync For Voice

If you get tired of reading your Audible books, you can start listening to it with the push of a button. Yes, the Whispersync technology of Audible is so intelligent that it will increase your productivity in completing the book FAST!

However, the book must be available on both Kindle and Audible and you have to have access to both platforms.

  • Sleep Timer
Audible Sleep Timer Settings
Audible Sleep Timer Settings

In reality, you will be enjoying your audiobooks more on your smartphone. And if you are a heavy listener, you will often sleep listening. When you get up early in the morning, you will notice your phone battery is completely drained.

Thanks to the Sleep Timer function of the Audible app. You can set the timer and at the end of that set time, the app will stop playing the audiobook. That way you will still get your battery life intact.

  • Listening Speed
Audible Speed Control
Audible Speed Control

You can go fast and slow listening to your audiobooks and only Audible let you do that. There will be many times when you would want to go slow or fast to finish the book in a specified time.

  • Offline Reading

When you download an audiobook, you can listen to it offline. If you travel a lot and enjoy listening to the books at the same time, this feature will come in handy for you.

Also Read More about Audible Download Manager.

Don’t worry, there is no extra cost for this feature. All you need is a membership and you can enjoy all the above Audible membership benefits.

Audible Monthly Subscription

If you are not a heavy listener to audiobooks yet want to save some money, you can opt for the monthly plan. This is how the monthly plan works:

  • Gold Monthly

You will get 1 credit for $14.95 each month if you sign up for the Gold Monthly plan. You can use the credit to buy any audiobook you like.

  • Platinum Monthly

If you need more credit, the monthly Platinum package will be a good choice. You will get 2 credits for $22.95 per month.

Audible Annual Subscription

In terms of credit numbers, there are no special benefits for the Audible yearly subscription. However, the cost will be much lower if you pick any of the following plans:

  • Gold Annual

In total, you will get 12 credits for $149.50 annually. So, your cost per credit will be more or less $12.45 only.

  • Platinum Annual

For only $229.50 per year, you will get 24 credits and your per credit cost will be $9.50 only. For a heavy listener, this is a pretty good deal! Using the annual plan, you can save a lot and keep the cost in check.

The Audible Escape Plan does not have any credit system but it’s a good way to enjoy unlimited books that work more like an Audible unlimited plan.

Lets clear about the Audible monthly plan and credits system

Alright, now that we know all the membership benefits, you may be wondering how much is an audible subscription, right?

Audible Monthly Plan and Credits

Let’s have an idea of how much each of these plans may cost you. But I need to clear something first.

The rate for each of these plans does not stay fixed over time. For several reasons including promotional activities and special occasions, these rates change dramatically.

As all the Audible subscription plans are associated with the credit system, the cost is linked to the credit you get from each plan.

To give you a rough idea for now, the monthly gold plan will cost you around $15 and the monthly platinum plan will cost you more or less $23. You will save money if you pick the annual plan.

This is how…

Whereas the annual gold plan will cost you approximately $120, the annual platinum plan will cost you around $230 for the first year. The cost will vary for the subsequent years.

To have the precise cost estimation, you must learn how much are Audible credits, right? If you pick the monthly gold package you will get 1 credit and that credit will cost you $14.95.

But if you pick the monthly platinum package, you will get 2 credit for each month and each credit will cost you $ 11.48 (approx.). So, per month it will be $22.95 in total.

However, to save yourself some money, you will get the best rate from the annual Gold/Platinum package.

For the Gold Annual Plan, you will get 12 credits and each credit will cost you $9.96. If you want to save more money, pick the Annual Platinum Plan where you will get 24 credits and each credit will cost you $9.57 only!

Alright, you already know how does Audible works, but what happens if you run out of credits?

Well, if that happens during any package period you pick, Audible will offer you to buy extra credits. But it’s worth mentioning here that there are other subscription plans like Audible Escape Plan and Enterprise Plan where you can’t buy any extra credits.

I know it still sounds costly. But don’t worry. To my experience, Audible often offers up to 30% to 40% discounts will lots of other benefits like exchanging audiobooks and sometimes free Audible Originals!

If you buy any audiobook from the Audible without being a member, it will cost you more or less $23 to $25. But as you have seen above, you can get the same book through membership at a very lower cost.

So, for serious listeners, an Audible membership plan is always a good choice. I hope the Audible membership review will help you to understand that. You will love it if read it’s benefits which I have explained later in this article.

What’s so amazing about Audible is that you can sign up for 30 days’ free trial to evaluate what you are about to get. You will receive 1 credit as soon as you sign up for the trial period and buy any audiobook of your choice.

Sign up today for the Audible free trial period.

Apart from the membership credits or card, you can still get audiobooks entering promo codes offered by Amazon or Audible itself. Audible offers such promo codes to attract new members to their platform.

However, do not gift such promo codes to others. This will be a direct violation of Audible terms and conditions.

Audible Family Subscription

Sadly, Audible does not offer any family plan. There is nothing to be disappointed yet. Instead of the family plan, there is an Amazon Household Library option that you can take advantage of.

Amazon Household Library program works exactly like a family subscription where you can share your audiobooks across the devices of other Amazon Household members. If you have multiple family members who love listening to audiobooks, this is a great plan from the Audible.

This is a great way to turn your family members into bookworms. There will be a library for all the audiobooks and any member of the Household program can access these books easily.

Sounds interesting?

Let’s learn more about the household program. In that program, you can share any audiobooks with your family member. Don’t get me wrong. You can share audiobooks but you CAN’T share your Audible membership benefits.

To avail of this program, you will need another member to set up the library. Then allow your devices to access such shared audiobooks.

If that sounds exciting to you and if you plan to have this package, you need to stay organized and plan to take full advantage of it. And the program comes with a catch!

There are some norms to follow as an Audible family subscription member to keep the shared library clean for everybody. For example, you can’t share any audiobooks from the library with a teen profile.

If two or more persons try to access the same book at the same time, this will get mixed up. Always maintain a shared Google Doc to list all the books and mark the one you have finished reading.

This should be done by all the family members whoever shares this Audible feature. Here are some tips to follow when you are part of the program:

  1. Without asking permission from the person who is paying the fee, do not buy anything from the Audible. There will be pop-ups with exciting offers that you may want to avail, but ask permission from the person paying the bill.
  2. Just because you know the content of a book, you should not ruin it for other family members. You can suggest anything interesting but do not spoil the story.
  3. Don’t buy weird stuff even using your won credit card. If you have to, give advanced notice to other members as a heads-up. Not everyone likes to see weird horror books in his/her shared account.
  4. You can access the account from all the devices but sign out from the app from the device you are not using to read right now. Don’t forget, Audible lets you keep up to 3 mobile apps activated at the same time. So, learn to sacrifice for others by signing out from the app when you are not reading.

How Do I Upgrade To Platinum?

As you already know about it, you can pick any membership plan you like from a wide variety of Audible membership options and you can upgrade your plan anytime you want. And the best audiobook subscription is the Platinum membership.

You are just a few clicks away to upgrade your current membership plan to the Platinum.  And this is something you should do if you are a heavy audiobook listener to save money and enjoy more books.

If you are on a Desktop, follow the step by step process to switch your account:

  1. The first step is to go to the Account Details page. You should see the Switch Membership button there. It is located just below Your Membership section.
  2. When you click the Switch Membership button, you should see Get This Plan Button next.
  3. Click the Get This Membership button corresponding to the Platinum package and continue all other instructions.

If you are on Mobile, Follow the step by step process to make the switch:

  1. Go to the ‘My Account’ section. You have to click the menu tab located at the top of your screen to click the ‘My Account’ section.
  2. Then you should see the ‘Membership Details’ tab. Click it.
  3. There will be a ‘See All Membership Plans’ when you click the ‘Membership Details’. Select the Platinum plan or wherever you like to switch.
  4. Click the ‘Confirm Switch’ button and complete all the necessary to make the switch.

Audible with Amazon

Launched about 25 years ago, Audible got tremendous popularity over the years. Being an Amazon company, Audible now operates almost all over the world with a strong subscriber base. 

You can now access any audiobooks including some prominent radio and TV programs if you have an Audible subscription plan. It supports all the operating systems like Android, iOS, Windows, and Kindle too.

For the Amazon Prime members, there are a lot of exciting benefits on Audible. However, the subscription is not free for Prime members. Audible is not like Prime Video. So, it does not come free with your Amazon Prime membership. I know why there is some confusion about it. You will get some audiobooks free for your Prime membership but Audible membership is not still free. However, during special occasions like Prime Day, you may get the Audible membership at a discounted rate that will simply wow you.

But if you keep a sharp eye on Prime Day or Black Friday, you will get some cool discounts and deals on Audible subscriptions and your audiobook purchases.

Whereas Amazon Prime members can gift Kindle books to their loved ones, you can’t do the same with Audible audiobooks.

Yes, you will get some audiobooks free with your Prime membership, but do not confuse Audible with Amazon Prime audiobook rental.

Protip: Clear your confusion about amazon prime and amazon audible.

In a nutshell, apart from free access to the Audible channels and around 50 selected free audiobooks, Amazon Prime members get nothing special from the Audible. It’s a completely separate service.

If you browse www.amazon.com/audible, you will access to everything you need to know about Audible. Without being a Prime or Audible member, you can still buy any audiobooks you like.

However, this is not recommended since it will cost you so much and you won’t get access to many exciting things like Audible Originals.

How To Get Free Audible Credits?

Whatever free credits you get when signing up, that’s all free credits you can get legally. Of course, there are plenty of Blackhat techniques to get free credits but they are not legal. 

Hence I strongly oppose searching for illegal ways to cheat the system. This will get you nothing but trouble. However, follow the steps to get the best out of your legal free credits:

  1. Get 2 free credits as soon as you sign up.
  2. Use the free credits to get your audiobooks during the period.
  3. Download your free audiobook to your device and return it within the allowed time to get back your free credits.
  4. Now, you can use the returned credits to down 2 more audiobooks!

How to Pause Audible Membership?

Pause Audible Membership

Unlike other subscription systems, you can just pause your membership instead of canceling it. We often have second thoughts and pausing is a great option to understand fully whether we should cancel membership or not.

However, you can’t just go on and off with your membership pause. You can’t pause a subscription plan that does not earn any credits. And once you pause, you will have to wait for 12 months for another pause.

But the cool part is you can resume your membership anytime you want while it is on hold. There are two ways to pause your membership: Customer Care and By Yourself.

The easiest way to pause is by contacting the customer service representative. They will review your membership plan and pause it. If you want to do it yourself, follow the step by step process:

  1. Browse the Audible Desktop website and sign in to your account.
  2. When you hover the cursor over your ID, you will find ‘Account Details’ from the drop-down menu. Click on it.
  3. From there, you can start your canceling process. Go to the membership details page and you will find the ‘Cancel Membership’ button.
  4. When you click the ‘Cancel Membership’ button. Audible will ask you to give them your possible reason.
  5. From that list of possible reasons, check ‘I don’t use it enough’ and proceed to ‘Continue Cancelling’.
  6. Now you will have 2 options to choose from. Choose the Pause Membership option and check on the radio button of days you want to keep it paused.
  7. And you are done!

Another way you can pause Audible Membership:

Audible Return and Refund Policy

For active members, Audible has a flexible return and refund policy. If you are unsatisfied with an audiobook, you can return it for another within 365 days of your purchase.

Audible allows this facility so that active members can taste a new book without wasting their credits.

Of course, the exchange policy comes with some limitations and restrictions which I will explain shortly. But before that, let’s check the step by step process of changing audiobooks:

  1. Log in to your account and browse the Audible Purchase History page. You will see all of your purchased audiobooks there.
  2. Find the audiobook that you want to exchange. Underneath the cover art of that book, click on the Return button.
  3. You will get a drop-down menu displaying all the possible reasons for your return.
  4. Select your reason and click the ‘Return This Title’ and click Return.

You should see the confirmation message on the screen confirming the success of your return. You will get your credits back for the return and you can reuse that credits to buy any audiobooks you like.

However, for credit/debit card purchases, it will take up to 7 to 10 business days to get your money back. In some rare circumstances, you may see ‘Online Return Unavailable’. Just contact the customer care to make the return successful.

Also Read | In-depth and Step by Step Guide to Return an Audible Audibooks

Any misuse of this facility will result in disapproval of your exchange. When you overuse this, Audible will understand you are misusing it.

If you truly don’t like any book (which should not happen more often), you can take this opportunity. But don’t try to return all the books you finished listening to.

However, if you want to get your money back, the Audible membership refund policy works differently. You can’t get back your money spent on your purchased books. Because you will retain your ownership on these audiobooks forever!

FAQs of Audible Membership

Is it possible to pause audible membership?

Yes. You can keep your membership on hold for several months. Depending on your membership plan, you can pause your membership from 1 month to up to 12 months. During this period, your credit card won’t be charged and you will not receive any new credits too.

How do I put my audible membership on hold?

The easiest method to pause membership is to do it with the help of an Audible Customer Care representative. They will review your membership and do it for you. Alternatively, you can do it yourself too.

Can I restart my Audible membership?

Yes, you resume your paused membership anytime you want during the paused period. There is no extra cost to do that.

What does an audible subscription get you?

It gets you credits and you can use those credits to buy any audiobooks of your choice. Through audible subscription, you can keep your cost of audiobooks purchase lower.

Do I own the books I buy on audible?

Yes, even if you cancel the subscription you will own the complete rights of your purchased audiobooks.

Wrap Up

Audible has brought revolutionary change to the way we enjoy books. As a book lover, this is the only place you need to go. To enjoy its full benefits, there is no alternative to get an Audible membership.

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