A streaming service subscription makes a great last-minute gift or the perfect addition to go with the gift of a Roku or Amazon stick.
Ways to Give Gift Subscriptions
Walking through Target, Walmart, or even grocery stores, you are sure to see a wall of physical gift cards, including those for Netflix, Hulu, and more. The cards are also available from online retailers. If you need a last-minute gift delivered, you can choose digital versions of gift cards. These eGift cards are sent to the recipient via email. Usually, you can add a message and choose what date you want the email delivered.
Other services, particularly niche streaming channels, require that you buy the gift subscription from their website.
If someone on your list is asking for a streaming subscription that doesn’t have a gift card option, an account can be set up to use a prepaid Mastercard or Visa.
Apple TV+ and YouTube TV premium channels can be gifted using an Apple or Google Play gift card.
Netflix offers its gift card in various amounts. Physical cards are available in stores, or you can buy a physical or eGift card from Amazon, Best Buy, and others.
Scratch off the foil on the back to reveal the code to redeem. If you buy a digital gift card, the code will be in the email. To redeem the card, go to netflix.com/redeem , enter the code, and click on “redeem” Gift cards can be used for new or continuing subscriptions.
How much should you buy? Subscriptions rates range from $9 per month for standard definition, $14 for 1080p, and $18 for 4K UHD. A $50 gift card would give three months of high definition or two months of 1080p and a month of 4K.
Physical and digital Hulu gift cards are available in stores and online at Amazon, Best Buy, and many other retailers.
To redeem the gift card, go to your account (or create one if you are new to Hulu), then go to the payment screen. Type the gift card number under “Gift or Promotional Code.” Or, you can log out and go to Hulu.com/gift, then type in the gift card number.
How much should you buy? A Hulu plan with ads runs $7 per month or $70 per year. The no-ad plan is $13 per month. The bundle including Hulu Plus Live TV now with Disney Plus and ESPN Plus is $70 per month; the no-ad version is $76 per month. Hulu Gift cards come in $25, $50, or $100. So you may need to buy multiples or have a balance left over on a $100 card to cover a year of basic Hulu or a month of the Hulu bundle with Live TV.
Disney+ and ESPN+ only offer a yearly gift subscription for new subscribers. You can’t add time to a current subscription. Purchase the Disney Plus digital gift subscription card directly from Disney. Go to the ESPN+ gift subscription page to give a year of the sports channel to a new subscriber (only in the U.S.).
A Disney+ annual gift subscription will cost $80. To redeem the gift subscription, open the email that contains your gift subscription card information. In the email, select “Redeem your Subscription.” Follow the instructions to create a Disney + account. ESPN+ is $70 per year, and the instructions are the same to redeem the gift subscription.
Amazon does not offer prime video memberships. If you want to give access to Prime movies and TV shows, you have to give a full prime membership that includes free Amazon shipping, Amazon music, and other perks. Amazon will send the gift recipient an email on the day you choose.
Memberships are available for $39 for three months or 12 months for $119. The gift membership does not automatically renew. The email will have instructions on how to redeem the gift membership. Those who receive a gift membership, but are already a Prime member, can exchange it for an Amazon gift card. Click on “Already a Prime member” in the gift notification email.
Physical Paramount+ gift cards can be found at Barnes and Noble, CVS, Walmart, and many other stores. Digital gift cards are available through Best Buy, Walmart, shopwithscript.com, and more.
The digital gift cards are sent via email, and you can add a message and specify the date you want it delivered.
At Best Buy, the $50 card comes with 30 days of free Showtime. Gift cards can be added to an existing subscription or be used when you sign up for an Essential or Premium plan. Go to Paramount+ redeem page and enter the pin from the card to add funds to your account.
There is a free version of Peacock, but you’ll get a ton of commercials, and it only includes a limited number of TV episodes. Original series aren’t included in the free tier.
The Peacock subscription is available at the NBC online store. The $10, $25, $50, and $100 are eGift cards that are delivered by an email that includes instructions to redeem them at checkout.
How much should you buy? The limited ad-supported version of Peacock to get all of its content is $5 per month or $50 per year. The ad-free Plus tier is $10 per month or $100 per year.
Vudu Fandango eGift cards are available from Amazon and other online retailers. Cards range from $25 – $75.
Gift subscriptions to the plethora of reality and documentary programming on discovery+ are available for the ad-free tier at gift.discoveryplus.com . Note that when you buy the subscription, the email will be sent immediately rather than choosing the delivery date. If you want it sent on a particular date, you can either wait or send the subscription to yourself and forward it on the date you want it delivered.
A six-month subscription runs $41.75 or a year is $83.75. To redeem a gift card new subscribers can go to discoveryplus.com/redeem and follow the step-by-step instructions. If the gift recipient already has a subscription, they can contact discovery+ customer service .
Criterion Channel classic films are better when you have someone you can discuss them with, and it is an excellent gift for a film buff.
On the Criterion Channel checkout page, choose the “Gift this subscription” dropdown on the left side. You can select any length of time from one month to twelve months at $10.99 per month. The one-year subscription gets you a deal at $100. Enter your email on the right side along with the recipient’s email and any gift message you want to send and when you want the email sent.
The email will include directions for redeeming the gift subscription.
It’s easy to purchase a Britbox subscription for the anglophiles on your gift list.
Britbox offers a one-year gift subscription for $70. To redeem a subscription for a new account, go to britbox.com and click “Free Trial” in the top right. Create an account. When the subscription options appear, choose the Annual subscription. Click on gift subscription and enter the gift code. Previous subscribers can go to the gift subscription tab in their account. If your previous subscription is through Apple, Google Play, or Roku, you’ll need to cancel that subscription before using the gift subscription.
You can’t directly gift an HBO Max subscription. But, if the gift recipient is an Apple user, you can pay for their HBO Max subscription by sending them an Apple gift card. Signing up for HBO Max on an Apple device will give you the option to subscribe, which is then billed and managed through an Apple iTunes account that uses the loaded funds.
Apple TV+, Apple Music, and Other Apple TV subscriptions
In the same way, your gift recipient can redeem an Apple Gift card for other channels. Paramount +, Showtime, STARZ, AMC+, EPIX, Britbox, Cinemax, Curiosity Stream, Sundance Now, Shudder, and many other niche channels are available.
The recipient redeems the gift card. When they sign up for a service on an Apple device, they can use the Apple balance.
The Apple gift card can also be used to pay for movie rentals, Apple Music, Apple TV +, or any other app subscriptions tied to that Apple account.
Live TV Subscriptions
Hulu Live TV can be gifted using a Hulu gift card and Best Buy sells a Sling TV gift card. But other Live TV subscriptions can only be gifted using a prepaid Visa or Mastercard to use as payment for the subscription when the recipient signs up for the service.
While you can’t buy a gift card specifically for YouTube TV, you can buy Google Play gift cards.
The recipient redeems the gift card to their Google Play account. That same email account should be used to sign up for YouTube TV.
Google Play gift cards are available from $25 to $200. To use the Google Play money for YouTube TV, click “redeem” on the left side to subscribe to the live TV service. YouTube TV runs about $65 per month.
Another Way to Gift Subscriptions
Of course, there is another way to “gift” a subscription. If you aren’t using the maximum number of family members allowable in your account, you can always share your login information with them. Before you do, consider your subscription tier as most streaming services limit the number of simultaneous streams allowed.