We're Upgrading All Accounts to Hourly Billing
We are upgrading all accounts to hourly billing. Here is some extra information to help clear up any questions you might have.
At the end of March 2019, Linode will retire prepaid billing. This means that all customers utilizing the legacy prepaid billing system will be upgraded to Hourly billing. By upgrading to Hourly, customers will not only have greater flexibility to add, remove, and change services on their account, but will gain access to the Linode Community, Cloud Manager, new API, and Block Storage.
We have seen a few general questions regarding this change, and we want to take this time to answer some of them.
Will my billing costs change?
For many users, billing will not change. Unless you currently have one or more Linodes with annual or biennial discounts, you'll pay the same amount - no more, no less. The only time you'll pay more is if your Linode accrues transfer overages.
Customers who have older annual or biennial billing received a discount applied to those specific services: 10% and 15%, respectively. To make this transition as easy as possible, customers who already have a legacy discount package will retain that discount for the next 3 months, or the same amount of time that was remaining on that annual or biennial plan, whichever is greater. This means someone who prepaid for a year in February 2019 will continue to use their services at a discount until February 2020 (I'll provide a specific example on how this will work below).
Upgrading to hourly manually ahead of time may cause you to lose any prepaid discounts. If you would like to maintain your discount as described above, please wait for these changes to occur automatically. If you've already taken the upgrade, please open a Support ticket and let us know.
What will happen to the money I already paid?
If you were using the legacy prepaid plans from month-to-month, there will not be much difference. You will not be billed on April 1, 2019, as you already prepaid for the usage in March, however you will receive the same monthly invoices again starting in May. If you were using a legacy prepaid annual or biennial plan, a positive credit will be added to your account after March 31, 2019, for the unused services that were already paid for. That credit will not expire and will be automatically applied to future invoices.
The yearly amount I prepaid is less than what the Linode would be billed hourly. Will I have less than a year’s worth of service?
Not at all! The best way to get an idea of how hourly billing works will be to take a look at our billing guide, but I’ll provide a brief summary here. With Hourly billing, Linodes are billed at an hourly rate up to a monthly maximum, which is the listed monthly amount on our pricing page. The cost for a Linode will never exceed what’s posted on the pricing page (barring network transfer overages). If a Linode is deleted before the end of the month, you'll only pay for the hours prior to deletion.
To help show what an hourly upgrade would look like, here's an example of a prepaid annual plan up through and beyond March 31, 2019:
Prepaid Annual 4GB (through March 31, 2019):
Say you signed up for a prepaid annual 4GB Linode standard plan on February 1, 2019, paying a $216 for one year of service ($240 annual rate with a 10% discount).
Hourly 4GB (beyond March 31, 2019):
After March 31, 2019, you will receive a $180 credit on your account (your annual payment less two months of service), and your plan will start accruing service charges on an hourly basis with a maximum of $18 per month (the usual $20/month rate with the 10% prepaid annual discount applied). Since you signed up for this plan in February, you'll maintain this discount until February 2020, and your account credit will cover the monthly costs until then. You'll receive an invoice on the first day of each month beginning May 1, 2020, reflecting the monthly charges for the previous month that will be drawn from your account credit. Beginning February 1, 2020, your plan will begin to accrue charges at the standard rate of $20/month.
Will I be able to have that credit refunded back to me?
If you would like to have the positive credit on your account refunded back to your payment card, please open a Support ticket and we will help with issuing a refund.
Will this impact any of my services?
These changes only affect billing and will not affect your Linode or any running services.
I would rather continue with prepaid billing.
We understand this is a major change, which is why we are extending prepaid discounts to customers even after the upgrade to Hourly billing. That being said, we will be unable to delay these changes beyond March 31st, 2019. If you prefer, you are able to make a manual payment on the Classic Manager or the Cloud Manager interfaces to pre-load the account with a credit. You will continue to receive monthly invoices to alert you when the cost of your services is deducted from that credit.
I still have questions…
We'd be happy to clarify further. If you have general questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. If you have questions specific to your account or billing, please open a Support ticket instead.