PSA: Xbox Game Pass prices increase tomorrow, so stock up today

Xbox Game Pass in 2023
(Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The price of Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft's all-you-can-eat gaming subscription service, is going up on July 6 (tomorrow).
  • Specifically, Game Pass is going from $9.99 to $10.99 (€10.99 / £8.99). Game Pass Ultimate, meanwhile, is going from $14.99 to $16.99 (€14.99 / £12.99).
  • Notably, the price of PC Game Pass is staying the same.
  • Before the price hike begins, you can "stock up" on subscription time by purchasing prepaid Xbox Game Pass Ultimate codes and stacking them. In total, you can pay for 36 months of Game Pass time in advance.

Xbox Game Pass is Microsoft's all-you-can-eat gaming subscription service that grants access to over 400 games across the Xbox and PC ecosystems. The prices of Xbox Game Pass and its elite Xbox Game Pass Ultimate tier have remained steady at $9.99 and $14.99 respectively since the service was introduced, but on July 6 (tomorrow), Microsoft is hiking them up. Specifically, Game Pass will be $10.99 (€10.99 / £8.99), while Game Pass Ultimate will cost $16.99 (€14.99 / £12.99). That means today is the last day to subscribe to Xbox Game Pass or purchase additional subscription time at its current price point. Notably, PC Game Pass will not be affected by this increase.

Microsoft announced its plan to raise Xbox Series X and Game Pass prices last month, noting that the increase was not related to the firm's ongoing efforts to acquire Activision Blizzard King. "These Game Pass price adjustments are not related to the Activision Blizzard deal and are intended to match local market conditions," said Kari Perez, Head of Communications for Xbox.

The new prices will affect new subscribers tomorrow, while current subscribers will see their recurring cost increase on August 13 (September 13 if they live in Germany). Game Pass users with prepaid subscription time won't have to pay the increased prices until that period ends.

(Image credit: Matt Brown | Windows Central)

Since using prepaid codes for Game Pass will allow you to dodge the hiked prices for a significant period of time, we definitely recommend buying several of them if you're planning to stay subscribed in the long term. In fact, you can prepay for up to 36 months of Game Pass, though doing so would require quite a large upfront payment. Even so, hardcore Xbox fans should keep the option in mind.

It's unclear what will happen to prepaid code listings at retailers when the price increase starts tomorrow, but Amazon has one and three-month codes for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate available now for small discounts. The former costs $13.82 (down $1.17 from $14.99), while the latter are $41.66 (down $3.33 from $44.99). Each three month code you buy saves you about $9 compared to what you'd have to pay after the price change, so there's definitely value here to consider taking advantage of.

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is generally considered to be the best tier of Game Pass. Not only does it give you Game Pass access on both Xbox and PC, but it also allows you to use Xbox Cloud Gaming. Also known as xCloud, this feature allows you to stream tons of Xbox and PC games to multiple different types of devices as long as you have an internet connection.

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

Xbox Game Pass is about to get more expensive, but thankfully, retailers have prepaid codes you can "stack" to get up to 36 months of subscription time ahead of tomorrow's price hike. Currently, one and three month codes are discounted on Amazon.

Buy at: Amazon (1 month) | Amazon (3 months)

Brendan Lowry

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.