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Paramount Plus Ad-Free Plan: How Much And Should You Upgrade?

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The standard Paramount Plus plan costs $4.99 per month but consumers can opt to upgrade to the ad-free version instead. While going the ad-free route does increase the cost by an additional $5 per month, some households may find the benefits on offer make the higher monthly cost more worthwhile. For others, sticking with the cheaper, ad-supported plan might be the best option.

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Similar to many other streaming services, Paramount Plus offers more than one plan for households to choose from. No matter which Paramount Plus plan a household signs up to, they do get access to the same content library. That is, both plans provide access to more than 30,000 episodes and movies from popular networks including BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, and Paramount, among others. However, upgrading to the ad-free plan will open up some additional content, as well as some additional features.

The standard $4.99 per month plan is the Paramount Plus Essential plan. For those looking to upgrade to the ad-free experience, the Paramount Plus Premium plan is priced at $9.99 per month. For reference, Paramount Plus does also offer annual subscriptions which can help to save on the cost. For example, the annual Essential plan costs $49.99 per year which works out to be around $4.17 per month. Again, for those looking to upgrade to the ad-free Premium plan, the annual cost of a subscription is $99.99 per year, the equivalent to around $8.33 per month.

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Occasionally, Paramount Plus does run promotions and deals which can help to lower the cost further. However, the cheapest someone can typically sign up to the ad-free Paramount Plus plan is at $8.33 per month when paying annually for a subscription.

Should You Upgrade To Premium?

For many households, the Essential plan is likely to be more than enough and especially for those that are looking to save on the cost of streaming each month. However, Premium does open up some additional features that might be worth paying extra for. As to be expected with an ad-free plan, the removal of ads is one of the key benefits of the Premium plan, and one of the main reasons why a household might consider upgrading.

Even then, consumers will want to be aware that although the Paramount Plus Premium plan is an ad-free plan, it is not totally ad-free. While the vast majority of content that’s available to stream through Paramount Plus will be shown without ads, it is still possible that subscribers will see some ads during some shows. In addition, as Paramount Plus also provides access to some live TV content, ads that cannot be skipped will also be shown on these channels, even when paying for ad-free Paramount Plus.

Paramount+ with ads

Speaking of live TV, this might be another reason to consider upgrading to Premium. Unlike the Essential plan, the Paramount Plus Premium plan does also provide access to a subscriber’s local CBS channel. If not currently signed up to a live TV plan, or not receiving access to a local CBS station through a live TV subscription, this can be a great way to watch live CBS at a low monthly cost. Again, this is access to the live CBS channel so even though Premium is also an ad-free plan, ads will still be shown.

Another key difference between Essential and Premium is the ability to download shows to watch at a later time. Even though there are some restrictions on which shows can be downloaded, Paramount Plus allows downloading of most shows including the service’s originals. However, downloads are only possible on mobile devices like an iPhone, iPad, Android phone or tablet, and downloaded videos only remain available for 30 days.

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Paramount Plus ad-free summary

The ad-free Paramount Plus experience costs $5 more each month than the ad-supported plan, or $4.17 per month on average when signing up to the annual Premium plan. Whether it is worth upgrading from the Essential plan will depend on a few factors. The main ones being whether the ads shown with the Essential plan are too frequent and whether access to local CBS is important. If both of these matter, then upgrading to the ad-free Paramount Plus plan is almost certainly going to be worth it. While there are some other benefits, such as downloads, these are more minor and should be considered additional perks rather than reasons to upgrade.

Essential PlanPremium Plan
Access to all on-demand videosAccess to all on-demand videos
Live NFL and Champions LeagueLive NFL and Champions League
AdsNo ads (mostly)
Local CBS
Downloads (mobile only)
Paramount+ ad-supported versus ad-free plans

In reality, Paramount Plus is a no-commitment service so there is no issue in existing subscribers upgrading to the Premium plan to see if it is right for them. If it’s not, they can just as easily downgrade again to the Essential plan and save on the cost. For those new to Paramount Plus, and not specifically in need of access to their local CBS station, then it is probably worth trying the Essential plan first.

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John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Better to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingbetter.com or on Twitter

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