If you were charged immediately when you joined your creator’s page, this article will help you understand your billing schedule and what to expect if you make any changes. Feel free to skip ahead using the links below if you know your question, or read through to learn more:
- How my billing schedule works – what to expect next
- What happens when I increasing my membership?
- What happens when I decreasing my membership?
- What happens if I cancel my membership?
- How Annual memberships work
Note: Examples are in US Dollar ($), however, your creator may bill in Euro (€) or British Pounds (£) depending on the currency they’ve opted into.
What can I expect if I was billed immediately
If you were charged immediately when you joined your creator’s page it means that your creator bills patrons immediately when they join, what we refer to as “charge up front.”
With charge up front, patrons are charged immediately to join, and then on the 1st of each month following their initial membership payment. Unless cancelled, your membership will automatically renew on the 1st of each month.
Patrons are billed in Pacific Standard Time, so if you would like to subscribe on the 1st of the month, check what time it is in PST, before joining – you will be billed on the 1st of the following month, regardless of your join date.
Your initial payment unlocks instant access to the creator's Patreon community. You will have access to patron-only posts right away and creators can start sending you any benefits that you might have earned. That said, creators may still maintain a monthly benefit distribution system, .
How does billing work after my first charge?
Once you’ve been charged to join your creator’s page, all following payments will take place on the 1st of each month for that month's access (PST). If you become a patron to a creator towards the end of the month, please note that you will be charged again on the 1st, regardless of your join date or time. Your monthly payments after your initial charge, grant you access to the creator’s patron only posts for the entire month.
Say you join a charge up front creator's $10 Tier on June 25th. Once you confirm, you're charged $10 immediately and unlock the creator's back catalog of patron only posts. You are then charged on July 1st for the entire month of July. This means that even if you cancel your membership, you'll still have access to the creator's patron-only content for the rest of the month, and will be marked as an "Active patron" on the creator's end.
Are you a creator? You can review our guide about billing patrons for more information.
What can I expect if I increase my membership?
If you increase your membership tier or amount for a creator who is charging up front, you will be charged the difference between your payment on the 1st of the month (or the date you joined) and your new membership amount.
You have a membership of $10.00 USD and you were charged $10.00 USD for that memberships on April 1st. You increase your membership to $15.00 USD on April 15th. You'll be charged the difference between $15.00 - $10.00 = $5.00 USD, immediately. Come the 1st of May, you'll be charged your new membership amount of $15.00 for May membership access.
What can I expect if I decrease my membership?
If you decrease your membership tier or amount to a creator who charges patrons up front, you'll experience no charge, nor any refund of the difference. Because you've already paid for the month in full, you will retain your higher membership until the end of the month.
Let’s say you join a creator’s page on January 7th, and you are immediately charged your membership amount of $15.00 USD. On January 26th, you decrease your membership to $5.00 USD. Your membership decrease will take effect the following month. Come the first February, you are charged your new membership amount of $5.00 USD, and you loose access to the higher membership content.
Please remember we bill patrons in Pacific Standard Time. If you have any questions about what your first payment gets you, or would like to request any refund, reach out to your creator directly with any inquiries. You can find our best practices for requesting refunds from creators, here.
I cancelled my membership with a creator who charges up front
You can cancel your membership with a charge up front creator at any time, and it will take effect the following month. Since you’ve paid for the current month up front, you will still have access to our creator’s patron only content for the remainder of the month. You will not be refunded a prorated amount.
Let’s say you are charged on September 1st and decide that you need to take a break from support your favorite creator. You cancel your membership on September 13th. You have access to your creator’s patron only posts for your tier for the rest of September. On October 1st, your membership will not renew, and you will lose access to your creator’s patron only posts.
I have an Annual membership, what does that mean?
Some creators may offer discounted Annual memberships for select tiers. If you join an Annual membership with a creator, your membership payment will process in full, immediately after you confirm your membership.
Once your Annual membership payment processes, you’ll instantly have access to creator’s already published patron only posts, and may be immediately eligible for other benefits the creator offers – similar to our month charge up front option.
Your Annual membership will automatically renew after 1 year on the 1st of the following month.
Let’s say you confirm your Annual plan with a creator for a 16% discount of $9.60 for the entire year (versus $1 monthly). If you join on August 7th 2020, your plan will automatically renew on September 1st 2021.
You can cancel your membership at any time. Cancelling will stop future Annual payments, and you will lose access on the 1st of the month, after a year has passed.
You can learn all about what to expect with Annual payment plans, here: