Here’s the basic overview of how Audible works and then we’ll jump into Audible Q&As!
How Does Audible Work?
There are two parts of Audible – one is the Audible Plus catalog. Think of it as Netflix for audiobooks. You pay a monthly fee and have access to unlimited listening from anything in the Audible Plus catalog.
There are a LOT of options in the Plus catalog, but definitely not every audiobook that exists. Don’t expect to find buzzy new bestsellers included in the Plus catalog.
If you aren’t super picky about WHAT you listen to, but want a lot of options, the Audible Plus subscription is probably a good fit for you (I have a list of favorite Audible Plus titles here, plus a list of favorite kid books included in Audible Plus as well!).
You won’t own any Audible Plus titles, which means you only have access to them while you have an active Audible Plus membership.
The other part of Audible is the full catalog which includes virtually every audiobook imaginable. You can either buy these with real money or use Audible credits to purchase them.
If you’re looking for bestsellers or to own your audiobooks forever, this is for you.
If you have an Audible Premium Plus membership, you’ll get a credit each month that you can spend on any book in the Audible catalog, AND you’ll get access to the Audible Plus catalog AND you’ll have access to Audible sales when audiobooks are on super sale (and are less expensive to buy with cash than using an Audible credit – for instance, if an audiobook is on sale for $3.99, it doesn’t make sense to spend your Audible credit, which costs you around $15-17/month depending on your plan, on a book that cheap).
Any Audible audiobook you purchase with cash or an Audible credit is yours forever, even if you cancel your Audible membership.
Now let’s get into some of the FAQs about how Audible works!
Is Audible included with a Prime membership?
No. Audible is a separate subscription so you’ll need to sign up separately for Audible. You don’t need to have a Prime membership to have an Audible subscription.
Does Audible ever do deals on their membership?
Yes – usually 3-4 times a year, there is some sort of Audible deal. Sometimes it’s a few free months, sometimes it is 3-4 months at a discounted rate.
Can I get those Audible deals if I’m a current member?
If you have a current membership, it won’t offer you a deal (and often it won’t work to cancel and then try to get the deal because your membership will run until the end of your billing period, so you’ll still be a current member for a bit, unless the timing works out). You CAN reach out to Audible customer service and see if they’ll honor the deal for you or offer you a deal (this is hit or miss but works for plenty of people) OR you can go to cancel your Audible account and they’ll often offer you a good deal to stay!
Can I gift an Audible membership?
Yes (but only at full price – I’ve never once seen the option to gift an Audible deal to someone).
Can I gift an Audible book?
Yes! I have step-by-step directions for how to do that here.
What if I use my Audible credit on an audiobook and hate it?
Good news! You can return it – I have step by step directions for how to do that here. (Note that this is NOT intended to be used as a lending library – buy/return/repeat – if you do it more than a few times, they’ll remove the option to do so from your account, so save it for when you really are unhappy with an audiobook so that it’s available when you need it).
How do I cancel my Audible membership?
Directions for how to do that right here!
Can I pause my Audible membership?
Yes! Here’s how to do that.
Can I roll over my credits if I don’t use them one month?
Yes! Unspent credits rollover and are good for a year.
Can I cancel my membership and keep my credits?
No – once you cancel your account, your unspent credits will disappear. Use them before you cancel and then you’ll own those books forever and can listen at your leisure.
Can I preorder an audiobook with my credits and then cancel?
Yes! Pre-ordering counts as spending your credit, so you can pre-order whatever audiobook you want, then cancel your membership and you’ll still get the Audible audiobook the day it releases and you can listen in the free Audible app without an active membership!
Can I make Make Your Own Yoto Cards with Audible audiobooks?
Not without violating the terms of service by breaking the DRM on an Audible audiobook which risks getting your account shut down and your entire library deleted. Use Libro.FM instead to legally make Yoto cards!
How many audiobooks can I get from Audible Plus at a time?
There is no limit! Add as many as you’d like to your library!
How do I find the books included with Audible Plus?
Here’s a little tutorial!
If I use up my credit, can I still buy audiobooks?
Absolutely! And because you’re an Audible member, you’ll get a 30% discount on any audiobooks you buy!
When do you use your Audible credits versus using your library?
I use my Audible credits on books my kids will listen to a million times, book club titles, and books with massive hold lines at the library!
What are some alternatives to Audible?
Libro.FM is a great one – it supports local bookstores and I have a whole post about how it works here! Chirp is a flash deal site for audiobooks so you don’t need a membership and can just grab audiobooks when they’re on sale for a few bucks. Everand (formerly called Scribd) is like Netflix for audiobooks and has a ton of options, including big new releases, in their library. And, of course, check your library – many of them use Hoopla or Overdrive/Libby to give you audiobook access for free!
How do I listen to Audible audiobooks?
You can listen in a browser on your computer, on the free Audible app, or through an Alexa device.
Can you listen in the car?
Yes! I connect my phone to my car’s audio system via Bluetooth and then play from the Audible app.
Can I listen offline?
Yes – you’ll need to download the book to your device in the app and then it’ll play without internet!
Can you listen to the same book on different devices?
Yes! If you’re switching between devices, you’ll want to keep syncing on so it holds your spot between devices. If, say, you and your partner are both listening to the same book but separately, turn syncing off so each device holds it spot.
Can you listen to an Audible audiobook on a Kindle reader?
Yes! You’ll need bluetooth headphones and ONLY Audible audiobooks will work – not any other audiobooks.
Any other questions about how Audible works? Happy to help – leave them in the comments!
if you liked this post about how does audible work, you might also like these other posts:
- The Best Books in the Audible Plus Catalog
- How to add an Audible audiobook to a Kids Kindle
- 20+ Fantastic Long Audiobooks
Photos by Heather Mildenstein