Azure credits are a perk offered by Microsoft that help you save money on your cloud bill. Like a gift card for a retail store, credits are applied to your account to help cover costs until they are exhausted or expire. In a sense, these credits act as a spending limit because any usage of resources or products that are not free will be deducted from the credit amount. We found 7 different ways that you can earn credits and start saving on your Azure bill.
1. Visual Studio Subscription
If you’re a Visual Studio subscriber, you get monthly Azure credits that can be used to explore and test out different Azure services. The amount of Azure credits that you receive will depend on the type of Visual Studio subscription that you have.
With a Visual Studio Enterprise subscription, you get a standard of $150 in monthly credits. For subscriptions through MSDN Platforms you get $100 a month. For Visual Studio Professional and Visual Studio Test Professional, you get $50 a month.
2. Azure for Students
Full-time students at an accredited, two or four-year educational institution in a STEM-related field are eligible for these credits.
When a student signs up with their school email address, Microsoft gives them $100 in credit in order to help them further their career and build their skills in Azure thanks to the free access to learning paths, labs, and professional developer tools.
3. Azure Free Account
With a free account, you get access to a number of popular Azure services for no cost. In addition to access to free services, you’ll also get a $200 credit. It’s important to note that while the free account lasts for 12 months, your credits must be spent in the first 30 days.
Whether you’re just getting started in Azure or are looking to further your knowledge, a free account is always a great way to test the waters without having to make a long term commitment.
4. Microsoft Partner Network
In the Partner Network, those that are members of Microsoft’s Action Pack program receive $100 of Azure credits every month. Based on your computing needs, you can use these credits for any Azure service; some examples include, Virtual Machines, Web Sites, Cloud Services, Mobile Services, Storage, SQL Database, Content Delivery Network, HDInsight, Media Services, and more.
The great part about this is that there are a handful of usage scenarios that won’t consume all of the $100 credit – you can use this pricing calculator to estimate how much you could use with a $100 credit.
Any of the unused monthly credits can’t be carried over to succeeding months or transferred to other Azure subscriptions, so make sure to use it while you can!
5. Microsoft for Startups
This global program is designed to help startups as they build and scale their organizations. Part of the technical enablement features that are always free and available to all startups is $200 of Azure credits that can be used towards any service for 30 days. This is a great option for startups because it’s free and gives you the ability to explore all the different offerings without having to spend any money.
6. Azure for Education
With Azure for Education, users are given access to the learning resources and developer tools that educators and students need in order to build cloud-based skills. This program is available to students, educators and institutions – once signed up, educators get $200 of Azure credits.
Whether you’re teaching advanced workloads, interested in building cloud-based skills, or just getting started in your Azure learning journey, this program provides guidance and resources for individuals looking to further their knowledge in Azure.
7. Microsoft for Nonprofits
In an effort to make their technology more affordable and accessible for nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations, Microsoft offers donated and discounted products. Each year, approved organizations receive $3,500 in Azure credits which can be used to purchase all Azure workloads created by Microsoft (excluding Azure Active Directory, which is licensed under EM+S).
No matter the industry you’re in or learning level you’re at, there are a wide variety of credits and resources offered that can help make Azure an affordable option for you.