Is the Netflix sharing fee actually happening? Binge-watchers, beware

Stressing about a Netflix sharing fee? Here's what to know before starting that true-crime marathon...

netflix scene from bridgerton season 1 on illustrated tv with multicolored background
(Image credit: Netflix)

Uh oh! Is the party over? Will the Netflix sharing fee actually happen...for real?

While binge-watchers gear up for the Bridgerton season 2 release date—and keep busy with Bad Vegan, Netflix's documentary sensation, in the meantime—the streaming service has decided to crack down on those who are getting away with freebies à la Ms. Sorokin in Inventing Anna

Password-sharing has long been a problem for the platform, but now Netflix plans to launch a test allowing primary account holders to pay an extra fee for users outside their households. Could you be affected? Is your marathon of the best true crime on Netflix going to be cut short? You might want to have a chat with your primary account holder before proceeding further. 

What's going on with the Netflix sharing fee?

Variety broke the news that the company will begin testing out an additional fee for main subscribers who've shared their passwords with friends and relatives outside of their homes. Chengyi Long, director of product innovation, said this test allows members to share their info "easily and securely, while also paying a bit more."

Currently, the locations undergoing the test include Chile, Costa Rica and Peru. It's unclear whether or not this initiative will expand to other markets, but assuming all goes according to plan, we cannot imagine the company declining to expand the test to other areas. 

Those with Netflix’s Standard and Premium plans will be entitled to use the "Add an extra member" feature, which allows two subsidiary accounts outside of the main household to access the subscription. The additional fees, per Variety, are 2380 CLP in Chile, $2.99 USD in Costa Rica and 7.9 PEN in Peru. 

The company claims password sharing between homes—which is forbidden, albeit ignored, according to the terms of use—is the reason why they haven't been able to calculate data accordingly for new series and films. 

It might be time to part ways like Damian and Giannina: plenty of viewers who are still using their parents' or ex-roomie's account will have to find an alternative method, perhaps as an extra member or a new subscriber entirely.

All in all, the platform does not fool around: between this test and the Netflix timer feature, excessive viewing on others' behalf is going to be challenged, so adjust your subscriptions wisely...and be mindful about dishing out those coveted passwords.

Danielle Valente
Digital News Writer

Need a TV show recommendation? Maybe a few decor tips? Danielle, a digital news writer at Future, has you covered. Her work appears throughout the company’s lifestyle brands, including My Imperfect Life, Real Homes, and woman&home. Mainly, her time is spent at My Imperfect Life, where she’s attuned to the latest entertainment trends and dating advice for Gen Z.

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids, where she got to experience the best of the city from the point of view of its littlest residents. Before that, she was a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, and amNewYork, to name a few. 

When Danielle’s not writing, you can find her testing out a new recipe, reading a book (suggestions always welcome), or rearranging the furniture in her apartment…again.