Courtesy of Netflix
Netflix’s increased rates for existing U.K. subscribers that were announced last year come into effect this week.
The streamer’s standard plan increases from £8.99 ($12.22) to £9.99 ($13.58) and the premium tier from £11.99 ($16.30) to £13.99 ($19.02) monthly. The basic plan remains at the same price of £5.99 ($8.14).
“This year we’re spending over $1 billion in the U.K. on new, locally-made films, series and documentaries, helping to create thousands of jobs and showcasing British storytelling at its best –– with everything from ‘The Crown,’ to ‘Sex Education’ and ‘Top Boy,’ plus many, many more,” a Netflix spokesperson told Variety.
“Our price change reflects the significant investments we’ve made in new TV shows and films, as well as improvements to our product. Our basic membership will remain at the same price, ensuring as many people as possible can enjoy our content.”
The increased rates applied to all new U.K. subscribers from Dec. 10, 2020.
Netflix also highlighted the areas across the U.K. where production provided employment opportunities locally. These include “The Irregulars” in Liverpool, “The English Game” in Manchester, “Zero Chill” in Sheffield, “Sex Education” in Wales, “The Last Bus” and “Bridgerton” in the South West and “Top Boy” and “Afterlife” in London.
The price hikes come at a time when rival Disney Plus is set to increase its monthly fee from Feb. 23 from £5.99 ($8.14) to £7.99 ($10.87).
Netflix, Disney Plus and their competitors including Amazon Prime Video will be streaming before a captive audience as the U.K. is now under its third coronavirus-induced lockdown. SVOD services grew 42% in 2020, according to recent figures compiled by the British Association for Screen Entertainment.
Variety's Naman Ramachandran contributed to this post.