I got charged today for the Hobby plan and I'm confused as to why cause Fly.io didn't send any emails

I wanted to try a new project I have and I created a new organization a few days ago. Today I got billed and I’m confused. I went to look for what happened and it looks like the hobby plan is the default now. What does that mean? And what’s more intriguing is that I got billed $5.36. What’s the bill for the .36? I would like to understand.

Also Fly should really communicate via emails with their clients and not only on this forum and sometimes the docs. I’m happy to pay if that’s what I have to do but my apps are so small and have no traffic that having them hosted for free is good for me. But like I said I’m ready to pay for when it will be necessary. Again Fly.io’s communication channels should involve more than this forum and/or the docs. I guess most people would be happy to get the new announcements in their inbox instead of seeing the bill on their credit card by the end of the month.

Lastly I deleted the two apps I had in the org and tried to delete it. But I can’t. Not sure why cause it still says I can’t delete the org because I have active apps. Weird!

If you go to the fly.io dashboard you can look at invoices (and all of your running systems) and download a current invoice and past invoices, complete with a per-item breakdown of detail.

fly dashboard · Fly Docs has some docs about how to launch the dashboard from flyctl.

Hey thanks for chiming in, I just looked at the bill again and it looks like I’m getting billed for January 1 to February 29, and the 36 cents was what I used for the past few days. Now that would make sense, only if they announced that they were taking the 5 dollars at the beginning of the billing cycle instead of the end, which they didn’t do before. So it’s more weird now.

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Hi @jgb-solutions, hopefully I can clarify some of this.

We recently changed the default plan to the Hobby plan. When you created your new organization, it should’ve said you were signing up to a $5/month plan. We’re not trying to surprise you with bills, so let us know if that wasn’t clear!

It looks like you created the organization on the 29th - the $0.36 is the cost of the plan ($5/month) prorated for the final days of January. It seems potentially Stripe didn’t send an individual invoice for this and just added it as a debit to your account, such that it was included on this subsequent invoice. I’m sorry this is presented so confusingly. We are actively working on improving the billing experience, so that stuff like this is clearer.

We bill for usage at the end of the billing cycle, but as far as I’m aware, we’ve always billed for the monthly cost of a plan at the beginning of the cycle. I think maybe this is unexpected since you have a number of other orgs on what is now our Legacy Hobby plan, which did not include a monthly charge.

Let me know if anything needs further explanation.

edit: Just to say - all your orgs on the legacy plan will remain on the legacy plan, i.e. will not have a monthly cost. The monthly cost only applies to new organizations!

Hi @jfent, thanks for replying! When I created the new org I didn’t really pay attention to the details. I just added my card as usual and kept going. To be honest I did see the $5 plan which was a little bit different visually, but I just thought that it was going to be credited to the org just as Im used to since I don’t have high traffic yet for the apps and no need for bigger machines.

I was billed once for an org and I was fine with it because I had went beyond the free allowance. But this time and also at the beginning of the year for the IP addresses, the surprising bill was not fun. I really think Fly.io should consider a better way to communication new features/plans to users. All other services I use do it by email. But thanks though!

I’m waiting for the decision of the billing team, then I will either pay what they said I owe or the bill can be removed and I can finally be able to delete the org since that was not possible last time I checked.

I’m also struggling to understand this situation. @jgb-solutions has been charged $5 directly, yet in Fly’s pricing docs, under new customers, the language makes it sound like new customers are credited $5, not debited.

In otherwords: Fly provides $5 startup credit to a new user. Once the free allowance limits are exceeded, that usage is deducted from the provided $5 credit from Fly.

When you sign up for a Fly.io account, we create a default (“personal”) organization for you, which receives a one-time $5 sign-up credit to let you test-drive Fly.io at no cost.

The “at no cost” element as well as receiving a one-time … credit is very easily understood as anything but the user being billed $5 from their credit card on sign-up.

It would be great to have this properly clarified and the documentation updated if it needs to be.
I have no real confidence in understanding what’s going on…

I also experienced the same thing and find it confusing. I even emailed the billing account and got no response. It’s quite poor that they don’t respond to billing emails to help me clarify that. And if at all they changed the Hobby plan structure as @jfent said, they should at least communicate that over email to all their customers.

@jfent do you mean that if I’m on the hobby plan, I’d get charged $5 even if I didn’t use any service? that seems to be what I’m experiencing since last month.

I also agree with @jgb-solutions that the forum should not be the only place to communicate these things with users. Not everyone keeps track of the forum, and for things like pricing change, at least communicate over email. Or respond to billing email since I assume that’s where people contact you for billing issues

To clarify, the sign up credit is for new users who sign up for a Fly.io account.

If you add a new organization to an existing account, then that org will automatically be on the $5/month Hobby plan.

Currently, you’re charged for a plan as soon as you sign up for that plan, prorated to the end of the month. For example, if you signed up for a Hobby plan today (the 6th) you’d be charged $4.03 right away to cover to the end of the month, and then $5/mo + [extra usage from the previous month], on subsequent invoices. You get $5 of usage with the plan. In the case of this example, you’d get $4.03 of usage included for Feb and then $5 of usage included for March, and so on.

Also to be clear, your existing organizations will remain on the Legacy Hobby plan. This pricing applies to new accounts and organizations.

We’ll make updates to the docs and ongoing updates to the UI to make all this as clear as possible.

Pricing page is now super-duper confusing. The following two paragraphs no longer make sense and indicate that there is a free month, but no longer a free tier.

What I “thought” was happening was as follows:

  1. All new users automatically on a default personal org. That org is NOT charged the $5/month. This personal org has a free tier and pay for usage after that point. Has a 1-time $5 credit.
  2. All other created orgs must be on a hobby or larger plan. There is some free usage associated with it, but the monthly fee still applies.

What the docs indicate at this point is there is no more free tier and the minimum cost is $5/month?

Hi @pmbanugo, at the point we made the change to have new organizations go on the $5/month plan, we didn’t change anyone’s existing plan. In other words, if you had an organization that was on a $0/month hobby plan, it should still be on that plan.

If you create a new organization, yes, there is a $5/month cost for the plan which comes with $5/month of included usage. You should only be charged this amount on organizations created after we made the change, which happened on January 25th. The plans page should’ve shown you the cost of the Hobby plan as $5/month when you created any new organizations, but it seems like it’s not clear enough at the moment and we’re looking into ways to make it more obvious that you’re signing up to a paid plan.

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The default personal organization gets a one-time $5 credit. Once the credit has been consumed, the personal organization then moves from the Hobby Trial to the Hobby plan, which is $5/month with $5/month included usage.

Additional new organizations are immediately placed on the Hobby plan ($5/month).

Yes, this is correct. We now give new users a chance to try us out without paying via the one-time $5 credit for new sign ups, instead of offering a plan that is free in perpetuity.

One additional clarification that might be useful: all plans are $X/month with $X/month included usage. So if your usage is >$X/month, then the cost of the plan is effectively $0.

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