According to a news tip given by a South African reader to Game Informer, Microsoft will be tripling the price of Xbox Live membership in South Africa and raising the price in five other countries.
If you live Austria, Hungary, Israel, South Africa, Sweden, or Turkey you might have received an email that looked something like this, alerting you to the impending price hike.
To give you a little insight, R 50 works out to $3.25 USD and R 159 converts to $10.33 USD. This would make a year’s subscription to Xbox Live R979, or around $63. As it stands now, we here in the states pay $9.99 a month for the service and $59.99 for a full year.
You can see how pricing will change in the other countries below.
- Hungary: 2,000 Ft (Approximately $7.19 per month)
- Israel: 37.99 ILS (Approximately $10.05 per month)
- Sweden: 79 kr (Approximately $9.58 per month)
- Turkey: 18.99 TL (Approximately $6.40 per month)
It seems like the price adjustments have to do with the markets in those areas as rep told GI,
We occasionally update pricing in a given market to provide a balance of service and value, and in some instances, meet currency fluctuations within the region, and will be adjusting the price of Xbox Live Gold subscription in a small number of markets on June 20, 2016…
As for Austria, that is where things get somewhat tricky. GI pointed out, like in the states, each country in the European Union has a different sales tax, or value added tax (VAT) that is applied to every purchase. The tax can range from seventeen to twenty-four percent, and in Austria it’s twenty percent. According to VG 24/7 this means that the tax could go over the usual 6.99 EU, making the service more expensive.
When GI asked for clarification on the change, they received the following statement.
We believe this model suits the way our fans want to pay for Xbox Live Gold memberships in Austria. We are always listening to customer feedback, but have nothing to share about other markets at this time.
Microsoft later issued a follow-up and while it didn’t include any prices, it did provide some additional information.
This is based on market rather than currency, and the new price in Austria aligns with other European markets…Xbox Live Gold codes are not region-locked. Customers may redeem any Xbox Live code regardless of where it was purchased.
So far it looks like the pricing changes won’t be making their way stateside, but we will update you if anything changes.