Disney is giving ESPN+ its second price hike of 2021. Starting on August 13th, Disney will raise the price of subscriptions to $6.99 a month and $69.99 a year. This January, Disney bumped the yearly price from $49.99 to $59.99, and last August, Disney increased the monthly plan from $4.99 to $5.99. In other words, this is the third price hike in the last 12 months.
This is sure to be a disappointing development for sports fans with ESPN+ subscriptions, but there is a silver lining. The Disney bundle (which features subscriptions to Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+) is still only $13.99 a month. Buying a subscription to each service separately will cost close to $21 a month after the price hike in August. The savings are substantial enough that some subscribers might consider buying the entire bundle rather than pick and choose.
Reasons for the latest ESPN+ price hike
As Variety reports, ESPN had a number of explanations for the increased price. ESPN recently struck a deal with the NHL that will see 75 hockey games stream exclusively on ESPN+. The network also made a 12-year pact with All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) to bring the Wimbledon tennis tournament to its service. ESPN+ will be the only service with full replays for all matches.
ESPN+ will be the English- and Spanish-language home for LaLiga in the US through 2029. Hundreds of live soccer matches will stream exclusively on the service. And starting next year, ESPN+ will be the home of PGA Tour Live, with coverage of dozens of golf tournaments.
As the service continues to expand, the price will go up. In the meantime, Disney undoubtedly hopes to push as many subscribers to the bundle as possible. Hulu also offers a live TV service, and if you’d prefer, you can include live TV in the Disney bundle for $72.99 a month.