How to Gift Someone a Hulu Subscription: 5 Steps


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If you are one of the millions of Americans who have “cut the cable,” you may have subscribed to Hulu. After watching reruns of some of your favorite old shows, you may have thought how nice it would be for your parents or grandparents to have access to Hulu, too.

Jump ahead to these sections:

A Hulu gift certificate would be a great Mother’s Day present, or a unique get well gift for someone who is going through cancer treatments. Depending on the package you choose, it can be particularly affordable.

Steps for Gifting a Hulu Subscription

You might think the first step in purchasing a Hulu gift certificate would be to visit the Hulu website. This isn’t the case. Let us help you through the process.

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Step 1: Make sure this would be an appropriate gift

Before purchasing a Hulu gift card, consider the circumstances whether or not your friend already has the streaming service. While Hulu might be a nice “Best Wishes” gift for a couple, it may not be a great choice as a sympathy present for someone who lost a parent. Depending on how close you are to the person grieving, you can offer to run errands, help plan a virtual funeral on a platform like GatheringUs, or simply offer a shoulder for them to cry on instead.

Hulu subscriptions often come bundled with other services. Hulu has made deals with Sprint, Spotify, and iTunes. You can also purchase a bundle that includes Disney+ and ESPN Plus. Unless someone pays close attention to what they are signing up for, they may have access to Hulu without even knowing it. 

Sometimes people use another family member’s login and password to access the content on streaming platforms. 

Although most people who receive gifts would simply send a thank you note or text and never tell you that your gift was a waste of money, a good gift-giver makes sure such a mistake doesn’t happen in the first place.

Step 2: Read the fine print

As we mentioned earlier, Hulu is often bundled with other services. You may have free access to Hulu’s content because you have cell phone coverage through Sprint, or maybe it came with your Spotify service. 

If your giftee currently has access to Hulu through one of those services, you can’t use a gift card. If your friend has access to Hulu through a bundle with Disney+ and ESPN Plus, you can’t use a gift card. Gift cards also can’t be applied toward Hulu Premium add-ons, like HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, and STARZ. 

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Step 3: Choose which Hulu package you would like to give

If you know that your friend or family member does not have access to Hulu through any other sources, now you need to decide how much to put on the gift card. Since Hulu gives customers many different options, this decision may be more complicated than you would think.

As of this writing, the Basic Hulu plan is $5.99 per month. This means that one year’s access to Hulu will cost $71.88. Keep in mind a Basic Hulu plan includes commercials. 

To watch Hulu content without ads, you need to purchase the Premium plan. Currently, this plan is $11.99 per month. One year of Hulu’s Premium plan costs $143.88.

Hulu has two other more expensive options as well. You can also purchase the Hulu + Live TV plan. This gives users access to all the content on Hulu as well as access to at least 60 more channels. The channels vary depending upon location. This plan is $54.99 per month or $659.88 per year. Finally, the ad-free version of Hulu + Live TV is $60.99 per month. 

Step 4: Buy a gift card

According to the Hulu website, gift cards for their streaming service can be purchased through “various retailers in-store or online.”

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Step 5: Tell your friend how to redeem the gift card

If your friend is not tech-savvy, they may have a difficult time knowing how to redeem the gift card. Here are some basic instructions.

  1. Visit Hulu and create an account.
  2. Under the “Payment Information” section, look for a box that says “Gift or Promotional Code.” Enter the 12-digit code located on the back of the gift card. 
  3. You may or may not choose to add a debit or credit card number to your account information as well. Doing so will prevent disruption of service when the credit from your gift card is up.

Hulu Gift Subscriptions: Frequently Asked Questions

The most challenging part of starting a Hulu account is understanding the pricing structure for the different bundles. Besides the four packages listed above, you can also get Premium Add-Ons and Features. Once you decide on the package that’s best for you, maneuvering through the website to make those selections is rather simple. 

Here are some frequently asked questions from potential Hulu subscribers.

What’s included in a Hulu subscription? 

This question has multiple answers, but we will answer as simply as possible. For $5.99, you get one month’s access to thousands of TV shows and movies through Hulu. The shows come from a wide variety of networks, which include CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox, FX, ESPN, AMC, Crunchyroll, and Disney. If you purchase the $5.99 rate plan, you will be periodically interrupted by commercials while watching. 

Can you pay for an entire year of Hulu for a loved one? 

Yes, you can pay for an entire year of Hulu for a loved one. If your friend has no other way of accessing the content, you should be able to buy a gift card from a local retailer for one year of ad-free streaming. 

The nice thing about Hulu gift cards is that you can purchase them for a specific dollar amount, and then the recipient can choose how to use the credit. 

How does the recipient redeem the Hulu gift card? 

Once the recipient has a Hulu account, they can visit the “Payment Information” section of the account. There, the subscriber will find a box that says “Gift or Promotional Code.” That’s where you can enter the 12-digit number printed on the back of the gift card.

Final Thoughts

Even though Hulu doesn’t seem as popular as Netflix and other streaming platforms, it makes a good gift. Especially if you know Hulu has your loved one’s favorite show. Hopefully, if this has been on your mind, this guide has helped.

Looking for more emailable gift ideas? Read our picks for the best digital gifts.


  1. “Hulu Gift Cards.” Help Center. Hulu.

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