Disney Quietly Intros $2.99 Disney+ Hulu Add-On To Boost Growth

The traditional Disney Bundle — Disney+, Hulu and ESPN — is no longer the only combo offer in town.

In its latest effort to boost Disney+’s subscription growth in North America in particular, Disney has now begun offering a $2.99-per-month Disney+ add-on for Hulu subscribers.

Subscribers billed directly through Hulu who do not already also subscribe to Disney+ or ESPN+ are eligible to add Disney+, which costs $7.99 as a standalone option, at the discount rate.

The offer is not a limited-time promotion, so the $2.99 price will presumably stick at least until the next round of price hikes for Disney+, or until (if) Hulu is merged into sibling Disney+.

Standalone Hulu costs $6.99 per month with ads and $12.99 without ads, so adding Disney+ means paying between $10 and $16 per month.

In addition to being listed on Hulu’s site, the add-on offer is being promoted via emails to eligible Hulu subscribers, according to The Streamable.



In late December, Disney also quietly integrated the Disney Bundle in its Hulu + Live TV offers and upped their prices by $5, eliminating the solo Hulu + Live TV option even for existing subscribers.

Since Hulu + Live TV had 4 million subscribers as of Q4 2021, according to Disney itself, that means  Disney+ and ESPN+ each instantly annexed at least that many additional subscribers to report to investors next time around.

The standalone Disney Bundle — which now costs $13.99 a month with the ad-supported version of Hulu, or $19.99 with the ad-free version of Hulu — has had much to do with Disney+’s phenomenal growth since its November 2019 launch, but its uptake has been somewhat limited among those not interested in the ESPN+ sports component. 

With ads, Hulu + Live TV subscribers are now being charged $69.99 per month (previously $64.99), and ad-free subscribers $75.99 per month (previously $70.99).

ESPN+ costs $6.99 as a standalone. Add that to the $7.99 Disney+ standalone price, and Disney is able to promote the new, three-services offer as getting a $15 value for only $5 more.

The Hulu + Live TV change helped Disney far exceed analysts’ expectations for Disney+ subscriber growth for its quarter ended Jan. 1, 2022. Worldwide subs rose by 11.8 million, to 129.8 million, in the quarter, instead of the expected 7.3 million—including an 18% gain in North America, to 42.9 million.

But Disney has declared that Disney+ will reach 230 million to 260 million by 2024, and has apparently calculated that achieving that will require moves like the new bundle offers, as well as expanding its content to include more adult fare—and most recently, announcing the addition of a lower-cost, ad-supported Disney+ tier.

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