Why Are Audible So Expensive? (Top 6 Reasons Explained)

Nowadays, it is a world of technology and we are living in an era of ebooks and audiobooks.

And if you are a fan of audiobooks, you must know well about Audible, the world’s largest seller and producer of audiobooks directed by Amazon. 

But a disappointing thing to mention is that Audible is very expensive and outrageous that may surprise you at all.

Its price is too high compared to the hardcovers and e-books.

Analyzing the ins and outs of Audible, it is found that the platform has been regarded as one of the most outstanding and magnificent audiobooks platforms replete with so many attributions.

It spends a huge amount of money behind audio production, top-class narrators, proficient professionals, and promotions.

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Along with these expenditures, Audible has also to give a notable share of royalty to its publishers.

However, in this article, I’m here to illustrate the reasons that make Audible so expensive. 

Why is Audible so expensive?

If you are a big fan of Audible, you are sure to enjoy it whatever the cost it takes.

But some people think it is too expensive. Whatever they think, some reasons are responsible for the high cost.

Therefore, let’s go on and explore the reasons. 

Production Cost 

Production Cost

The chief reason that makes Audible so expensive is its production cost of an audiobook.

One should remember that as the price of hardcover books vary from one to another according to their sizes and length, the production cost of an audiobook also ranges in length along with its production scale.

Therefore, different-sized books need a different amount of outgoings to produce completely.

It is seen that the average cost of production is nearly $300 to $400 per hour.

That means if an audiobook of Audible is just 10 hours long, it would need an expenditure of $3,000 to $4,000 on average.

Think how superfluous the production cost is!

As a result of this outrageous amount of expenses, the price of an audiobook on Audible is very exorbitant. 

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Top-class and Renowned Narrator

Top-class and Renowned Narrator

An audiobook needs perfect pronunciation, mistake-free narration, and continuous deliverance.

A narrator should have sufficient knowledge, skills and he must be able to provide all of these obligations because a narrator is a crucial figure who brings the book to life and keeps the readers involved to listen to the book relentlessly. 

And this is another leading cause for which Audible is ridiculously expensive.

Audible is sincere enough to offer the best audiobooks.

In this case, it hires the top-class, reputed, talented, and popular narrators to make the audiobooks with a higher charge.

Sometimes, Audible hires celebrities and big-name narrators.

Thus, the more well-known and highly-skilled narrators are hired, the more cost is spent behind them.

As a result, the fee of subscription rises higher.

Read: Why Are Kindle Books So Expensive?

A Big team of Professionals

Big team of Professionals

Audible has a big team of professionals engaged with the production of an audiobook.

These professionals work together to make the audiobook standard, mistake-free, and smoothly audible. 

A producer has to coordinate all the things from the very first of the creation.

He casts the narrators, schedules the recording studio, and works with the rest of the team.

There are also directors, production and audio engineers, and sound editors who contribute from behind the scene.

After recording the audio, proof-listeners have to check the audio to ensure its exactness with the textbook. 

Hence, Audible has to spend a huge amount of money behind this big team that is engaged with the production of the audiobooks.

As a result, it has to take an expensive cost in return for the service.

Thus, it is understandable that Audible is expensive because there is a huge team of professionals involved in the work of production. 

Length of the Audiobooks

Length of the Audiobooks

It is significant to notice the length of a book.

As I have anticipated earlier, the length of hardcover books differentiates the cost of the book.

Similarly, the cost of an audiobook varies from one to another following the sizes and length of the book.

For this reason, even if the production cost of an audiobook is somewhat low, the price will still be high and extravagant if the book is big and huge-sized. 

It is seen in Audible that it has set the price of the audiobooks based on their length.

If a book is under 1 hour, it costs $7. If an audiobook ranges from 5 to 10 hours, then the cost can range between $15 to $25 on average.

When a book is more than $10 an hour, it takes more than $30.

And if the book is over 20 hours, the cost rises to more than $35. 

Thus, the price of Audible varies in this way according to the length of the books.

That is why when a book is lengthy, the price also stands for a significant amount of cost. 

The royalty of the publisher

royalty of the publisher

The royalty of the publishers of Audible audiobooks is another prominent reason that the price rises expensively.

The royalty share of Audible is hefty and it varies in the situation.

When the audiobook is made through ACX, an Audible-owned company, Audible’s share ranges from %60 to %80 if all the cost of production is arranged by ACX.

Then, the rest 20-40% share belongs to the author regarding many other related factors. 

Hence, the high royalty of publishers makes Audible resolute to claim an outrageous price for the audiobooks. 

Promotional Cost

Promotional Cost

And the last reason that plays a fundamental role in making the price superfluous.

Whatever kind the book is, whether it is an e-book, audiobook, or hardcover, it should be sold by accomplishing some promotional activities.

The books must be spread throughout and reach the readers.

Audible has to bring out this task for the audiobooks.

Thus, it has to spend a large sum of money behind this sector for reaching the books in the collection of the readers and customers.

In return, it demands a higher amount to recover the promotional cost. 


Is audible worth it?

worth it

Whether Audible is worth it or not depends on you.

If you enjoy listening to audiobooks and love them, Audible is worth it indeed.

It enhances the capacity and skill of listening, simplifies reading and writing.

In contrast, if you do not enjoy listening, you should avoid Audible.

To get experience, you can get a free trial on Audible for 30 days. 

Are Audible books cheaper with Amazon Prime?

Are Audible books cheaper with Amazon Prime

Yes, Audible books are cheaper with Amazon Prime.

Although Audible is an Amazon service, it is separate from Amazon Prime.

Customers of Amazon Prime may get a number of discounts regarding their audiobooks on Audible.

Therefore, they can get cheaper costs in terms of conditions if they have membership in Amazon Prime.

They also get a month of free service for the first time during opening an Audible account. 

How to get Audible Credits for FREE?

How to get Audible Credits for FREE

Audible needs a certain amount of fee to deliver its service.

So, a customer has to pay the fee to listen to audiobooks from Audible.

But if you want to listen without any subscription fee, you should have credits that enable you to listen to free audiobooks from Audible.

When a listener subscribes to Audible for the first time, he gets two free credits in return.

Then, a customer can get more credits for free if he follows these techniques.

One of the primary methods is getting free credits every month because of being a monthly subscriber.

Then, you can get free credits from the deals occasionally offered by Audible.

Besides, Audible sometimes offers free challenges and delivers credits as an award.

There are also promotional codes for the customers to get free credits. 

How to save money on audible?

save money

Although Audible is an expensive audiobook service, one can save money on it by upholding some strategic ways. 

One of the best means is using your credits.

As Audible listeners can earn credits from different ways, they can use the credits for buying the audiobook.

It reduces the cost of the book surprisingly.

For instance, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, written by Mark Manson, costs almost $24 at Audible.

If you have credits and spend a credit to buy the book, it will cost $15 for you. 

Another way of saving money on Audible is being a regular member of it by monthly subscription.

As Audible offers deals, special sales, and challenges, you can save money by participating in them and winning awards. 

If you have more credits, you can get silver membership in Audible.

It also helps curtail the cost and save money. 

What is the most expensive audiobook on Audible?

most expensive audiobook on Audible

Audible is expensive indeed. But the price of some audiobooks on Audible may amaze you.

At the moment, the popular novel Ulysses written by James Joyce and Narrated by Jim Norton is the most expensive book on Audible with more than $120 fee!

Another expensive audiobook on Audible is Truman, authored by David McCullough and narrated by Nelson Runger.

It costs more than $115. 

Why is Audible more expensive than Kindle?

Why is Audible more expensive than Kindle

Audible and Kindle are two of the world’s largest audiobooks platforms well-known for having a great variety of audiobooks.

Between them, Audible is more expensive and popular among the customers.

The reason can be the available facilities provided by Audible.

It has several advantageous options such as whispersync for Voice, customizable listening speed, sleep timer, offline access, etc.

Moreover, you can download the book on Audible when you get access to it by using credits or subscription fees, and after it, the audiobook is yours.

But, Kindle does not provide such an advantage; rather you can just borrow the book and keep it for once.

Overall, Audible is better than Kindle and so, it is more expensive than Kindle. 

How much is Audible a month with Prime?

How much is Audible a month with Prime

As I’ve mentioned before, Audible and Amazon Prime are two individual entities of Amazon.

So, Audible doesn’t come with Prime.

Nonetheless, the cost of Audible is somehow low with Prime.

Audible customers get various kinds of discounts and other additional services that reduce the cost highly.

Therefore, Audible customers can save up to %75 if they have Prime membership also.

Thus, the monthly cost of Audible with Prime ranges from different conditions.

However, the subscription fee of Audible with Prime may start at $5. 

Some Reviews of Audible

Some reviews

Because of its outstanding services, Audible is a popular audiobooks platform.

Thus, it has a huge community of listeners who love it, admire it, and are happy with its performance.

At the same time, various customers have gotten bad experiences with Audible.

However, At this time, there are some reviews of customers about the service of Audible. 

  1. This customer is delighted with the services of Audible. 
  2. He enjoys using Audible.
  3. The cost is worth it to him. 
  4. And now she is another listener of Audible for a long time. She is also satisfied with Audible.

Alternative to Audible


Being an expensive audiobook platform, everyone can not afford Audible.

Thus, some think it is ridiculously expensive and look forward to alternatives at a reasonable cost.

Several audiobook platforms are affordable and less expensive than Audible.

Thus, these can be alternatives for you. 

  1. Scribd
  2. Audiobooks.com
  3. Kindle Unlimited 
  4. Kobo Books
  5. OverDrive 
  6. Google Play Books

Final Lines

Arriving at the conclusion, it is now crystal clear why Audible is surprisingly expensive and the subscription fee is exorbitant.

In brief, it is expensive because of its high production cost, accurate narration, efficient professionals, length books, and hefty royalty of publishers.

All of these factors play a significantly in raising the price.

However, despite the high price, Audible is an excellent and perfect platform for audiobooks and is widely popular among listeners.

It offers several types of discounts and other facilities to its customers on occasion.

If you are a fan of audiobooks, Audible can indisputably be a great option for you.

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