Paramount Plus Offers Two Tiers of Plans — Which Is the Better Choice?

Allison DeGrushe - Author

Sep. 1 2022, Published 3:11 p.m. ET

Paramount Plus
Source: Paramount Plus

Since its inception, Paramount Plus has been one of the leading streaming services. From an impressive catalog of original TV shows and movies to a decent selection of live sports, the platform is definitely worth checking out. The service also offers two payment options to ensure you have the best experience within your price range.

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Now, let's discuss the payment options. For those unaware, Paramount Plus offers two tiers to its subscribers — essential and premium. How are they different? Stick around as we break down each and discern which is the better option.

Paramount Plus logo
Source: Paramount Plus
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Paramount Plus essential vs. premium: Which plan is better?

For starters, let's discuss the essential plan. This plan takes the place of the discounted limited commercials plan and will cost $4.99 per month (or $49.99 annually). However, you should know that this tier does not include access to your local live CBS channel. The benefits of the essential plan include:

  • Limited commercials
  • 30,000+ episodes / movies / originals on demand
  • NFL on CBS and Champions League live coverage (available via separate live feeds)
  • 24/7 national news

If we're being honest, this sounds like a pretty sweet deal! It's totally affordable (unlike Netflix, which now charges its subscribers between $10 and $20) and offers plenty of content for everyone to enjoy. However, if you're not too big of a fan of commercials, don't fret. The premium option is here to save the day.

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Paramount Plus Essential and Premium tiers.
Source: Paramount Plus

Introducing the Paramount Plus premium plan, formerly known as the commercial-free option. This tier costs $9.99 per month (or $99.99 annually) and features great benefits, including:

  • No commercials
  • 30,000+ episodes / movies / originals on demand
  • Access to Paramount Plus originals and exclusive programming
  • NFL on CBS, UEFA Champions League (and additional top soccer leagues), PGA golf, NCAA basketball, and more
  • 24/7 local and national news
  • The ability to download your shows and watch offline
  • Your local live CBS channel
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Now, for the verdict: It's clear that the premium plan is the better option regarding benefits and how much content is available to view. Nevertheless, the essential plan might be the wise option in the long run due to its price — who could pass on such a steal?!

Wait, we have one last note: If you sign up, you'll receive a one-week free trial.

Paramount Plus recently integrated Showtime into its platform.

On Aug. 31, Deadline reported that Paramount Plus and Showtime combined into one single streaming service. So there's now an option for subscribers to get both platforms in a bundle called "Paramount Plus with Showtime." The streaming service announced that there are special prices through Oct. 2, so make sure to snag the deal before it's too late!

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Paramount Plus Essential and Premium tiers with Showtime.
Source: Paramount Plus

The essential plan with Showtime will cost $7.99 per month — $79.99 annually — and offers subscribers all the same essential-tier benefits, including commercial-free Showtime programming and the ability to stream Showtime live. Once the special promotional period concludes, the bundle rate will be $119.99 per year.

As for the premium plan with Showtime, the price currently stands at $12.99 per month ($129.99 annually) and includes all premium-tier benefits, as well as ad-free Showtime programming and the option to stream Showtime live. After the special promotional period ends, the bundle rate will be $149.99 per year.

Like the normal subscriptions, these bundles also offer one-week free trials.

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