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The best cheap Xbox Live Gold 12 month deals in May 2022

Xbox Live deals
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Xbox Live Gold deals can easily get you online (and saving on top games) for less. Don't let your subscription renew at the full price, keen players can cut some costs from their setup just by picking up a discounted 12 month subscription from another retailer. Whether your membership is up, or you're still reeling from an Xbox Series X restock, we're rounding up all the best Xbox Live Gold deals on both 3 and 12 month subscriptions right here. 

Xbox Live is one of the most important Xbox Series X accessories on the market right now, and one of the best ways to save on the Xbox Series X price through your setup. At its base price, the Xbox Live Gold price is $24.99 / £17.99 for three months, however you can up that to an Xbox Live Gold 12 month membership for $59.99 / £49.99

We'd generally suggest going for a Xbox Live Gold 12 month subscription, as it's better value for money overall. However, that's not to say you should pass on any good three-month offers or wait until your membership has run out entirely. Xbox Live Gold is stackable, after all, which means you can always add it on top of your current subscription, no matter how much you already have in the tank.

Alternatively, you could always check out Xbox Game Pass Ultimate deals if you're willing to stretch your budget. In terms of sheer bang for buck, it's arguably better value. Although more expensive, you're getting Xbox Live Gold to go with a library of well over 100 games.

Cheap Xbox Live Gold 12 month deals

Xbox Live Gold 12 month

Xbox Live Gold 12 month

Xbox Live Gold 12 month deals are generally the best value option. We see the biggest price drops on the annual subscriptions, with prices generally sticking between $40 and $60 during larger sales events. If you spot anything cheaper than that you're getting a particularly solid offer.

Sure, you'll likely get cheaper offers during big retail events, but if you need to renew now, these are the best prices you'll find today. The Microsoft store sometimes has deals on as well, but you'll normally find better prices via the bigger online retailers.

Cheap Xbox Live deals - 3 months

Xbox Live Gold 3 month

Xbox Live Gold 3 month

Ok, maybe you don't want to commit to a full 12 months of Xbox Live. Grabbing a 3-month subscription does allow you to see whether or not you're going to get real value from the service. 

And don't forget that you can add 12 months later. It'll simply stack on top of your 3-month code. So, you could end up with 15 months or more all paid for, taking us well into the Xbox Series X generation... Win!

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate

If you're looking to combine your Game Pass with a cheap Xbox Live Gold membership, you've come to the right place. While a more expensive subscription than simply picking up the Live by itself, you are also getting access to, arguably, gaming's best subscription service yet - especially if you're doubling down on that low Xbox Series S price. Game Pass offers up a plethora of free titles with all new exclusive Xbox Series X games heading straight to the service as well. That's a lot of value in one monthly payment. 

Not only is Game Pass Ultimate an excellent subscription in itself, but combined with stacked Xbox Live Gold months you can save some serious cash. That's because Microsoft is currently running a promotion that will offer up your first month of Game Pass Ultimate for just $1. However, the fine print also states that claiming the offer will also convert all your remaining Xbox Live Gold months to Game Pass Ultimate, a far more expensive service, for up to 36 months. 

That means you can stack your Live Gold months for far less than you would Game Pass and convert them all to Ultimate for just an extra dollar. 

Xbox Live: Games with Gold - May 2022

If you pick up an Xbox Live Gold 12 month membership (whether it's through these Xbox Live deals or not), you also get to take advantage of the Games with Gold programme. This allows you to download and keep a handful of free games each month.

What are this month's free games, then? We're always keen to see what freebies we're getting - you'll find all of this month's offerings just below.

  • Yoku's Island Express; May 1 - May 31 
  • The Inner World - The Last Wind Monk; May 16 - June 15 
  • Hydro Thunder Hurricane; May 1 - May 15 
  • Viva Piñata Party Animals; May 16 - May 31

Xbox Live Gold vs Game Pass Ultimate: which should you choose?

If you're at all interested in sampling Microsoft's excellent Game Pass service, we would thoroughly recommend ditching your separate Xbox Live Gold subscription and rolling it all into a Game Pass Ultimate membership. Three months of Xbox Live Gold will cost you $24.99 and three months of Game Pass will add another $29.99 on top. Considering Game Pass Ultimate comes in at just $44.99 (and is often available for less than that), the value is obvious. 

However, if you're collecting physical games and don't intend on bashing through your backlog using Microsoft's subscription service, you won't be gaining anything extra by paying more for the all in one membership.

Do you need Xbox Live Gold for free to play games?

It's worth noting that if you just intend on playing free games online, you don't need an Xbox Live Gold subscription. As of April 2021, you'll be able to simply glide onto the likes of Fortnite, Apex Legends, and Rocket League without paying the monthly price.

Can you still buy 12 months of Xbox Live Gold?

As you've hopefully gathered from the Xbox Live Gold 12 month prices further up, you can still buy a full year of the service. Microsoft itself doesn't offer the 12 month card, but these codes are still available at a range of retailers across the US and UK. 

If you're on the other side of the fence, we're listing all the latest PS Plus deals and Nintendo Switch Online membership prices as well. Or, for more Xbox One accessories, check out our top picks for the best Xbox One controller, best Xbox Series X headset or Xbox steering wheel

Tabitha Baker
Tabitha Baker

Currently Managing Editor of hardware at GamesRadar+, I originally landed in hardware at our sister site TechRadar before moving over to GamesRadar. In between, I've written for Tom’s Guide, Wireframe, The Indie Game Website and That Video Game Blog, covering everything from the PS5 launch to the Apple Pencil. Now, i'm focused on Nintendo Switch, gaming laptops (and the keyboards and mice that come with them), and tracking everything that suggests VR is about to take over our lives.