GCP Free Tier

The Google Cloud Platform Free Tier gives you free resources to learn about Google Cloud Platform (GCP) services by trying them on your own. Whether you're completely new to the platform and need to learn the basics, or you're an established customer and want to experiment with new solutions, the GCP Free Tier has you covered.

The GCP Free Tier has two parts:

  • A 12-month free trial with $300 credit to use with any GCP services.
  • Always Free, which provides limited access to many common GCP resources, free of charge.

This article describes both parts of the GCP Free Tier.

12-month, $300 free trial

The free trial provides you with credit to pay for resources that you use as you learn about GCP.

Program eligibility

You're eligible if you:

  • Have never been a paying customer of GCP before.
  • Have not previously signed up for the free trial.
  • Have enabled billing for your account through the Google Cloud Platform Console.
  • Are not setting up a business account with a term sheet by working with a sales representative.

Contact sales if you need to set up a business account.

Program initiation

The 12-month, $300 free trial starts automatically when you set up your first billing account.

You must provide credit card or bank details to set up a billing account to verify your identity, but you won't be charged during the free trial.

Program coverage

Your free trial credit applies to all GCP resources, except that you cannot:

  • Have more than 8 cores (or virtual CPUS) running at the same time.
  • Add GPUs or TPUs to your instances.
  • Request a quota increase. For an overview of Compute Engine quotas, see Resource Quotas.

You must upgrade your account to perform any of the actions in the preceding list.

The free trial credit also applies to Google Maps Platform usage.

Restricted actions

In addition to resource constraints, the Free Trial Terms of Service describes uses cases that are prohibited during the free trial. For example, you may not use GCP services to mine cryptocurrency during your free trial.

Program duration

Your trial ends as soon as one of these conditions is met:

  • 12 months have elapsed since you signed up.
  • You've spent the $300 in credit.

Your remaining credit and days are displayed at the top of the Google Cloud Platform Console during your free trial period.

Terms of service

You must accept the Free Trial Terms of Service and the Google Cloud Platform Terms of Service.

Service level agreement

Service level agreements do not apply during the free trial. Because this is a period to test and explore GCP, you should not run production applications on GCP during the free trial.

Always free use

When you use resources covered by Always Free during your free trial period, those resources are not charged against your free trial credit.

Credit card verification

Google asks for your credit card information when you sign up for the free trial to:

  • Verify your identity.
  • Distinguish actual customers from robots.

Even though you set up a billing account, you won't be charged unless you upgrade to a paid account. You might notice a $0-1 transaction from Google after you sign up. This transaction:

  • Is an authorization request to validate your account, not a permanent charge.
  • Might be converted to local currency by your bank.
  • Might appear on your statement for up to a month.

Contact your bank if you have questions about the authorization.

No credit card?

If you don't have a credit card you can provide bank account information instead:

  • Google deposits a random small amount to your account.
  • You use the deposit amount to finish the sign-up process.
  • It might take 2 to 3 days to get the deposit.

End of the free trial

The free trial ends when you use all of your credit, or after 12 months, whichever happens first. At that time:

  • You must upgrade to a paid account to continue using GCP.
  • All resources you created during the trial are stopped.
  • Any data you have stored in Compute Engine is lost.
  • Your account enters a 30-day grace period, during which you can recover resources and data you used during the trial period.
  • You might receive a message stating that your account has been cancelled, which only indicates that your account has been suspended to prevent charges.

Recovering data

Contact Google Billing Support to export any data you stored in GCP services (other than on Compute Engine) during your trial period. Your data and resources are only available for 30 days after the free trial ends.

Upgrading to a paid account

You must upgrade to a paid account to use GCP after the free trial ends. You may upgrade before the trial ends in order to take advantage of the feature of a paid account (using GPUs, for example). When you upgrade:

  • Any remaining, unexpired free trial credit remains in your account.
  • Your credit card on file will be charged for resources you use in excess of what's covered by any remaining credit.

You can upgrade your account at any time after starting the free trial. If you upgrade:

  • Before the trial is over, your remaining credit is added to your paid account. You can work with resources you created before you upgraded without interruption.
  • Within 30 days of the end of the trial, you can restore the resources you created during the trial.
  • More than 30 days from the end of the trial, your free trial resources are lost.

To upgrade your account

You can upgrade from the free trial to a paid account through the Google Cloud Platform Console. Click the Upgrade button at the top of the page. If you do not see Upgrade, click Free trial status Free trial status icon in the upper-right of the page and Upgrade will appear.

You must be a Billing Administrator on the account to make this change.

Costs after the free trial

GCP services charge you only for resources you use. Each service has its own pricing model, which you can find in the documentation for individual services.

You can estimate the cost of using GCP by using the following tools:

  • Translate your estimate of the resources you'll use into estimated monthly charges with the pricing calculator.

  • Learn more about how GCP pricing works on the Pricing page.

Always Free

The Always Free program provides limited access to many common GCP resources free of charge. Resources are provided at intervals, usually monthly. Always Free resources are not credits; they don't accumulate or roll over from one interval to the next.

Unlike the free trial, Always Free isn't a special program. It's a regular part of your GCP account.

Program eligibility

You're eligible if you:

  • Do not have a custom contract or rate card with Google.
  • Have an upgraded billing account. An upgraded account is ready to be charged for use, as opposed to a free trial only account.
  • Have an account in good standing.

If you are deemed ineligible, you will be charged at the normal rates for resources you use. If you think you are being charged for Always Free usage, contact billing support for assistance.

Program initiation

Just start using resources within Always Free limits; no special action is required to get started.

Program coverage

Always Free coverage varies by service. Not all GCP services offer resources as part of Always Free.

Program duration

The Always Free program has no end date, but Google reserves the right to change the offering, including changing or eliminating usage limits, subject to 30 days advance notice.

Terms of service

You must accept the Google Cloud Platform Terms of Service.

Use during free trial

When you use resources covered by Always Free during your free trial period, those resources are not charged against your free trial credit.

Always Free usage limits

Always Free resources are available for the GCP services listed in the following table, subject to the listed limitations.

App Engine
  • 28 frontend instance hours per day, 9 backend instance hours per day
  • 5 GB Cloud Storage
  • 1 GB of egress per day
  • Shared memcache
  • 1000 search operations per day, 10 MB search indexing
  • 100 emails per day

The free tier is available only for the Standard Environment.

Learn more

Cloud Firestore
  • 1 GB storage
  • 50,000 reads, 20,000 writes, 20,000 deletes per day

Learn more

Compute Engine
  • 1 non-preemptible f1-micro VM instance per month in one of the following US regions:
    • Oregon: us-west1
    • Iowa: us-central1
    • South Carolina: us-east1
  • 30 GB-months HDD, 5 GB-months snapshot
  • 1 GB network egress from North America to all region destinations per month (excluding China and Australia)

Your Always Free f1-micro instance limit is by time, not by instance. Eligible use of all of your f1-micro instances each month is free until you have used a number of hours equal to the total hours in the current month.Usage calculations are combined across the supported regions.

Compute Engine offers discounts for sustained use of virtual machines. Your Always Free use doesn't factor into sustained use.

GPUs and TPUs are not included in the Always Free offer. You will always be charged for GPUs and TPUS that you add to instances.

Learn more

Cloud Storage
  • 5 GB-months of Regional Storage (US regions only)
  • 5000 Class A Operations per month
  • 50000 Class B Operations per month
  • 1 GB network egress from North America to all region destinations per month (excluding China and Australia)

Always Free only available in us-east1, us-west1, and us-central1 regions. Usage calculations are combined across those regions.

Learn more

Cloud Pub/Sub
  • 10 GB of messages per month

Learn more

Cloud Functions
  • 2 million invocations per month (includes both background and HTTP invocations)
  • 400,000 GB-seconds, 200,000 GHz-seconds of compute time
  • 5 GB network egress per month

Learn more

Google Kubernetes Engine
  • No cluster management fee for clusters of all sizes. Each user node is charged at standard Compute Engine pricing.

Learn more

  • Free monthly logging allotment
  • Free monthly metrics allotment

Learn more

  • 1 TB of querying per month
  • 10 GB of storage each month

Learn more

Cloud Vision
  • 1,000 units per month

Learn more

Cloud Speech-to-Text
  • 60 minutes per month

Learn more

Cloud Natural Language
  • 5,000 units per month

Learn more

Cloud Shell
  • Free access to Cloud Shell, including 5 GB of persistent disk storage

Learn more

Cloud Build
  • 120 build-minutes per day

Learn more

Cloud Source Repositories
  • Up to 5 Users
  • 50 GB Storage
  • 50 GB Egress

Learn more

Exceeding Always Free usage limits

Any usage above Always Free usage limits is automatically billed at standard rates.

You can help control costs by setting up budgets and alerts through the Google Cloud Platform Console.

Premium OS Licenses and GCP Marketplace products

You will be charged normally for any GCP Marketplace products and premium OS licences you use, even if your Compute Engine use is covered by Always Free.

Getting support

Direct support
Community support

What's next

See Getting Started with GCP for tutorials, quickstarts, and other resources about getting started.

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