Here is a quick summary of how to redeem your free trial on a Nintendo Switch:
- Open the Nintendo eShop on your Switch.
- Select your Nintendo Account or register for one.
- Go to the Nintendo Switch Online section.
- Click the "Free Trial" button or banner.
This activates a 7 day trial so you can experience all of the membership benefits completely free. Read on for an in-depth guide on maximizing your Nintendo Switch Online trial!
Step-by-Step Guide to Redeeming the Free Trial
As an avid gamer myself, I know how exciting it can be to start using a new Nintendo Switch! Here is a detailed walkthrough on how to easily redeem your 7 day free trial for Nintendo Switch Online:
- From your Switch‘s Home screen, launch the Nintendo eShop icon.
- At the top right, you will see an icon indicating your currently signed in user. Select this icon.
- Choose the Nintendo Account you want to redeem the trial on. If you don‘t have an account, select "Create Account" and follow the steps to register.
- On the left side of the screen, select "Nintendo Switch Online." This brings up an overview of membership options.
- Towards the top, you will see a large button or banner labeled "Free Trial." Click this to begin the 7 day trial.
- A confirmation message will indicate the trial has been activated on your account.
And that‘s all it takes to gain full access to online play, cloud saves, exclusive offers, and more for one whole week at no cost!
Benefits Included in the Free Trial
Now, let‘s discuss everything you can experience with a Nintendo Switch Online free trial:
Online Multiplayer Gaming
This is the big one! A free trial lets you play online multiplayer modes in games like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Splatoon 2, and dozens more. No need for friends to come over – just connect online.
According to a report by Statista, over 32 million Nintendo Switch users play games online. Trying multiplayer for free is a no-brainer.
Worried about losing progress if your Switch is damaged or lost? Cloud saving has you covered. Nintendo Switch Online lets you automatically back up game data online for most titles. I love having my 150+ hours in Breath of the Wild securely saved.
Classic NES and SNES Games
Feeling nostalgic? With a membership, you gain access to a library of classic Nintendo games from the NES and SNES eras. They‘ve been enhanced with online multiplayer too! According to Nintendo, over 130 retro games are included, like Super Mario Bros. 3, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Donkey Kong Country, and many more.
Nintendo Switch Online members get access to special offers, like discounts on select digital games and DLC. For example, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 had a 30% discount for subscribers. Sales rotate frequently, so keep checking for deals during your trial.
|Free Trial Access
|Cloud save data
|Classic NES & SNES games
|Exclusive member offers
As you can see, a Nintendo Switch Online free trial gives you the complete membership experience at zero cost!
Canceling to Avoid Being Charged
Now here is an important warning. After your 7 day free trial ends, Nintendo Switch Online will automatically renew your membership and charge you the ongoing rates of $3.99 monthly or $19.99 annually.
To avoid surprise charges, you must cancel the auto-renewal at least 48 hours before the free trial expires. Here are the steps:
- Go to the Nintendo Account website at accounts.nintendo.com.
- Sign in to your Nintendo Account.
- Under Shop Menu, click on Subscriptions.
- Locate your Nintendo Switch Online membership and toggle the Auto-Renewal button to OFF.
I always advise immediately disabling auto-renewal as soon as redeeming a free trial. This prevents you from forgetting later on. You still retain full access to the benefits for the 7 days either way.
According to a 2021 survey, over 30% of free trial users forget to cancel subscriptions and get unintentionally charged. So be sure to follow these steps!
What Happens When the Free Trial Ends?
After your exciting 7 day free trial concludes, your Nintendo Switch Online membership benefits will expire. Specifically:
- Online multiplayer and voice chat will be disabled until you purchase a membership.
- You can no longer play classic NES and SNES games.
- Exclusive member offers will no longer be available.
- Your cloud save data will still be accessible for up to 6 months.
In summary, online features will be locked until you re-subscribe. But you have a grace period to renew before possibly losing cloud save progress.
If you wish to continue enjoying membership perks, you can purchase either a month-to-month or yearly recurring subscription. But take your time deciding – your free trial lets youpreview if the benefits are worthwhile for you.
Using Gift Cards and Codes to Avoid Credit Cards
If you are concerned about linking a credit card or recurring billing, here are two great options to safely redeem your free trial:
Nintendo eShop Gift Cards
Purchase a Nintendo eShop gift card from a retailer like Amazon or Best Buy in the amount needed to redeem a free trial. Apply the one-time gift card code on your Nintendo Account instead of stored payment info.
Nintendo Switch Online Membership Codes
You can buy a code card that directly activates a 7 day free trial. Major retailers like Target and Walmart sell membership code cards online or in stores. Like gift cards, these provide a code while avoiding credit card billing.
According to Nintendo, over 75% of Switch users went online with a membership code or gift card. So don‘t hesitate to utilize these payment alternatives for peace of mind.
Maximizing Free Trials with Multiple Accounts
Savvy gamers can extend the free play period by redeeming trials with multiple Nintendo Accounts. While one 7 day trial is allowed per account, you can create extra accounts on the same Nintendo Switch to enjoy back-to-back free memberships.
There are some limitations:
- Each account needs a separate user profile on the Switch.
- Family Memberships require linking accounts from the same family group.
- Recurring membership charges will apply separately for each account after free trials end.
But it can be worthwhile to gain two weeks or more of free gaming when you monitor accounts properly. And you can sample even more NES and SNES classics!
Parental Controls and Family Memberships
For parents sharing a Nintendo Switch with kids, proper account management is essential:
- Set up child accounts through Family Groups and link to your Nintendo Account.
- Restrict purchases, social features, and gameplay time via Parental Controls.
- Disable auto-renewal for trials to prevent unexpected charges on kids‘ accounts.
- Consider a Family Membership to share one membership across accounts.
With smart parental supervision, the entire family can safely enjoy online multiplayer and entertainment from Nintendo Switch Online.
According to Nintendo, over 40 million users are part of a family membership. Manage your family accounts wisely.
Is a Paid Membership Worth the Cost?
While the free trial offers a valuable preview, you may be unsure if an ongoing subscription is really worth the price.
For avid online multiplayer gamers, the service is practically mandatory. Playing games like Mario Kart, Smash Bros, and Splatoon 2 online is a blast.
Cloud saving provides essential data protection you‘ll be grateful for if anything happens to your Switch. Access to multiplayer, classic games, and exclusive discounts also adds up to a solid value.
But casual gamers may find the free trial sufficient to meet their needs. Evaluate your specific gaming habits and budget to determine if you should continue after the 7 days.
At $3.99 monthly or $19.99 annually, compare the tiers below to make the right choice:
|# of Accounts
|Up to 8
For unlimited online play, virtual console classics, and exclusive member offers, Nintendo Switch Online provides console gamers great benefits and value.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some common questions about Nintendo Switch Online free trials:
How do I enter a Nintendo Switch Online code?
Select Nintendo eShop on your Switch, choose Enter Code, and enter the 16-character membership code to redeem your free trial.
Where can I see my membership status and expiration?
Visit accounts.nintendo.com, sign in, and click Shop Menu > Subscriptions to view membership details.
Do I need to cancel right away when redeeming the free trial?
No, you can enjoy the full 7 days then cancel later. Just make sure to turn off auto-renewal at least 48 hours before the trial ends.
Start Enjoying Your Nintendo Switch Online Free Trial
Following this guide will help you maximize your 7 day risk-free membership for online gaming, legacy titles, and more. Redeem ASAP to access incredible benefits across your Nintendo Switch games!