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HP Instant Ink Plans: A Guide to the HP Printer Ink Program

HP Instant Ink Plans: A Guide to the HP Printer Ink Program

Linsey Knerl
If shopping for ink and toner is part of your always-growing "to-do" list, it may be time to consider a way to cross it off for good. HP’s Instant Ink subscription program reduces the hassle, guesswork, and costs associated with buying printer supplies.
Here's what makes this subscription program so special and why you may want to consider signing up today.

What is HP Instant Ink?

HP Instant Ink is a monthly smart ink subscription program that delivers ink cartridges or toner cartridges right to your door, automatically, just when you need them. Every page counts the same, so for one low fee, you can print as many color pages, photos or black-and-white pages as your plan limit allows.
You'll never need to buy ink or toner cartridges. Instead, when your printer starts to get low on ink, HP automatically sends you a replacement cartridge before you run out.
Any unused pages roll over to the next month, up to the number of pages allocated under your plan. You can switch plans easily, too, so if you anticipate a big printing need in the next month, simply increase your plan to access more pages.
If you don’t end up using as much as you had planned, you can easily downgrade, too. You can print more than your plan allows, even after using up your saved rollover pages, with an additional low print cost per page.
Recycling is a breeze, too, because you can send your empty cartridges back to HP with the prepaid envelopes included with your ink shipments.
Essentially, you can shop, refill, and recycle without ever leaving your home or office. All you need to do is make sure your printer is connected to your internet network and that it is compatible with HP Instant Ink.

How do you sign up for the program?

If HP Instant Ink sounds like a good value, you can take part in any of three ways.

1. Sign up with the HP Smart app or website with an existing printer

Do you already own an HP printer that's eligible for the program? You can go to the HP Instant Ink website to start your plan. The HP Smart app also allows you to sign up via smartphone, tablet, or computer.

2. Sign up with a new printer

When you buy an HP printer you can set it up using the HP Smart app. You’ll receive a prompt to register up for the program right away. Just provide your contact information and a method of payment, and you can sign up for the plan that works best for you.

3. Follow the prompts for a free trial

Many new HP printers come with a free trial period of HP Instant Ink, during which you pay nothing for 1 to 12 months of the program (depending on the terms of the trial). This is a risk-free way to see what HP Instant Ink is about and why it’s so highly recommended.

How much does the plan cost?

Instant Ink package being placed into inbox new
HP Instant Ink has options for numerous printing volumes for both inkjet and toner replacements. (Pricing is accurate as of the date of publication, June 2021. Click here to check for the most current information.)
The plans for ink are:
  • 15 pages per month: $0.99
  • 50 pages per month: $2.99
  • 100 pages per month: $4.99
  • 300 pages per month: $11.99
  • 700 pages per month: $24.99
The plans for toner are:
  • 50 pages per month: $1.99
  • 100 pages per month: $3.99
  • 400 pages per month: $13.99
  • 800 pages per month: $19.99
  • 1,500 pages per month: $25.99
Remember, with HP Instant Ink, you only pay for the monthly subscription fee, plus any additional pages beyond your plan and rollover allotment. You don't pay for postage, shipping, or recycling. You'll never have to buy your ink cartridges "a la carte."
There are complimentary trial offers available for existing printer owners and new printers, so you can fully test the program before you ever pay a penny.
Want to find out more about each of the HP Instant Ink plans? Read our in-depth review on HP Tech Takes by clicking here.

What are the benefits of HP Printer Ink?

You’ve already heard about some of the ways that the HP Instant Ink membership can simplify your print life. But there are plenty of other benefits to enjoy, too.
  • You’ll never have to shop in-store or online for printer ink again. Ink is always sent straight to your door.
  • You’ll never get halfway through a print job before running out of ink. Ink is sent automatically before your ink levels get too low.
  • You can save money over buying expensive cartridges in-store, which may not always be the best bargain. Instant Ink customers save up to 50% on ink or toner.
  • All ink and toner are genuine HP products that offer high-quality prints every time. Plus, it matches your printer, so you don’t have to guess or remember which model type you have.
  • You pay the same price for color and black-and-white prints, because each counts as one printed page. Print a black-and-white Word document or a borderless photo print – it’s all the same to your plan.
  • No more ink rationing or switching to gray scale to save ink. Print full-color pages and photos whenever you want.
  • Rollover pages ensure you always get your money’s worth, even if you have light printing needs during certain months.
  • The plan benefits the environment both because you don’t have to drive to buy ink and because each cartridge is easily recyclable with postage-paid envelopes.
  • Your plan comes with HP support. If you ever have problems or aren't satisfied with a cartridge, they'll take care of your issues right away.
  • The plan is integrated into your HP software, so you can handle all your print tasks from the HP Smart app and also see printer health, check ink levels, and perform maintenance.

Best ways to use an HP Printer Ink subscription

Whether you pick the inkjet plan or the toner option, here are some of the ways that users are making the most of the HP Instant Ink service:

1. Home printing needs

Mother and son printing in kitchen
Meal planning, articles, coupons, photos, and financial documents are just a few of the ways household managers keep track of so many important things through printing. Today’s home printers can do so much more than simply print, too, like scanning and copying.
Whether you need to print out a copy of a bill or scan a receipt for a rebate, it’s easier to run a household when you’re not stressed about ink shortages. With HP Instant Ink there is no need to be selective about printing in color, since you no longer need to ration ink use.
And if you run a home-based business, you will have all the tasks included in the business section, too!

2. Small or home-based business

Work team around a conference table with Instant Ink
Even with many of the top business tasks converting to digital, there’s a need for paper prints. Many businesses keep paper backups for security purposes or IRS compliance. Plus, some transactions simply appear more professional when sent through the mail in physical form.
If you need to print invoices, full-color direct mailers, or important tax returns, you can keep your company running without disruptive stops for more ink. Even companies with high monthly page counts or who need stunning laser-quality prints can find a plan that works for their needs.

3. Homework, school projects, and educational activities

Mom and daughter drawing with Instant Ink
Whether you’re new to home education or have been homeschooling for years, you may not know about all the possibilities with today’s top HP printers. Scan artwork for portfolios and quickly create activities, quizzes, copy work pages, and so much more with your favorite device. HP has even created its own curated collection of learning worksheets to boost your curriculum – for free!
With many public and private schools returning to the classroom in stages, it’s more important than ever to have the right tools for parents to help teach their kids. With HP Instant Ink, you can count on your printer to be ready when you are, stocked with ink for your latest school project. But you don’t need to waste time and effort on shopping for it. Simply pop in the new cartridge when it arrives at your doorstep.

4. Hobbies

Hobbies on table with HP Instant Ink Box
So many crafts and artistic pursuits rely on printers today. You can use HP Instant Ink to stay creative at a lower cost and with less stress while you print at the same quality as a print shop. You’ll produce paper crafts, party decorations, and invitations with ease.

5. Teachers and Educators

Teacher and students using Instant Ink in school classroom
Do you teach or tutor and need a printer that can keep up with the many growing demands in your field? HP Instant Ink ensures you can always print tests, worksheets, and beautiful additions to the class bulletin board. Wherever you take your printer, from remote to in-class sessions, HP always knows which ink or toner to send out next.

6. Nonprofits

Your religious or local charity organization likely prints a lot of pages each month. Church bulletins and mailers alone are a big business! Save money on each copy and keep your community informed with easy templates that print beautifully from HP printers. School fundraisers are a good fit, too, because you can create flyers, signs, and price tags for pennies, leaving more money for the cause.

Is HP Instant Ink worth it?

There are very few reasons you would ever want to buy ink outside of the HP Instant Ink subscription program. If you absolutely love shopping and find the process of finding, selecting, and buying ink to be a pleasure, then you won't find that with the subscription – but who really has the time to do all that?
Chances are you don’t love buying cartridges, but do love saving money, in which case you’ll see the savings from the program almost immediately. Never run out of ink, get the best value on high-quality HP products, and be part of a sustainable way to shop for and recycle ink. Those are just three of the reasons people are turning to the HP Instant Ink program even after their free trials expire. Plus, you can use the time you save for more important things in life.
About the Author: Linsey Knerl is a contributing writer for HP Tech Takes. Linsey is a Midwest-based author, public speaker, and member of the ASJA. She has a passion for helping consumers and small business owners do more with their resources via the latest tech solutions.
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