Audible may be the world’s largest audiobook seller but it may not be the best option for you. Other audiobook services offer some unique benefits, including no subscription fees, supporting your local bookstore, the ability to borrow high-quality audiobooks for free, and much more. What is the best alternative to Audible? In this guide, we review our favorite Audible alternatives to help you pick the audiobook service that’s best for you!
Audiobooks.com – A generous free trial
How it works: Audiobooks.com is a subscription service with a catalog of 400,000+ premium titles. Like Audible, it has an extensive library and the service works very well. The service has a generous free trial with 3 audiobooks and the app is nice and easy to use.
Why we recommend it: Audiobooks.com makes it easy to find a great listen with their extensive library and various book lists (e.g. they have a list called ‘Perfect First Listens’). They also offer Audiobook Clubs which is a unique offering whereby you can join one of 8 clubs for 30 days of unlimited listening to thousands of best-selling and classic audiobooks. Some of the popular clubs are Romance, Mystery & Thriller, and Sci-Fi & Fantasy. Lastly, Audiobooks.com is a very similar service to Audible without… uh… being an Amazon company (something we don’t have an issue with but appreciate some people do!). Read our Audiobooks.com review to learn more about why we like the service.
Getting started: click here to go to the Audiobooks.com website and sign up for a 30-day free trial. You will get your first 3 audiobooks free with 1 book from the entire catalog of 400,000+ premium titles plus 2 audiobooks from the VIP selection (this is similar to the Audible Plus catalog although not as extensive). After the free trial, the cost is $14.95 USD per month.
Chirp – Limited-time audiobook deals
How it works: Chirp offers limited-time deals on popular audiobooks with savings of up to 95% and no requirement to subscribe to the service.
Why we recommend it: For occasional audiobook listeners, Chirp offers a good selection of cheap audiobooks without the need to commit to a monthly subscription. For avid audiobook listeners, Chirp is a great addition to other audiobook services as it has some really good deals and can be less expensive than Audible. Read our Chirp audiobooks review to learn more about why we like the service.
Tip: get 30% off your first Chirp purchase with our code: CHIRPAA30
Libro.fm – Support your local bookstore
How it works: Libro.fm makes it possible for you to buy audiobooks directly through your local bookstore. As part of the sign-up process, you’ll choose the independent bookstore you want to support with future purchases and Libro.fm will split profits with this bookstore. Libro.fm is a Social Purpose Corporation making it a great option if you are seeking an ethical alternative to Audible.
Why we recommend it: Libro.fm has a lot more to offer than just ‘feeling good’ about being a customer (although we do love that!). Our favorite thing about Libro.fm is the fantastic community. This is evident in the many playlists curated by expert booksellers, the Libro.fm team, influencers, and others. These playlists are a great way to discover your next favorite audiobook (click here to check them out). Another great thing is that Libro.fm provides DRM-free audiobooks. Read our Libro.fm review and watch the following video to learn more about Libro.fm:
Getting started: click here to go to the Libro.fm website and create a free account. If you are an avid audiobook listener, you can sign up for a monthly subscription with the code AUDIOBOOKADDICTS, and Libro.fm will give you a bonus audiobook. That means you’ll have 2 audiobook credits to redeem from the start. Libro.fm also offers à la carte purchases for the occasional listener.
Libby – Free audiobooks from the library
How it works: Libby lets you borrow audiobooks with a library card making it a great free alternative to Audible. However, you should be aware that due to publisher restrictions and high prices faced by libraries, you may find the audiobook you want is either not available or there is a waiting period until it is (particularly if the title is a new release or a recent bestseller). Availability will depend on factors including the size of your library, how popular a title is, and how many audiobooks are stocked.
Why we recommend it: Who doesn’t love free? Libby is an excellent choice either as your main audiobook service or as a complement to another service. Read our Libby review to learn more about why we like the service.
Getting started: Libby is available for Android, iOS, Windows 10, some Chromebooks, and in your browser at libbyapp.com. The following video is a helpful guide to getting started with Libby:
Scribd – Unlimited listening and more
How it works: Scribd is a subscription service that provides members access to millions of audiobooks, ebooks, magazines, comics, and sheet music selections. The subscription fee is currently USD $11.99 per month and membership includes access to an unlimited number of audiobooks and other content (although restrictions on certain titles may apply).
Why we recommend it: Scribd’s massive digital library offers a wide range of reading material in both print and audio formats at a price that seems very fair for everything you get. Stephen King has endorsed the service, describing it as “like Netflix for word wonks.” Read our Scribd review to learn more about why we like the service.
Getting started: click here to visit the Scribd website to create a basic, free account. You can then activate a free trial of the premium membership for 60-days to get access to Scribd’s library of content. Note: this 60-day trial is exclusive to Audiobook Addicts readers (the normal free trial is 30-days).
Verdict – the best alternative to Audible?
As you see, some great alternatives to Audible exist. But what is the best Audible alternative? Well, that depends on what you value most in an audiobook service as they each have something unique to offer:
Audiobooks.com has an extensive catalog, a unique book club offer, various book lists to help you find the perfect title, and a nice app. Plus, they have a generous trial that offers 3 free audiobooks to get you started.
Chirp has cheap audiobook deals without the need to subscribe to an audiobook service. You can save an additional 30% on the already reduced prices with your first purchase by using our exclusive Chirp discount code: AUDIOBOOKADDICTS30
Libro.fm lets you support your local bookstore, has a wide selection of titles, expertly curated playlists, and a fantastic community. Use the code AUDIOBOOKADDICTS when signing up to get a bonus audiobook.
Libby lets you listen to audiobooks for free from the library. Note: you may have to wait for titles to become available to borrow, particularly if they are new releases and bestsellers.
Scribd has unlimited listening to audiobooks plus access to other digital media such as ebooks and magazines.
Tip: learn how to pause Audible while you try these alternatives to Audible.
Do you use one of the Audible alternatives above? Let us know your experience with the service in the comments below!