GitLab subscription

GitLab offers tiers of features. Your subscription determines which tier you have access to. Subscriptions are valid for 12 months.

GitLab provides special subscriptions to participants in the GitLab Education Program and GitLab Open Source Program. For details on obtaining and renewing these subscriptions, see:

Choosing a GitLab subscription

When choosing a subscription, consider the following factors:

Choosing a GitLab tier

Pricing is tier-based, allowing you to choose the features which fit your budget. See the feature comparison for information on what features are available at each tier.

Choosing between or self-managed

There are some differences in how a subscription applies, depending if you use or a self-managed instance.

  • GitLab's software-as-a-service offering. You don't need to install anything to use, you only need to sign up and start using GitLab straight away.
  • GitLab self-managed: Install, administer, and maintain your own GitLab instance.

On a self-managed instance, a GitLab subscription provides the same set of features for all users. On you can apply a subscription to either a group or a personal namespace.

Choosing a group or personal subscription

On you can apply a subscription to either a group or a personal namespace.

When applied to:

  • A group, the group, all subgroups, and all projects under the selected group on will have the features of the associated tier. GitLab recommends choosing a group plan when managing an organization's projects and users.
  • A personal userspace instead, all projects will have features with the subscription applied, but as it's not a group, group features won't be available.

Choosing the number of users

There are some differences between who is counted in a subscription, depending if you use or a self-managed instance.

A subscription uses a concurrent (seat) model. You pay for a subscription according to the maximum number of users enabled at once. You can add and remove users during the subscription period, as long as the total users at any given time is within your subscription count.

Every occupied seat, whether by person, job, or bot is counted in the subscription, with the following exception:

  • Members with Guest permissions on a Gold subscription.

TIP: Tip: To support the open source community and encourage the development of open source projects, GitLab grants access to Gold features for all public projects, regardless of the subscription.


A self-managed subscription uses a hybrid model. You pay for a subscription according to the maximum number of users enabled during the subscription period. For instances that aren't air-gapped or on a closed network, the maximum number of simultaneous users in the self-managed installation is checked each quarter, using Seat Link.

Every occupied seat, whether by person, job, or bot is counted in the subscription, with the following exceptions:

  • Blocked users who are blocked prior to the renewal of a subscription won't be counted as active users for the renewal subscription. They may count as active users in the subscription period in which they were originally added.
  • Members with Guest permissions on an Ultimate subscription.
  • GitLab-created service accounts: Ghost User and Support Bot.

NOTE: Note: If you have LDAP integration enabled, anyone in the configured domain can sign up for a GitLab account. This can result in an unexpected bill at time of renewal. Consider disabling new signups and managing new users manually instead.

Obtain a GitLab subscription

Subscribe to

To subscribe to

  1. Create a user account for yourself using our sign up page.
  2. Create a group. GitLab groups help assemble related projects together allowing you to grant members access to several projects at once. A group is not required if you plan on having projects inside a personal namespace.
  3. Create additional users and add them to the group.
  4. Select the Bronze, Silver, or Gold plan through the Customers Portal.
  5. Link your account with your Customers Portal account. Once signed into the Customers Portal, if your account is not already linked, you will be prompted to link your account with a Link my GitLab Account button.
  6. Associate the group with the subscription.

TIP: Tip: You can also go to the My Account page to add or change the account link.

Subscribe through GitLab self-managed

To subscribe to GitLab through a self-managed installation:

  1. Go to the Customers Portal and purchase a Starter, Premium, or Ultimate self-managed plan.
  2. After purchase, a license file is sent to the email address associated to the Customers Portal account, which must be uploaded to your GitLab instance.

TIP: Tip: If you're purchasing a subscription for an existing Core self-managed instance, ensure you're purchasing enough seats to cover your users.

Manage your GitLab account

With the Customers Portal you can:

Change billing information

To change billing information:

  1. Log in to the Customers Portal.
  2. Go to the My Account page.
  3. Make the required changes to the Account Details information.
  4. Click Update Account.

NOTE: Note: Future purchases will use the information in this section. The email listed in this section is used for the Customers Portal login and for license-related email communication.

Change the linked account

To change the account associated with a Customers Portal account:

  1. Log in to the Customers Portal.
  2. Go to in a separate browser tab. Ensure you are not logged in.
  3. On the Customers Portal page, click My Account in the top menu.
  4. Under Your account, click Change linked account button.
  5. Log in to the account you want to link to the Customers Portal.

Change the associated namespace

With a linked account:

  1. Log in to the Customers Portal.
  2. Navigate to the Manage Purchases page.
  3. Click Change linked group.
  4. Select the desired group from the This subscription is for dropdown.
  5. Click Proceed to checkout.

Subscription charges are calculated based on the total number of users in a group, including its subgroups and nested projects. If the total number of users exceeds the number of seats in your subscription, you will be charged for the additional users.

View your subscription

To see the status of your subscription, log into and go to the Billing section of the relevant namespace:

  • For individuals:
    1. Go to User Avatar > Settings.
    2. Click Billing.
  • For groups:
    1. From the group page (not from a project within the group), go to Settings > Billing.

The following table describes details of your subscription for groups:

Field Description
Seats in subscription If this is a paid plan, represents the number of seats you've paid to support in your group.
Seats currently in use Number of active seats currently in use.
Max seats used Highest number of seats you've used. If this exceeds the seats in subscription, you may owe an additional fee for the additional users.
Seats owed If your maximum seats used exceeds the seats in your subscription, you'll owe an additional fee for the users you've added.
Subscription start date Date your subscription started. If this is for a Free plan, is the date you transitioned off your group's paid plan.
Subscription end date Date your current subscription will end. Does not apply to Free plans.

Renew your subscription

To renew your subscription, prepare for renewal by reviewing your account, then do one of the following:

Prepare for renewal by reviewing your account

The Customers Portal is your tool for renewing and modifying your subscription. Before going ahead with renewal, log in and verify or update:

  • The invoice contact details on the My Account page.
  • The credit card on file in the Payment Methods page.

TIP: Tip: Contact our support team if you need assistance accessing the Customers Portal or if you need to change the contact person who manages your subscription.

It's important to regularly review your user accounts, because:

  • A GitLab subscription is based on the number of users. You will pay more than you should if you renew for too many users, while the renewal will fail if you attempt to renew a subscription for too few users.
  • Stale user accounts can be a security risk. A regular review helps reduce this risk.

Users over License

A GitLab subscription is valid for a specific number of users. For details, see Choose the number of users. If the active user count exceeds the number included in the subscription, known as the number of users over license, you must pay for the excess number of users either before renewal, or at the time of renewal. This is also known the true up process.

Purchase additional seats for

There is no self-service option for purchasing additional seats. You must request a quotation from GitLab Sales. To do so, contact GitLab via our support form and select Licensing and Renewals Problems from the menu.

The amount charged per seat is calculated by one of the following methods:

  • If paid before renewal, the amount per seat is calculated on a prorated basis. For example, if the user was added 3 months before the end of the subscription period, the amount owing is calculated as: (3 / 12) x annual fee.
  • If paid on renewal, the amount per seat is the standard annual fee.
Purchase additional users for self-managed

Self-managed instances can add users to a subscription any time during the subscription period. The cost of additional users added during the subscription period is prorated from the date of purchase through the end of the subscription period.

To add users to a subscription:

  1. Log in to the Customers Portal.
  2. Select Manage Purchases.
  3. Select Add more seats.
  4. Enter the number of additional users.
  5. Select Proceed to checkout.
  6. Review the Subscription Upgrade Detail. The system lists the total price for all users on the system and a credit for what you've already paid. You will only be charged for the net change.
  7. Select Confirm Upgrade.

The following will be emailed to you:

  • A payment receipt. You can also access this information in the Customers Portal under Payment History.
  • A new license. Upload this license to your instance to use it.

Seat Link

Introduced in GitLab Starter 12.9.

Seat Link allows us to provide our self-managed customers with prorated charges for user growth throughout the year using a quarterly reconciliation process.

Seat Link sends to GitLab daily a count of all users in connected self-managed instances. That information is used to automate prorated reconciliations. The data is sent securely through an encrypted HTTPS connection.

Seat Link provides only the following information to GitLab:

  • Date
  • License key
  • Historical maximum user count
  • Active users count

Here is an example of the POST request:

  date: '2020-01-29',
  license_key: 'ZXlKa1lYUmhJam9pWm5WNmVsTjVZekZ2YTJoV2NucDBh
  max_historical_user_count: 10,
  active_users: 6

For air-gapped or closed network customers, the existing true-up model will be used. Prorated charges are not possible without user count data.

Disable Seat Link

Seat Link is enabled by default. To disable this feature, go to {admin} Admin Area > Settings > Metrics and profiling and clear the Seat Link checkbox.

To disable Seat Link in an Omnibus GitLab installation, and prevent it from being configured in the future through the administration panel, set the following in gitlab.rb:

gitlab_rails['seat_link_enabled'] = false

To disable Seat Link in a GitLab source installation, and prevent it from being configured in the future through the administration panel, set the following in gitlab.yml:

production: &base
  # ...
    # ...
    seat_link_enabled: false

Renew or change a subscription

To renew for more users than are currently active in your system, contact our sales team via for assistance as this can't be done in the Customers Portal.

To change the GitLab tier, select Upgrade under your subscription on the My Account page.

Automatic renewal

To view or change automatic subscription renewal (at the same tier as the previous period), log in to the Customers Portal, and:

  • If you see a Resume subscription button, your subscription was cancelled previously. Click it to resume automatic renewal.
  • If you see Cancel subscription, your subscription is set to automatically renew at the end of the subscription period. Click it to cancel automatic renewal.

With automatic renewal enabled, the subscription will automatically renew on the expiration date and there will be no gap in available service. An invoice will be generated for the renewal and available for viewing or download in the Payment History page. If you have difficulty during the renewal process, contact our support team for assistance.

Renew a self-managed subscription

Starting 30 days before a subscription expires, GitLab notifies administrators of the date of expiry with a banner in the GitLab user interface.

We recommend following these steps during renewal:

  1. Prune any inactive or unwanted users by blocking them.

  2. Determine if you have a need for user growth in the upcoming subscription.

  3. Log in to the Customers Portal and select the Renew button beneath your existing subscription.

    TIP: Tip: If you need to change your GitLab tier, contact our sales team via for assistance as this can't be done in the Customers Portal.

  4. In the first box, enter the total number of user licenses you’ll need for the upcoming year. Be sure this number is at least equal to, or greater than the number of active users in the system at the time of performing the renewal.

  5. Enter the number of users over license in the second box for the user overage incurred in your previous subscription term.

    TIP: Tip: You can find the users over license in your instance's Admin dashboard by clicking on {admin} (Admin Area) in the top bar, or going to /admin.

  6. Review your renewal details and complete the payment process.

  7. A license for the renewal term will be available on the Manage Purchases page beneath your new subscription details.

  8. Upload your new license to your instance.

An invoice will be generated for the renewal and available for viewing or download in the Payment History page. If you have difficulty during the renewal process, contact our support team for assistance.

Subscription expiry

When your subscription or trial expires, GitLab does not delete your data, but it may become inaccessible, depending on the tier at expiry. Some features may not behave as expected if you're not prepared for the expiry. For example, environment specific variables not being passed.

If you renew or upgrade, your data will again be accessible.

Self-managed GitLab data

For self-managed customers, there is a two-week grace period when your features will continue to work as-is, after which the entire instance will become read only.

However, if you remove the license, you will immediately revert to Core features, and the instance will be read / write again.

CI pipeline minutes

CI pipeline minutes are the execution time for your pipelines on GitLab's shared runners. Each tier includes a monthly quota of CI pipeline minutes.

Quotas apply to:

  • Groups, where the minutes are shared across all members of the group, its subgroups, and nested projects. To view the group's usage, navigate to the group, then {settings} Settings > Usage Quotas.
  • Your personal account, where the minutes are available for your personal projects. To view and buy personal minutes, click your avatar, then {settings} Settings > Pipeline quota.

Only pipeline minutes for GitLab shared runners are restricted. If you have a specific runner set up for your projects, there is no limit to your build time on

The available quota is reset on the first of each calendar month at midnight UTC.

When the CI minutes are depleted, an email is sent automatically to notify the owner(s) of the group/namespace. You can purchase additional CI minutes, or upgrade your account to Silver or Gold. Your own runners can still be used even if you reach your limits.

Purchasing additional CI minutes

If you're using, you can purchase additional CI minutes so your pipelines won't be blocked after you have used all your CI minutes from your main quota. Additional minutes:

  • Are only used once the shared quota included in your subscription runs out.
  • Roll over month to month.

To purchase additional minutes for your group on

  1. From your group, go to {settings} Settings > Usage Quotas.
  2. Locate the subscription card that's linked to your group on, click Buy more CI minutes, and complete the details about the transaction.
  3. Once we have processed your payment, the extra CI minutes will be synced to your group.
  4. To confirm the available CI minutes, go to your group, then {settings} Settings > Usage Quotas. The Additional minutes displayed now includes the purchased additional CI minutes, plus any minutes rolled over from last month.

To purchase additional minutes for your personal namespace:

  1. Click your avatar, then go to Settings > Pipeline quota.
  2. Locate the subscription card that's linked to your personal namespace on, click Buy more CI minutes, and complete the details about the transaction. Once we have processed your payment, the extra CI minutes will be synced to your Group.
  3. To confirm the available CI minutes for your personal projects, click your avatar, then go to Settings > Pipeline quota. The Additional minutes displayed now includes the purchased additional CI minutes, plus any minutes rolled over from last month.

Be aware that:

  • If you have purchased extra CI minutes before the purchase of a paid plan, we will calculate a pro-rated charge for your paid plan. That means you may be charged for less than one year since your subscription was previously created with the extra CI minutes.
  • Once the extra CI minutes have been assigned to a Group, they can't be transferred to a different Group.
  • If you have used more minutes than your default quota, these minutes will be deducted from your Additional Minutes quota immediately after your purchase of additional minutes.

Contact Support

We also encourage all users to search our project trackers for known issues and existing feature requests in the GitLab project.

These issues are the best avenue for getting updates on specific product plans and for communicating directly with the relevant GitLab team members.

Learn more about:

GitLab Education Program subscriptions

To renew a GitLab Education Program subscription, send an email to with the following information:

  1. The number of seats for the renewal. You can add seats if needed.
  2. The use case for the license. Specifically, we need verification that the use meets the conditions of the End User License Agreement. Note that university infrastructure operations and information technology operations don't fall within the stated terms of the Education Program. For details, see the Education FAQ.
  3. The full name, email address, and phone number of the primary contact who will be signing the renewal quote. Only signatures by faculty or staff with proper signing authority on the behalf of the university will be accepted.

After we receive the above information, we will process the request and return a renewal quote for signature. Please allow a minimum of 2 business days for return. Email us at with any questions.

GitLab Open Source Program subscriptions

All requests for our GitLab Open Source program, including subscription renewals, must be made by using the Open Source Program application process. If you have any questions, send an email to for assistance.