Account Type

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Account Types

There are three Account Types available to new players in Lotro today, Free to Play, Premium, and VIP (subscribed). They give different benefits and bonuses. This page summarizes these differences.

Free to Play

Free to Play (abbreviated F2P) was launched in the fall 2010 and introduced a new business model. Players can play for free with some restrictions and remove those restrictions by making a purchase in the in-game Lotro Store with LOTRO Points (LP).

You can download the game for free and start playing without a subscription or even a credit card. Anyone can join the game for free as a Free player.


You will automatically be upgraded to Premium player status with your first purchase of something for real world money, e.g. LOTRO Points, etc.


VIP ("Very Important Person/Player") status is one of three types of accounts a new LOTRO player can have today. As a player with a VIP account, you have unlimited access to all game content; only expansions must be purchased. VIP is another way of describing a subscriber. Please see VIP Account Discussion below for a detailed description of this account type.


A player who pre-ordered the original Shadows of Angmar release in 2007. Benefits at the time included participation in the beta testing, special lower pricing for monthly and lifetime subscriptions, and special benefits for all characters (a ring of agility +3 and a special cloak). When Free to Play was released in 2010, Founders automatically became VIPs, as long as they kept paying their monthly fees (or were Lifetime members).


Lifetime subscriptions were offered to Founders at $199.00 USD. After release, the Lifetime Subscription was offered to others for $299. This subscription option was discontinued in 2009. SSG, has said many times officially and unofficially they have no plans to ever offer this option again.

VIP Account Discussion

VIP ("Very Important Person/Player") status is one of three types of accounts a new LOTRO player can have today. As a player with a VIP account, you have unlimited access to all game content; only expansions must be purchased. VIP is another way of describing a subscriber.

For a monthly fee, Lotro’s VIP program offers the best value and the most options for players who like the convenience of having unlimited access to all of Lotro’s game content and features.

Acquiring VIP status

Currently, VIP status can be acquired by maintaining an active subscription through the LOTRO in-game store LOTRO Store interface (requires a credit card or PayPal account).

Information in this section is obsolete, and is presented as part of the historical record In the past, there were several other ways to acquire VIP status:

  • Adding game time from 60 day or 12 month Game Cards. These are no longer purchasable. Previously purchased and unused cards are no longer valid since the 2023 Lotro Store revamp.
  • Adding the key from a physically purchased Moria box to an account will add 30 days of VIP time. These are old boxes from before Free to Play. These keys are no longer valid since the 2023 Store revamp.
    • If a product key includes 30 days of play time, those 30 days count as VIP access. Please note that many, but not all types of keys include play time. If the key does include an upgrade, but no time, it won't include any VIP access.
  • Having a Lifetime Membership. Note: no longer purchasable, but occasionally awarded as Prizes for participation in Beta events.
  • As of the August 2023 Store upgrade, older keys and time cards can no longer be used.


While LOTRO can be played for free without an active subscription, being a VIP player unlocks many elements of the game that non-VIP players would have to unlock with LOTRO Points or cannot use at all. Benefits of VIP status are:

Tooltip explanation of the VIP Bonus Experience

(*)= These features cannot be purchased from the LOTRO Store and are exclusive VIP features.

See: official LOTRO VIP information and Free to Play for more detailed information.


Having VIP status also has some elements that some players may find undesirable. These are:

  • Need to pay a monthly fee, unless the VIP is a lifetime subscriber.
  • Inability to purchase LOTRO Store Quest Packs and other elements that are unlocked while VIP. This makes it impossible to take advantage of sales in anticipation of a downgrade to Premium status.
  • Automatic rest XP. A possible side-effect is that quest content may be out-levelled before it is finished. This can be counteracted with the store-bought XP disabler.


If a subscription is cancelled or the time of a game card expires, a VIP account is automatically downgraded to a Premium account at the end of the remaining subscription period. Some features are maintained while most are no longer available.

Features maintained

Some features are maintained on a per-character basis when downgrading from VIP to Premium. However, these features, listed below, are maintained only for characters who have entered Middle-earth (logged in) while the VIP status was active; characters created after downgrading from VIP to Premium and characters that were created before or during VIP but were not logged into the game during VIP do not have access to these features. These per-character unlocks also function for content the character hasn't reached yet due to level or other restrictions.

The following features are maintained on a per-character basis:

  • Swift Travel
  • 75 inventory slots (plus any additional +5 Inventory slots purchased)

Handling of removed features

Downgrading removes all VIP features not described in the previous paragraph. Handling of the removal of some of those features is described below:

  • If downgrading causes a player to go over their character slot limit, they must select one or two characters to give up. These characters are not deleted, but become unavailable until they purchase the extra character slot(s) or resubscribe.
  • Deeds and quests in progress can be finished.
  • Rest XP can be consumed, but is no longer generated.
  • Items placed in the Wardrobe as a VIP can be used and dyed but not replaced.
Your total available number of Shared Wardrobe slots is reduced by 20 (including the Maximum number of Shared Wardrobe Slots available). I.e. the 20 Shared Wardrobe slots received as a VIP player are removed. You must purchase those 20 slots from the LOTRO Store to again utilize them.
  • Crafting guild access is maintained but can no longer be increased.
  • Auctions in progress are maintained but no new auctions can be posted above the cap.
  • Swift travel is available to VIPs for free.
Swift travel can be temporarily unlocked (1 hour, 1 day, 7 days, 30 days) with the Writ of Special Passage from the LOTRO Store for Free or Premium players. The swift routes in the beginning areas are free to all players.
Characters of Premium players who downgraded from VIP keep access to all swift travel routes, even travel routes that character did not unlock while VIP (contradicting official information, which states only unlocked travel routes are maintained). Please note that only the characters played while the subscription was VIP will have access to swift travel routes; characters created after a subscription downgrade from VIP to Premium will only have access to beginning area swift travel routes.

Account type comparison table

Here are the benefits for each player status:

Feature VIP Player Premium Player Free Player
LOTRO Points (LP) 500/month
Can purchase more
Or earn through gameplay

Or earn through gameplay

Or earn through gameplay
Epic Story3 Unlimited, with some exceptions3 Unlimited, with some exceptions3 Unlimited, with some exceptions3
Level Cap 150 150 150
Character slots1 7/server
Can purchase more
Can purchase more
Can purchase more
Quest Packs All LOTRO Store Quest Packs Most content up to level 95
Can purchase more
Most content up to level 95
Can purchase more
Key features
Priority login Priority High Standard
Chat Unlimited Limited Limited
Auction 30 active listings; 20 active bids 5 active listings (can purchase more); 20 active bids Listings purchasable; 20 active bids
Mail Unlimited Limited by currency cap Cannot mail currency
Rest XP Automatic Not available Not available
Crafting Guilds Unlimited
Purchasable Purchasable
Shared Wardrobe 20 slots
Can purchase more
Purchasable Purchasable
Destiny points Can earn and spend on perks Can earn but cannot spend on perks Can earn but cannot spend on perks
Hobbit gifts 1 silver per day, 1 gold per week
Can purchase more
1 silver per day
Can purchase more
1 silver per day
Can purchase more
VIP Rewards Quest Access Yes, can obtain Subscriber's Jug & Subscriber Town Services N/A N/A
Community features Read/Post Read/Post Read/Limited posting
In-game Support Full access Full access for 30 days following the purchase of LOTRO Points Self-service online
1 As of March 2022, the maximum number of Character slots per server is 46.
  • Purchasers of the LOTRO Adventurer’s Pack got 2 extra character slots and 20 slots of shared bank storage. (Option no longer available).
  • The introduction of the Beorning in Update 15 allowed for the purchase of one additional character slot. (Beorning and Character slot Bundle)
  • The World Transfer (Server Consolidation) process (Update 16.3 - August 3, 2015) allowed 2 additional character slots for VIPs.
  • Also, as part of this World Transfer process, the number of purchasable Character slots (in the on-line store) has been doubled to 26 for a F2P account.
  • Minas Morgul expansion granted 1 additional slot, if bought from the LOTRO Market (all versions).
  • Fate of Gundabad expansion granted 1 additional slot, if bought from the LOTRO Market (all versions).
  • Before the Shadow expansion granted 1 additional slot, if bought from the LOTRO Market (only collector's and ultimate fan bundle).
  • Corsairs of Umbar expansion granted 1 additional slot, if bought from the LOTRO Market (all versions).
  • up to 3 additional slots might be acquired via River Hobbit Bundles. Each of the packages includes 1 char slot, so buying top tier will grant you just 1 slot, buying base and upgrading twice will grant you 3 slots total (but you are paying for a character slot at normal price (595 LP), not available otherwise)
2 This feature is permanently unlocked on a per character basis; A character played during VIP status retain these inventory slots after the VIP time expires and the subscription status is downgraded to Premium.
3 Access to the Black Book of Mordor story line is included in the Mordor expansion and the Minas Morgul expansion.

Points to note

  • All content released before and including Helm's Deep is available to all players.
  • All landscape areas in The Lord of the Rings Online are open to free players. While free players can explore and kill monsters in these areas they cannot complete the side quests or Deeds contained there without first purchasing the LOTRO Store Quest Packs (or Expansions) for those areas.
  • Most Epic Quests are free, with the exception of The Black Book of Mordor which requires VIP or buying either Mordor or Minas Morgul and The Song of Waves and Wind which currently requires VIP or buying any Quest Pack or Expansion related to this storyline.

Fraud Prevention FAQ

For info about hacked accounts, see Fraud Prevention FAQ.