API Access without paying for a ChatGPT Plus subscription?

Can people purchase only the API Access alone, and not have to pay for the “Plus” subscription? The docs don’t make this clear and only says they’re billed separately.

They are entirely different products.

You may choose to use none, either, or both.


Thanks! I just purchased $5 worth of API usage to try out. Looks like you can pay in advance whatever amount you want.

Whatever you want, as long as you want a minimum payment of $5 and a maximum payment and balance of $50.

The prepay system is new, made to work in OpenAI’s favor, with kinks to be worked out. API users previously would be billed at the end of the month.

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So can I use the GPT-4 API witout the ChatGPT plus subscription? Or can I only use GPT-3.5 if I don’t have ChatGPT plus?

ChatGPT Plus and the API are completely separate billing. If you want to use GPT4 or plugins on chat.openai.com you need Plus.
Plus does not get you GPT4 on API.

See How can I access GPT-4? | OpenAI Help Center

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If you only need access to the API you can pay for that alone. That’s what I did. The API will give you access to both gpt-3.5 variations and gpt-4 (via the API of course, not GUI). Since the only way I consume GPT-4 is thru my own app GUI I therefore never had to purchase “GPT plus”.

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