Avoid Unnecessary Charges on Your Domain: A Must-Read for GoDaddy Users

In the digital space, your domain name is not just your online identity; it’s your most important online asset for your business. However, managing this asset through certain registrars can sometimes lead to unexpected expenses that could have been avoided. This post is an essential read for those who have registered domains through GoDaddy. It’s time to take a closer look at your account to ensure you’re not paying for services you don’t need. We’ll discuss why switching to a more transparent registrar like Cloudflare could save you money in the long run.

Recently, a client’s experience with GoDaddy brought to light some of the challenges and pitfalls that can arise for all who manage their own domain registrations.

Background: A Surprise Bill with Unwanted Charges

A client, who had registered their domain with GoDaddy several years ago and who hosts their site with Digital Creative Lab, faced unexpected and unwelcome billing practices. This situation, made worse by a lack of clear communication from GoDaddy, led to significant unwarranted charges.

The Issue Unfolded as Follows:

Without prior notice or reminders about upcoming renewals, GoDaddy charged the client for three services they did not knowingly opt into, amounting to a considerable sum. The charges included:

  • Two instances of a Website Security Basic New Account, each on a 2-Year Plan at C$64.56 x2.
  • An Ultimate Domain Protection and Security Renewal for their domain, on a 2-Year Plan at C$89.98.
Screenshot of GoDaddy unwanted services for website not hosted with GoDaddy.
Screenshot of GoDaddy Domain renewal charges

When they contacted GoDaddy, they sought to reverse the charges for these unsolicited services while intending to keep their domain renewal active. However, they were informed that to process any refund for the additional services, all associated products, including the domain, would need to be cancelled. This directive resulted in their domain being “frozen,” now facing a redemption fee alongside the standard renewal cost:

  • A 1-year renewal now quoted at C$32.99.
  • An additional Redemption fee of C$135.06.

In this instance, GoDaddy should not be charging a redemption fee as the domain was only 2 days past it’s expiry date as of the time when the client contacted GoDaddy. Generally, the redemption period—a time when the domain can still be recovered before being released for public registration—commences a minimum of three weeks post-expiry. Most ethical domain registrars offer a grace period, allowing domain owners to renew their domains at regular rates for up to 30 days after expiration.

Screenshot of GoDaddy shopping cart with unwarranted Redemption Fee

Lessons and Warnings: Signs to Watch For

This incident underscores several critical points and warning signs that domain owners should be vigilant about:

  1. Unexpected Charges: Regularly review your account statements and be on the lookout for any charges for services you did not explicitly agree to or no longer require.
  2. Lack of Communication: A reputable registrar should provide timely reminders about upcoming renewals and any changes in terms or services. The absence of such communication is a red flag.
  3. Inflexible Policies: Policies that require cancelling your domain renewal to reverse charges for unrelated services are not only inconvenient but potentially harmful to your online presence.
  4. Exorbitant Fees: Be wary of excessive fees, especially those related to domain renewal or redemption. These should be clearly stated and reasonable.

Moving Forward: Considering Alternatives like Cloudflare

The challenges faced by my client highlight the importance of choosing a registrar that values transparency, fairness, and customer service. Cloudflare emerges as a commendable alternative. Unlike GoDaddy, Cloudflare doesn’t charge markups on domain prices, offering a more straightforward and cost-effective solution for domain registration and renewal.

Transitioning to a More Reliable Registrar:

If you’re contemplating a switch, consider registrars that provide:

  • Transparent pricing without hidden charges.
  • Clear communication regarding renewals and changes.
  • Customer support that seeks to resolve issues in your favour.

How to Make the Switch

If you’re considering transferring your domain away from GoDaddy or any registrar with similar practices, here’s how you can start:

  1. Verify Your Domain Details: Ensure your contact information is up to date and that your domain is unlocked for transfer.
  2. Obtain a Transfer Authorization Code: This code is usually provided by your current registrar and is necessary for the transfer process.
  3. Initiate the Transfer with Your New Registrar: Follow the new registrar’s process for domain transfer, which will include providing the authorization code.

Here to Help

Navigating domain registration and management can be complex, but you don’t have to do it alone. If you’re facing difficulties with GoDaddy or considering a switch to a more transparent registrar, we at Digital Creative Lab are here to help. Together, we can ensure your digital presence is secure and cost-effective.


The digital landscape requires us to be ever vigilant and proactive in managing our online assets. By sharing these experiences and insights, we can empower each other to make informed decisions and safeguard our digital futures. We encourage all GoDaddy users to review your accounts and consider whether you are getting value for your money.

Don’t let unnecessary charges drain your budget. Review your account today, and if you need assistance or advice, reach out. Our team is ready to support you in securing your online assets without overpaying.

Sherissa R

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