AWS - Set Up Billing Alerts

It's a good practice to set up billing alerts when you're first getting started with AWS to avoid unexpected charges than can be caused by forgetting to clean up and remove unused services.

Enable Billing Alerts in "Billing preferences"

  1. Navigate to My Billing Dashboard > Billing preferences
  2. Enable "Receive Free Tier Usage Alerts" to receive email alerts when AWS service usage is approaching, or has exceeded, the AWS Free Tier usage limits.
  3. Enter the Email Address to send the alerts to
  4. Enable "Receive Billing Alerts" to send billing alerts to via email when your charges reach a specified threshold.
2020 06 17 billing preferences

Create a CloudWatch Billing Alarm

  1. Navigate to CloudWatch > Alarms > Billing
  2. "Create Alarm"
2020 06 17 cloudwatch billing alarms dashboard

  1. Specify the threshold dollar value to trigger an alarm

Here, the dollar threshold value is $10 USD

  1. Click Next
2020 06 17 billing alarm threshold

  1. Create a new SNS topic for Billing Alerts
  2. Specify the email address to send Billing Alerts to
  3. Click "Create topic"
  4. Click Next
2020 06 17 billing alarm sns topic

  1. Set the Alarm Name and Description
  2. Click Next
2020 06 17 billing alarm set name

  1. Review the summary of the alarm to be created
  2. Click Create alarm
2020 06 17 billing alarm preview create

The CloudWatch Billing alarm is created. However, we need to confirm the SNS Subscription.

  1. Click "View SNS Subscriptions"
2020 06 17 cloudwatch pending

Confirm the SNS Subscription

  1. Navigate to Amazon SNS > Subscriptions

We can see that the new SNS subscription is "Pending confirmation"

2020 06 17 sns pending confirmation

  1. Go to the email inbox you designated for alerts and find the email "AWS Notification - Subscription Confirmation"
  2. Click "Confirm subscription"
2020 06 17 sns email

2020 06 17 sns email confirmed

You'll now see in Amazon SNS that the subscription has been confirmed

2020 06 17 sns confirmed