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About our Royalty-Free images and Extended Licenses

Dreamstime is one of the world leaders in stock photography and a reliable supplier of high quality digital images at affordable prices. We include only the best images in our database and we cover an extensive range of subjects.

If you want to download and use our images, you should know:
Our standard license agreement is the Royalty-Free license which means you pay for the image only once and then you can use the image as many times as you like, with just a few restrictions. This is a one-person license and can be used only by the account owner or his employee, for the company's own projects or clients and cannot be transmitted to another party. Royalty Free licensed images can be used on websites, TV-programmes, for educational projects, in magazines, newspapers, books or booklets, covers for books, flyers, games and any advertising and promotional materials, in either printed or electronic media. This list is not exhaustive. Please email support using the contact form if you have doubts or questions.

You may require extra rights granted by our Extended Licenses for web templates, greeting cards or postcards especially designed for sale, similar print-on-demand services, canvas, t-shirts, mugs, mouse pads or any other items incorporating the image in an essential manner, intended to be sold or given for free. You may also need an extended license if the same image is used by several employees in your company.

Buying the high-resolution image (purchasing the license) does not transfer the copyright. We recommend that you credit the agency and the photographer when you use an image. You can find our site terms here for more info.

Registration and membership are free. To download images, you need to acquire one of our download plans (credits or subscriptions) on the Buy Credits page

Should you have any questions about the potential use of an image from our site, please email support using the contact form.

Depending on the desired usage and type of download, the categories and their end-user, prices are as follows:

Content prices for Royalty Free (RF) and Extended Licenses (EL)

What does Royalty Free mean (RF)?

  • you pay for the image only once and then you can use it as many times as you like
  • there are no license fees except the initial fee and no other royalties to be paid except those included in the initial cost
  • the maximum number of copies for printed materials is 500,000 copies. Additional royalties of $0.01 per copy are to be paid if this amount is exceeded
  • the Royalty-Free license is granted ONLY for the high-resolution, non-watermarked image
  • the free files downloaded from the Free Photos section may be used in commercial projects under our limited RF-LL license is a one-person license and is given to you as a designer, your employer (client) or any employed persons

What are the Extended Licenses (EL)?

They are licenses that extend the rights given with the regular Royalty Free license. Unless otherwise specified the restrictions imposed by the RF license still apply.

  • Unlimited Seats (U-EL) - Extends our regular Royalty Free license to an unlimited number of seats within the same organization. It is an additional license to the usage included within the regular Royalty-Free license that awards rights for a single person within the same company. The U-EL license is applied only for the staff of the organization that holds the account.
  • Increase Max Copies (I-EL) - extends our regular Royalty Free license to a maximum amount of printed copies of up to 2,500,000 copies.
  • Web Usage (W-EL) - electronic Items for Resale: this license includes the right to use the photos for web templates that are sold to more customers, screensavers, e-cards, PowerPoint presentations or as wallpapers on cell phones. Maximum number of electronic items is 10,000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage). If this amount is exceeded you need to acquire this license once again. The new license will provide you with the standard amount of copies.
  • Print Usage (P-EL) - Physical Items for Resale: includes the right to use the photos for t-shirts, postcards, greeting cards, mugs, mouse pads, posters, calendars, framed artwork that is to be sold to other customers for a maximum amount of 10,000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage). If this amount is exceeded you need to acquire this license once again. The new license will provide you with the standard amount of copies.
  • Sell the Rights (SR-EL) - this license represents a full ownership of the downloaded image. The buyer can use it exclusively (exclusivity applies from the moment that the file was downloaded using this license), and include it in any type of design with just a few restrictions: sensitive subjects may still apply and the buyer may not claim that the file was created by him nor resell it as a photo. The agency will disable the image immediately after the buyer acquired this license. The photographer is required to disable the file permanently from all other places where he may sell it, as soon as possible after the sale occurred, but no longer than 72 hours. The photographer acknowledge and agrees to provide the buyer with full ownership for the file retrieved using the SR-EL license.

Flexible purchasing options

Pay per download

Our site uses credits as currency to pay for downloads. Valid for one year to use at any time, perfect for occasional purchases!

Purchase credit packs

Time-based plans

Subscriptions allow you to make a certain number of downloads daily. Renewed monthly or depending on the plan selected, they are the recommended choice for large amounts of files!

Purchase a subscription

How and when the RF license is used

Using our regular RF license you CAN:

  • illustrate websites
  • decorate you home or office
  • create advertising posters, flyers, postcards and any other promotional material of this type
  • create unique interior designs
  • illustrate books and CD covers and booklets
  • illustrate magazine articles and covers or newspapers
  • create wrappings for different products
  • create posters for humanitarian campaigns or social campaigns
  • create company presentations

RF licenses are NOT suitable for:

  • postcards, posters, calendars that will be redistributed or resold. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • creating T-shirts, mugs, or any other product of this type that will be resold or redistributed. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • creating logos or trademarks. In this case you will need to buy the Sell the Rights License that will give you full usage of the image less claiming the image is made by yourself or resell it as an image.
  • creating your own art from that you will resell or redistribute. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • creating puzzles that will be resold or redistributed. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • creating web templates that you will sell or redistribute. In this case you will need to buy the Web Usage Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies.
  • creating coloring books that you will sell or redistribute. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • using it in any other essential manner in a product that will be resold or redistributed
  • images can not be used in candy wrappers. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • creating art prints that are resold or redistributed. In this case you will need to buy the Print Extended License that allows you a number of 10 000 copies (applies as a total of each type of usage)
  • surpassing 500 000 copies of the same image. In this case you will need to buy the Increase Max Copies Extended License which extends our regular Royalty Free license to a maximum amount of printed copies of up to 2,500,000 copies.

When you use a Royalty free or Extended License image that involves people be careful about the sensitive subjects, drugs, psychic diseases, handicaps and so on.

If you have doubts about a potential usage always contact the agency first.

 

Credit packages

Pay per download
Our site uses credits as currency to pay for downloads. Valid for one year to use at any time, perfect for occasional purchases!

Subscriptions

Time-based plans
Subscriptions allow you to make a certain number of downloads daily. Renewed monthly or depending on the plan selected, they are the recommended choice for large amounts of files!

Corporate accounts
Manage multiple sub accounts and receive discounts (Request activation)


Buy credits or subscriptions


To download high-resolution non-watermarked images you can select either credit packages (pay per download) or subscription plans (monthly-based). Invoices are provided for all your purchases. Credits expire after 12 months while subscriptions are set to expire after a specific period, depending on the plan selected.For a complete list of image prices as well as any update that may apply to your purchase, please check About Our Images page.

All licenses you receive when downloading images are worldwide valid and perpetual. Using credits, you can download: Royalty Free, Extended licenses and Editorial images as well as JPG/TIFF, vector and RAW formats. Subscriptions do NOT allow Extended license downloads. Purchasing a plan grants you unlimited free access to our free images database.

Remember to check license specifications on About our images and Terms pages to ensure you select the license appropriate for your usage and buy the package/plan that best fits your needs. Unused credits are kept in your account for future downloads for 12 months after purchase date. You can start downloading images once the transaction is registered.

Frequently asked questions

How do I pay for your images?
We provide you with several payment options. You can pay online (PayPal or credit card; all major credit cards are accepted) or use one of our offline payment methods (regular bank check, cashiers check, bank transfer/wire). For any of the offline payment methods, please contact us at 001-615-771-5611 (INTL) or toll free 800-243-1791 (US&Canada) for more details. Make sure you create an account first and have all the payment info ready prior to making the call. Please keep in mind that there is a minimum amount of $99.99 for offline payments.

What are credits?
The credit is our site currency and you use credits to download images. For each image downloaded, a certain number of credits will be deducted from your account, as per the credit price scheme displayed on the image detail page. Unused credits are kept in your account for future use for exactly 12 months from purchase date.

How many images can I download using the 8 credit package? It says up to 8 images but I got less.
The 8 credit package allows you to download a maximum of 8 images if you download images that cost 1 credit each. These would be the level 0 images at the smallest size. Our image prices differ according to the image size and level and they vary between 1 and 19 credits for a maximum size, maximum level file. For a complete list of prices, check the table on the About our images page.
Most of our database is made up of low level, hence low price images. You can set your search to return only low level images by using the Advanced Search - see button under the main menu toolbar. Remember to check the "Save settings" box in order for the search engine to maintain your settings for future searches. This will allow you to always download the lowest priced imaged and make most of the packages you purchase.

How many images can I download each day if I am using a subscription?
Subscriptions allow you to download a certain number of images every day. The maximum number of images you can download daily is 25 or 50. Image levels and sizes do not apply so only one download will be deducted for each image purchase you make. See a complete list of prices here.

What is the difference between subscription packages and credit packages?
Credit packages allow you to download as many images as the package allows with no significant time limitations. The majority of our credit packages offer substantial bonuses and discounts. Furthermore, credit packages allow you to purchase images under the Royalty free license or under Extended Licenses. You have to use the credits in maximum 12 months from their purchase date, but licenses for your downloads are lifetime. Subscriptions on the other hand, are based on a certain number of downloads allowed on a daily basis, up to 25 or 50 images, depending on the selected plan. Although there is a daily limit, you can download any image or size. Considering the high amount of images that you can download, the daily restriction is applied in order to assure an equal split of the consumption throughout the whole subscription period. Please note that subscription packages allow you to purchase images only under the standard Royalty Free license. For more details see pricing table here. Subscriptions are usually required by companies demanding high volume of images daily, while credits provide more flexibility and cover extra usage.

What are levels?
The levels refer to how many times an image has been downloaded. When someone downloads an image, the download will be added to the image's total number of downloads. When the amount of downloads per image reaches a specific number the level of the file is increased, increasing its pricing as well (the number of credits you pay for it). This system gives incentive to other images that are very good (but newer) to be downloaded, encouraging their use. You can use the Advanced Search to search based on the desired price level. Most of the images in the database are level 1 when they are submitted (images submitted in assignments are an exception).

I want to buy a subscription plan. How many images can I download and when does the subscription end?
The subscription plans give you access to a very high discount. The bonus can even exceed 100% in specific cases. Considering the high amount of images that you can download, a daily restriction is applied in order to assure an equal split throughout the whole subscription month. You may download up to 50 images/day, each day. If you used all downloads for one day, come back the next day and continue the download. If you are trying to meet a deadline and need more images for one day, you can buy credits to be used right away. Do not purchase a new subscription plan. You cannot have two subscriptions running simultaneously on the same account. Subscriptions end automatically after their specified period. The end time is not related to the calendar month but to the date at which you made the subscription purchase.

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