The difference between my subscription and my license key
When you check your account page you'll find you have both a License Key and a Subscription for your purchase. Both could have different expiration dates, in some cases.
The license key is the most important one and as long as your license key is valid you have access to plugin updates and support. Whenever you do a plugin renewal, exactly 1 year gets added to this period. So renewing always gets you another year of updates and support.
When purchasing or renewing it also sets up a subscription for you. The subscription is linked to your Credit Card or PayPal account. A subscription is always set up for exactly 1 year. So that means that if you purchase today, the subscription will be set to renew 1 year from today.
At any time you can cancel your subscription. This will NOT cancel your license key or affect your website in any way. You are only cancelling the automatic renewal. Your license key will stay valid until the end of its period. At that time you can decide to manually renew your license key or just let it expire and not receive plugin updates anymore.
My license key and subscription have different dates
If you do an early renewal (for example when making use of a sale) it will follow those principals above:
1. Your license period gets extended by exactly 1 year.
2. A subscription gets set up for exactly 1 year.
In the case of an early renewal (not at the end of the license period), this means that both dates become out of sync. In that case, we recommend just immediately cancelling the new subscription (basically cancelling the automatic renewal) and waiting for the license key to actually expire.
For example: let's say you have a license key that's set to expire on March 23, 2022. In January 2022 we have our Birthday Deal, which allows you to renew early using a discount code.
When you do that, the license period will get added 1 year to it and therefore be valid until March 23, 2023. But the subscription will be for 1 year and therefore set to renew in January 2023 instead.
You do get everything you paid for (updates and support until March 23). It's just the dates that have become out of sync.