Caltech Home > Caltech HPC Homepage > Cloud > AWS Promotional Credit program for Research
Search open search form

AWS Promotional Credit program for Research


AWS Credits

Congratulations on being awarded AWS promotional credits. In order to obtain the appropriate credit code from Amazon we'll first need your existing AWS account ID#. If you do not yet have an AWS account you may follow these simple setup instructions to create an account. After login to the AWS console the account number can be found on the upper right under the dropdown menu <Account Name> > My Account: XXXXXXXXXXXX. Once we have your account number our Amazon representatives will issue a credit code that can be applied to your account. Note that all cost, billing and security is the responsibility of the AWS account owner and associated research groups.


Applying the credit code
To apply the credit code navigate to your account name in the upper right hand corner > My Account > Credits > Redeem credit. Credit recipients that have multiple AWS accounts under a single AWS Organization will need to determine if they plan to share the credits to their sub-accounts before applying the credit code. Credit sharing features can be enabled/disabled under the master AWS Organization account. See this link for more information on credit sharing features.

Budget Alerting

AWS budget alerts paired with weekly budget reports are useful tools for alerting groups to unexpected spend in their account. It is recommended to determine your desired monthly spend thresholds based on the amount of AWS credits issued along with any preexisting budgets . Be aware that AWS promotional credits have a default lifespan of 1 year. Click here to launch an AWS Cloudformation Stack that will automatically generate tiered budget alerts to email and optionally cell phone . (Click Link > Login to AWS Console > Hit Next > Fill Parameters > Hit Next > Click Create Stack.) AWS budget alert threshold values and alert contact information may be modified at any time through the AWS Console. (AWS Console > Billing > Budgets). 

More complex setup requirements such multiple budgets and multi-tiered AWS organizations are out of the scope of this budget template and will require manual configuration in the AWS console. See the following links for more information. 

AWS Billing and Cost Management Documentation

Getting Started with AWS Budgets

Creating an AWS Budgets report


AWS Regions

IMSS typically recommends that researchers stick with AWS Region US-West-2 (Oregon) as it's less expensive than the older US-WEST-2 (California) , is more decoupled from California's seismic events and receives new AWS services well before US-WEST-1. 

A powerful part of reigning in cloud costs is proactively limiting the ability to run AWS resources in other regions and countries. It's possible that resources inadvertently running outside of the primary selected region may go unnoticed adding to your monthly spend or depleting valuable credits. 

To limit your account to resources to only US-WEST-2 perform the following.


  • Log into your AWS account as the ROOT (the default) user.
  • Navigate to Service > AWS Organizations (or use search box)
  • Click Policies > Service Control Policies
  • Create Policy 
  • Add Name and Policy Description
  • In the statement box, paste the statement found at this link
  • Click Create Policy
  • Attach the Policy to your Organization. 

Amazon's own documentation on SCP usage here


Please send all Amazon web services support questions to our ticket system at amazonwebservices@caltech.edu .


Cost allocation tagging for tracking individual user spend - coming soon. 
Multi-account AWS Organizational strategy for fully isolating user spend - coming soon.