How to create billing alert in AWS and send email

In this session we are going to learn how to create Billing alarms for your AWS account.

First, go to AWS cloud management control and under the Alarms section, select Billing. Then click Create alarms as shown in the figure 1.

Figure 1: Creating alarms

Step 1 of creating alarms is specifying the metric and conditions. Set the metric name as EstimatedCharges. Then for the currency, put the type of currency you prefer. In here we putUSD as shown in figure 2.

Figure 2: Specifying metric name and currency

Select Maximum for the statistics and for the period choose 1 day because we are going to check for one day as shown below.


Then under conditions, set the threshold type as Static and then the whenever EstimatedCharges is an option as Greater. For the then. option choose 1 USD. For this, you can put your desired amount. This means the system will give us an alert if the estimated charge is greater than 1 USD (threshold value) for one day. This is shown in figure 4.Then click next.

Figure 4: Setting the conditions

The second step of creating alarms is, configuring the actions. Under Notifications, set the Alarm state trigger as In alarm. In order to get an alert, SNS topic is required. So, we need to create a new SNS topic. Select Create new topic option under Select an SNS topic section as shown in figure 5.

Figure 5: Configuring the actions

Then give a name for the topic. It should be unique. Give the name of your preference. Then give your email address in the Email endpoints that will receive the notification field. The alerts and notifications will be sent to this email address.

Figure 6:  Creating an SNS topic

The 3rd step of creating an alarm is adding a name and a description. In the alarm name field, give a name for your alarm. The alarm description is optional. You can specify anything you prefer here. Then click next.

Figure 7: Giving the alarm a name and a description

Then click create alarm which is shown at the end of the page. Then you will be prompted to the Billing alarms. As you can see its successfully created as shown in figure 8. The state is shown as insufficient data because it’s still collecting data. Once the data collection is done, it will display as active.

Figure 8: The successfully created alarm

Note that the actions under your alarm. It shows pending confirmation. This is because AWS has sent a confirmation email to your email account. Hence, make sure to confirm it.

Figure 9: Pending confirmation action

Then again go to the Billing section. But, before make sure you have root access. If not so, configure it using billing management access control.

In the Billing section, under the preferences, select Billing Preferences. Then tick the checkboxes for receiving free tier usage alerts and receive billing alerts. Give your email address.

By ticking receive free tier usage alerts, you will receive email alerts when your AWS service usage is approaching, or exceeded.

Figure 10: Setting the billing preferences

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