We get $100 credit a month for Azure, from everything I can see that wouldn't even get us the most basic of Windows Servers ?
I find the whole thing crazy confusing.
I get 230NZD through MSDN and find it easily runs a grunty VM with fairly large SSD pretty much every day (though I do have a shutdown schedule every evening so realistically the VM is probably only running 40% of the time - though I find the disk size it what takes most of my credits - when I had it smaller I was easily running 3 VMs for the month) When you create VMs, try sort by cost and un-select some of the filters, then read up a bit on the offerings.
I also have a few Azure SQL DBs and app services, VSTS accounts with package management, test functions, etc, etc running on that.
The real value IMO comes in when you have a reasonably built system and can take advantage of some of the PaaS offerings. If you want to run a VM with a bursty workload look at the B series VMs, they seem like a fairly good option at low cost though.
If you just want to run grunty VMs 100% of the time in the cloud I think you will find costs don't really add up, especially if you're comparing to servers you build, maintain and run yourself. You might be better looking at Amazon, but even then I don't know if it will all add up.
IMO Azure does really well if you have a decent devops pipeline in the Microsoft\.NET space. If you're not living in Microsoft land Amazon is probably a better option.
The good thing is it's pretty easy to use both and lean on your investment in Azure AD as your identity source across both platforms.
THIS! Have a dabble in both - you'll find the skills are transferable. Once you start getting used to cloud and provisioning\spinning up VMs on the fly\scripting these things\scaling\etc you won't go back and the costs will start to make more sense!