7 Genius Ways to Save Money on Cable
The cost of cable has never been cheap, but it also continues to rise each year. If receiving your monthly bill is a source of dread and anxiety, you should know that there are numerous cost-cutting ways to save money on cable.
1. Compare Provider Rates
As with anything in life, you should never jump at the first offer you come across, and cable is no exception. Be sure to shop around for your cable needs, and consider both large, national providers as well as local providers in your search for the most affordable cable. If you already have a provider when you find a more affordable alternative, be sure to check your existing provider's cancellation fee before switching.
2. Bundle Your Cable and Internet
Opting to bundle your cable and internet through the same provider can result in savings. When it comes to bundling, though, the key to saving money is not signing up for additional things you don't truly need.
Take a look at the speed of internet that is required for the things you use it for, and don't sign up for faster internet than you need. Similarly, if you don't really need it, don't sign up for the premium channel package when you bundle.
3. Limit Your Number of Cable Boxes
Providers are notorious for charging extra fees for more than one cable box, as much as $10 to $12 per box per month from some companies. Reassess your cable-watching habits.
Do you primarily watch TV on the main level of the house, but there's a cable box in the basement on the off-chance that you're down there? Is that cable box in your bedroom going to waste when you only watch TV for a few minutes before going to sleep? If so, consider eliminating these extra cable boxes as another way to save money.
4. Cut Back on Your Channels
According to Nielsen data provided by the Media Post, Americans are tuning into far fewer television channels than ever before; of the almost 200 channels available in an average home, only 12.7 channels were actually watched. If you're like most Americans, downsizing your plan to include only your must-have channels can save you serious cash monthly.
Another way to trim your channels is by cutting back on premium subscriptions like HBO, Showtime, STARZ, or Cinemax. These often cost $5, $15, or \$20 monthly per premium channel, depending on your provider.
5. Forego the DVR & HD Fees
Are you still paying additional fees for the use of DVR on the off-chance that you might not be home to watch your favorite show? Chances are, the show that was scheduled for a certain day and time will be available on-demand the following day. Whether it's your show, a movie, or local news, these are often available on the station's website.
Cable providers also tack on additional fees such as the fee for HD (high definition) technology. Ditching both of these unnecessary fees could save you about \$20 per month.
6. Call Your Provider and Ask for a Discount
Another way of lowering your monthly cable bill is by calling your provider and negotiating on price. Do your research and see if competitors are offering specials, discounts, or introductory offers, and be sure to get specifics on the internet speed, what channels are included, and any other fees involved. When you reach your provider on the phone, inform the representative that you've been considering canceling your service or switching to a different provider if you can't lower your monthly bill.
Because cable companies are seeing an exodus of customers interested in their services, reaching out this way will often get you sent to the customer retention department, ensuring that you speak with someone who is actually capable of cutting costs. When you speak with them, be detailed in what you know about other providers and the cost of their services so that the representative understands you're serious about switching or canceling.
7. Ditch Cable Entirely
If these saving tips aren't enough, join the exodus and cut the cable cord for good. There are cable alternatives that still provide plenty of content viewing options for you and the entire family.
Internet subscriptions like Netflix begin at $8.99 per month, and Hulu's basic plan is a low $5.99 per month. Amazon Prime Video is available to Amazon Prime members for either $12.99 monthly or $119 per year, bringing that monthly cost down to $8.99 (and also providing the benefits of Prime membership on top of the streaming service). With Disney+, you can stream the magic for $6.99 a month or \$69.99 per year.
With Sling TV, you can pay a low monthly fee ($30 or $45 depending on the package) for dozens of channels and have the ability to select add-on packages that include specific channel bundles for between $5 and $15 per month. Customizing your viewing choices and limiting the number of channels with Sling's a la carte offerings gives you the control over what channels you pay for.
For tips on how to save money on cable review our top 5 cable providers . We'll help you compare all utilities, simplify the bill-paying process, and keep any personal information you share confidential.