Welcome to The Penny Hoarder’s monthly Money Challenge, helping you find simple ways to save money every month.
In this challenge, we’re going to help you reduce how much you pay for cable and/or internet service. These bills have a tendency of creeping up over time, especially if you don’t check in on them regularly.
Here’s what to do:
- Research rates and deals in your area
Check your TV and/or internet bills to see how much you’re paying each month. Then, look for deals and promotions from all the providers in your area. To see what options are available near you, visit our sister sites:
Do your research. Are there any deals for new customers of your current provider that could apply to your plan? Are there better offers from a different provider? Would bundling cable and internet save you a few dollars? Make a list of the plan(s) you’re considering switching to.
- Call your cable company
Locking in a cheaper rate might be an uphill battle when you’re on the phone with a cable rep, but patience and persistence can really pay off.
- Be kind – you’re talking with someone who is just doing their job.
- Mention the cheaper deals you’ve found from competitors – be sure those deals are actually available in your area.
- No luck? Try again with a different rep on another day.
- Is cutting the cord an option?
Streaming services offer much of the same content you’ll find on cable, plus an ever-growing catalog of exclusive content. So, do you really even need to pay for cable TV in 2022? Maybe a combo of streaming and free over-the-air channels will satisfy your viewing needs. You’ll still need to keep your internet provider in this case, but you could save hundreds each year by dropping cable TV.
Resources from The Penny Hoarder
How to complete the challenge
- Find out how much you’re currently paying.
- Research better deals in your area.
- Call your provider and negotiate a lower bill or cancel and sign up for a better deal from a new provider.
- If you haven’t already, consider “cutting the cord.”
Let us know if you were successful in lowering your bill and share your own tips with the community!
I haven’t had cable in 24 years and quite frankly, I don’t miss it. I don’t stream either. I just use a simple converter box when I choose to watch the occasional live broadcast. I find too many people are wasting their lives away sitting in front of a screen binge watching. I choose to read instead (from the library for free of course) or pursue my own interests outside of being a zombie.
I cut the cable back in 2011 no regrets. I like the occasional DVD and I read but I splurged and got a Roku several years ago because antenna or other airwave options didn’t work out here in BFE. But there’s so much free stuff on Roku why would anyone pay for cable? Also changed internet companies several months ago when I found a better rate and ended up getting big city speeds on top of it!
i live in a senior complex and the owner gets a reduce price for us so we pay less for our cable and inter net
I haven’t had cable in at least a decade, probably more. I have Netflix, Amazon Prime (with a free Disney+ subscription) and HBO Now. That’s way more than I have time to watch!
This is great - my current setup is just:
Amazon Prime. (Reading the above comment, I didn’t know this came with a free Disney+ subscription?! I have to check that out).
YouTube (not YouTube TV, just regular-old, free YouTube).
My projector is hooked up to my FireStick which’ll let me watch either Prime shows or YouTube. Mostly it is the latter. And because YouTube is nicely integrated, I can just use my phone to connect to the YouTube app playing on the projector and just use my iPhone as a remote for YouTube. Amazon Prime requires using the Firestick remote which is fine as well.
I got rid of cable in 2017! I had Verizon Fios internet for $60-$70/month for four years before moving. I currently pay for Spotify + Hulu bundle, Amazon Prime, and HBO Max. My bf shares Netflix and Apple TV with me. I don’t have time to watch everything either! I’d like to get Audible again, but it’s way too expensive.
These are great tips! Especially insightful to go through everyone’s comments and see their own methods for reducing these tedious bills. Like a lot of us, I’ve shifted mostly to streaming and shared subscription services. Cheers!
I’ve never paid for cable TV as an adult, however, I have had to “wheel and deal” for better internet rates, as they always go up with no improvement in service. Another tip is to buy your own modem and wireless router, as most internet providers still charge you to rent their equipment for $10-$15 a month. It adds up!
@polarmoney @amypatt @irishnanny @dear.penny @angie.p @pinay @thomas.martchek
Thanks for participating in the challenge! Hope a few of you were able to some a little money!
I love learning from this great community
I have enjoyed the convenience of cable TV and internet all in one.
I have resisted change until 2022 I have made changes.
I did all I could to reduce my bill and still get the few channels I watch.
I lowered my internet speed, I lowered the channel selections, I got the $30 a month ACP credit, I bought my own modem/router to not rent, I finally took the DVR box back.
And as usual, within a month or 2, my bill is very close to where it was when I had all that stuff.
It honestly seems like they are going to charge a certain amount per account regardless of how much or how little you have. The bill always creeps back up!
I am going to cancel EVERYTHING except INTERNET soon, probably in the next 2 weeks as soon as I find a cheap streaming service that offers the 3 channels I watch.
Xfinity is charging people an insane amount of money to BOMBARD YOU WITH COMMERCIALS and they get rich.
What can be better, paid by companies to play commercials and paid by consumers to watch the commercials. They win both ways!
It is TIME to put XFINITY out of business!
thank you for sharing this
Yeah, as more people drop their cable tv, the prices and services slowly shift over to the internet (paid to same cable company) and streaming sites. What can you do? Read more books, I suppose.
will do that or do more surveys for extra money
There are only 1 or 2 internet providers in our town - they have a monopoly. My husband doesn’t have a cell phone so we have a landline. A lot of people are unhappy with these companies and they just keep gouging us. We have not had WiFi in our house for over a month, just internet with a physical connection to the tower.
I was a long time cable customer. I had even purchased at least 3 TiVO boxes over the years as well and loved being able to fast forward through commercials back in the day. I replaced all of that with a one-time purchase of a Roku Streaming Stick for about $35. In my area, we are down in a valley that makes a digital over the air antenna (even if put on my roof) not an option but we tried exploring that. One of the streaming options not mentioned is YouTube TV which I’ve been researching for a client I’m helping cut cable that says it’s $64.99 a month and includes an unlimited DVR. But, in our personal household, we do without access to local news and local sports except what we can find on free on the regular free YouTube app.
Here’s my streaming tip I love to share: One other penny hoarder thing we do is we subscribe to just one station at a time. Right now, we are subscribed to Netflix but after a month or two, we might cancel that and switch to Paramount+ or Hulu. We couldn’t possibly watch everything available anyway and by having only one channel at a time, we truly look forward to the next time we get access again.
its always good to trim out irrelevant expenditures
Absolutely, about buying your own modem and router. I’ve been buying my own since 2015. I recently switched to ATT Internet and the modem/router couldn’t be purchased separately because they add it into the monthly price, not as a separate pull-out. I still got an amazing monthly rate though.
That’s how I got my bill down to an acceptable level, @rick.campbell . The ACP credit.