In this new internet connected age, many of us will inevitably wonder, “should I cancel my cable TV service?” With services like YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix, you can watch a large number of the most popular TV shows and movies while paying substantially less.
But is it really worth switching? What if you could just pay LESS than you’re currently paying? Would you stay then? A premium Hulu and Netflix subscription will cost you about $16 combined per month. That is potentially a huge savings. For me, it wasn’t worth it.
Why I Went Back To Cable
I remember the first time I asked myself, “should I cancel my cable TV service?” A few years ago, I finally decided to do it. I was going to cut the cord and stream everything I wanted to watch. Only after canceling my cable tv did I realize how much I enjoyed it.
For starters, I wasn’t satisfied with just having Netflix and Hulu. I also wanted to watch live sports. I ended up purchasing the NHL, MLB, and NFL streaming packages, which of course, aren’t cheap at about $150+ for the season, EACH! Suddenly, my savings were starting to shrink.
Not only that, but I was very unhappy with the quality of the streaming sports services. They claim to be HD, but they are just… different. The quality is much, much worse than real cable tv. There is also a delay in the stream. This resulted in me getting text messages from friends about a “crazy play!” that was only just getting ready to happen on my screen. It got annoying pretty quickly.
Hulu and Netflix are great, but it doesn’t match up to real TV. I found within’ the first few months, I had gone through all the documentaries, movies, and TV shows that interested me on Netflix. I do like the Netflix Originals that keep coming out, but I usually hammer out a full season in a week or two, then I have to wait.
Hulu is getting much better as they keep adding more and more shows. But again, they don’t stream sports, some shows have delayed releases, and you still have to deal with annoying commercials unless you pay for the no commercial option.
You can also say goodbye to any type of live television if you cancel your cable service. Like to watch some live news during breaking news events? Too bad. Want to watch the Oscars or the Super Bowl? Go to a friends house.
Due to these reasons, I decided to go back to cable. I ended up getting DirecTV and while it certainly isn’t perfect (I still pay more than I’d like to), it is way better than having no cable tv at all.
How To Pay LESS For Your Current Cable TV Subscription
One of the reasons I wanted to cancel my cable TV service is due to my ever-increasing cable bill. Of course, they lured me in with an awesome temporary “new subscriber” special, but once that special deal expired, I my bill began to skyrocket. Upon closer inspection, I found that I was paying all sorts of ridiculous “fees” for my cable that they never mention until you look at your bill. A DVR recorder fee? A cable box rental fee? A surcharge fee? WTF? Of course, they’ve made the processing of calling customer support such a painful experience, most of us never bother to call and complain. Even when we do, half of all people attempting to lower their cable bill do not succeed. But hey, you’ll probably get a “thanks for being a part of the Comcast family!” right before you hang up. Ugh!
So, how do you negotiate for a lower cable bill with more than 90% certainty you will succeed? Hire a professional. Don’t laugh, this actually exists and it WORKS!
There is a company called Bill Fixers that will call your cable company and negotiate a lower bill on your behalf. The cool thing is, if they don’t save you money, you don’t have to pay them anything. They are successful more than 90% of the time and on average, they save you about 35% off your existing bill. Sometimes they are even able to negotiate for BETTER service at a LOWER cost. They do charge a fee if they save you money, but the service essentially pays for itself. Not to mention, they deal with the phone trees, transfers, customer service reps you can hardly understand, and all that hassle. You can check out this negotiation service here.
Are You The Type Of Person That Should Cancel Your TV Service?
Some of you might not be satisfied with lowering your cable bill. Instead, you just want out. You’ve had enough of the cable companies jacking up your rates and taking your business for granted. You want to send a message and ditch them forever. Just make sure you’re really one of the people who would benefit from not having cable TV.
For starters, if you’re into sports, I would strongly advise against canceling your cable TV service. However, if you could care less about sports and never watch it anyway, you are already a strong contender to cut the cord.
What about other types of live events? Do you like watching the news or TV shows that are only available through cable? If not, canceling your cable service may be a great decision. Otherwise, you will eventually find that not being able to access live TV is annoying. Just wait until a major news event happens.
How much TV do you watch during the week? Be honest with yourself, here. If you spend 10hrs or more per week watching TV, your “cost per hour” is actually probably pretty low for the entertainment you’re getting. If, on the other hand, you spend more time dusting your TV than actually watching it, switching to a streaming only service would probably be a good idea.
Only you can decide if canceling your cable TV service is worth it or not. Of course, it’s not a life sentence, either. I cancelled my cable service and eventually came back. You could do that, too. Just make sure if you do keep your cable service, you either try to negotiate for a lower rate, or have someone else do that for you.