Even though the holiday season is over, here at Cable Alternatives, we give out free advice no matter what time of year it is. So in the spirit of year round giving, we’re happy to give out some useful hints in managing your cable bill, even if you’re not ready to cut the cord yet.


Cable and satellite bills are frustrating, but with a little advice from Cable Alternatives, you can shave your bill and leave a little more room for eggnog (as if you needed it).


So without further adieu, here are some good ideas.


Scrutinize That Bill, Write Down Your Questions.


Cable and satellite bills can be very confusing. Take some time to go through your bill, if you have a significant other or someone who pays the bills with you, involve them in the review as well. As you go through it, write down your questions. It’s best not to speculate on answers, just focus on the questions. Once you’ve gone thorough your bill, give your cable/satellite company a call, or better yet, walk into the local office if they have one, and have them answer your questions. Don’t leave or get off the phone until you are sure you have all the answers. Be prepared to get some answers you don’t like, that’s ok, we’ll cover that.


If you don’t feel comfortable talking to them, call us, we know cable/satellite bills, and can help you understand them and get the best deal.


Look at Your Cable/Satellite Providers Website Before You Call for a New Deal


When you call cable or satellite providers often times they won’t tell you about all the options available. This is generally because they get bonuses to up-sell. I’m sure you’ve heard a few time’s that you “must” get a landline in order to get the best deal, or that landlines or certain channels or services are “free.” This is almost never true. Go onto your TV providers website and look at all the deals there. Read the fine print, which is often contained in a link.  Many times people have been forced to buy a landline or something else they don’t want because they weren’t told of other deals that would better suit them. Also, look on the web for the new subscriber deals as well as the existing subscriber deals. Sometimes they are different, and even if you don’t fit into that category, you might be able to negotiate that deal if you ask them for it (and are persistent). If you’re still confused, call Cable Alternatives. We help you find the best deal, even if it means you don’t buy anything from us, we’re that helpful!


Know Exactly What You Want


This is critical. Use your research so far to figure out exactly what you want with those in your household. Figure out the channels everyone likes, the shows you all watch, the type of internet you need, and if you need a landline. Match it to the deals you see from your research. Do you need that ultra premium package?  Do you watch Showtime, HBO or a premium channel like the NFL network?  Do you need a landline?  Do you need super fast internet? If not, look for a package that doesn’t have those services. Sometimes you’ll still get more than necessary, but you’ll likely still pay less. Know what fees you’ll be paying as well.  Also, if you’re buying a promotion, know what you will be paying after the promotion. If you don’t know what you want, you can always call Cable Alternatives (notice a theme?). We’ll help you sort through all your options and arrive at one that’s best for you.


Negotiate in Person


In our experience, if there is a local office for your cable or satellite provider, it’s best to go there and negotiate. Working with someone in person helps avoid pressure tactics, and its very hard for them to “transfer” you or put you on hold. Also, if you’ve got printouts of the deals you pulled off the website, its harder for them to claim ignorance when you ask for a particular package.


Know what else is out there - Knowledge is Power


Take a look around at other services. Look at DirectTV and Dish’s deals and packages, as well as those of your local cable companies. Many times folks who don’t want to go through the hassle of switching don’t even look at other deals available to them. Your current Cable/Satellite provider is counting on that, and uses that to get you in a bad deal. Knowledge is always power. If you can let your cable company know that there is a better deal for you out there, they may be more willing to work with you, even if you were never planning to switch in the 1st place. Of course, you could always look into options to cut cable or satellite completely. Call us for help. Again, even if you’re not looking to get rid of your provider, showing them you know more makes them more willing to give you a good deal.


Accept that you’re probably not going to get exactly what you want from your Cable or Satellite provider


Pay-TV providers have been acting like monopolies for decades now. There is a reason they rank at the bottom of nearly every customer satisfaction index today. Even if you think you’ve found the package that would work perfectly for you, or something they do doesn’t make sense, they may not be able to help you. If you’ve made the decision to stick with your provider anyway, take a deep breath, know that you are a smart customer, and accept that they are just not able to help people like you very well. If you’ve reached this stage, you may want to give us a call to see if Cable Alternatives can get you a better deal. Most of the time our customers are pretty smart, and have done a really good job, but that extra perspective never hurts.


Call Us


Many of these tips do require some time. While in our opinion it’s a good investment, we know that many people are just too busy to deal with that. That’s OK! Cable Alternatives can negotiate your cable bill down for you, and let you know what other options you have in a positive way, free from the hassles of dealing with your provider yourself.


Take Charge, be an Empowered Customer


At Cable Alternatives, we help you become an empowered customer. Whether it’s negotiating down your bill, talking through all your options, or showing you the money you can save by getting rid of Cable or Satellite completely. You will feel good after we help you, because you’ll know exactly what you want, and you’ll know how to get it. Call us today at 763-571-1037.