Entertainment costs are often the hardest to reduce because they’re the expenses that bring us the most enjoyment. However, there are ways to minimize home entertainment spending to help getting out of debt without losing access to your favorite shows. “Cutting the cord” of your cable subscription and using online streaming services instead can lower your monthly entertainment costs significantly. Here’s how!
What Does “Cutting the Cord” Mean?
Traditional cable TV enters your home via a coaxial cable or cord. When people talk about cutting the cord, they mean canceling their cable TV subscription. This has become an increasingly attractive option to many consumers thanks to cheaper online media streaming.
The most popular streaming services are Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon Prime. These media providers offer access to much of the same content with some added benefits. Unlike standard cable or satellite subscriptions, streaming services offer movies and TV shows on demand. That means you can watch when it’s convenient for you, and there’s a lot more variety in available content. Plus, these services offer free mobile apps that let you watch on the go.
The best reason to cut the cord, however, is the much lower cost compared to cable. Even paying for all three online providers combined is cheaper than cable or satellite TV, which means more money left over for debt reduction. But don’t take our word for it. Do the math!
Crunching the Numbers on Cutting the Cord
All media providers offer different levels of service. Most basic cable or satellite TV plans start at around $30 per month up to $140 or more per month. Let’s see how streaming costs compare. Here’s a quick overview of different rates with the 3 mainstreaming services.
Current Streaming Service Rates:
- Basic – $8/month for streaming on 1 device at a time
- Standard – $10/month for streaming on 2 devices at a time
- Premium – $12/month for streaming on up to 4 devices at a time
- Hulu Plus – $8/month for access to TV and movie content (with commercials during TV content)
- Commercial Free – $12/month for all content with no commercials
- Extras – You can get access to Showtime content for an additional $9/month
- Prime Video – Amazon Prime costs $99 per year ($8.25/month), which gives consumers access to a library of streaming video content as well as free shipping on many consumer goods listed on Amazon.com. Amazon does offer installment payment plans for Prime service.
The basic cable plans usually barely include more than standard network TV channels, which you can get free. Paying for streaming service from all 3 providers would cost less than $25 per month. This gets you more than cable offers and costs less! That’s a win-win to help eliminate credit card debt.
To speak with a certified counselor about budgeting and debt management solutions, call American Consumer Credit Counseling at 800-769-3571.