One of the things I am doing is changing the way that we handle Internet and Television. That system is a ripoff thanks to what they call “bundling.” My last bill was $230 for CATV and Internet. We don’t get any premium channels. I am trying to figure out what I am getting for all of this, but I have seen Greek instruction manuals that are less confusing than our cable bill:

  • They charge me $102 for Internet service that is nominally at 800MBps. When I check it, the best I get is around 50-70 MBps. My in-laws live 2 miles away and are getting 250 MBps, according to speedtest. So I decide that I am not paying for speed that I’m not getting and look to see what a lower speed would save me. Lowering my speed to 400 would actually RAISE my bill by $22 a month. Going to 200 would raise my bill by $34 a month. Yeah, I know that they have a disclaimer that says speed can vary, but only getting 10% of what they are advertising seems to be a stretch.
  • Now on to television. My wife watches far more of it than I do, but I do occasionally watch. Mostly movies, hockey, and old television shows. My wife loves watching shows like medical dramas. I can’t stand those, but we gotta keep the wife happy. They charge us $91 for 185 channels. Cutting it to the 125 channel option would save us a whopping 94 cents per month. If I go to only 10 channels, it would save me $40, but I can get those same 10 channels with an antenna for free.

They bundle them together, and the bill claims that with discounts, I am being charged $130 a month. Seems reasonable, so how do they arrive at my $230 biil?

  • Add-ons. They charge us $30 for three cable boxes, another $10 for DVR service, $6 for the remote controls so we can use their cable boxes, and $38 a month in service, sports, and local channel fees, Then add in the taxes, and the total bill is a quarter grand. $3k a year for cable and Internet. Believe it or not, this is the best of the providers in our area. We tried DSL. That service has even slower Internet. T-mobile has a home Internet that works over 5g cell towers, but there is a 200gb per month data limit. That isn’t going to work if we stream. They are raping us because there are really no other options.

So I called them. We are getting rid of cable TV and cutting the Internet speed to 400mB/s. Why pay for 800 when we never get speeds that high, anyway? If it continues, I may even cut it further. We already have Amazon Prime and Netflix, because they were free with other things that we already have and pay for. So here is the plan:

  • Internet: $87
  • Netflix: Free
  • Amazon Prime: paid for through other means
  • Paramount+ $12/mo
  • Hulu (with ads): $8/month
  • Peacock (with ads): $5/month

So it will cost us $25 for TV and $87 for Internet. Once we see if there will be any hidden charges, especially from the not-so-transparent Internet provider, we can consider upgrading to the “no ads” version of the above services, which will cost us an additional $19 per month. However, we just cut our cable/internet bill from $230 to $112 per month.

Categories: Me


Joe Blow · July 10, 2023 at 4:39 pm

Wifey has some website she goes to, 30 bucks worth of bitcoin, is able to get some app for her firestick (thats jailbroke?), and it gets everytbing. I mean, everything. 7 days after a movie opens in theatres…? Its there.

    Divemedic · July 10, 2023 at 5:22 pm

    I don’t trust anyone on the Internet, even a website that takes bitcoin, to not be a bunch of Feds, especially when we are talking about committing a Federal felony. (Yes, a jailbroken FireStick is a Federal felony)
    Not worth saving a few bucks.

oldvet50 · July 10, 2023 at 4:39 pm

I did the same about 3 years ago. Got a Tablo OTA DVR with an active guide ($20/yr) so we can record our shows from our antenna. Pay Fronteir $65/mo for internet, amazon & hulu.

joe · July 10, 2023 at 5:02 pm

i cut the cord about a year ago…was paying about $130 for directv and that was without any premium channels…i live a ways from any major cities so getting fiber for tv or internet is out of the question…internet is with a dish line of sight to a tower or through directtv or one of those rip off companies with a max of maybe 25 megs down…found a company about a year ago that promises 100 megs down, my house roof had a good view to the tower and 80% of the time i hit 80 to 100 megs and 20 megs up…it ain’t cheap, costs me what directv was running but with a set of rabbit ears i can get about 50 stations most in 1080 i can watch…t-mobile pays my netflix and we pay for hulu…i mostly watch heros and icons and metv with all the old shows…so for about $150 bucks we now have tv we actually watch…have my old ps3 hooked up to my office tv to watch the occasional blueray and i bought a little desktop box at wally world, core innovations, that is a digital tuner and you can plug a portable hdd in to it and record shows, set timers, blah, blah…that was like $35…much happier now that i cut the cord…

D · July 10, 2023 at 5:13 pm

Just be careful if your internet provider is a huge monopoly that starts with “Com” or “Xfin”…

If you change stuff related to your package, they will frequently lock you in to a 12-month contract (or longer)…aaaand they only let you reduce your speed *once*. They’ll always let you pay more….so drop your speed down pretty low, then raise it if you need it.

Grumpy51 · July 10, 2023 at 5:56 pm

Same boat. Try Frndly TV ( for $7/month. It has the shows the CFO likes and she watches it exclusively.

We do high-speed internet only (Verizon first, then Frontier)

Bad Dancer · July 10, 2023 at 7:08 pm

I would absolutely love to get to sit down with the cable internet folks and a pvc pipe full of lead shot.

Paid 80 bucks for two years andd it went up to 120 after that, okay I guess that was the actual price after the introductory rate they could’t tell me before. I don’t watch tv even though they’re willing to lower my bill from the highest speed internet price of 120 to 100 for a year …..oh but they can’t tell me what it will be after that.

Seems like every other month my monthly statement will be up anywhere between 5 to 100 bucks and it takes a good few minutes of arguing that NO I will not be paying the error pricing even if they offer to take it off my bill next month.

You’re fighting a real battle on this un

EN2 SS · July 10, 2023 at 8:42 pm

I cut the cord a couple of years ago. The better half’s LG TV had almost a hundred channels through LG, my Samsung has nearly a hundred channels, all for free over the internet. I spent $40 bucks for an antenna that I aimed at the most towers about 46 miles away, shooting straight through Houston, and still get mostly great TV. Being in Houston, I use Xfinity for the internet, was $50 bucks for 500 download, mostly runs at 350-425. But Xfinity told me I was eligible and should apply for the poor folks government help to pay that, dropped to $25 a month. So I went from my last satellite dish bill of $242 a month to $25. Since I have Xfinity internet, I get Xfinity mobile phone for $7.50 bucks a month for two phone. But only 1 gig of internet. Then she passed, I didn’t need two phones and plan to travel so that bill went to $45 a month unlimited.
And thank you all for helping me pay for my internet with your taxes. 😉

Terrapod · July 10, 2023 at 8:50 pm

Old EE here, we pay 265 for triple play (Internet, phone and TV), and question what value we get for all that too. Wife is prime consumer, so that kind of puts the kibosh on deleting TV and phone (we also both have cellular, but habit keeps the original “land line” alive).

As to your lack of internet speed, that I know exactly how to improve. Take a good look at every single “F” cable connector, junction and splitter between the line coming to your house and the modem. If they are old, remove and replace the splitter for a modern one with gigabit rating, then cut off and replace (properly) the RG6 connectors, then crank them down super tight. Doing this jumped my speeds to over 500 MB/S from a prior max of 90 MB/S. If you have an RJ45 ethernet cable from the modem to your computer or wireless router, make sure it is cat 5 or better cat 6 rated. Lastly, take a look at your wireless router and any switch box in between the modem and your equipment, all should be gigabit rated. Older switches were rated at only 100 MB/S, modern stuff is gigabit rated. Good luck, small changes can make big difference.

Don't mind me. · July 10, 2023 at 8:57 pm

You don’t need TV. It will make you more stupid. There’s plenty of content on the internet for free if you want to get more stupid. Why pay for it?
Read, so that you may comprehend.

KurtP · July 10, 2023 at 9:40 pm

About 2- 3 months before we moved to Seguin, TX from Hondo, TX (in a mobile with NO cell service) DirecTV jacked our rate by almost $40 of which we watched about 4- 5 channels.

I told the wife- if she needs TeeWee that bad, she can pay for it.
We had radio internet from the electric co-op and now have fiber at Rancho Snakebit through our electric co-op still.

The only advice we didn’t take from that topless lady was to grow peaches (because I like plum wine better). “Spanish pipedream”

Skyler the Weird · July 11, 2023 at 6:47 am

Cut the cord a few years ago. I ‘ve got Netflix, Hulu, and Prime and I temporarily get Starz and Paramount to watch a particular show then cancel. I was sharing the accounts with my kids but Netflix and Prime are cracking down if you watch from a different address and say ‘Get your own account here’. They must be hurting for subscribers.

noway2 · July 11, 2023 at 7:49 am

Congratulations on cutting the cord. I was so glad when I did. The cable bundle, as you said, was over $200 per month and we only used a small fraction of that. Internet speeds were no where near advertised, not that we needed that much.

Currently we have Netflix and Paramount. A lot of people complain about Netflix being “woke”, and some of their content is, but not all of it. It does carry a good bit of foreign TV programming and movies, often times dubbed over in English pretty well. Some examples of what I enjoyed:
3% (Brazil) – a dystopian society where there is the ‘off shore’ people living in luxury and the proletariat living in squalor with the hope of winning a competition to live off shore.
The Rain (Denmark), – post apocalyptic world where a virus in the rain killed most people. Starts out with teenage girl raising her kid brother in a bunker.
Better Than Us (Russian) – Russian oligarch runs a sex robot business and gets a unique android that is more than she seems.
The Gift (Turkey) – something strange is happening at Globeki Tempi
Entre Vias (Wrong Side of the Tracks) and Unauthorized Living (Spain a lot of the same actors). The first, the curmudgeon abuelo y su amigos take on the local drug gangs after they mess with his granddaughter. The second is about an arms dealer who is dying with Alzheimer’s and has to pass his business off to the family.
Lots of other stuff, viking shows from Scandinavia, stuff from Korea and other places.

Paramount, well we watch a lot of Star Trek, and yes, some of it, especially Discovery went overboard but if you can ignore that, it has some good story telling.

Another one I often watch is Tubi (free) finally got to see the whole remake of Battlesar Galactica that way. And you can also find old shows you probably enjoyed growing up.

TechieDude · July 11, 2023 at 7:50 am

I cut the cable bill decades ago. Almost 20 years.

I was chatting with a coworker that did the same thing and he said if he added up all the time he watched TV, he was spending $5/hour (in 2001) to watch TV. With me, it was $10. Not worth it since we usually watched DVDs anyhow.

Once the interwebs could support video, all we do is stream. I have an HD antenna on the roof that catches dozens of channels, but I rarely watch it.

nick flandrey · July 11, 2023 at 12:20 pm

You’ve already reduced but for anyone else reading–

–you can buy your cable modem – there are tons on ebay, and that will quickly hit payback and then save you money over renting from the cable company. The company will (must) have a list of compatible modems on their website. If you haven’t upgraded in a while, you might be on an old and slow modem, and the company won’t tell you. If you want to rent, make sure you have a new modem supporting the speed of your plan.

— you can buy DVRs and tuners online rather than rent. This is true for cable or sat. With DirecTV it’s the smart card inside that enables your account, so grab that before returning any equipment. With cable you might need a ‘cablecard’ decoder card to insert in the back of your DVR.

–at a minimum, buy your remotes. WIDELY available cheap, try ebay or even your local goodwill. I see them at goodwill all the time.

We dumped cable for a straight fiber to the home from ATT and never looked back. Ooma for a phone connection to the landline extentions in the house, streaming for stuff to watch, OTA antenna for the times when the in-laws want to watch sportsball. It’s easy to accumulate streaming services too, keep reviewing whether you actually use them or if there is a free alternative (or someone else pays for a service -we get hulu free thru a credit card or cell account.)

Don’t forget that you can rent DVDs from your public library, and that thrift stores and garage sales practically give away DVDs and CDs. I’ve got over 800 DVDs on my local server. I could watch a movie a day for a long time without running out….


    Divemedic · July 11, 2023 at 3:46 pm

    Yeah, I have a gigabit modem that I bought just three years ago. It’s still current.
    My CATV provider doesn’t allow subscribers to buy their own cable boxes.
    There are only two wired Internet providers at my current address, and no fiber. One of the providers is a DSL, the other cable. There is only a couple of wireless home providers in the area. Choices are very limited.
    I own several hundred DVDs. I also was ripping them and saving them to the home server, back when Netflix still mailed out physical disks. I have a few hundred movies that way.

      Gem · July 21, 2023 at 1:46 pm

      I’m in Flagler and MetroNet fiber just dropped and Gbit fiber to the house is $60 with no commitment, Spectrum is going to defecate when I cancel $250/month, and support is American, should be coming to Orlando soon.


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