One of the best ways to get the best value from your internet service is by evaluating your usage. After that, look into negotiating your bill or switching to a cheaper service. The average American spends $57 on internet services each month. Compared to the days of the AOL free trial CDs, that’s a lot of money.
Of course, today’s internet is much faster than dial-up, but we’re right there with you when it comes to slashing that monthly cost. This post from US-Reviews will show you 5 ways to get the best value on internet services.
Buy Your Own Modem and Router
Plan to stay with an internet provider for a few years? It might be more cost-effective to buy your internet hardware rather than renting it. In this case, it’s best to find out what other people are saying about a particular service by reading broadband telecom services reviews to learn about them.
Many providers charge $10 to $15 per month to rent their equipment. If you stay with that company for two years, the total rental costs would be $240 to $360. You can buy a top-rated modem and router for less than $200.
Keep in mind that some providers won’t offer support or troubleshooting for your personal hardware.
Reduce Your Internet Speed
Internet providers are taking high-speed to the next level, with plans that promise download speeds of 100 Mbps or more. That’s great if you need that level of service. Most families don’t.
Dropping to a lower, more appropriate speed could reduce your monthly bill by $35 or more, depending on your carrier. Consult the chart below to help determine what speed you need, then contact your provider to lower your plan. The recommended speeds assume multiple devices doing the activities listed, so you can adjust down if you only have one device gaming or streaming HD video at a time, for example.
Negotiate Your Monthly Bill
If you’re stuck in the middle of a two-year contract and have just about had it with your ISP, you can still shop around. You don’t need to be a fast-talking salesperson to play the negotiation game. Your position is simple: I know of a better deal elsewhere, and I’m prepared to leave your company to get it.
See what other internet providers in your area charge for the same or similar download speeds you’ve got now. You can use this info later to negotiate a lower price—especially if your provider isn’t delivering the download speeds and performance it promised.
An easy way to check this is to take a speed test. Be polite, but firm. Don’t bluff. The better you can back up your position, the more leverage you’ll have. Research the promotional prices that your provider and its competitors are offering to new customers — and be prepared to actually cancel your service and change providers.
Bundle Your Services
If you already have cable, you can save more than $1,000 over two years with some providers by bundling your cable and internet service. But beware of the up-sell. Carriers may try to talk you into extra speed or channels for $5 or $10 more per month. That small monthly increase adds up over time, and defeats your goal — to save money.
If you do bundle, take a good, hard look at any additional streaming or TV services you’re still paying for. If they offer the same channels, networks, or shows as your newly bundled TV service, hit the cancel button and tell them goodbye.
Be sure to also compare the cost of bundling to the cost of buying each of your services separately. Not all bundles are created equal, and some offer services you won’t use, channels you won’t watch, or prices that aren’t any good.