Bye Bye Cable TV
I posted last week that we had finally made the break from our cable programming. We had been paying several hundred each month for the last few years and enough was enough! We knew we could find something that worked better for us. If you missed that little post, stop right here and read it first… I will wait for you…
OK, anyway.. like I posted last week, Ryan and I have always had cable, internet, and data packages. But a few months ago things just seemed to get out of hand with programming, home security, data packages for cell phones and devices. We wrote it all down to see how much was going where and we were not just shocked but disgusted!
So we have been making some changes to reduce our monthly expenses and I want to share them with you. First of all, I will admit, changing anything that you’ve been doing for several years is a bit stressful(I’ve been stressed), and takes a bit of research. But once you’ve got things situated the changes just takes a bit to get used to.
If you are a millennial, you are reading this out of the kindness of your heart, aren’t you? I know you already know this stuff! So if I am leaving anything out, please drop them in the comments!😊
Replacing Cable Programming
We started a while back looking into programming on Youtube, Roku, Fire Stick, Fire TV, and subscriptions like Hulu, Netflix and other paid subscriptions. For us we chose to go with Fire TV. We chose it over the Fire Stick for two main reasons, it worked in 4k, and also had voice activation. Our 8 yr old has a hard time with searching for shows on any device without that feature, so if those two things aren’t important to you the Fire Stick seemed a great value at around $30 or $40. I believe we paid $60 for the Fire TV.
We order a lot through Amazon, we use Alexa and the Dot so sticking with the Fire products over Roku seemed to make sense for our family.
When I went through all of the apps and programming options, I did notice that a lot of programming still requires a subscription so for now we are sticking with all that are free and paying only for subscriptions to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and Spotify for music. If you have a smart tv, or smart Blue Ray player they carry many of these apps loaded onto their home screen, so you can probably even get by without the Fire stick or Fire TV.
Data and Wifi
Since we had a dozen devices and tv’s hooked up to our internet and kids gaming we were subscribing to the most expensive internet package for our home. And we had separate data packages on all of our devices that allowed us to be connected when we weren’t home for our cell phones and tablets. It was getting really ridiculous!
Ryan and I have cut back on the kids time online which was met with a great deal of resistance at first, but they have adjusted really well and go outside with friends so much more now. So we aren’t in need of those high speeds like we used to need. Here is what I came up with…
Since we travel through our camping resort membership parks most weekends I asked in the Thousand Trails Facebook group of 20k members what they use for internet when they travel? I was so surprised to get such a response from everyone, but hands down the majority of the people said they use Verizon Jetpack and it always works great for them!
So I started researching it! We don’t currently use Verizon so I wasn’t sure if this was a problem. But apparently it works as a portable router basically, a hot spot that you can join, so you don’t have to have Verizon as your main cell phone carrier, and you can take it with you everywhere. Perfect for our weekend adventures so I stay up-to-date on all of your blogs each morning!🤩
They have an unlimited plan that seemed to have fast speeds and would offer us what we need. So we ordered it! We are waiting for the Jetpack to arrive Wednesday before we go on vacation next week. It was $100 to purchase and the unlimited 4GLTE plan will be $95 a month, which will replace our data packages for our tablets and our home internet.
So in conclusion to all these changes, here is a recap of what we have done. I share this with you for anyone that is wanting to cut back, find alternatives and be efficient with your dollars . I certainly don’t have all the answers, I am learning as I go, but I feel like we’ve made a huge improvement!
- We have cancelled our cable, internet and home theater bundle of $300 a month
- We use Netflix, Hulu, Prime
- We check out movies at the library and Redbox as opposed to renting in online for $6.95 or purchasing it at $21.95
- We have cut down on data packages and are slowly phasing out most of what is on our cell phone bill(so far it has dropped $200 a month)
We will definitely know more once we get the Jetpack on Wednesday and see first hand how it works for our needs. It is still a work in progress…
What are your thoughts? Are you overpaying for WiFi and data?What is your affordable solution for staying connected to shows and information?
Thanks for everyone’s tips and advice and interest in a follow up post! Good luck and Happy Blogging!
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