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Cutting the cord has been a fairly steady trend for a long while now, and it’s certainly a step that can be justified. This is especially true given the impressive smorgasbord of streaming goodies available today from Netflix, Disney+, and many other sources. But streaming can also be more costly than expected if you don’t do some planning first. Luckily, there are ways you can cut the cord and still save money on streaming. We offer tips below for your consideration.

Scope Out What’s Available First

Do your streaming homework and see what services have shows you know you’ll watch either currently on or coming up. With shows coming up that interest you, time your sign-up for service to dates when those series start running. Another possibility is to take advantage for free trial periods during times when shows you want to watch are available. In this instance, you can use the trial period to watch the shows that appeal to you. You can use this same period to see if there are other things that justify continuing beyond the free trial.

Consider Opting for an Annual Subscription

With a streaming service you know you or anyone else in your household will be watching on a regular basis, an annual subscription is worth considering. For instance, if everyone in your home is a Spanish TV fan, you may be able to snag a good deal for signing up for a one-year subscription instead of doing it monthly. Paramount+, for example, offers a discount if you pre-pay for a year.

Look for Current Deals

As long as we’re on the topic of deals, see if there are any current streaming service deals that could work for you. According to C|net, deals available as of March 2022 include: 

• Free Netflix with some T-Mobile unlimited plans
• Free HBO Max with certain AT&T plans
• Free Paramount+ for a year with some Sprint and T-Mobile plans
• Hulu discounts for students

Only Use Your Live TV Subscription When You’ll Watch It More Often

While live TV subscriptions can be useful, you could end up wasting money if you automatically renew it. YouTube TV, for instance, costs close to $800 for an entire year. However, if you mostly use it to watch live football, you’ll save money by only using this service during football season.

Bonus Tip: Consider shifting to live TV subscriptions that are cheaper, like Sling TV, when you’re not watching live TV too much.

Consider an Antenna for Live TV

Another possibility with local channel access is to buy an antenna for your TV. If you do this, you’ll just have to adjust the settings on your TV so you can get whatever’s available locally. Some cities also have a free live TV service called Locast that has local channels. With either of these options, you can just go with streaming services with content you can’t get locally for free.

Stick with Basic Plans

Many streaming services offer add-ons. This is a good thing for some subscribers, but it can also be costing you more money. If the basic plan has enough viewing options for you, consider sticking with that instead to enjoy some extra savings.

See If You Can Get a Better High-Speed Internet Deal

In order to enjoy streaming services you’ll need a reliable high-speed internet connection. While there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to snag a better deal, it doesn’t hurt to contact your provider to see what’s available. Some internet service providers are like HughesNet internet willing to negotiate, especially with long-term customers.

Consider Free Streaming Options

The downside with free streaming is you may not get premium-quality content, and you may have to put up with commercials. However, free options can still have some appealing gems you may appreciate. Some of the more popular free streaming services include:

• Pluto TV
• Roku
• Tubi
• Peacock (free tier available)

Final Thoughts

In addition to what we’ve already mentioned, you may be able to save money on streaming by using credit cards that offer special rewards for doing this. American Express, for example, offers these discounts with its Blue Cash Preferred card. With any of the savings tips discussed here, pick and choose which ones you think you’ll benefit from most to optimize your streaming-related savings.

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