Cable is expensive. If you have more than just basic cable, you are probably paying at least $65 per month or more, just for TV. How can you save on television, without stealing cable?
The good news is that, in the internet age, it is possible to fully enjoy TV without having to pay exorbitant fees to the cable company.
Basic cable generally runs about $15 per month, but it usually comes with a $10 per month discount on internet access if you use cable for that. For $5 per month, you can get all of the local broadcast channels, including the news and weather, which we use in the morning while getting ready for work.
We watch movies. We watch lots of movies. Spending $14 per month for an unlimited 2-at-a-time plan is a no-brainer for us. It has also enabled us to scratch the movie itch without resorting to HBO or incessant movie purchases, which used to run $100+ each month. When you include Netflix instant in the equation, which gives us a ton of older movies to choose from at a moment’s notice, we are more than covered for our movie obsession.
Hulu.com has a metric crapload of TV shows and movies available for free. They are moving towards a partial pay model, but most of their content will still be free. But, you don’t want to crowd your family around a 15-inch laptop screen to watch something, you say? Fine. We went to our local computer parts store and bought cables and converters to go from the video-out and headphone jacks on the laptop to the inputs on our VCR. That cost about $30 for 2 extension cords and 2 converters. We use the analog outputs, which allows for cheaper converters. The quality after conversion is no worse than watching a movie in the VCR.
TiVo comes with a Video-On-Demand(VOD) section, if you connect it to the internet. It’s mostly free, with hundreds of channels to choose from, ranging from trailers to full shows and movies. I have a season pass to TEDTalks, which are always impressive and usually inspirational. There are many more channels to choose from.
I’m kidding. I’m not advocate piracy. This is just search-engine bait.
As you can see, it’s entirely possible to save money on cable, without missing out on anything you care about. How do you save money on TV and movies?