I used to faithfully pay the monthly service charge on my wireless Internet plan without questioning its standard cost of over $58 each month. Then I became self-employed and that bill each month was just too costly. But I couldn’t just go without Internet service since I relied on it for work.

One day, I received a flyer in my mailbox advertising a $24.99 a month introductory rate with a different wireless Internet company. On a whim, I decided to call my current carrier and end my subscription with them. The result? I ended up staying with my current company for the lower amount of $24.99 per month. That saved me half the cost I had been paying and the inconvenience of switching to another carrier. Here’s what I did:

  1. Have a backup plan. When I called my wireless Internet provider, I had the competitor’s offer in hand and was ready to switch over if I couldn’t lower my monthly rate. The first thing I did after being connected to my provider was ask to cancel my plan. By doing so, I was immediately put in contact with what is called a “retention specialist.” These people are trained to stop current customers from canceling their plans by offering discounts or other incentives to stay.
  2. Be polite — but firm. Once I had the retention specialist on the line I politely stated that I had recently changed jobs and couldn’t afford to pay $58.01 per month for my wireless service. When I was asked what I planned to do without an Internet connection, I mentioned that I was going to try another provider since they were offering monthly service for just $24.99. I had nothing against my current provider per se, I just couldn’t make the payments anymore.
  3. Think about the initial offer — and refuse. At this point, the retention specialist put me on hold to either talk to the supervisor or to look up lower rates. After I’d been on hold for maybe 5 minutes, I was given the offer of paying $24.99 for the next 3 months until my financial situation “stabilized.” I thanked him for the offer, thought about it for a minute and politely refused. I needed something more permanent because I didn’t see my new job taking off anytime soon.
  4. Take the final squeeze. I was again placed on hold by my retention specialist, after which his supervisor came on the line to speak with me. Again, I explained my situation politely but firmly. The supervisor asked if I had any other reason to cancel my current subscription besides its higher cost. I said ‘no’; I actually liked my current carrier. At this point, the supervisor offered me a 2-year service contract at $24.99 per month, with the stipulation being that I could not switch to another carrier for 2 years or I’d pay a hefty termination fee. I happily agreed to the much lower 2-year service plan.

After I negotiated this lower rate on my wireless Internet plan, I decided to try the same tactic with my cell phone carrier. I ended up saving $21 per month on my cell phone plan thanks to having a competitor’s offer that I could refer to while “canceling” my service. Thus, by “canceling” my Internet and cell phone services, I ended up saving $54 a month! I am considering “canceling” my mother’s satellite dish service next month.

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25 thoughts on “How to Secretly Lower Your Internet and Monthly Subscriptions”

  1. Sam says:

    Very nice tips.  The most important one is to be nice and polight.  I found out that if you are screaming at the person they are not likely to be helpful.  I have used these steps with my bank for an over-draft of .40.  They ended up waiving the overdraft fee for a one time curtisy. 

  2. Purple13 says:

    I never knew you could do this. My Fiance and I do not use our house phone so it seems like a waste paying $15.00 a month for something we don’t use. We called to cancel and the woman said she would lower the cost of our box so we could keep the phone. Our bill dropped $20. Who knew? The sad part is we would have been paying the extra $240 a year if my fiance hadn’t called. It’s really worth it. We will call again when our one year contract is up! 

  3. i do this all the time with my phone/internet. my cell phone provider is already the lowest ive seen for the type of plan we’re on compared to other providers and my phone/internet i usually get it $15 cheaper a month so i pay $55 after the discount. the only thing thats sucks is i don’t have any other options for providers so dont think i can “cancel” my service with them bc i need my internet and don’t want to take the chance. lol

  4. Argelyncollera says:

    Thank you i just save me a lot….

  5. Anonymous says:

    My husband did this with AT&T for our Internet. I think he saved like $20/mo.

  6. We have been a no cable house for 2 years now. The rates are just to high, they keep coming to the door with offers but I say “we watch Netflix and pay $8 a month and Hulu which is free. When you can get me a deal like that I will gladly sign up” I thought we would really miss cable but we really didn’t. 
    I saw an article about Google working or a free internet provider. I bet other companies are cringing at the thought. There is a $300 instalment free for the free internet but it is $30 for 10 months, then free, free, free. Forever. I’m looking forward to seeing how it works.

  7. CynthiaZ says:

    has anyone had luck doing this with verizon? i have fios and i called and tried this and was pretty much told that the good rates are only for new customers. when i told them that as soon as our contract was over we were leaving, the customer service rep said that they are more interested in getting new customers than retaining old ones. i was pissed! cant wait til december when our contract is up

  8. Anntots says:

    We are using Att Uverse right now, and Xfinity Comcast has a great deal for us that will save us $71/ month for a 2yr contract (we are previous Comcast customer). I called Uverse if they can offer us the same deal, but unfortunately, they can only lower us for $40. We decided to switch to Comcast with the same level of subscription (hd premier),, and with a greater deal because we are getting their 30mbbps internet connection, unlimited home phone usage including Canada and other territories, free installation and wireless set-up. Horray to competition because we are getting good deals :)

  9. Valerie says:

    Let me know how that goes with canceling your mom’s satelite internet!
    I have satelite and it is biting me in the but right now!

  10. Jdharr123 says:

    I do this with my newspaper.  I don’t just get it for coupons my husband actually reads it.  I call whenever the renewal is up and ask them to cancel because I cant afford the rate.  The past 2 years they have reduced it by half!   I have a question on the ones getting a discount on their cell phone, are these basic plans or smart phone plans with data packages?  I would never think of giving up my iPhone but I would love to pay less for my plan.

    • Anonymous says:

       If your phone has a SIM card, look up Boost Mobile and Straight Talk. They both offer unlimited everything for $45-$50 a month. Plus one of them, (I think it’s Straight Talk) lowers your bill by $5 for every 6 months you pay on time down to $30. You could also see about changing your data plan to the cheapest one, usually around 200 MB and then using Wi-fi at home or places that offer it.

  11. Tara o Stevens says:

    I did this with my cell phone and I’m now saving $72.00 a month……Yes $72.00 a month!!!

  12. Christi Hughes says:

    I have done this with Comcast (Xfinity) plenty of times.  I basically utilized all the steps in the article and was always given a fair price…sometimes for only 6 months, but still.  A few weeks ago, we decided we have to get rid of cable.  At $180/mo for phone, internet, cable, we just couldn’t justify it.  I called, fully intending to cancel the cable completely.  I was polite, but firm and ended up getting to keep basic cable….about 100 channels…for just $102!  We are super happy with that price and only miss the HD ;-(  No biggie.  This is a great tactic.

    • Ryan B says:

       I am pretty sure Comcast is meant to be that way.. we got a phone call after our initial promo ran out telling us we could call and get another promo, so we are always on a promo plan with Comcast.

      I told my parents to do that with Time Warner, and they pretty much laughed in her face knowing that the only cable internet in her area was them.

      • Siebert200 says:

         Much to my surprise Time Warner Cable in our area call me and offered me a lower rate to add cable to my services.  I was paying $104/mth taxes included  for phone and internet.  Now I am paying $95/mth taxes included for phone, cable and internet for 2 years.

  13. If the satellite service is DirecTV, call them and when you get the automated response system, say “cancel” twice at the prompts.  It will route you to a retention specialist.  Depending on how long you’ve been with them, the package level you have, past credits you’ve received, etc – they will offer different things from $10 off month to free NFL Sunday Ticket to free Showtime for 3 months.  If you don’t like what you’ve been offered you can say you want to think about it and call back later.  They will note in your record your initial call.  The 2nd call may result in a better offer.  Or they may offer to send you a box to send in their equipment.

  14. guest says:

    I do this ALL the time, it really works!  My boyfriend had no idea the utility bills were “negotiable.”  My mom taught me this, she’s been doing it for years.  I was able to cut our bills for electricity, cable and internet in half.  

    • Beadandelion says:

       Utility bills too!?!? HOW?!

    • Katraishia69 says:

      How did you get the discount on the electricity bill? I am in North Carolina w use Duke Energy..I will love to know how so I can call them.

      • Beadandelion says:

         I dont think she meant electric… there is just no way :-

        • Sam says:

          My mom found another electric company in our area that we were able to switch to and negociated with both until she got it the cheapest we could.  Took about $30 off our bill.  Not much, but that was at least $30 back into her pocket.

  15. Anonymous says:

    cool and helpful