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Did you know you can usually negotiate with your internet service provider for a better deal? Yes, for real.
Before trying your hand at negotiating, make sure to do some research to see what internet service providers are available in your area, as not all providers are located in every state.
If you exhaust these strategies, consider combining, or bundling it together with your TV and/or phone service. Check with providers in your area to see what types of bundle packages they offer.
Here’s the latest information on these 6 companies:
Base plan cost: $29.99/month for the first 12 months with a one-year agreement ($39.99/month for the first 12 months with no term agreement).
Speed: Up to 10 Mbps Download Speeds.
Is there a contract? Yes; a one-year agreement for the cheaper price, or no term agreement for $10 more per month.
Other fees: You can use your own compatible modem for free or lease a Wireless Gateway for $10/month. Comcast offers a self-installation kit starting at $14.99, or you can schedule a professional installation with a two-hour window for $89.99. Standard shipping is $14.99, and priority shipping is another $30.00.
Fine print: There is a one year minimum term agreement. After the promotional period, regular rates apply. Comcast does offer a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee that applies to one month’s recurring service charge and standard installation up to $500. Bonus!
Extras: Access to Wi-Fi hotspots, Norton security suite, 24/7 support, and self-service apps.
How to negotiate a lower XFINITY bill: Call the customer service number at 1-800-934-6489 and say “disconnect service” when prompted by the automated voice.
This should send your call to a Comcast retention specialist (the person you want to talk to). A retention specialist has more power to offer deals and discounts since they are trained to keep you as a customer.
Do some research of competitors and prices in your area so you can tell them that you want to cancel because these other companies offer lower rates and have better offers.
TIP: Use Trim to negotiate your Comcast bill! Sign up for Trim and they’ll try to negotiate your Comcast bill on your behalf. If they succeed in getting you a lower bill, they’ll take 25% of the difference you saved for the first month. After that, the savings are all yours!
Base plan cost: $40/month plus taxes with a 12-month agreement (up to $100/month after 12 months).
Speed: Up to 50 Mbps and includes 1 TB (terabyte) of data per month.
Is there a contract? Yes; a 12-month agreement.
Other fees: There’s a $99 one-time charge for installment, plus prorated ETF ($180), and equipment non-return fees apply.
Fine print: After 12 months, the regular monthly rate applies unless you cancel before the end of the promo period. If you get close to your monthly data allowance, AT&T will notify you several times, and if you happen to exceed your data allowance for a third time, they’ll automatically add 50GB for $10 to your monthly data limit, not to exceed a maximum of $100.
Extras: Access to national AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot network, Wi-Fi Gateway router, internet security suite powered by McAfee, and $50 VISA reward card.
How to negotiate a lower AT&T bill: I’ve heard from a few people who have had AT&T that they don’t match the competition, and they certainly don’t haggle with pricing after the promotional period is up.
Still, take a chance and call customer service at 844-723-0252 and ask what they can do for you. If they cannot offer a better deal, time to move on to the next one.
Base plan cost: $44.99/month for 12 months ($64.99 regularly).
Speed: Starting at 60 Mbps.
Is there a contract: No.
Other fees: Professional installation normally costs $49.99 but they are running a discount for $15.00-off which makes the installation only $34.99. (Sa-weet!)
Fine print: The promotion price is $44.99 per month for one year and standard rates apply after that. No additional charge for modem, but other equipment, installation, taxes, fees and surcharges may apply.
Extras: Free internet modem, free online protection with security suite, and no data caps.
How to negotiate a lower Time Warner Cable (Spectrum) bill: Call the customer service number at 1-800-892-4357 and say “cancel service” when prompted. The retention specialists have a list of promotions they can offer. You can negotiate a faster internet plan, a DVR upgrade, movie channels, etc.
RELATED: 8 Ways to Watch TV Without Paying for Cable
Base plan cost: $29.95/month for one year ($74.00 after a year) or $35.00 for 24 months.
Speed: 40 Mbps.
Is there a contract? Yes; a 12-month contract plus AutoPay enrollment and paperless billing.
Other fees: Lease a modem for $9.99/month or purchase one for $99.99 (one-time charge). Installation is a one-time charge of $59.99.
Fine print: Internet monthly rate will not change for one year. Requires a 12-month contract, AutoPay enrollment and paperless billing.
Extras: Free activation and free shipping on internet. When I asked what the rate would be after the promotion rate for one year, a CenturyLink representative on chat said, “We have our retention team that is trained, equipped, and graded on retaining customers.
Rest assured they will make you an offer you cannot resist to keep your business and so you will not have the rate increase to $74.00.”
When I mentioned I wasn’t ready to make the change at this time, the representative said, “We will honor the free $20.00 activation and the free $25.00 VISA gift card as a thank you for your business.” She also told me they will not throw you into a higher pricing tier if you use a lot of data.
How to negotiate a lower CenturyLink bill: Give them a call at 1-800-244-1111 and say “loyalty” even though it is not an option they give you.
If you get with a customer service rep, simply say that you’re not happy with the amount you’re paying for your internet service and they will transfer you to their loyalty department. This department has the power to give any promotion that CenturyLink offers.
Before calling, be prepared with their current promotions and ask to get those rates even though you are a current customer. If the first person you speak to doesn’t give you a better rate, call back the next day or ask to speak with another rep.
Base plan cost: $59.99/month for 12 months ($77.99/month after one year term).
Speed: 50 Mbps Downloads/5 Mbps Uploads.
Is there a contract? No.
Other fees: Rent a Wi-Fi modem for $9.99/month or purchase a modem for $149.99. If you own a compatible modem, you can use that. On top of that, expect a $75 installation fee.
Fine print: After the promotion period, regular rates apply. Prices exclude installation/activation fees, equipment fees, inside wiring fees, additional outlets, taxes, surcharges and other fees. Internet speeds not guaranteed; actual speeds vary (yikes).
Extras: Free access to 500,000+ Wi-Fi hotspots.
How to negotiate a lower Cox bill: Contact their loyalty department at 1-866-867-7644. If you mention the service is too expensive, they may lower your rate. They also have online chat and a Twitter page for support (@CoxHelp).
6. Cable One
Base plan cost: $35/month for the first 3 months ($55/month after the trial offer).
Speed: Up to 100 Mbps download and up to 3 Mpbs upload.
Is there a Contract? No. There are never any contracts so you can cancel anytime you want!
Other fees: Supply your own modem for free or lease an HSD modem for $8.00/month. There might be a deposit fee when you first sign up, but when I talked with a Cable One representative, they told me they can waive these fees if you qualify.
In order to qualify for free installation, you must pay the order total and monthly payments automatically. Doing so saves you up to $90!
Fine print: The promotional rate is good for the first three months. After three months, the rate increases to $55 per month and is subject to change at any time. Full discounted installation charge requires enrolling in their Cable One Easy Pay program.
Extras: You get 20 email accounts and a 300 GB Data Plan is included at no charge with the service. If you exceed the data plan three times, you may be required to upgrade to a more appropriate data usage plan.
How to negotiate a lower Cable One bill: Give their customer service a call at 1-800-692-2253. Cable One has a reputation for not negotiating with customers, but it is worth a shot. Since they are one of the more pricey options, you may be better off switching to a cheaper provider altogether.
BONUS: Try FreedomPop for free internet access.
If you are a light Internet user and you live in their service area, free high-speed Internet is available through FreedomPop.
FreedomPop is a non-contract service that provides 1 gigabyte (GB) of data per month for free. All you need to do is purchase the $89 Freedom Hub Burst home modem and you are good to go!
Check out some other ways to get cheap or free internet here.