Why I No Longer Have Cable TV!

 In Blog, Ideas, Uncategorized

80s cell phoneMany years ago when I bought my first home, it came to my attention that the home had no phone outlets. I had no idea this was even a possibility back then – but those are the kind of surprises you get when you purchase a “fixer-upper / as is” gem of a find.

Back then for cell phones – there was no such thing as “unlimited minutes” and certainly there was no such thing as data/internet on your cell phone. In fact – 911 was not even usable back then via cell phone. The year I bought this home it was during the large flip phone / antenna phase if that gives you a point of time reference for this story. (I’m not good at dates – thank goodness Facebook remembers my birthday!) The phone company wanted to charge me money to install land lines in the home … so I could pay for their service. Wasn’t that nice of them? They thought so – I didn’t and decided 911 available or not – I’d stay with only a cell phone.

When I told people this small lifestyle change nearly everyone’s eyeballs widened, their mouth opened in astonishment and the question I always got was “Are you kidding me?”. No. I wasn’t kidding. No more land line for me.

Skip to the year 2010 … my cable TV bill was outrageous … I was working a lot of hours and never had time to watch TV like I had in the past. When I did watch it … I was watching re-runs. Why was I paying $100/month for cable? Cable told me I couldn’t live without them and surely I couldn’t live without watching local TV news! I could.

I switched to a “Direct-dish-ish” type of service. Great pricing, tons of channels and I only missed local news and TV with bad weather. I could sacrifice. Until all those little charges came up … contract negotiations and then again … my bill was up to $100/month. Could I live without seeing my shows and all the commercials? I could.

Enter “Roku” …. my next little gem of a find. Getting rid of cable TV to me is much like getting rid of that land line back in the day. It feels odd initially and people are amazed that I don’t have cable TV. (to be fair, I’m amazed when someone tells me they don’t have a TV at all!) I don’t miss it … and I’m not paying a huge bill every month. I love it! I’m officially cable free!

How did I get rid of cable and still watch TV shows?

Step One:
Get fantastic internet service (highest available)

Step Two:
Order a Roku Streaming TV device (or something similar)

Step Three:
Get an Amazon Prime Membership (free streaming movies and TV shows)

Step Four:
Become a member of Netflix – they have old movies and TV series that you are probably watching on cable right now. How many times are you watching that old Seinfeld episode … or yes … I’ll admit it … Magnum P.I. is in my queue!

Step Five:
Get a Hulu subscription – All the networks are there. You may have to wait a day or two to watch the episode after it originally airs … but if you work like me … you were recording that episode to watch later on the weekend anyway.

Step Six:
Figure out what to do with that extra $36 -$80 a month. (Breakdown Hulu $7.99/month, Netflix $7.99/month, Amazon Prime $7/month and your internet service bill approx.) Don’t forget that you also save in shipping with Amazon Prime so .. even more savings!

Have you gotten rid of cable or other network providers? Do you have another source for watching TV (local or otherwise?) I would love to hear about them in the comments below!

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