You might have never thought about giving up your cable television, but if you're on a budget, turning off your cable services can be a great way to save money. After all, the average cable or satellite bill in the United States is about $99 a month, and this rate has jumped up by about eight percent every year since 2010. That isn't chump change, and if you're looking to trim unnecessary costs in your budget, disconnecting your cable is a good way to start. If you think that you and your family will have a tough time with the transition, consider these three tips for getting by without cable or satellite television.
1. Stream Movies and TV Shows
If you have an internet connection, you will still be able to stream movies and television shows. If your television is internet-ready, you can generally watch these movies and TV shows directly from your device. Alternatively, you can stream it onto your television with a video gaming console, a streaming console or a laptop computer that is connected to the TV with an HDMI cable. Many networks allow you to stream their TV shows from their websites, and there are also online streaming services that charge modest monthly fees that are much more affordable than cable or satellite.
2. Rent or Borrow Movies
Not only can you use self-service kiosks to rent movies nowadays, but you can also often borrow movies from the public library for free. Alternatively, you can talk to other friends or family members who might be looking to scale back or who might have a nice collection of movies, and you can try trading and borrowing among one another.
3. Buy Your Favorite Movies or TV Show Seasons on DVD or Blu-Ray
It might seem like you're trading one expensive thing for another by buying movies or TV shows on DVD or Blu-Ray rather than having cable, but you can often buy movies and TV shows seasons for much less than you would spend on cable or satellite TV each month. Try shopping online for the best prices on movies, or check out local pawn shops to find great deals on used DVDs and Blu-Rays. Even some mass market retail stores have bargain bins that are filled with movies for low prices. You can even check out places like Pristine Sales.
As you can see, getting by without cable or satellite TV doesn't have to be as hard as you might think. If you follow these three tips, you're sure to always have something to watch, but you won't have to worry about dealing with a costly cable bill each month.