Haggle To Lower Your Cable or Direct TV Satellite Bill

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directv_newlogoI’ve written several times about the significant savings you can achieve if you haggle with your media providers like DirecTV, be it broadband internet, telephone, or cable/satellite TV. A simple phone call can save you hundreds of dollars per year. This is as true today as in past years, and below is a collection of all related tips as well as some new information.

Why does it work?
Media service is like banking. People tend to stick with who they have, and the companies make tons of money from it because they can raise prices and most people just accept it. As a result, competing companies have to offer rather juicy deals to make people switch. But since customer acquisition is so expensive, if you let your existing company know that you’re shopping around, they will gladly give you a temporary incentive to stay. Media is so profitable that they can give you a discount of $20-$40 a month and still make money.

Of course, they don’t offer this to everyone because your neighbor is probably paying full price without complaint. In behavioral finance terms, this is called price targeting.

Negotiating Tips

  • Call customer service and tell them you are thinking about canceling your service. Your goal is to reach the Retentions Department. As you can tell from the name, the primary goal of this group is to keep you as a customer (for as cheaply as possible). This means they have the most discretion when it comes to service discounts.
  • Prepare your pitch. I like using the “open-ended approach” which consists of basically saying “I’m unhappy and shopping around. What can you offer me?” You leave it up to them, and see what they throw at you. You may also throw in a competitor’s offer (see below). A script suggestion:

    DirecTV Retentions: How can I help you today?

    You: Hi, I’ve been a [current company] customer for a while now, but I am trying to lower my expenses. I’ve been seeing commercials for [competitor’s name] offering service for [$XXX]. Am I eligible for any similar discounts to my service?

  • Accept or counter. If you’ve been paying full price for at least 6 months, you’ll likely get offered a discount instantly on the order of $20 a month or more. However, you can always ask for more. If they aren’t willing to budge on price, you can ask for some freebies like free DVR rental or free premium channels. They’re usually happy to give you these because you might pay to keep them later.
  • Hardball method. If they won’t budge or you really want to push the envelope, you can ask to cancel the service. Say that you want to set the cancel date a few weeks into the future so you can have time to install the alternative. This should reveal their “final offer”. You can wait even longer and see if they follow-up later with an even better offer. If you decide to stay, simply call them back and your service will never be interrupted.
  • Rinse and repeat. Usually your discount will last 6 or 12 months. Once it goes back up, you can try again. You may get more pushback the next time around however (but try anyway). I’ve found that if you pay “full price” for 6 months, then they’re more willing to offer you another round of discounts.

Bargaining Chips
Here are some links to the major companies and their current offers:

  • DirecTV current offers. $29.99 per month for 12 months plus HD and other extras. Or call the DirecTV offer line at 1-888-704-8323.
  • AT&T Internet, TV, Phone. High-speed internet for only $14.95 for 12 months.
  • Comcast. Cable TV + Internet for $70 a month.
  • Charter. High-speed internet at $19.99 a month.
  • Cox. High-speed internet at $19.99 a month for 3 months.

Media Coverage
You’re not being too sneaky; the companies know people are doing this, and asking for a deal has been getting increasing media coverage. Here’s a lengthy WSJ article from late 2011:

Many providers offer less-expensive packages with fewer channels but don’t advertise them widely. Providers often will allow customers to continue cost-saving promotions well after they expire. Other providers will cut you a new deal every six months—but you have to call and ask. Often, if customers threaten to cancel service, they are transferred to the “retention department” staffed with representatives who are trained to offer customers deals to stay put.

However, most people still don’t bother, and that’s why the opportunity persists for those willing to act. In fact, Consumer Reports had some pretty interesting stats that showed that negotiating has some great odds:

Seven out of 10 readers with a triple-play package didn’t even try to bargain on their telecom bills. Yet of those who did, more than 90 percent got some accommodation. Price reductions led the list of concessions, with about 40 percent of bargainers reporting savings of up to $50 a month.

Remember, you lose nothing by asking! Even the shyest person can simply ask nicely for them to check if you are eligible for any discounts, there’s no requirement for meanness or verbal ninja skills. Share the discounts that you scored in the comments.

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  1. I did this with Dish Network recently and cut my bill in half. They gave me a monthly discount and dropped my DVR fee. I also dropped HD service (local HD is free, so I get some) and switched to the basic package after confirming that my favorite channels were all there.

    Alternatively, the digital TV switch added a lot of new channels in my area (Dallas). There is no better price than free!

  2. I also had luck with Dish Network. Got a $15 credit per month for 12 months. (I agreed to another 24 month contract) They also offered 12 months of Cinemax for $.01 if you sign up for autopay and e-statements.

  3. Does this work only when the contract has already expired?

    • Mike21222 says

      No, I just did it with DirecTv and my contract is not up. They gave me half off my cable package and I’m on the top package, so they are dropping our monthly by $70 for 6 months then $40 for 6 after that before it goes back to normal. I figure at the end of the year we will be ready to renegotiate as our package will be up then anyway. This ad just helped me save over $600 over the next year, thanks.

      • bob johnson says

        I had Directv for 13 years. I had five receivers and had the highest package. Told them it was too expensive, all they wanted was to reduce my channels to lower the price. The Hell with that, I cancelled out of principle!

  4. I did this with comcast internet. It took about 3 minutes and I cut the cost by more than half. The cost of Comcast internet is outrageous compared to the competition.

  5. My two year contract with Direct TV finally ran out this month, and I decided I wanted to cancel service altogether and see if I could get by without television. When I called to cancel, they offered me a small reduction in my monthly bill, but I was pretty set on my no TV experiment and I went through with the cancellation.

    The next day, the retention department called me three different times, offering me a better deal each time. I held out for awhile, but by the third call they offered 7 months free and a reduction of my monthly bill from $75 to $45. So for anyone wondering how low they will go, the answer is REALLY LOW.

  6. I would assume you can do this while in a contract, because the loss of a long term customer weighs greater to a retention rep than a customer willing to pay the cancellation fee to terminate contract in order to save money in the long term.

  7. I lowered by Dish Network bill by doing something similar. I looked got it lowered based off what they were offering new customers. Haggling works with auto insurance also. It used to work with credit card compaines and interest rates but I’ve had less success, with American Express in particular, with lowering interest rates.

  8. Your site seem to has popped up on a scam site list and gotten red rated on Web of Trust. You may notice a drop off in Google traffic because of this. I tried to counteract the negative ratings but you may need more positive ratings to overcome all of the negative ones.

  9. Vinny Financio says

    I recently did followed a similar process with my internet provider (Comcast) and managed to save $12.00 a month for the exact same service I had before I called.

    Not a life changing monthly savings but I’ll take it!

  10. @JB – Hmm… it seems that I am associated with another site on some huge list, it is unfortunate how someone can just list you by accident and get people to rate you red blindly without even actually reading your content. Any suggestions as to how I can fix this?

  11. I’ve had similar experience with Comcast as well. I’ve been paying $29.99 for internet for 3 years now. It was initially 6 months at that price (about 50% off for my area), but I called and asked if I could continue at the promotional rate. The first person I talked to told me, “no” and wouldn’t negotiate. I hung up and called back. The 3rd person I talked to guaranteed $29.99 for 1 year. At the end of that year I called back…same offer $29.99. Sometimes persistence pays off.

  12. I had previously called and got a discount for my cable, read this, called again and got internet down from $42 to $30 (Comcast). Thanks.

  13. Thanks. I just called Directv and said I was thinking of going to Dish Network. The Directv rep said I will get $10 off each bill for 6 months.

  14. At times you definitely need to be persistent. I ended up saving $35 a month for a year with RCN, but I did have to call three times. CSR 1 told me promotional rates are only for new customers, so I can’t get any discounts. CSR 2 only applied $15 discount for 6 months. Finally I asked CSR 3 if I could get RCN’s 1 yr promo for new customers and she gladly said yes.

  15. @Jonathan. It looks like the WOT people have corrected the mistake and your site now has a good rating. apparently there was a site at “my-moneyblog.com” (note the dash) and this was mistaken for your site. If it happens again the best bet is probably to enlist your readers to go to http://www.mywot.com/en/scorecard/mymoneyblog.com and rate your site truthfully.

  16. Thanks for the tip! I did try to negotiate my cable/internet rate a couple of months back but they wouldn’t budge, so I just said fuggetaboutit.

    But reading this entry pushed me to try again so I called and stated that I was interested in going to Verizon FIOS and they were able to match their rates and dropped my monthly bill by $30 a month for 12 months!

    That’s a total saving of $360!

  17. About two weeks ago my old DirecTV TIVO box died outright. I had previously called about getting a replacement/upgrade box and was told I’d have to commit to 24 months of service (with a $500 cancellation fee) to get a High Def box. As I was a 4+ year customer paying “insurance” there was NO WAY that I’d sign a new 2 year contract.

    Anyway, I got sent to the Retentions Department and had only 1 condition: remove the 24 month commitment or I cancel DirecTV today. Well…I had to cancel. The guy was nice and offered to effectively match the new customer rates but I wanted fair treatment as a *loyal* customer.

    Now I’ve upgraded my DSL and use Netflix unlimited streaming video. The quality usually is better than DVD, and I’m paying $20 a month ($10 Netflix, $10 for faster DSL) instead of $80 for DirecTV + Netflix. The writing is on the wall for traditional cable and satellite: streaming video is the future. Don’t sign any contracts and let the old boys squirm. Cable/satellite is the next business model to die after newspapers.

  18. I’m a full time RV’er and have a DirecTV in my home and a portable satellite antenna I use when out camping. They use to charge me an arm and a leg for the second receiver and even more to keep turning on the house install as I’m on the road 6 months out of the year. I finally had enough, called Dish Network and told them my story. They set me up, no connect/disconnect fees and I’m up and rocking. Don’t let them get away with taking your cash!

  19. For DirecTV and Dish…. If you ever receive a change in terms letter in the mail you can choose to “not accept new terms” and get out of your contract without penalty!
    I get these once or twice a year from Direct.

  20. I call DTV once or twice a year and ask for lower rates. They usually offer $10/month off for 6 or 12 months. Small, but better than nothing. At least it covers the HD fee. Oh, and they always throw in some movie channels for 3 months, just for complaining.

  21. Ted Valentine says

    I got a second DVR with installation for free by doing this. An ATT Uverse salesperson had made an offer and I called to see what they could do.

  22. I called DirectTv a couple of weeks ago and was set on canceling my service. It was going to cost around $440 to cancel it but I was going to spend around $1700 to keep it until the contract ran out. After going through the first couple of offers the customer service rep threw at me(what it would cost me through my contract) I ended up getting my service reduced from $70 per month to $30(I kept my 2 DVR receivers for this price), plus another $200 credit which gave me free service for 6 months. The economy is extremely bad right now and they are loosing lots of customers. They will budge!

  23. I just called DirecTV and they took $10 off my bill for a year, free HD access for a year (another $10/mo) and free Showtime for 3 months (hello Dexter!). I’ll take it…….

  24. I have DirecTV. I got $10 off for six months from the first person I spoke with. Then, I was transferred to the retention departmen and haggled away to get another $200 statement credit. Saved $260 overall. They kept trying to give my a free HD receiver (I don’t have an HD TV yet, so that was easy to refuse) and free upgrades, but I held out for cash.

  25. Thanks for the tip. FYI, Comcast, and maybe others, have an online chat support so you wont need to call. I was able to lower my internet bill from $57.95 to $34.99 for six months.

  26. i called dtv. 3 times. first two people offered 10$ off for 6 mths and 50$off a hd rec that i needed. i said not good enough and hung up.

    called right back and said i was going to cancell service. I was honest and said I will switch to dish, get my hd rec for free and lower my bill at the same time. Long story short they gave me an hd DVR for free along with install, showtime/starz for 3 mths, and 20 off my bill for a year. i maybe could have gotten more since i have been a customer for over 10 yrs but right now i am satisfied with there offer.

  27. Direct TV seemed to be good for the move and new cable I wanted to put in the house. They had a decent offer for HD (less than Comcast, but more than Dish). They came to install and did not complete the job thoroughly. The following day, the customer service line rang to inform me that I was misquoted on my service. Apparently they don’t offer HD contracts on a 12 month service time, it must be 24 months. Nice to know AFTER it was already installed…remember though, improperly (the wrong cable wire was used). So, I decided that I did not want to continue with them because I did not want a 24 month contract and they wouldn’t work with me. Good time to lose a customer in these economic days!! Since then (first week of November) I have been charged $460. Not just that, but it was on autopay which I never approved and it came directly out of my checking account. I have spoken with no less than 15 people (I have all the names and ID numbers) in regards to getting my money back. I have written the President of the company with no response. I have written the VP of the company with no response. Today is December 16th and I still do not have my money back. I was told that I would have it in 5-7 business days. I waited 10 and when that didn’t happen, I called back. I was then informed that I should expect the money between the 12th and 14th of this month. Again, its the 16th and no money!!! So, I called today. The new thing is that now I need to wait because its going to be put back into my account with two installments. Funny, they can take it all out in one nice swoop, but can’t put it back…Someone please help me!!!!

    • beendoneit says

      I had this happen to me. I was transferred to pay a bill that was due in order to have DirecTV work on my equipment that was not even showing a picture. They charged me for services I didn’t order. I spoke with someone to credit the charges. I was transferred to the self service line to pay my bill. When asked if I wanted to pay the entire bill due I said no. The self service replied with you have a balance of $0 due. I immediately hung the phone up and began to call back to explain. IT TOOK ALL DAY. I called my bank to stop payment but it was too late. The bank representative gave me a number for businesses to call them to reverse payments. I called DirecTV back and had to really plea with them to have someone call the number the bank gave me. They did reverse payment but it took ALL DAY to find someone at DirecTV that would call the bank. you may have already gotten your money back but it’s some handy info for future issues you or someone else may have.

    • Get legal counsel. If you did not authorize autopay or for them to draft your account it’s called theft I don’t care how big the company is. The issue might be in the fine print of any contract you might have agreed to. If not, lawsuit!!

    • Getting a 2 yr contract will always get you, your lowest price. If you want to leave before your contract is up no problem. All you need to do is have another company whether it be directv or a cable company and get a good deal from them and they will be happy to payoff your contract fee to get you as a customer.

  28. Hey,
    I called Directv today to try to get them to lower my bill. We suspended our service for six months in order to save $75 a month, and also because we weren’t going to be around enough to justify having it.

    Service is set to turn back on, on January 18, but we really don’t want to pay $75 for what some people are getting for $30 or less.
    We have been with them for about 3 and 1/2 years, so we are no longer in a contract.

    When I called today, I sat on the phone for about 20 minutes in silence as the lady I talked to tried to see what she could do. She said that she could only do $10 off for 6 months, and she admitted (without any coaxing from me) that, that probably wasn’t good enough, so she was going to transfer me to a “Specialist” who could help me out.

    I repeated my spiel to the specialist, and told her that I was transferred because they recognized that saving $60 wasn’t going to cut it, but the specialist was absolutely unwilling to do anything. Some specialist.

    In the end, I decided to tell them that I’d like to cancel, but she said that in order to cancel, she’d have to un-suspend my service, and she wanted to know what day I’d like to have it terminate. I didn’t want to end up having to pay for service just so I could cancel, so I said that I’d like to move the cancel date to the 18th of January.

    I’m going to try to call again and see what results I get. If I can’t get anything, I’d rather go with Dish than keep getting hosed by Directv.

    • you probably didn’t have any credits because with companies like these, if you suspend your account or you pay your bill late or don’t have pretty decent package lineups with them you will NOT generate offers like 10 bucks off for a year. It just depends on how well you maintain your account, and all these negotiations are based on company loyalty, they probably wanted to cancel you since they haven’t been getting money from you. Not to rub it in, I just called recently and got NFL sunday ticket for free for 2015 since I’ve been a loyal customer for a few years now. The dude on the phone straight up brought it up I didn’t even ask for it, he wanted to know what my team was (Go Broncos!) Oh and honestly in my experience being nasty with these guys over the phone does the opposite of work and I’ve actually gotten hung up on before when I was taking my bad day out on someone. Again, not trying to be rude just informative, all these companies are the same. they need their money!

      • I will agree with the not being nasty. That only makes them want to drop you quicker. I will say, I am down to about $45/month for my “Dish” but I have nothing special except 4 receivers. I just don’t see the value of the programming any more? It’s all garbage. We don’t watch sports, we are not “TV Shoppers”, I get my religion from my church, and the main networks (ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX) all come in over the air great. Of the 12 or so channels we do watch, most of it is old re-runs and we end up “Settling” on something. It’s nothing that we really want.

        When I call, they almost always offer me a discount to stay, but I really am ready to pull the plug. My kids are even watching more Netflix and such then they are TV, so I am thinking it’s now finally time to not even consider the offer of further reduction. Unless they are going to give it to me for free.

        As a final note, these companies are making a fortune off of this programming even at the discounted rates. They are willing to lower the rates for you a lot because if their subscriber rates go down to far, other networks and more importantly ADVERTISERS will pull out which has a cascading effect on their bottom line.

  29. Branden: Thanks for offering the tip about using the online chat session. I tried this with Comcast and lowered my bill from $115 to $50 just by asking. The two previous times I called I was unsuccessful and this was a lot easier than calling.

  30. actually did this with NFL Sunday Ticket — had never had it before, called them up and said I was thinking about following football this year, but thought the sticker price of $300 for the package + $100 for the complete package in HD was a bit too steep. They knocked off $100.

  31. I’m only in the 18th month of a 24 month contract with DirecTV, so didn’t have a ton of leverage, but called customer service and asked if there was anything they could do anyway… they knocked off $10/month for 6 months without hesitation. Now, when this little perk runs out, I’ll be done with my contract and can really haggle them for a better discount… thanks!

  32. Question. My contract with DTV has expired. DTV is offering a $100 visa plus $26 off your bill for 12 months.

    Can I just cancel my account and sign up again with someone else in my household? (They have different last names).

  33. Update,

    I called DTV today. My contract has expired. I told them that I would have to cancel my service if they couldn’t give me a good deal. They gave me a $20 a month credit for 6 months plus 6 months free Showtime. The customer service rep said call back in 6 months and they will give me another deal.

  34. FYI, I called to cancel the $12.99 sports pack (Fox Soccer, College networks, regional sports networks from across the country, etc.) and was offered a $5 credit for 12 months. When I turned that down, they offered another $5 for 6 months, which would have made it $2.99/month. I still turned it down since I don’t think I use it enough even to justify $3/month. That might be good though for anyone who wants to keep a premium service but doesn’t want to pay the absurd price…

  35. I called to cancel my Direct TV service today. At first, the customer service said all he can do is give me $5.00 off my $75.00 bill. I said it not good enough and I want to cancel my service. Then he transfer me to retention department.

    The lady offer me $45.99+tax. I asked how much after tax the bill would be. She then said she will give me $46.00/month included tax plus 6 months of Star and Showtime for free. I asked if I can get them for 1 year. She said yes.

    So, I end up with 40% off the bill with free showtime and star for 1 year. But the best part is I not even have to sign a contract and my price is good for 1 year and I can cancel at anytime.

    Do you think if I call back and ask to get HBO and Cinemax instead of showtime and star, will they give them to me??

  36. @Ann:

    They will give you HBO and Skinemax, but only max for 3 months. Those are worth more to DIRECTV than Showtime and Starz. Believe me, I have tried.

  37. Just called DirecTV and after going through the initial representative, who was no help, and the promotions representative, who was no help, I asked to cancel my service and was connected with the cancellation department. I told him I would have to cancel my service unless I could get some sort of rate reduction. He immediately offered me $10 off for 12 mos and free HD access for a year. So $20/mos for a year, not bad. Before that I was able to reduce my Comcast cable internet to 39.99/mo for 6 mos down from 57.99/mo. So in the matter of about 20 min I was able to knock $38 off my monthly bills. Thanks to everyone on here with all the recommendations.

  38. Has anyone had any success with Time Warner Cable?? I live in the NYC area, and have called numerous times and mentioned the same script, and none of the service reps have budged at all.. I have gotten to the customer retention department, and nothing has worked???

  39. I just got off the phone with Direct tv and told them that a door to door dish network person offered me an hd package with dvr for 43 dollars a month for a year. She offered to swap my dvr to an hd dvr and a second one one to regular hd keep my package (which includes starz and show) with free hd service for a year. My monthly is now 124 with taxes and i will now pay 61 with the taxes for a year! for me that is huge. 63 x 12=756 less i am paying and getting all this equipment upgrages for free and free hd for the next year. i tried it before and it didnt work. I tried now again and they didnt even put up a fight. thanks for the info!!! it really helped me out.

  40. Everyone on this site makes me sick. Do all of you go to the grocery store and say you want to pay less for your milk because the price went up in the last year. Give me a break. You know why prices go up more? Part inflation, part people like you making others pay more so you can pay less. What’s the point of putting a price point on any package. Might as well just pay what you want. If you can’t afford the service don’t get it. Do you go buy a nice car and ask the monthly to be lowered as well?! Go on welfare people.

    • OK Brian…..so how should we feel when I get a mailing/email from the SAME provider offering deals to new customers for half what I’m currently paying ? Been with DISH for years and years, but apparently the only thing customer loyalty means is you are a sucker and get a higher bill.

      As for car prices, yes, I shop them. You would be AMAZED at the difference in prices between dealers for the exact same car. We decide the car we want (model, colors, options), then get on the phone and shop dealers. We spent $1700 less for our last Honda between highest and lowest dealer. One even told me on the phone when he asked how his price was and I told him the lowest price I’d gotten so far “YOU CAN’T BUY THAT CAR FOR THAT !!” I said “maybe not….haven’t picked it up yet…but if I do, would you like me to wave as I come back past your place ? ” ( We did buy it for that price….and I did wave )

    • It’s not our fault they decide to give us a lower package. Upon us saying “I’d like to cancel my service” THEY offer reduced prices. Trust me, these are money-making entities. They know what they can afford to offer and what they can’t. It’s not our fault they decided to give discounts.

  41. I hear you Brian and agree with you.

    However, the problem is that these companies keep on extending these discounts. So, if my friends and neighbors are getting the discounts, why shouldn’t *I* get it too? Otherwise, I would be the fool left paying full price.

    I have no problems paying full price for something as long as the seller doesn’t turn around and sell it to somebody cheaper just because the other buyer was asking for a discount.

    If they want to solve the problems of price lowering, then stop lowering the price!! It’s as simple as that

  42. Brian, you must work for a media provider. You should understand that no one needs TV. It is not like electricity or other utilities that are necessities. Also, today we can pick up digital signals via antenna and “free” streaming entertainment from the internet. Most people on this site have stated that they are willing to cancel their service in order to save money. None of the providers want to lose customers and thus use what ever is necessary to keep them. What’s wrong with both sides? Are you saying that everyone MUST pay these companies even if they are willing to drop TV altogether? If one’s house is close to foreclosure, dropping TV costs is a very prudent move along with any other elective monthly bills. All these people are doing is shifting the ball to the providers court by saying they don’t need their services anymore. The providers do the negotiating to keep the customer. If this makes you “sick,” move somewhere where free enterprise is non-existent. I hear crickets……..

  43. No, most of the people on this site call in pretend they are going to cancel service to get a discount.

    “At first, the customer service said all he can do is give me $5.00 off my $75.00 bill. I said it not good enough and I want to cancel my service.”

    “Has anyone had any success with Time Warner Cable?? I live in the NYC area, and have called numerous times and mentioned the same script, and none of the service reps have budged at all.. I have gotten to the customer retention department, and nothing has worked???”

    “I told him I would have to cancel my service unless I could get some sort of rate reduction.”

    I’m all for free market and choice, I don’t put “all my eggs in one basket”, and when I don’t care for a company I move on. No “What can you do for me?”, no “this company if offering me XYZ”, no “I want the same exact programming but at half of what I’m paying”.

    Again as you stated there are the Hulus and such on the internet now and days, BUT people will always want to watch that football game on that “great 50 inch plasma” they just got. There is no requirement that someone has to carry TV like you said, but then again if they didn’t want an extra bill they would have not have signed up in the first place. Again I’ll stand by my original statement “If you can’t afford the normal price service don’t get it.” Call me non-free enterprise all you want, but in the end it’s financial responsibility of the customer that must be held accountable.

    • While I hear both sides of the Argument, my concern is that I am willing to pay a FAIR price for a good service. Right not I am paying almost a $100.00 for TV that SUCKS. there are about 10 – 15 channels on my Dish that I can also get on the rabbit ears antenna. Then I have about a dozen sports channels (ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNA, MLB, MLB1, etc…). Guess what, I (for the most part) HATE sports. The only real sporting event I care to watch is the super bowl. I like football but have no desire to spend endless hours watching it on the tube. So why am I forced to pay for them.

      Now I have about a dozen Shopping channels and let us not forget the plethora of religion channels. Don’t want them don’t need them, but I have to pay for them.

      What about the 40 – 60 “Music” channels. Right? Ok, like I want to keep my power guzzling TV on for music (in comparison to my ipod or radio). But wait, it’s “Targeted music to my tastes, Right?” Ok, isn’t Pandora? How much is Pandora? Oh that’s right…. FREE. So is RADIO! I am willing to listen to their commercials for the services. Sometimes I actually hear a commercial that inspires me to buy. So now I have to pay for all this “Music” that I don’t want or use.

      Speaking of “Music” I have about 10 “Music/Video” channels (MTV1, 2, 3…. VH1, 2, 3….) That in my mind is not even Music TV any more… Just a bunch of idiots trying to break into TV with their various “Reality” (NOT) TV shows.

      So what we have left (of my minimal package for near $100.00 a month) is about 20 channels that I am even remotely interested in. Half of them are for the kids but since I have kids, I am willing to keep them. The rest of the channels rarely (if ever) have any NEW or UNIQUE programming, and is a plethora of re-runs or reality shows. Shows that OFTEN don’t even represent the “Network Theme”. By this I mean, What in the world does “Honey Boo Boo” have to do with TLC (The LEARNING Channel)? I suppose Ancient Aliens could be ok for the History Channel, because they are “Ancient” (Not knocking it because I like Ancient Aliens, but just saying).

      So is it worth $100 a month for 20 channels of re-runs and Reality TV that I don’t care about? The channels that DO Have descent programming are in higher priced packages, (which I have had) but I cannot justify the $180/month cost for the extra 200 channels of which we watch 10 of.

      To boot, I was reading another article that indicated that Cable/Satellite companies have a mark-up of near 600%. in comparison your local grocer is about 15-20% So I will be the squeaky wheel. When I threaten to cancel because it’s too little value for too much money… I WILL Cancel. These companies want your money as much as you want to keep it. so excuse me if I “Dicker” with them to get a better right. Maybe I learned that from the “History Channel” on “Down East Dickering”.

    • I believe Brian is a communist

    • Why are you trying to get a lower price too? Anyway, I do live in NY area but my cable choice is cablevision but I know a friend who has time warner. You know why Brian he go an incredible discount? Because, even with the low price he ended up getting from Time Warner:Time Warner is still making a big profit.

  44. Brian you lose! Most people want to be treated fairly when buying a service or product, including you, agree? Yes you can get discounts on just about everything including milk. Heard of ‘coupons?’ They’re out there so businesses can coax you into spending your money with them instead of the competition. Dish has a special on, 120 channels for $29.99, Direct’s special is 150 channels for $29.99. They’re vying to get you to spend your money with them instead of the competition right? If you ran a business you might understand that. Look beyond the moment, they are telling the savvy consumer that they can operate their business on a charge of $29.99/mo. and give you the upgraded packages with it. Why are soo many paying twice that and more? And by the way, what are you paying per month? Is it wrong to try and get your best price in today’s market and economy by shopping the competition or by re-negotiating terms with your current provider/supplier? That’s called “Business” and as a consumer it is everyone’s right to choose whom they spend their money with including you. Big Businesses are always finding new ways to nickel and dime their customers. Check your bank statements or bought gas lately? Do you shop prices before making a purchase? If you don’t you’re every businesses dream customer! Walk in and give them your money no matter what the cost right? Look at the big picture. How many gas stations, grocery stores, hair salons, auto part stores, health clubs, network companies etc. etc. are in your town? Why is one’s prices lower than the others? You got your break and by the way, with unemployment pushing 10% there are plenty of people chewing up our tax dollars on welfare! Lets not go there too! You’ve been served.

  45. Adam Smith says

    At Brian…

    “Normal Service Price”?????

    The normal service price is exactly what the buyer and seller agree to. If Directv, Dish, etc. offer a lower price upon request and the customer accepts then that is the “normal price.” You act as though cable providers are entitled to the higher rate. This is business and price negotiation is part of the game.

    Time for you to go back to econ 101 for a refresher.

  46. I am going to have to disagree with Brian. The milk comparison is a bad example. As pointed out, it is a luxury item, not a necessity. For example, would you pay the sticker price for a car? If so, you are throwing money out the window. Free markets are what keeps prices in check. It is good that there is some competition between cable and the satellite providers. Do you think it is right that a satellite box goes out or happens to be a lemon and the satellite provider will replace it at no cost, but you must sign another 24 month contract? These companies stick it to the people who are willing to pay their sticker and don’t want to dispute the point. At the end of 2Q 2010, satellite TV service revenue increased to $24 billion. This is about a 12% increase from the second quarter of 2009. They aren’t losing any money, especially in a recession.

  47. I called and said I was thinking of switching to Dish Network for their promo, and they switched me to a very grumpy woman in the “Promo Dept.” She said all she could offer me was $5 off for 3 months. “That’s it?” I said. She said yeah, that’s it. I hung up, called back and said “I want to cancel my service.” This time they switched me to “retentions,” and the woman was sweet as pie and offered me $20 off for 6 months, plus some free movie channels for 6 months. I bit on that. It really does matter who you talk to. If it doesn’t work the first time you call, hang up and call again.

  48. Hi I jus called direct tv an got 10 dollars off a year an hd service free for a year thanks for the insight it saved me 20 dollars plus got show time. Glad I found this web site

  49. I called Directv and said I was thinking about switching to one of Dish Network’s packages and got transferred to their Promotions Dept. The guy was very helpful and said he could take $10 off per month for a year, which is what sounds like most people here are getting. Hey, I’ll take it! Times are tough..

  50. Brian… did you come to a thread that is titled Haggle to lower your directv bill to find targets? Why in the hell would you even post here? Did you come here to pretend you wanted to haggle for a lower price?

    Pretend your way back to your cubicle at Directv.

    These tactics seem to work, but if you think about it, Directv and Dish are broadcasting the signal whether you pay or not. Until we get a la carte pricing, it’s always going to be a rip off. I tried today and was able to get $20 off per month, but I was not happy with that price, so we disconnected. $86 a month for roughly 6 channels we watch regularly isn’t what I call fair, so I will take my money elsewhere.

    • Amen to you Mike.

      Reality is, if It wasn’t for my kids (and sometimes the wife) I would cancel the Satellite completely. I could be content with Broadcast TV and Netflix. Grand total of $7.99 a month.

      I actually did cancel it at one point, but the Wife wanted her “Lifetime” shows.

      I actually would love to see them offer “Ala Cart” but there are SOOOOOOO Many channels that would be lost. I don’t think these Shopping Channels and others would survive if they did that.

    • Rather than denigrate businesses that due to programming providers (particular sports programming providers) demanding billions of dollars to rebroadcast their content, how about listening to what you are agreeing to and for how long when you sign up for something? A la carte would be far too expensive for any television carrier to provide because it’s not like one company owns one channel. Program providers would never allow this. They make more money selling contracts for their channel families. People are so ready to talk about getting “ripped off” or being “conned” when they simply don’t understand how the industry works. Additionally, this idea that a business should somehow NOT try to make money for its shareholders to whom it is accountable is asinine. If you have a 401K or other retirement fund, or you own stocks in other ways, I think you might change your tune a bit. The market provides for competition. It does not say that you should get expensive product for next to nothing. Negotiation is part of the process, but this incessant whining that businesses of any kind owe the consumer the lowest prices possible is ridiculous. Shop around and be willing to walk away. Do some research on the internet for a change instead of bitching about how you got hosed. You are the only one personally responsible for how you choose to spend your money. Stop blaming legitimate business for operating as a business. As with television service, it’s a luxury. Paying for it is required.

  51. I will not ever do business with direct tv. I would rather not have a tv at all than give them a cent of my money. They are con artists. everyone of them. My daughter got a phone call while at school from them. Now mind you she is a minor. They asked her about installing direct tv and she told them they would have to speak to me (her mom) and that this was her cell. Needless to say they came out that day and installed a dish 2 ft over my property line and left the reciever at my front door. For two weeks i begged them to come get the crap and told them that i didn’t order this. (they told me my daughter did I screamed in the phone and told them she was a minor and they said oh sorry maybe she shouldn’t have a phone then. ) About Wed of the third week, I finally convinced them to come get the equipment and the dish. They did but the tech drove across my yard on a rainy day so now i have truck marks in my grass. While all this is going on I get hit with a bill in my name stating I owe 780.00 for installation and cancellation charges. I have done everything to get them to understand that I didn’t order this. I still haven’t gotten the bill resolved and its been 8 months now. I have given this to a lawyer who agreed to check into it. He laughed when I first gave him the bill but then a few days later he called me and said you are right these people are jerks and he has found 5 other families in my neighborhood that they did the same thing to. Direct tv tried to tell the lawyer that this was a contractor that was installing for them and they had since terminated his contract but they didn’t agree to drop my bill yet. I am still trying to figure out how they got my daughters cell number too. its scarey. Luckily they don’t have any of my information and everytime i call they want my social to pull up the account. I just laugh and tell them no address will do cause you never had my social.

  52. Just got off the phone with Direct Tv. I told them I wanted to terminate my service. They offered my $17 off my bill for 12 months, Free HD DVR Reciever Upgrade plus free service and installation, and free Showtime and Starz for 3 months.

  53. Brian, you my friend are an idiot. This is the way it is welcome to America. Get off this website grow a pair call and save. You don’t have said pair to do it so my hard working self “makes you sick” and milk really? If you can save money you don’t do it? Give me a break! Get off your almighty soapbox and this site. Idiot!

  54. As a Dish employee I understand that everyone want to save money. Believe me I do to. The reason I went to Dish before working here for because they had low prices. At first I was paying for HD but now they have HD free for life for new and existing customers! Direct only has HD free for life for new customers only. We also have great movie promotions all the time. For our Spanish speaking customers we have the all-Spanish T.V package which Direct does not. Our packages are even at a lower cost then Direct.

    • Packages at a better price during the first year (or two) while in the promotion.

      I will say that of all the providers I have dealt with, the Dish Customer Service has definitely been the nicest. Where I currently live, I have 3 choices of paid providers. Dish, DirectTV, and Comcast Cable. I am here to tell you, that Comcast is the Absolute WORST customer Service. From my dealings DirectTV is hit or miss. Dish Customer Service has nearly Always been very pleasant with me when I called.

  55. Hi Sarah,

    As an existing dish customer, is there any way to reach you directly for good deals?

  56. We have been with DTV since 1998. We have threatened to cancel several times. They have usually given us something. This time we just came off a 3 month Hold on service as we are snowbirds. Told them in order to reactivate the service we need a better price. Told them (the truth) that DISH came to our door offering comparable package for $31 less. We already had Free HD and $10 off so CST and Promotions and Retentions could not offer us anything. So I canceled. Worried about it for a night and morning, then DTV called us. They gave us $31 rebate for 1 year and 4 premium channels HBO,SHO,STARZ,CIN for 3 months free. We took it. We are on choice extra w/ national network pack + HDDVR w/autopay. $66 total. Inspired by mymoneyblog.com thanks.

  57. It is definitely worth your time to ask for discounts. I have been a customer of Directv since 1999. I did not threaten cancellation, just asked if they could lower my bill. I got the $10 HD access charge waived for 24 months for going to autopay and a $5 reduction on Showtime for 3 months.

  58. my 2 year contract expired last week. i called directv today and said it the current montly bill cost me too much and dish was offering me a great deal.
    they transfered me to someone (not sure if it was retention dept)..customer service rep said he was transferring me to cancellation department….anyway lady said she could take off 30 a month for 12 months (360 dollars in savings)..i said can you do any better..she said 35…then i said can you do 40..and she said no…so i took the 35 off a month for 12 months..(420 dollars)..and she said after 12 months..prices will go back to what i was paying..but i can call back then and see what they could do for me…btw, i was paying
    98 a month for HD/DVR choice xtra package w/ HBO…so now i will get
    the same package for 63 a month.

  59. Asked for the retention dept on the IVR and was sent directly without having to speak to a rep. WHen asked why I was call call, I answered the IVR “to cancel”.

    Got two new HD rec to replace 2 std free. Got a HD DVR to replace an HD free and service free for a year with an additional $10 per month credit for two year contract. Got whole home free, DirecTV Cinema free, and free installation and a new dish. And my bill went down from 118 to 99 to boot!

    Thank you to the folks above who contributed.

  60. I was on a 24 month contract with DTV and I had 10 months left and they had offered me half off the package for the first year and the second year I would have to pay full price. So my bill sky rocketed from $50 a month to $90 a month. So I had a passed due amount on my avvount for $170 and called to cancel my service because in the long run paying the cancellation fee would save me more money than paying the crazy amount they are trying to charge me. Anyhow, I told them I simply could not afford it anymore and they waved my $170.00 past due bill I started at 0 balance and they lowered my bill from $90 to $46, not sure if that’s with taxes or not, but I will soon find out! Thanks for all the advice, plus they waived my DVR service charge.

  61. Brian….with all due respect…you are an idiot! All of these promos are out there for a gain in market share. Part of a company increasing the market share number is reducing churn. Great offers to come on board, but no offers to stay? Are you just stupid or something? You just keep giving your money away….I will take my savings and invest in Direct stock…LOL

  62. Called DTV tonight after spending time reading the posts from years ago to the present. Wife and I talked and we were intent on cancelling and going solely Roku and Netflix, however, agreed if I could get 50% off we would take the deal. I called DTV and gave the bad economy and lack of money story which is true and explained I was calling to cancel due to saving money. The rep was extremely nice and she took it down to $39.99 with a different channel lineup (which was okay for us) and keep the DVR service for free. I asked if she could do better and she said she could knock off $5 more dollars and put it at $34.99. She asked if that would help and she understands our situation as she had been out of work for two years. I said if she could make it $30 we could probably handle the bill at last for a little while. She offered the deal for six months. I was going to ask for 12 months, however, figured we might be done with DTV or any service before that time so took the six. Actually, would go OTA TV for free as we like mainly the regular channels, however, we live about 50 miles from a TV station and it would not work unless we put an antenna on the roof which the wife does not want. So, before the six months is up I will call and either extend or cancel totally to go with Roku, Netflix and Hulu Plus. I don’t see the point in the end for paying for TV. I am not a sports fanatic and can watch the sports at other locations or with family who have DTV or cable so cutting the DTV will be a money saver all the way around. The next six months or less is good so we can wean ourselves off and start reading, spending time doing other things, etc. Thanks to all the posters who gave me the idea to call DTV and weep on their shoulders.

  63. Called Dish to cancel unless they could lower my bill from $54.99 to $34.99. The CSR was polite, but the only thing she said she could do was offer $5 off for 6 months. It’s no problem to be without tv for me, so I cancelled.

  64. Just called got my bill dropped from $122.00 a month to $92.00 a month with whole home package (stop and watch in another room) and another hd receiver, and showtime free for a year. Ill have to call again in 3 months cause it will go up to 112 but will go back down to $92 if i sign up for auto pay. Not to bad.

  65. I just called direct tv to get my bill lowered. I was being charged $4.99 for HD channels I didn’t even watch. So they cancelled that and then gave me a $5 credit for 5 months. I couldn’t get any other discounts, because I have been a customer for a year, which is still considered a new customer. They said I also still had credits on my bill that would end in december and for me to call back in January to see if their are any other credits that could be applied. I tried to get their new customer package which was $39.99 and so was their competitors’, but I didn’t qualify for that, because I was still considered new. But I am somewhat satisfied with the discount I did get.

    I will call back in January and see what other discounts I can get.

  66. Called DTV and said I was thinking of cancelling because bill was so expensive. Got offered $50 off for six months plus $25 off for the six months after that. Free HD ($10/mo) for 24 months for autopay.

    DTV customer for 8+ years, pay bill on time with auto-pay. 8 receivers.

  67. Simon Berube says

    I have been paying $93.92 per month in this second year of my 24 month DirecTV contract. My contract expired mid last month, so I gave them a call to haggle or cancel.

    I was transferred to a Retentions department representative. I told him that I was planning to switch to Dish Network, and I explained that I had calculated almost $400 in savings within the promotional year and still about $150 per year thereafter.

    He made an offer for $35 off, which was clearly not their best offer; I declined. He then offered 6 months free Starz and Showtime, as well as a seasonal sports package. I explained that we are Netflix subscribers and we don’t watch sports. I declined again, at which point he proceeded to assist with cancellation.

    I understand that probably the best thing to do at this point is hang up, but I stayed on the line and answered questions for cancellation, such as address confirmation for RMA. I genuinely do like the DirecTV HD-DVR and its software, and for other reasons I don’t actually want to switch if I don’t have to. I started to talk about Dish Network’s comparable package and he replied that I would only have that special pricing for 12 months and that his offer is provided without contract. I explained that if the contract phased me I would not have dealed with DirecTV in the first place.

    At this point, I was given a package offer of $42.99, *after* taxes, which still included those movie channels. At this point we became best buddies.

    I just wish I could cut my mortgage in half just by talking with someone for a short time.

  68. Just called Directv….reduced package by $5 per month, got $20 off per month for a year plus free HD for 2 years – totally $35 off for a year, then $15 off for another year!

  69. I just called and said I wanted to cancel and try Dish since I heard it was comparable and they immediately offered to cut my $85 bill in half so I went with it. Thought I’d have to haggle a lot more to get to that price and I probably could have got more, but I had a long day. 🙂 Thanks for all the posts – it encouraged me to call!

  70. ALOHA, I just got off the phone with Direct Tv, after reading all these posts I decided to give it a try, after I talked to the automated system and said the reason for the call was to cancel service, a service rep got on and asked why? I told them I couldn’t afford the 100.00 price anymore and asked if they could do anything for me. The rep said is that the only reason for cancelling, the price? I went on to tell her that I didn’t think they were treating current customers right because new customers got all the specials. She said they could offer me the special for current customers right now, instead of my package price of 70.00 she could give me the package for 25.00 less, for 45.00 for 12 months. I was also able to upgrade to the whole house DVR and change my 2 regular receivers to HD receivers. Got HD for free for 2 years, a saving of 10.00 a month. but I had to enroll in autopay. My total bill now is around 80.00 instead of the 100.00 I had been paying, but thats because I added whole house DVR fee of 3.00 plus a additional receiver for 6.00. They also gave me showtime for free for a year. I did have to sign up for a additional 24 months but thats okay because I like DirectTV.
    So I guess I will have to try again in 12 months for another reduction, but 20.00 saving for 12 months is 240.00, plus the free HD for 10.00 a month for 24 month is 240.00, so I guess I got a pretty good deal, saved 480.00 in about 30 minutes.


  71. I love getting peoples’ deals emailed on occasion……it keeps reminding me to call DTV. I’ve been a customer since 2000. I’m currently off any 24 month contract and my current bill is about $100/month. I called on 1/24/12 and requested “cancel service”. With very little sob story from me, the rep offered me two new HD DVR’s to replace older DVR’s (one HR22-100 POS and an old Tivo DSR6000R that works great), free install of the whole home DVR service (although I will have the $3/mo fee going forward). Tech coming out on a Sunday for the install (don’t know what DVR models they are going to give me). $5 off for 3 mos, $20 off for 6 mos, $5 off for 12 mos, $5 off for 24 months, free HD for 2 years, free HD+ package for 6 months, 1 year of Showtime, 6 months of Starz/Encore…….whew, did I miss anything? They said that the free programming deals will expire automatically; I don’t have to call them to avoid being charged once they’re up. I will wait until the fall and try to get the NFL Sunday Ticket for free, but right now I’m pretty happy with the deal.

  72. Thank you so much for creating this post!!

    I wanted something to refer to while I was on the phone with DirecTV. Someone at a party had mentioned calling to lower his bill so I thought I would give it a try. I Googled and your website was at the top of the list!

    I was on the phone for nearly 35 minutes but it was completely worth it: our bill is now almost $30 less per month, we’re upgraded to HD with new receivers, movie/sports channels for a few months.

    As you said – you lose nothing by asking.

  73. No one has answered the question raised in an earlier post. Can you have Direct TV uninstalled/Cancel and then have a roommate call and get a new account in her name with all the new customer perks?

  74. Mary, if the address is the same, I would say nope.

  75. Have been a loyal customer since 2001 with autopay, no contract and premier package and I called and said “Cancel Service”. About 15 minutes later my bill went from $144 to $85 for the next 6 months. Just need to remember to call again in 6 months!!!! — Thanks for creating this post!!!

  76. @Mary: yes you should be able to do that, but when you cancel just tell them you are moving. Then wait about a week or so and have your roommate get an account in her name. That way it looks realistic. You can’t just cancel and re-sign up all in one day.

  77. I called Direct TV a few days ago since I forgot to call in January. My credits I was getting had expired. I guess I should have said I wanted to cancel, but instead I asked about getting my bill lowered. They tried to get me to get a cheaper package, but I didn’t want to do that because I wouldn’t be able to get one of the channels I always watch.

    So the only thing the CSR did was offer me $5 off my bill for 3 months. I’m not satisfied because I was expecting to get the same credits I have gotten before. I will wait a few weeks and call back and tell them I am thinking of cancelling and then I will report back with the results. My bill is $85 and now it will be $80 and I think that is still too much!!

  78. I called Direct TV today. Asked them to cancel me at the end of this billing cycle. My contract had expired last month. Had an $87 + tax pkg and they offered to reduce the rate to $52 + tax for a year and include 6 months of free premium channels. No contract extension.

    Not bad for 30 min work.

  79. Can I cancel. Wait 30 days, then reorder with all the “new customer” perks? I could go a month without TV, other than local over the air.

  80. I just called direct TV and ask when my contract will be up so that I can cancel. They told me November of this year. Then they ask why I wanted to cancel and I told them my bill is too high. So he gave me an $8 discount on my dvr. He said I was already getting a $5 discount for 3 months and another $5 discount for 2 months. Then he ask if there was anything else i needed help with. I ask to get my other 4 receivers for free for a few months but he said that was a required fee, so he threw in Showtime for me for 3 months.

    Took my bill from $84.99 to $76.99. Every little bit helps, but I am still not satisfied.

  81. Great point guys…I was paying 84 dollars and I just called refused to promotions and got a deal for 59 dollars for 6 months plus 45 dollar credit.
    Thanks Guys!

  82. i am receiving free blockbuster at home starz hbo and free hd for 6 months and a bill discount just by calling in i received thsoe offers

  83. I’m looking to get either dish or directtv, what would be the best way to approach this and witch service is better?

  84. @Bettina: I’ve never had dishnetwork, but I have directtv. Its ok, but I would suggest for you to log on to both website and compare prices and channels in order to get the best deal. You will also get the new customer discount on either one of them. Hope this helps.

  85. Happy Customer says

    I called directv to ask for a discounted rate. I was paying $170 for 2 dvrs 1 hd receiver & 2 regular receivers plus the premier all channels package. I told them there are a lot of commercials advertising free dvrs and $79 a month so they lowered my bill for 6 months to $112 and free hd for a year!

    They said that if i bundled my phone and internet they would credit $15 more a month to my service. I currently have these things with Cox and i might just switch over if cox can’t beat directv’s bundle pricing!

    Try it people. i’m way happy paying $112 than $170.. i’m going to have to call back when football season starts to get a discount on sunday ticket!!! hahahahaha!!!!

  86. Called DirecTV today with all intentions to switch to Dish if they could not lower the price since it is just too pricey. I have the premium channels, whole home HD DVR service, and I pay for insurance coverage in total the bill was 170 before taxes!! Spoke with a really nice lady in the retention department and got the bill down to 120 and kept the same lineup and services for 6 months! Very happy with that!

  87. Sofaking Nuts says

    I’ve been out of contract with DirecTV for about 5 months and have been thinking of making the switch to Dish.

    I called for the cancellation department, gave them the story, and they offered to drop my $99/mo bill (86.99 package + 5.99 protection plan + 6.00 receiver fee) to 68.98. 30% reduction, not bad. This rate is good for 12 months, no commitment.

    I wanted to upgrade the standard def receiver in my bedroom to an HD or HD-DVR, but they wanted a 2-year contract for that – no thanks. Then they offered a $100 credit if I signed a new contract, to match what Dish is offering new customers (either a $100 Amazon credit or a $100 Visa debit card). I was thinking of doing this, but they would only honor the 68.98 rate for 12 months, then it would assume the then-standard rate, which by then will be around $90. Not a chance.

    I’m thinking of dropping the protection plan. That will save an additional 5.99. We have had multiple issues with our old DVR, and when we call to resolve the issues they just have us reset the receiver. It will temporarily fix the issue, but doesn’t solve the problem.

  88. Sofaking Nuts says

    An update to my 5/14 post –

    A few days after I got the discount mentioned previously, I again called DirecTv to inquire about the cancellation process. I spoke with the rep for a few minutes but we were disconnected. About 2 days later my service was cut-off, even though I had never actually set up cancellation. This all worked in my favor, though.

    I called to explain the situation, and my service was immediately reconnected. The rep apologized profusely for the inconvenience, and I got an even lower monthly rate (for 12 months, no contract), all the movie channels for 6 months (I could care less about these, but I’ll take them), and free Sunday Ticket (all new customers are getting this for free).

    As a result of my experience, I like Jonathan’s suggestion to set up cancellation a few weeks into the future and see what they’ll offer you.

  89. IMHO, cable/satellite TV is a ripoff even with whatever promotional deal they might give you. We got rid of cable altogether five years ago and have not regretted it even once since then. Remember, you can get all major networks in HD for free via antenna.

    • Scott, You can get Major Networks in HD for free via Antenna, IF You are in a location that will get it.

      Where I used to live i could barely get them short of an expensive antenna system mounted atop the house. What about people who “Rent”? Not so easy for them.

      I do agree that Cable/Satellite TV is a ripoff, but I think that is exactly why this site is here, to help people not get ripped off (or not as much anyway).

  90. Haley Hill says

    Maybe I need to try again but I was doing this with Comcast for years (calling and getting on a promo, then calling back when the promo expired), and recently they have stopped offering me promos even when I threaten to cancel. I’m a pretty good negotiator in general and I tried to hardball with them, but still no luck! I’m pretty fed up with Comcast and all the stupid promos they have that expire every 3-6 months. My bill has changed and gone up every month for the past 6 months! We may switch to Dish or cancel completely and use Hulu but for now we are waiting to see if our bill goes up again.

    Any advice as to why they wouldn’t offer me another promo or discount when they used to do it all the time? it’s extremely frustrating because they have deals for new customers which is half of what I’m paying! Ugh I hate Comcast…

  91. Sofaking Nuts says

    Not sure why the comment I posted this morning was rejected. I didn’t violate any of the “rules.”

  92. Called Directv few months ago and got them to drop over $25 a month in charges for a year. Then called my internet provide and got a $20 a month drop. And there ya go…$500 in savings with little effort.

  93. @ Haley Hill …. I have the exact same experience. I’ve been working the Comcast promotions for several years now. My latest expired a few months ago, so I called and tried to jump on another. I was only offered $15 off of my monthly bill. I called a few more times, spoke with the retention dept., scheduled a cancellation … and they still said there’s nothing else they can do. I’ve been with Comcast since 2001.

    I’ve never had this much trouble until now. I guess they are catching on. The last rep told me they get calls just like mine hundreds of times per day.

    I guess $15 off is OK. But in the past it was never a problem to cut the internet in half, and get a $20 discount on cable … resulting in a ~ $50 cut.

    Whatever … I’ll be leaving Comcast soon. The only thing that keeps me is the internet service. Everything else about Comcast sucks.

  94. Called DirecTV today and the best CSR could do was $5 / month. Saw your links though and noticed a bundle of ATT phone/net w/ DirecTV, so called ATT and they talked me into U-Verse. Long story short, I’ll go up by 150 channels, major upgrade to my existing phone service, 3x faster internet, and I’m going to lower my bill by $50/month. D-TV just too darn expensive!

  95. We did this with AT&T. The cost of our DSL went from $35/mo. to $15/mo. We are very happy. Our year is almost up and I’m hoping they’ll continue this price.

  96. We’ve done this a few times. Be careful about giving them too much information because our last attempt actually backfired. When the CSR scrutinized our services she noticed we weren’t paying the DVR rental fee. So she laid the trap: “Are you happy with your DVR?” I sprung the trap when I said it was fine then she said she’d have to add the fee! I protested (we’re paying 120 a month, we’ve used them for 15 years, etc.) and threatened to cancel but she wouldn’t budge.

  97. @Ray: $120 is way to much to be paying..I think you should go ahead and cancel and try Dishtv…that is what I am going to do when my year is up in November.

  98. so my two year contract was up last year…and i called and said i am going to leave directv for dish/comcast, and they gave me a 30 dollar discount per month for 12 months..now that is expired and i called them back and they said they can only give me 5 dollar discount for 3 months…so i told them cancel my service at the end of the billing cycle..and i am going to switch to at&t u-verse…so my service will shut down in about 20 days..i am playing hardball/chicken with them now…lets see if they call me w/ a special deal …

  99. I’ve been with DirecTV for five years and play hardball with them every six months or so. I was looking to bundle and knew with the Viacom issues they had been having and signal issues which had just been corrected, my wiggle room was great. Overall, I was able to get $35 credit on my previous statement, added AT&T extreme Internet , free whole home DVR service, cinema connection kit plus install, and $24.99 a month credit for 12 months. I now have Internet with DirecTV and all the top of the line perks, and pay $5 a month less. After canceling my Verizon Internet, I’m saving over $60 a month on Internet alone. I love negotiating.

  100. Hey, If anyone is looking to lower their DTV bill just give them my acct # and my name and tell them to call this number: 1-800-507-4045. They’ll get $10 off their bill every month for 10 months. If you were wondering, I get $100 off for referring them. Pretty cool.

    Thought I let you guys know.

    P.S. My acct# is 59042952. Name: Jess.

  101. Another Jess says


    How tacky. Any DirecTV user on this thread could do the same thing you just did.

    A little class goes a long way.

  102. This is the best way to get the very best discount on Directv….. I have done hours and hours of research to find this out.

    Directv New Customers save $220 with Costco offer and Directv refer a friend! PLUS after verification of installation using the account number below I will send you $20.00 to your PayPal account.
    This is the best deal I have found for new Directv customers. Will only work if you are a new customer, and requires a 2 year commitment.
    Follow the instructions below to save $220 on top of the current Directv package savings and to get your $20.00 PayPal Cash.

    Go to the Costco website here: Costco Directv offer [costco.com]
    Click the button that says “residential customers click here”
    Then after that page comes up, click on any of the orange buttons that says “Learn more”
    That brings up the cart page where you select the package and equipment that you want. This will also allow you to see what you payments will be for the next 2 years.
    Now that you are on the cart page, paste this link in your address bar: http://www.directv.com/refer
    Type in an account number 52798361 and click “get directv now”.
    That will bring you back to the cart page, and should show your first 10 months are $10 lower.
    Make sure that a Costco banner is displayed at the top of the page, if it isn’t, you will not get the $120 Costco cash card.
    Continue checkout as normal.
    Print copies of everything as proof.

    Note: I did not get a confirmation about the $120 Costco cash card, it was Fedex’d to me 3 weeks after the install date

    Another note: Avoid signing up by phone, do everything online. I tried to do this by phone initially and they messed up everything from not giving me the $100 referral discount, spelling my name wrong, and entering the wrong email address. It was so bad that I had to cancel and re-order online.

  103. I called seeing what direct tv would do for me since my contract was up and I’d like to lower my bill. Most she could do was $10 of per mo for 6 mo. We talked and I said I’d shop around. Called back 10 min later saying I was considering canceling and going to dish. They had free hd for life and whole home DVR too. She gave $20 off per mo for 12 mo, $5 off per mo for auto pay, free hd DVR and free hd rcvr to upgrade tv #2 and #3. Free starz for 3 mo. Install was $49 – not waived. Called back later and talked to someone else and mentioned a free nfl ticket for 2012 ($199). Wasn’t in their log but we did originally mention it just not add it.
    Final tally – $250 saving, upgraded rcvrs, whole home DVR, starz for 3 mo, and nfl ticket free – ($199)

  104. I read a bunch of these, and most of you people are getting ripped a new one. You all need to grow a pair in your negotiating. $10 off??? Come ON! They are providing NOTHING once you are set up. They do NOTHING and collect ~$50-$100/month from you. They are streaming the content 24/7 anyways whether you are a customer or not. I had $50 off a month from their normal rate for the highest package, and I called to cancel. They offered me $16 off, and no sweet movie channel deals or sports packages. He offered me Sunday ticket for $200. I told him if that’s the best he can do we can part ways. He went out of his way to tell me I would never get my discounts back if I changed my mind and wanted to come back. I told him he wouldn’t be getting my $100/month for doing nothing either, and to finalize my cancellation at the end of my paid period (you pay these cheap buggers in advance for “service” in case you didn’t know or remember). Guess who called me like a love-sick spurned girlfriend today? Almost all of you need to cancel and wait for them to call you back with the really sweet deal. Deep down they know netflix costs $8/month, and they have no advantage over netflix. Commercials vs no commercials, watch what you want when you want vs having to record things before hand so you can have to keep hitting the fast forward button over the ~50% commercials they play. I have a question… If I pay $100/month to watch tv… Why do you turn around and have to collect MORE money from advertisers at MY expense??? You charge me, and then steal my time by forcing me to watch an endless stream of advertisements that interrupt what I PAID to watch. WRONG!!!

  105. AT&T DSL, I Haggled and was given 3 months of DSL Elite 6.0 Mbps for 15$ compared to 43$. Savings 84$

  106. Forgot to mention i already had a dsl basic which was about 20$ 768kbps. I do not qualify for the 12 month introductory service. I was also told that, DSL Elite 6.0 Mbps will be 20$ per month once the 3 months ends, I doubt that since DSL ELITE on AT&T show 43$ per month. An I doubt they would put me on the intro price structure, since I’m a current customer.

  107. I just got $10 off a month for a year and free showtime and stars for 6 months.

  108. We have been customers for 10 years and the one thing we were looking forward to was the new 5 tuner dvr that came out early this year. When I first called about it, they wouldn’t let current customers get the HMC DVR. I said what would it cost and the price was $399. I pay enough for DTV and with the deals they were giving new customers I felt cheated being loyal for so long. After a couple more calls and no luck I gave up. Then After reading this blog I decided to make another call.

    When I called I told the autobot that I wanted to cancel and it sent me directly to the retention dept. I was very nice to the lady and explained how we sometimes have a number of shows that tape at the same time, and that we were looking to move to Dish and the Hopper. She was very nice and offered me a second DVR and whole home to replace an aging SD dvr.(We have a 2 TV set up). I told her that this wouldn’t work and that we would still have the issues because of our boys taping shows that conflicted with ours. I mentioned the HMC DVR they offered and that it’s not fair it’s not available at a reasonable cost to loyal customers. She told me to hold for a couple of min while she checked more on what she could do. When she came back she gave me an offer I couldn’t refuse.

    For the cost of shipping, $20, they would send me an HMC DVR and set up a time for Whole home setup with our current HD DVR, replacing our aging SD receiver. She also gave us a $20 a month credit for a year, Sunday NFL Ticket, Showtime/Stars for 3 months and a couple of other credits. They were very nice and I think they were more receptive of the fact I was honest and to the point.

  109. DTV SuperFan says

    thanks for the post Scott Says, I just called dtv today on three different tries and we are just in the process of getting a couple of HD Tv’s for our set up here at home. Currently we have three CRT Tvs (I know we are behind the times) They want us to pay $199 for the HD DVR and another $99 for each HD Receiver which is needed if if you want to do the whole home DVR service. Just for equipment with shipping and tax $444.07!! I can buy another TV for that! I ended up speaking to three different people, none of whom really seemed to even know how to quote what my service would be. I asked for discounts. 1st person was no help at all. 2nd person said they could give one receiver at no cost. Third person first could give $5 a month off for six months, then offered 10, then 20 and then the free Xtra thing for NFL Ticket (we already pay for ticket) Still not good enough in my opinion.

    I spent about 2.5 hours with phone calls, got nothing out of it and am more disgusted now than I was before. We have been LOYAL customers with what we call the “Full Meal Deal” line up, meaning we pay for ALL the movie channels and NFL ticket every year with DVR and two other TV’s. Our average bill is $140 and then in football season almost $200!!! Then you insult us by wanting another $444 to upgrade to HD…. well forget it! We don’t care about the ticket that much. We can save more by going to the bar up the street, watch the game we want and have an enjoyable date time.

    DTV gets one more shot at giving us equipment at no cost (we are willing to do a new contract for 2 years) but if not . . . . ta ta DTV we will go to AT&T Uverse or Cable in a second!

    • I was surprised to see $39.99 charge for NFL football on my Directv bill. I wasn’t even aware of it until it hit my bill. Directv said I was enrolled in auto renewal (apparently they “gave” it to me for “free” when I signed up the previous year). When I contacted them they went on to tell me how nice they were to send me email notices for upcoming auto renewal months in advance. They were so “nice” to even extended the deadline to stop by 1 month. Problem I have is Directv emails so much scam that I simply can’t open every email they send. First time I noticed a problem is when the actual charge showed up on my bill. According to Directv, at this point it’s too late and I’m stuck for the full 6 months of programming I don’t even watch.

      When I called Directv customer support, first they told me I couldn’t stop future auto renewals essentially meaning I’m obligated for the full 6 months at $39.99. After getting switched to a supervisor (Shaquille), they will remove future billings but since my billing is through Quest partnership, I’m responsible for 3 of the 6 since Directv already billed me (apparently there is a 2 month lag through Quest billing for Directv). Eventually Shaquille agreed to remove 1 more month meaning I got stuck with $80 for 2 months of NFL package which I never even watched!

      Anyone else having this problem? I’m not a lawyer but this really seems like the basis for class action suit.

  110. DTV SuperFan says

    I should mention that by LOYAL customers I mean for 9+ years all without any special discounts other than the two people we referred, back when you could get the refer a friend deal and at that time it was only for 5 months, not the 10 they do now!

  111. Brian above is not very budget conscious now is he? The prices charged my these companies are extremely over priced. I saw not too long ago other countries pay much less for these services. As one poster said, “it is what both parties agree to.” That was well said! Cable and satellite companies are too damn expensive! If you try and NOT get a lowered price, you are a FOOL! I am trying it with a new cable company I am not a customer with. My current net provider is fairly well priced and I get good enough speed for me. The new one wants to charge about 15 dollars a month more for half the speed I am currently receiving. Bottom line: If they can’t come close to where I am, we will not do business! Brian, you sir… are silly!

  112. DTV Superfan, do you know if you ever got to the retention department? If not the normal phone reps won’t be able to offer you much. If you are serious on canceling like I was, the best thing to do is when the autobot on the phone asks why you are calling say cancel. This should get you to retention. If not ask to be transfered there. They might fight it but insist. As I said above, I was honest and mentioned loyalty and that it’s tiresome that we don’t get the deals. I did sign up for 2 more years, but I figured I’ve had it this long and like what they offer, but not all the pricing. Hope all works out for you.

  113. I am looking into tv and internet package, I looked into fios and it is not offered in my area. Can anyone recommend me the best option?

  114. i told directv i was switching to comcast..they offered me 30 dollars a month in savings for 12 months…i also wanted genie dvr upgrade for free..they said 98 dollars for that…and i said cancel it then….so we will see if they call me back with a better deal.

  115. Thanks for the tip! Just called DirecTV and immediately told them I wanted to cancel my service (current bill is $84.99). Nice guy on the phone asked why… I told him it was too high and I mostly watch Netflix. He immediately said he’d lower it $30. Deal done.

  116. With 10 refer-a-friend discounts and other discounts I was able to bring my bill to a credit of -$24.36 per month. I have the the premiere package with the HD pack added on. I have been with Directv since June 2012. I wonder if I would be able to talk them down on price even though I have a reoccuring credit each month.

  117. Outstanding post and just what I needed. I only wish that I had seen it sooner.

    I have Directv (Choice Xtra package with HD DVR) and have been paying nearly $100.00 per month since my introductory offer expired. I have been with Directv for 3 1/2 years, two of which were under the initial contract. My introductory offer was only good for 12 months.

    I really like Directv because I live in a rural area with a TERRIBLE mom & pop cable provider and Dish Network does not carry the local channels in HD. Neither AT&T U-Verse nor Verizon FiOS serve my little town. But, geez, for $100.00 per month, you ought to like your satellite carrier.

    I called and told the automated voice prompt that I wanted to cancel my service. I was immediately connected to the retentions department. I asked the representative to cut the bill in half. She countered with $20.00 off per month for the next 12 months. I balked, she went to $30.00 off per month. After I hemmed and hawed, she added an additional $5.00 off per month for three months and offered to bundle my internet.

    When I said that I am currently in a contract with my DSL provider, she offered a $200.00 Visa gift card to help defray the costs of getting out of the contract. Because I sometimes get dinged on my credit score because of the age of my accounts, I declined to shut off my current internet service.

    When I rejected the internet bundling, she offered a one-time $45.00 bill credit. I hemmed and hawed some more. She threw in a free Genie upgrade if I would extend the contract to 24 months. I declined the free Genie because (a) I have a bunch of stuff saved on my DVR that I want to keep and there is currently no way to transfer those shows and (b) I do not want to be locked into a contract that is longer than the offer of discounted service. Also, I only have the one TV in my living room and I intend to keep it that way for the foreseeable future.

    Failing that, she threw in the Cinema Connection Kit and installation thereof (an $80.00 + tax value for the equipment, who knows how much for the installation). Also, she upgraded certain local channels which, heretofore, had only been available in SD.

    To recap, Directv gave:
    1. $35.00/month off for three months and $30.00/month off for months 4-12;
    2. A one-time $45.00 bill credit;
    3. The Directv Cinema Connection Kit and free installation;
    4. Upgraded local channels.

    I could have gotten, but rejected:
    1. Additional discounts in exchange for bundling my internet with Directv and a $200.00 Visa gift card to recoup the cost of canceling the existing service;
    2. Premium movie channels (I hate having to remember to call and cancel premium packages once the free trial expires); and
    3. A free upgrade to and installation of the Directv Genie HD DVR.

    Directv extracted from me a 12-month contractual arrangement, which is no skin off my nose because the contract ends when the discounts do and there is not a viable alternative in my area.

    Thank you for the timely and informative post. Clearly, the retention department representatives are the only people who have authority to make any real concessions to long-term customers. It is a shame that the “customer service” department is not empowered with authority to keep customers before they decide to cancel their service. Had I not read this post, I would not have known to make my way through the automated voice prompts to the retentions department, but I am so glad I learned!

  118. I have been with Comcast forever as they are the only player in our area (tried Dish for a short time but kept losing signals due to neighbors trees) At any rate, my bundled cable/phone/internet is now up to $195/mo. I keep calling telling them I can no longer afford that as I recently lost my job, I threatened to cancel them but had absolutely no luck with Comcast budging on their rates or offering me anything. Maybe I should try Direct TV?

  119. 8 year direct tv customer says

    I would never recommend directv. There was a time when they were the best but those days have passed. I wanted to watch a local game tonight, it was blacked out. I called Directv and they told me that Directv does not black out games. When I told them that my neighbor (dish network) and my family (Comcast) both had the game, I got transferred to the supervisor who said that Directv does not have an agreement with Comcast who owns the rights. Missed my game. I am so infuriated, I will probably pay the pro rated cancellation fee and cancel, though they are raising prices, so I will try to be excused from my current contract.

  120. I just called DTV and asked to cancel. Got me to the retention department. Gave the speech about price getting to high and looking to a better deal. He offered $20 credit for a year I said that’s just not acceptable and to schedule my disconnect for last day of the month. He ran through the disclosure stuff and said I might get a call from the marketing department before then…I said I fully expect to.

    Guess I’ll see what happens otherwise I need recommendations for alternate TV service deals. TBC…

  121. Just got $10/mo for 6 months off, but will be calling them back.

  122. DirecTv gave me $15.00 off my bill for 6 months, Free DIRECTV HD EXTRA PACK for 3 months, and scratched my primary tv fee (6.00) THANKS!!

  123. I am out of contract with Direct Tv so far they are offering $23 off my bill for a year one jeanie one client and cinema connection kit. I would like a total of 4 clients but they are trying to charge me $99 for each additional client.

    My issue is if you are a new customer they will offer you a jeanie and up to 4 clients no charge.

  124. and because I ask to speak to a supervisor they took the above deal away and will not offer to us anymore. That is from a Daniele who is a rentention supervisor

    • Then that is when you say… GOODBYE.

      The problem that most people have with these “Negotiations” is that many of them are not prepared to leave or deal with the hassles of switching.

      If they won’t offer you anything and you truly feel you are being taken advantage of, then you need to go ahead and drop em. That is the ONLY way they will get the message that you are serious.

  125. I just called and spoke with DirectTV and said I needed to reduce my $98 monthly bill to $50, or I need to cancel. The best they can do is get it down to $68. He even put me on hold to find a better deal. That was the best, and I don’t even have any special sports or movie channels. He didn’t offer me anything free, just the lower price.
    DishTV bundles with my current phone/cable provider and and I can get a triple bundle for $130/month for 12 months, $140 for the following 12 months. Right now for all three services combined I pay $185, and could have only gotten it down to $155. I will be calling Dish tomorrow to set up services.

  126. I just called DTV and said with current price increase my bill (97) is going up more and i would like to cancel…told prompt when called in wanted to cancel. The rep said could offer 25 off for a year and no contract extension. I accepted the offer and also neg free showtime and cinemax for 6 months in Dec. So paying 72 for choice ult with hd dvr another hd box and standard box with the whole home..declined the genie upgrade since was another contract. Also getting the free hd for life and another 10 dollar discount for company sponsorship ATT.

  127. Just called DirectTv and followed the above “script” – there are better offers, I see their current offer is much lower, and my rates keep increasing.

    I have a much different story than everyone else – my CSR said that they could take away HBO if I wanted to cut anything on my bill, but otherwise there was nothing they could do. I think she mentioned about 10 times that they would “hate to see my go” but made ZERO offers to do anything besides reduce what my lineup is to “save money”. At the end of the call, she said “you’re going to dish then?”. Funny. Asked about genie and was told that it would be $299.00 for that – they couldn’t waive it because of a variety of things including payment history. When I asked what that meant (I’ve never missed a payment or been late – I’ve been on autopay for two years) she said it can mean a variety of things.

    Bummer. Might have to get my husband to re-sign us up.

  128. I had a local Directv provider come to my home and tell me he could get me exactly what I had now for about $30 less a month so I called corporate Directv to haggle. The first lady I talked to said she could do no better than giving me a $10/month discount even after telling her I wanted to cancel.

    I called back five minutes later telling them straight away that I wanted to cancel because the bill was too high. They transferred me to retentions, who then asked me how much I actually wanted to spend a month. They immediately gave me a $30/month discount for the next 6 months, and $20 a month for the following 6 months. Definitely pays to call and try!

  129. This sounds great, but remember one thing : They don’t lose out on money. That $20/month credit you’re looking to get (after you agreed to pay and signed up for fair and square) comes out of someone’s pocket. Most likely in this type of industry probably the sales person. They WILL be charged that amount youre trying to take off your bill. If you need a cheaper package, you should ask for one in the beginning. I used to work in sales so this is a soft spot for me.

    • That’s right, it comes out of someone’s pocket. Whose pocket should I be more concerned about? Mine or someone on the other side of the phone.

      I signed up “Fair and square” but I can also “Leave” fair and square too to go to the competition. If they choose to make a better offer to keep me that’s on them, right?

      Don’t try to guilt people into trying to save money. I haven’t heard a whole lot of people guilt Dish/DirectTV/Comcast/etc… because they MAKE too much money. Everyone is trying to do the best that they can for themselves. It’s called a free market.

  130. Dona Collins says

    I know this is older, but I started with one of your savings posts and came to this one. Great tips in this script, regardless.

    Around here, it depends on who you talk to. My aunt called and threatened to cancel her service and they wouldn’t budget. Her daughter happened to meet a guy on the street and struck up a conversation, and he used his PC to lower her price right then and there. True story. Same provider, two very different results.

    I’m going to be working on this soon – on my business phone/internet lines and at home.

  131. Jon-Jon B. says

    I just renegotiated my DirecTV package:

    $20 off my monthly bill for the next 12 months
    $5 off HBO for the next 6 months
    $5 off Showtime for the next 6 months
    $5 off (cancelled one receiver lease in my garage)

    It does help to be a loyal DirecTV customer, too.

  132. Laquita says

    I had to end up switching from DirectTV to charter. Back when they took away certain channels until they reached an agreement. I think that was last year. Anyway, the channels they took away was the ones I watched the most, so I switched and then they ended up reaching the agreement the day after I switched but I never went back. I am with Charter Communications now, and I’m paying less to bundle 3 services, even though they could still come down on the price a bit.
    I think I will call them and try to renegotiate my bill.

  133. Bob A Booey says

    I today to see if I could lower my bill. The CSR said she could not offer me anything and would not budge. She put me hold so that she could write down her comments that she couldn’t do anything for me (sheesh!). I basically hung up on her and called right back. I was more forceful this time. Asked to cancel. They transferred me around. I guess I ended up in “retention”. I said I wanted to schedule a cancellation date in about 2 weeks time so I could get Verizon out to my place to hook up FIOS (ahem)….. Now we’re cooking with gas! CSR offered me $20 off for 12 months, $15 off for $15 months, 6 months free Starz, 3 months free Dexter……I mean Showtime, an $11/month discount on Sunday Ticket Max. As he’s processing all this, I ask if any of my equipment is due for an upgrade. He says he can give me a Genie for free with free install for tomorrow. I’m pretty happy with the deal, but I think I could have asked for even more…. but no need to be greedy, right??? 😉

  134. I think some providers are onto this scheme. RCN for example has started to take a hard stance about not offering reductions. Last three times i called over a period of 3 months, their claim is there are no discounts they can offer (not even promotional offers for new customers) Any threats to cancel or mention of other providers, they simply say we are sorry to hear about that. Even trying to reduce service level they end up telling me you will end up paying more.

  135. Gaming DirecTV says

    I just called DirecTV because my initial two year contract is up in two weeks and my bill has more then doubled from the first year introduction rate of $45 dollars all the way up to $95 dollars. As a previous poster said if these companies cared about you at all they would lower your bill every year you were a loyal customer not increase it. Anyways I didn’t call in bluffing like most people I actually fully intended to cancel the service. The first person I called and talked to offered me some lame deal like $10 off each month for 6 months and free movie packages which I was not at all interested in since Dish was offering a $45 dollar a month introductory package. I told her I would be switching to Dish and to please cancel my subscription in two weeks when my contract was up. She was nice but offered me no better deal and so we parted ways and I believed I had heard the last from them. Then two days later someone from the retention department calls me. He starts by offering me the same deal she did which I promptly decline. He then offers me $20 dollars a month which I also decline as it would still put my bill at $75 dollars a month. I say no to several more offers including free HBO, Showtime, Sports Package, etc. plus more and more money off each month. Once we got down to him offering me $50 bucks a month off I decided that I would see how far I could push it out of sheer amusement more then anything because once again I truly intend to cancel the service. About 10 minutes later he is telling me that they can offer me the same service I am paying $95 a month for now for $22 dollars for the first 3 months then $37 dollars a month for the remainder of the year. All this and I can now be on a month to month contract which means as soon as I see the bill creep back up again I can simply cancel. I agree and he tells me that they appreciate my business.

    Just to recap here is what I got by legitimately attempting to cancel service

    -bill reduced from $95 a month to $23 dollars a month for 3 months
    $72 dollars x 3 months=$216 dollars savings for 3 months

    -bill reduced from $95 a month to $37 dollars for remaining 9 months
    $58 dollars x 9 months= $522 dollars for remaining 9 months

    $216+$522=$738 dollars for the year

    Once again absolutely ridiculous that they offer me this deal when I ask to cancel but when I am a good customer who always pays bills on time and is loyal to their company they offer me nothing. When they try to jack up my rates again I will just call and cancel to go with Dish TV. Unless of course they magically come up with some better rate.

  136. Gaming DirecTV says

    Oh and by the way Brian who said that people who call in and try to make deals “make him sick” you are absolutely ridiculous. Either you work for DirecTV or you are incredibly naïve. I hope you realize that cable, internet, and phone companies do everything in their power to rob you. They have absolutely no conscious and they survive by gauging the consumer with predatory tactics like surcharges, bill creep, offering introductory packages that automatically renew and charge you in hopes you aren’t paying attention, etc. People should have no qualms about lying to the cable company. To me it is the equivalent of telling a mugger that you left your wallet in your other pants. You act like they are raising other people’s rates to offset the rate of people who are getting deals. They raise rates because they can and because most people would rather lie back and take it then deal with the inconvenience of changing service providers.

  137. IworkInARetentionDept says

    I work for a satellite company, I wont say which one. and might I just say that if you are going to call in and do all this just to get money off of your bill at least be up front about it. The worst is when people call in and try to give some sob story about not being able to afford it when they have like the highest package but wont go down to a more affordable one. We have done this long enough to know who is “blowing smoke” so if you want the best deal just be nice (we in the retention department deal with mostly escalated situations as well as customer retention) If you call in and just say “hey, I know you guys have a lot of good deals going on for different customers, is there anything you can do for me” I PROMISE You you will get the best deal. 1, you are being polite which we will automatically do more for you because you are easy to deal with. 2. DO NOT use the “why do you treat new customers better than loyal ones” approach, you got new customer promos when you signed up so that just makes you sound like you are going to be hard to work with. 3. we KNOW what people want when they call in, we do do this for a living, so just be honest, it will get you the best deal every time, we expect people to call to ask for discounts so when you are up front about it it makes our jobs a lot easier because we dont have to ask you 1,000 questions we can just cut to the chase.

    • Wow! I called up Directv retention department. Was very nice to the lady. Asked “Hello. I know you guys have a lot of good deals going on for different customers, is there anything you can do for me?” She looked at my account. Been with DTV for a year…she said “I can save you an extra $5 off your bill for 3 months if you sign up for autobilling.” Then later said, “for 12 months”. I said I’d think about it, then she said “we can give you a 2 for 1 deal on the movie packages”-which are already available at anytime..I’ve checked. I politely thanked her and said “I’d think about it”.

    • The problem is, is that there is crap on the lower packages. I have Dish but I am sure Direct TV is the same.

      I did have a higher package. It was TOO MUCH, so I did drop to a lower package. Kids and wife now are not happy with the “Choices” of channels now. (Kids don’t know I changed… They think the provider stopped offering those channels).

      Now I am not on the “Bottom” package. That is barely a step up from Broadcast TV. If I get to that point, I will drop all together. That being said, I called to reduce my bill. The first offer was to change my package to a more affordable one (Dish America I think it is). I already dropped from America’s Top 250 to Americas Top 120. I stayed there for a bit too… Really for what I get and what I pay, it’s garbage. Anyway, I said I was not willing to go to a lower package because the Top 120 has only (maybe) 20 Channels that anyone in my family cares about (and that’s a stretch at that). Of those, there are 5 that are on Broadcast that I can get so really wasn’t looking to go to a package that would have only about 5 channels we care about (ok 10 with broadcast). For that money it was not worth it.

      So I was able to get a $15 a month reduction for 10 months. If things get any worse with the economy, I will cancel and just use the broadcast channels. For the most part, there is crap on the TV anyway.

      • I understand your desire to save a buck, but I think keeping your kids in the dark about it is the wrong move. Tell them what you’re doing – it’s a good object lesson in doing what you have to to survive financially! They’ll respect you for it in the long run!

  138. I honestly want to cancel DTV since they don’t offer the Pac 12 conf. channel and Dish does. If DTV offers me a can’t miss deal then I’ll seriously consider staying I pay 192 a month for a premier package and several tv’s… I want the pac 12 network first but also wouldn’t mind cutting my bill in half.

  139. I called today and said cancel at the prompt, got sent to retentions department.

    I simply told the guy that I was a current Comcast internet subscriber and noticed that if I bundled my TV with them, I would save roughly $30-$40/month over staying with DirecTV and asked if there were any discounts available on my account that would help me to continue as a DirecTV customer.

    Walked away with $20/mo service discount for 12 months, free HD service ($10/mo) for a year, and an additional HD DVR to replace my 2nd HD receiver at zero cost with a 2-year contract agreement.

    Also found out that switching my internet to AT&T U-Verse would not only save me $20/month for 1 year, and $9 every month after that, but that it would qualify me for another $15/month discount from DirecTV if I ordered it through them as an AT&T partner.

    I took the polite approach and it worked out quite well.

  140. I called Directv today and said that I wanted to cancel my service, due to price being to high. They initially offered to lower my rate from $104 per month to $74. I said no, I still want to drop it, unless they could do $50 per month. The service rep said she could do $60 per month for one year – with a 1 year subscription. I countered with I would do $60, if they added Sunday Ticket, which she said she could do. 30 minutes on the phone and I saved $44 a month for a one year subscription and got Sunday Ticket for free this year. Maybe I can do the same thing next year.

  141. directTV for 1 year now, rebates went away (now 166/month: xtra, HD, 2 DVRs, media connect box, HBO, ), but the nfl ticket had snuck into our bill over the past several cycles anyway so i called and in the end i got 1068$ savings for this next year overall and monthly down to 79/month, here’s how:

    the customer service dpt was able to credit all the months for the nfl ticket and remove it completely (114 credit). i then said i had comcast internet now and could just bundle and get the specific channels i wanted for 60-75 , or switch to new uverse in our area with same channels for 70-80 or use my other dish tv satellite that was already here for 55-70 from the research i did, then asked if there was more they could do to be competitive with those other offers and they couldn’t do lower, so i said i want to cancel, so on to retentions…

    re-summarized with new lady: i said i was charged for nfl ticket which i never wanted but pointed out how nice the last lady was to fix this for me but that i wanted to cancel and stated the research i had done on the other companies and asked if there was anything i could do. had my bill in front of me (and previous bills) and explained the details of the fees i didn’t like and they got me a 25 plus a 10 and a 5 off for a year each month then an extra 10 for first 3 months, so down to 79 from 166 initially then 89 for the rest of the year from 166, plus the 114 credit from earlier so 1068 total versus what i would pay for the upcoming year.

    i really could still switch for a better price to those other companies, but this has been the best quality/dvr function/customer service with directTV so far vs att,TWC, so i stayed with the new deal.

    be respectful and courteous but have a legitimate argument and arm yourself with details. for the few minutes it takes to gather information, you can save thousands a year, and i’m sure it could’ve been more but i didn’t want to push too hard since i want to be able to call next year. in fact, the lady even told me that i could do the same thing again in a year since they are the ones authorized to give these concessions, she said “just call retentions”.

    many thanks cheers…a round of drinks to you all

  142. My Direct TV is on suspension, don’t watch much in the summer. I have gotten pretty used to streaming with Roku, even tho my Internet is not as fast as I’d like in my rural home, but I am a hockey fanatic and face withdrawal or reinstating service this time of year. I called Direct and went through a few channels to talk to a rep in the US. Got a nice gal eventually, gave my spiel but was told since my service was on suspension they could do nothing for me until I reinstated it. My answer was, “Why would I reinstate if I may wish to cancel or switch my service” Obviously her hands were tied. I will wait & see if I am now on some list & get a call offering me great deals. I am being heavily solicited by Dish, they will even give me a free iPad. I just don’t want to have to pay for any new equipment. Will wait & see.

  143. If i’ve been a DTV customer and am currently out of contract, can I cancel service and re open immediately for their promotional prices?

  144. I Just Got Off The Phone With Dish. They Offered To Ruduce My Bill By $10.00. I Asked Her For More, Then She Offered 15, Then 25, And Finally 30.00 For 10 Months With Premium Channels for 3 months. After 10 Months I’ll Call Back.

  145. Shelley Wagner says

    All except Comcast in Sonoma County Ca. You tell them you are going to cancel., and they ask you what date do you want your csncellstion.

  146. I agree that you can bargain up a storm with DirectTV.,…But what I will also say is WATCH YOUR BILL!!!…. I got them to give me amazing offers…However, when I would get my bill, it NEVER matched what they would tell me it was going to be…At the end, they cut me out of 3 months of Movies that was promised me. I called in to cancel, they made me some slightly lesser offers and even gave me my 3 months of movies for FREE back. I called in a canceled after that one, They have contacted me a couple times but I have not paid them much mind since. Each time I spoke with a new person, they made me a completely different offer than the person before, each time saying the other person was wrong and I could have this or that…Each time they gave me something, they shorted me out of something else. I finally just gave up. I have just been watching my computer as TV. I can always find something interesting, from finding Noah’s Ark to Beverly Hillbillies, Matlock and lots of news.

  147. Now, I don’t agree with this. I AM a customer Service Rep, and used to be retention for TWC (horrible company by the way) and we knew exactly when people where where trying to trick us into lowering their bill, and usually, we would take them up to the disconnect step, the one where we schedule the disconnect, before we offered them anything. By the way, this gets honest, hardworking people out of work. It’s a f-ed up system, but remember, as you call to save some money per month, on a Service that is a luxury item, you may be getting the one Customer Service Rep that has one to many credits given on his stats, and you feed him some bullsh-t story about how you can’t afford to eat, while you eat Cheetos on your couch, he’s loosing his job to give you a five dollar credit so you won’t starve. We are people too, and unfortunately we have to have these jobs. We also have the misfortune of having to work under these strict regulations. But remember the less fortunate.

    • So I should pay more so YOU can have your Cheetos?

      Don’t presume that everyone here is living in the lap of luxury. If I can get a service at a better price, then good for me.

      By the way, Maybe Cheetos is more of a staple and less of a luxury for some. I have always told my kids the first thing to go in financial crisis is the TV (Cable/Satellite), Next is Cell Phones (maybe down to a minimal plan before they go all together) then Internet, etc… there is a pecking order. Just because I like Steak more than TV don’t fault me for that. If you like TV more than Cheetos, then you will give that up first, but I bet before you do, you will look for them for a better price first.

      If, as a CSR you get “Dinged” for giving too many credits and you don’t like it, then get a new job or don’t give the credits. If someone else wants to give the credits so be it. Again, don’t blame us for wanting a better price. It’s called a free market.

      Just saying… That’s all.

    • Courtney says

      TWC is all in itself a RIP OFF. my mother in law was paying 160 bucks for tv and cable, that was terrible quality to top it off. dont sit here and blame this guy for trying to help us make ends meet.. you should be mad at the big guys in your company.. if theyre charging huge amounts like that for cable and internet then their customer service reps shouldnt have a care in the world. you are mad at the wrong person… and maybe you should consider a new job.. maybe one that values its employees more or at least as much as its customers.

  148. Courtney says

    i am hands down one of the shiest people youve ever met but i just called and asked directv for a better deal and theyre giving me 25 bucks a month off. woohoooooooo. thats an extra 25 bucks a month toward buying a house. sometimes you just gotta ask!

  149. My mother has done this with Dish Network several times, and yes she got pretty good deals by haggeling, however everytime we had a lowered bill they would drop the quality of their service significantly. She recently did it again, and now I can barely watch anything at all, the quality is so terrible. And it’s not like we moved, the dish is in the exact same place yet a complete drop of quality. The only thing they would say is that there’s a tree in the way, however that was never a problem before.

  150. I just did this with DirecTV. We have been a customer for almost 2 years and basically have the highest plan you can get (premier) with the basic NFL Sunday Ticket and all premium channels (no porno stuff though). We have (1) Genie DVR box (HR-34), (2) regular DVR box’s (HR-22) and (1) Samsung RVU client TV, so we basically have 4 boxes/devices. Our current contract is up in June of 2015.

    We currently pay $219 a month as most of our discounts have now expired. A few moments ago I called DirecTV to cancel and switch to COX. I was then offered a much better deal, here’s what we got:

    – Upgrade from NFL Sunday Ticket to the NFL Sunday Ticket MAX + upgrade. We were given 50% off this package.
    – $40 dollars off all premium channels for four months. We were told to call back after four months and we will likely be able to get another discount.
    – $20 dollars off our bill for 12 months.

    Our new bill is now down from $219 to $159 for the next four months and then $199 after that, though we should get another discount in four months when we call back.

    Hope this info helps!

    • – One other note: We had an old Genie HR-24 that broke this past July (2014). It was replaced by a newer HR-34 under warranty (for free by a technician on site, we have the basic protection plan). According to the technician, allowing DirecTV to give us the newer box would NOT extend our contract, I also found this to be true when I read the fine print on DirecTV’s website. Here’s the rub.. our contract was extended. Luckily I caught this error and called DirecTV to fix the problem. It has been fixed (I didn’t get any hassle). So… if you get an upgrade under warranty (protection plan) make sure that your contract is not accidentally extended.

  151. I have Comcast for High Speed Internet. I was paying almost $80/month for JUST 50 Mbps speed,, 300 Gb bandwidth, and rental of a cable modem. I called to protest a service call bill, and as a followup to fixing that error, the rep said, “I think I can save you some money! If you let me sell you basic digital service at $56.99 a month for one year with NO contract commitment, I can give you the same high speed internet you’re getting now included FOR FREE. You’ll pay just $56.99 a month plus taxes (about $70 out the door).” I confirmed that this was really a real deal and he reiterated. Two days later I got two cable boxes – included without monthly lease charges – and sure enough, my monthly bill is now just under $70 – and I have free digital cable in my basement and kitchen! Sometimes, all you gotta do is let them talk!

  152. Dish just dropped my bill – 60% – from $70/mo to $27/mo (for 12 months)
    I am content with this but the reality is I was very serious about canceling (and paying the $80 early termination fee), so in a way they pulled one over on me.

  153. Our DTV bill is now up to $106/mo. and we are out of contract. I called Direct and spoke to them about cancelling. He asked why…told him what a great deal Dish has (same package for $68 with new DVR and $200 cash back). They said they could lower mine to $73 with new genie, but subject to 2-year contract and no cash back. (no PAC12 network either). What would you all do? Should I push for no contract and some concellation for the $200 (free showtime, cinemax?)

  154. Currently shopping for cable providers — will have to give this a try! Thank you!

  155. BOB Hasssett says

    I have Direct TV service and have had it for over 10 years +. After all the FREE BEE’s went away my bill now is
    $96.00 a month. I called after getting cut off the first time after 15 minutes on the phone to start all over. I got passed around and then to the Promotions Dept. I told the guy that I want to get my bill down from the $96.00 and of course he had to get his supervisor. I told him to consider the length of time I have been with them and a new customer get’s all these perks and us older people with them get no perks. I have no contract with them so I can cancel any time and I told him that. Well his supervisor had the nerve to give me a $10.00 credit and some free channels. I told him I don’t care about the Free Bee’s, only what is coming out of my pocket, they didn’t care. I told him I will start looking for another service . Do you know of any service that offers Digital TV service at a decent rate? I am retired and looking to save some $ My zip code is 80537 if that helps. If there is a TV and internet package that would be good also (I have Comcast for internet) Any help would be appreciated
    BOB Hassett
    970-556-7293 (C)

  156. I called & got some discounts from Time Warner Cable. Not enough though.
    When I called to cancel, I finally got an offer which I considered acceptable, but they came through too late in the game. The cord has been cut.

  157. 10 year customer and called last week to lower my bill. $10 off was the most they could do. I was already paying for showtime so they weren’t giving me anything for free. I said ok how about $10 and free Sunday ticket. She said no way. I said ok then cancel my service. Within 5 minutes, to my surprise I was off the phone and had a cancel date of 2 weeks later. That night they cut my service. I called the next day and said wtf? The rep turned it back on, offered me $20 off and Sunday ticket. Since then I called Comcast and had them do an install, called DirecTV back and told them to pretty must shove it. I am delighted with my new Xfinity deal, locked in for 2 years all the premium channels and $100 less than I was paying DirecTV. Signal quality is every bit as good and no more 771 errors when a storm cloud covers the area. Never ever going back to DirecTV. If you have the choice stick with cable.

  158. We signed up with Directv a little over a year ago. The promo at the time was $39 for the package PLUS $150 Wal-Mart gift card. We never got the gift card and when i kept on them they told me it showed it was delivered so i needed to contact Fed ex. Ive been trying to get this gift card for over a year and no results! FedEx says theyre looking into the matter. Still havent heard back from them either. A month ago i called to switch packages and was told my bill would only increase $4 a month. Its gone up from $39 to $189! I called to have it fixed and they told me that my sign up promo has ended. I told them that i was told it would only go up $4 and im NOT paying nearly $200 a month when i can cancel and stream for less than $100. They did NOT wanna talk after that. They told me i would need to call (i was using the chat w rep service) and get help with that. I asked about 6 times when my contract was out and they just skimmed that question every time. Now im calling this number they gave me and if it isnt fixed I’m streaming. This is ridiculous. Thank you for all your help with finding ways to help us save our hard earned money.

  159. karen denham says

    my bill for dtv for a 12 onths contract was 29 a month – now its 73 a month – i cant affordr no 73 a month!

  160. Okay, so here’s the thing about all this: These companies keep track of the discounts you have been given.
    Yes, it works, and yes, you can save money. But be realistic with your expectations.

    I run the site SatelliteTechnicians.com and I talk with independent Dish and DirecTV installers every day. I’ve personally installed 5,000+ residential satellite systems over the last two decades, and I’ve had extensive first hand experience with customers asking for everything you can imagine.

    Also, it’s not just subscription discounts that you can ask for. Often times service calls will have a small associated fee, even with the protection plan. They might give you 1 or 2 free service calls a year, but not 4 or 5. So I would say, yes, absolutely avail yourself of the discounts. But don’t demand them. It’s entirely up to their discretion. Don’t bluff. Be ready, willing, and able to switch providers. The smart consumer does this anyway – every two years you get all new equipment, and a much cheaper bill!

  161. Rutger Hauer says

    Hi Sam. They (Direct TV) appear to no longer be discounting Direct TV Satellite. At my last renewal, they indicated this and so I set a date in the future to shut service and unlike in the past they never called with an enticing offer. I switched to DirecTVNow at $40 per month but now AT&T just started putting 1TB data cap monthly which DirecTVNow consumes a sizable portion putting streamers at risk of being charged for exceeding their monthly data allowance (family of 4 is not hard to do with 2 gamers in our house). Of course AT&T for an additional $30 fee will ‘upgrade’ us to unlimited data for internet. From what I’ve seen Comcast also have a data cap but not Spectrum (yet). The challenge with Spectrum is DirecTVNow performance is unreliable (I wonder why?) with frequent caching! This is leaving fewer options for consumers. Are you hearing the same from other MMB followers?

  162. I think your readers could benefit from updating this post to consider streaming services. As an example, I was able to receive a $25 for one month discount for DirectTV Stream by requesting cancellation. The customer service rep said I should call back in January to check for a longer term discount. Paramount+ Streaming offered 2 months free by simply cancelling online – I accepted and plan to cancel at a later date.

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