Streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and more seem like an affordable way to enjoy endless entertainment. However, with new streaming platforms launching regularly and everyone creating their exclusive content, monthly costs can spiral out of control if you subscribe to multiple services.
Even mainstream options continue finding ways to steadily raise prices over time. For instance, all Netflix subscribers recently saw rates increase across basic, standard, and premium plans.
Between price hikes and must-watch content fragmented across different platforms, cord-cutting can start to add up. Use these 5 savvy hacks to reduce how much you spend each month on streaming services while still being able to watch your favorite shows and movies.
5 Savvy Hacks to on Streaming Services
1. Check Out Free Trials
Almost every streaming platform offers free trials for new subscribers, usually 7 days or a month. Take advantage of these to test services out before committing. You can binge-watch a show or check out the content library during the trial period. Just be sure to cancel if you don’t want to continue the subscription. Setting calendar reminders can help avoid forgetting.
2. Leverage Account Sharing
Many streaming platforms allow you to create multiple user profiles under one account. Check their policies, but services like Netflix now allow people who live in your household to share the same subscription. Split the costs with housemates or family. Some services enforce location sharing, but workarounds like logging in from the same Wi-Fi network first can help.
3. Rotate Subscriptions
Chances are you don’t need access to multiple streaming services simultaneously. Identify 2-3 you can’t live without or that offer the best value. Rotate between additional services each month. Most billing is monthly, so you can cancel and rejoin easily. Jot down shows or movies you want to watch on each platform so you can optimize the timing.
4. Browse Smarter
All platforms prominently promote their original content, which doesn’t always align with your tastes. Dig deeper into the browsing menus and use search to find hidden gems tucked away in their libraries. Older and licensed shows are just as good. Finding content you’re excited about will help you maximize the value of each streaming service.
5. Downgrade Plans
See if you can get by with a basic or standard plan instead of a premium. Removing HD streaming and several simultaneous streams provides the biggest cost savings. As long as you have decent Wi-Fi, standard definition quality is still enjoyable on laptop and mobile screens. If you share an account, coordinate streaming so you don’t miss the fewer concurrent streams.
You May Like to Read: The Best Microphone Kits for YouTube Streaming
What Streaming Services Have Seen Price Increases?
Within recent years, several prominent streaming platforms implemented noticeable price hikes including:
- Netflix – After incremental increases over the past decade, the streaming pioneer boosted popular tier rates between 13-18% in early 2023 to $15.50 monthly given rising content budgets. However, loyalty subsidies are still available for longer-tenured subscribers.
- YouTube Premium – This ad-free video giant plus bundled music option raised prices by 30% to $22.99 monthly in late 2022 citing expanding offerings and licensing costs after holding at $11.99 for years.
- Sling TV – One of the first over-the-top “skinny bundle” live TV streamers ended 2022 with a $5 monthly increase to $40 for baseline packages although discounts for annual plans still exist.
With media rights inflation and heightened competition, more modest hikes from Apple, Amazon, Hulu, and additional players seem probable as well into 2024.
How to Save on Streaming Services?
Thankfully multiple tactics can minimize surging streaming prices including:
- Loyalty Discounts – Platforms like Netflix and Hulu still offer reduced pricing for customers maintaining continuous subscriptions reaching 12+ months tenure or longer. Just call to request applicable legacy plans.
- Account Sharing – Splitting subscription costs across trusted family or friends, while forbidden officially, remains quietly prevalent for maximizing account utility. Just beware freeloaders!
- Reward Programs – Many credit cards provide cash back or statement credits redeemable towards paid streaming plans as part of wider purchase rewards programs.
- Free Perks – Mobile plans frequently bundle free Spotify, Apple Music, or TV subscriptions as incentives so review existing postpaid accounts for unused streams.
- Annual Plans – Prepaying annually upfront sometimes unlocks 10-30% discounts compared to more popular month-to-month terms. Just set payment reminders to avoid unwanted auto-renewals.
With some diligence around optimizing account configurations, pooling usage, and locating subsidy opportunities, streaming lovers can still feast on content smorgasbords without breaking budgets.
Top 5 Free Alternatives of Premium Streaming Services
There are fantastic 5 free alternatives of premium streaming services. These services allow you to legally watch quality films, TV series, and more without spending a dime.
- The Roku Channel: Thousands of hit movies, TV shows, and Roku originals supported by ads. Available even without a Roku device.
- Tubi: Massive content library with over 20,000 movies and shows from major Hollywood studios. Ad-supported.
- Pluto TV: Mimics cable TV with over 250 curated, ad-supported channels. On-demand movies too.
- IMDb TV: Owned by Amazon, IMDb TV offers many Hollywood hits for free with ads. Some originals too.
- Hoopla: Free movies, shows, music, and eBooks. Available through many public library systems to cardholders. No late fees.
With these free streaming services, you can save money while still being entertained.
Q. Which streaming TV providers still offer free trial periods?
Major services like DirecTV Stream, FuboTV, Hulu + Live TV, and YouTube TV allow test-driving cable-esque offerings 7-14 days initially to experience channel lineups before paying.
Q. Do multiple paid subscriptions guarantee more content variety?
Not necessarily – analyzing each service’s library strength by personalized genres prevents overpaying for duplication across smaller platforms that mega-hubs like Netflix may satisfyingly consolidate already based on diverse catalogs.
Rather than endlessly accumulating monthly streaming expenses in pursuit of wide access, take time to assess true household utilization rates, valued programming depth, and discount resources available before committing long-term.
With strategic bundling, reasonable sharing, and loyalty diligence, entertainment costs can stay under control even amidst rising fees enabling more sustainable cord-cutting.
You May Like to Read: Top 8 Cool Gadgets for Tech Lover