We finally did it – we got rid of cable tv! The cord is cut, no more cable TV for us.
The last year has really had us thinking, do we need cable? But alas, we were stuck in a contract and it wasn’t worth us breaking it.
Get Rid of Cable TV
Our contract bundled our cable tv service with our internet service. The contract ended in early December, and if we wanted to continue with cable after our contract was up, we would have to pay big.
Let’s dive into what you need to know before you cut the cable service from your home. Here are practical tips that will you transition from a cable television service to a streaming service. We are showing you what you will need, things to think about and what to watch out for. Let’s get started!
Save Money with No Cable TV
Cutting back on your budget or just tired of spending so much money on cable tv service? Save money by cancelling cable, but before you do so – there’s a few things you need to know before you cut the cord.
5 Things To Know Before You Get Rid of Cable TV
Yay! Cable-free and we have an extra $100 in our pocketeach month. Take it we have been subscribing to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime (try free for 30 days) for the last few years – so I don’t count that as additional money that we are spending.
Here are 5 things that we learned when we got rid of cable!
So now that we’ve been without cable for a month, what do we think? For the most part, we love it. BUT that said, we have learned several things that we just didn’t think about or know before we cut the cord.
We are talking about getting rid of cable TV. Here is what you need to do before you cut the cord and get rid of cable.
1. Buy a Clock to Replace Cable Box
So, what we didn’t think about as we were packing up our old cable tv boxes was that we relied on the cable box clock way more than we realized. We found this clock alternative. It’s bright and you can see the clock from across the room and in the dark.
We liked it so much, we bought 1 for our bedroom and another for our family room.
Here is the clock we ended up purchasing on Amazon. Yes, it’s an alarm clock. Yes, it’s bigger than normal – but believe me, you want something that you can easily read from across the room. (If you have a toddler, don’t miss our toddler alarm clocks post!)
2. Buy an HD Antenna for Your TV
Today’s antennas are nothing like the antennas of yesterdays! There is no tilting a huge antenna various ways to get channels. With this HD Antenna, we are able to pick up around 20 channels – and it’s all digital so the picture is just as good as you would have with a cable tv box.
Here is the antenna we purchased. Best part? It’s cheap and works perfect with our Fire TV stick (more on that, keep reading!)
This is the digital HD antenna. The antenna has a 200 mile range to help you get local channels from up to 200 miles away!
Remember that where you place the antenna will also determine your reception. We had this on our family room TV and everything was fine and dandy. You will want to lay it flat on your entertainment center or stick it high on a window.
3. Amazon Fire TV Stick Can Replace Cable
When we originally wrote this post, the Amazon Fire Stick wasn’t even a thing. Now it’s everything, well almost.
Originally, when we first wrote this post, Amazon Fire TV was all the rage. It is now 2020 and the Amazon Fire TV is now just the Amazon Fire Stick.
Amazon Fire Stick
I have read the questions, including:
Does Amazon Fire Stick replace cable?
YES. The Amazon Fire Stick can replace cable television. It is the most affordable way to get access to the multitude of streaming services. You can watch just about anything using the Fire stick!
Make Your TV a Smart TV
Rather than upgrading your television, just purchase a Amazon Fire Stick to make your TV a smart TV. We have a smart TV in our bedroom and prefer the interface and options that the Fire Stick offers over what comes with our LG TV.
Here is what you get when purchasing a Amazon Fire Stick:
With both Amazon Fire TV and Amazon Fire Stick you will get amazing features (see below.) But the big difference is the power. Read more to learn about each of the devices.
Replace Cable Box with an Amazon Fire Stick
Here are the general features of BOTH the Fire TV and the Fire Stick. This is why you will want to replace cable box with an Amazon Fire stick upgrade.
- Enjoy tens of thousands of channels, apps, and Alexa skills with access to over 500,000 movies and TV episodes from Netflix, Prime Video, Hulu, HBO, SHOWTIME, NBC, and more.
Plus, access millions of websites such as YouTube, Facebook, and Reddit with browsers like Silk and Firefox.
- Launch and control content with the included Alexa Voice Remote. Simply say, “Play Game of Thrones” or “Launch Netflix” and Alexa will respond instantly.
Plus, play music, find movie showtimes, order a pizza, and more—just ask.
- No cable or satellite? No problem. Watch the best of live TV and sports from AMC, HGTV, ESPN, FOX, and others with a subscription to DIRECTV NOW, Sling TV, or top-rated primetime shows with CBS All Access.
- Amazon Prime membership (try free for 30 days) unlocks thousands of movies and TV episodes, including “Thursday Night Football”, Amazon Original Series, Prime Video Channels, and ad-free listening to millions of songs with Prime Music.
- Pick up where you left off. Bring hit shows and movies with you when you travel. Plug Fire TV Stick into any TV’s HDMI port, connect to Wi-Fi, and continue streaming.
Amazon Fire Stick 4K Review
There are multiple versions of the Fire Stick, our favorite is the Amazon Fire Stick 4K.
The Amazon Fire Stick 4K offers brilliant picture with access to 4K Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, HDR, and HDR10+ and a voice enabled remote (yes, you can talk to Alexa from your remote control). This is in addition to all of the things a normal Amazon Fire Stick can do.
Our favorite feature of the Amazon Fire Stick 4K is the ability to control your TV controls! That’s right, lose the TV remote, no problem! The Fire Stick 4K will let you turn on and off your television and control the volume.
4. Subscription TV Services
While yes, we are loving not having to pay for cable – I will say we are paying for subscription TV services. While these do cost us, we WERE paying for BOTH cable and all of the subscription services – I am in!
We currently have Amazon Prime Video, which is included with our Amazon Prime subscription. (Use this link for a free 30 day Amazon Prime trial!)
We also subscribe to Netflix (T-Mobile pays the bill), HULU, Sling TV to watch football (we unsubscribe when it’s not football season,) and Disney Plus. While these do add up, it doesn’t add up to what we were paying and the commercials are minimal!
Remember This – To Save Money on Cable
Now adays, there is a tv subscription service for everything. If your goal is to save money by cancelling cable tv – don’t oversubscribe to these subscription television services.
Listen, I am a TV junkie. If you are wanting to watch a TV series, wait until the series is done airing then subscribe and binge watch. Unsubscribe to the subscription service so that you aren’t charged every single month!
5. Cancel Cable TV
When you go to quit your cable TV provider, be prepared to get some backlash. No one gets to cancel cable TV easy, or at least no one I know!
Cable TV Customer Retention
By the number of people that have read this article, it’s easy to see that cable companies are losing customers. People are cutting the cord with cable TV. So what is a company to do? Cue customer retention.
This is when the cable company tries to sweeten the deal so that you keep your service. If you have any desire to keep your cable TV subscription – NEGOTIATE your heart out! They need customers like you, and you have the upper hand. Be a Karen and talk to the manager.
Your Cable Company Contracts
A common cable company ploy is a bundle deal where they bundle internet and cable TV. While yes, this may feel like you are saving money – make sure to do the math and ask about contracts.
Cable companies LOVE contracts. We were paying over $150 for our bundle DEAL with a 2-year contract.
Once our cable contract was done, we were able to go internet only and pay just $65 a month, with taxes.
Cut the Cord with Cable TV
So there are 5 things we’ve learned since cutting the cable cord. Are we glad we did it, yes! Now it is your turn.
Happy cord cutting!
5 Things To Know Before You Get Rid of Cable TV originally posted on Digital Mom blog on January 15, 2015. Updated in January 2021.