How much is your cable bill?

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Sometimes, I really feel like I am out of touch with the rest of the world. Living in my frugal corner of the world, I am sometimes shocked by how much people are willing to pay for things. Cable bills appear to be one of those things for which I am COMPLETELY out of touch!

Before Christmas, I was talking to a small group of people about internet speeds. I said we have 105 mps because of the businesses that we run out of the house. Someone asked how much I pay for that. It costs $76.50 per month. Apparently, people were impressed with that. I got a lot of “Wow! That’s pretty good” reactions from people in the group. So I asked what other people were spending. The answers varied from $240 to $310 per month! Seriously???

My jaw clearly hit the floor because a number of them reassured me that the amount they were spending was for TV, internet, and phone service. My gaping mouth was left unchanged by those reassurances, so I was asked how much I pay for all these services.

Well, $76.50 covers the internet and we get free basic cable (probably because we cancelled our cable TV for over a year). We have Ooma for our phone. That costs another $3.82 per month. So that’s about $81 per month. Now, their jaws were ajar.

Oh, and we have Amazon Prime to stream TV shows and movies. They all had Prime as well, in addition to their $240 to $310 per month cable bill.

I thought, this can’t be normal. This is just a few people. As we moved to a larger group of about a dozen people and the discussion continued, apparently this is very normal. Everyone in the group, except for me had TV, internet, and phone bills that were well over $200 per month.

I got upset when my bill went to $92 per month! I cancelled the cable TV portion and got an antenna to watch football and PBS. Previously, we had Netflix or Hulu in addition to Prime, but I didn’t want to spend the additional $8 per month. Plus I have more things in my Amazon queue than I will be able to watch in a lifetime, so I’m good with one service. I’m not sure how I would react if I got a $240 cable bill. Actually, I’m pretty damn sure I know how I would react.

Maybe I’m just completely out of touch but $240 per month is a lot of money. That’s over half my grocery budget. Over the course of a year, that’s a pretty decent vacation. An extra $160 placed in a retirement account at 8% for 30 years would be $234,904.14. Yup. That is a lot of money to give up to watch Swamp Stars or  The Real Housewives of King’s Landing.

Help me out here guys! How much are you spending each month for these services? Do you still have cable TV or have you cut the cord? I promise you that as soon as Comcast tries to charge me for cable, we will cut that cord again! Am I just completely out of touch?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • notsofastnow

    Yes, $200-300 a month IS a lot to pay for Internet, cable, and phone. I balked when my bill hit $165 — on top of that, I was already paying for Hulu and Netflix because cable offered such lousy programming. And I’ve been a member of Amazon Prime since 2010. So I cut the cable altogether. Now I have much cheaper Internet that includes voip phone, and I stream all my TV viewing. This saves me about $90 a month, but the real bonus is that my viewing is much richer and commercial-free. Think about it — people pay through the nose for cable, and are rewarded with a limited choice of substandard fare packed with commercial interruptions. Not a good deal, as I see it.

    By the way, I live in an area with no TV reception. Antenna TV is not an option, but I can still get PBS, local and international news, and a host of other stuff for free, all through apps that load on a streaming box like a Roku. Unless you REALLY need all those sports (with all their ads), or don’t have access to high speed internet, there’s absolutely no reason to pay for cable any more.

    • John

      notsofastnow – I know I’m probably talking to myself as you commented over a year ago – but that was EXACTLY my threshold! My bill reached $165 after a rate hike at the beginning of the year and that’s when I said “OK now that’s too much” and cut my cable down to the local channels.