A typical digital subscription might only cost $10 or $15 per month, but that can add up quickly when you’re paying for multiple services. Even cutting a few dollars out of your monthly budget will give you a little extra breathing room and give you more money to save or spend on other things.
If you’re like most Americans, you might not even realize how much you’re spending on subscriptions and other expenses every month. Fortunately, you can start saving money on your digital subscriptions by making a few simple changes.
Cancel Subscriptions You Aren’t Using
It might sound obvious, but your first step should be to make sure that you aren’t paying for any subscriptions you don’t even use. With so many streaming services out there, it’s easy to leave a subscription open in case you might want it later before forgetting about it and letting it stay active for months or years after you stop using it.
The only reliable way to avoid paying for extra subscriptions is to periodically check your bank and credit card statements and review the latest activity. You might be surprised by how much those sneaky digital subscriptions were taking from the rest of your monthly budget.
Remember that you can always restart a subscription later on if you start to miss the service. On the other hand, there’s no way to get your money back for unused time. Even if you only cancel for a few weeks, you’ll still save a little cash compared
Look for Bundles
One issue with most streaming services is that they only offer a small slice of content. For example, Disney Plus has an incredibly deep library of Disney shows and movies, but it isn’t going to be as helpful when it comes to sports, news, live TV, or other content that isn’t owned by Disney.
Fortunately, some digital subscriptions have started partnering with other providers in order to give customers savings when they bundle content. Hulu, Disney, and ESPN have put together one of the most attractive bundles currently available, offering customers access to premium plans from all three platforms for as little as $13.99 per month. Don’t forget to look for similar bundles if you’re trying to save money on multiple digital subscriptions.
Switch to Annual Plans
When you’re starting a new subscription, you might prefer to stick to a monthly plan instead of committing to a full year (or longer). However, you should keep in mind that many providers give customers significant discounts when they prepay for a year at a time rather than staying on a monthly subscription.
YouTube Premium, for example, usually costs $11.99 per month if you pay monthly. If you’re willing to pay for a year, you can get a monthly price of $10. That works out to savings of nearly 20% relative to the monthly option.
If you’re on the fence about continuing with a certain digital service, you should stick with a monthly plan in case you change your mind later on. On the other hand, you should look for any prepayment discounts for subscriptions that you’re expecting to keep active for a year or longer.
Remember to Cancel Free Trials
One of the most common tactics subscription providers do to get your business involves offering you a free trial, and then automatically billing you for an ongoing subscription unless you cancel by the end of the trial period. If you forget to come back and cancel the trial, you could end up paying for something you don’t even want.
The best way to stay on top of free trials is to make a note or reminder when you sign up for a new account. Set it to notify you a few days before the trial is set to expire so you have time to make a decision without having to worry about being unfairly charged.
If you forget to cancel before the trial ends, don’t assume that you’re out of luck. It’s always a good idea to send the provider a message and see if they can help. If you haven’t used the service since the end of the trial, they may be willing to refund your payment.
Share Your Accounts
In the end, the best way to spend less money on your digital subscriptions is to share them with others. Most services allow subscribers to access their content on multiple devices, although there may be limits on the total number of authorized devices or simultaneous connections.
With Gowd, you can cut your digital subscription bill by up to 90%. Gowd makes it easy to set up listings for your subscription accounts and minimize your bill without missing out on any content. Check out our website today to learn more about how we can help you save money on your digital subscriptions.
Track Subscriptions with an App
Using yet another app to cut down on your subscriptions might sound counterintuitive, but some people find it very helpful. There are a number of apps and websites that can help you shore up your budget.
Trim, for example, will analyze your bank and credit card statements to identify all active subscriptions. From there, Trim can cancel for you instead of forcing you to go through the provider directly.
If you tend to have trouble staying on top of your subscriptions, an app could make it easier to keep track. Trim is just one of many different personal finance apps that cover digital subscriptions. Don’t hesitate to try out a few different options to see what works for you.
Negotiate Your Bills
One of Trim’s other services involves negotiating with service providers to help users access the best rates. Most consumers aren’t even aware that their monthly payments could be negotiable.
With Trim, they’ll handle the entire negotiation process and only take a cut of any savings. Of course, you can also get the same service from many other businesses.
You can even contact providers yourself if you have some extra time and you’re confident in your negotiation skills. This can be frustrating and time-consuming, but it also means that you won’t lose any of the savings.
Keep in mind that bill negotiation won’t be an option for every service. Spotify isn’t going to care whether or not you keep your subscription.
In contrast, other providers may be much more interested in negotiating. Phone, cable, and utility companies often choose to accept a lower rate instead of losing the customer entirely.
$5 or $10 per month doesn’t sound like much on the signup page. Unfortunately, even just a handful of subscriptions will have a dramatic impact on your budget. Even worse, most providers don’t send any monthly reminders or updates. You could forget that you’re paying for something until you remember to check your bank or credit card statement.
Splitting costs is the best way to save money on digital subscriptions without losing your accounts. The Gowd marketplace offers accounts with some of the most popular providers. Check out our listings now to connect with other users who want to share an account.