I Dropped My Satellite TV Subscription. Was it Worth It?

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By the author of  An Arm and a Leg and The Prepper’s Guide to Post-Disaster Communications

Years ago, when I first moved out and got my own place, it almost seemed like a given that I needed to buy a satellite TV subscription plan. I’d grow up my entire life with TV. The thought of not having it at my own place never even really crossed my mind. Having your TV bill, at the time, to me, just seemed like a normal part of life. As time went on, though, and as I began to take a harder look at my finances, I began to realize that an expensive TV subscription plan really wasn’t a necessity.

When I began to do the math on how much per year I was spending on TV, it about made me shiver.

I supposed I’d just never really even thought about it before. But when you look at your strapped finances and realize you’re spending over a grand a year on TV and have been paying that for years, you begin to look at your TV a little differently.

You begin to understand that TV is a racket.

After all, I only ever watched maybe five channels despite paying for hundreds of them. Why on earth was I spending over a thousand dollars a year for maybe one or two hours of five channels in the evening? Was it really worth it?

I voted ‘no’ on the satellite TV subscription.

I ditched my satellite TV plan altogether. I looked around at some other options first before I did so, but nobody else really offered anything that I found to be any different. Everybody wanted hundreds of dollars and were only going to offer a minimal number of channels that I would want to watch.

I still didn’t want to completely forgo TV, however. Some days, it is kind of nice to just be able to zone out in the evenings. While movies seem to be my go-to for that, the idea of being able to watch Hogan’s Heroes, The X-files, or something else on TV still was something I kind of wanted to hang onto.

The solution? I bought an $80 analog TV antenna. I paid for this antenna one-time several years ago and have been using it ever since. I haven’t paid a TV bill since, and it’s been wonderful. I never really watched what I would classify as “a lot” of TV to begin with. Most of my evenings were spent playing basketball, reading, or hanging out with friends.

For me, this is the best of both worlds here.

I still have access to about 30 analog TV channels with a pretty diverse range of channels, and I don’t have to pay a cent for them. I probably watch even less TV now than I did beforehand as well. I consider this a positive. I don’t really know of anybody that would seriously consider the TV to be a worthwhile means of spending hours of your time every year, and the more you can step away from it to “real life,” the better.

If, like me, your TV subscription service is/was over a grand a year, you could do a lot of things within ten years’ span. Ten grand in a decade could go to a down payment on a house, help to pay off a big chunk of student loans, or help you to be able to get the new car that your growing family needs.

My recommendation here…

So, if you’re just graduating from high school, trade school, or college and now find yourself out in “the real world,” may I suggest that you consider forgoing the TV subscription plan. It only will serve to waste your time, it will not serve as an economical means of using your money, and it offers minimal benefit. There is so much more that you can accomplish with your life with an extra 1-2 hours of “life” every evening rather than 1-2 hours of wasting time watching commercials that I think the benefits far outweigh the ”loss.”

Ditch the satellite TV subscription plan and be happier.

Initially, I never would have thought I would have found myself in such a Luddite camp, but I think that if you take the same approach as I do, there is a lot of benefit that you could get out of it.

For example? Let’s say that you go to your favorite local café every night instead of having a satellite TV plan. You could spend $3/drink every night rather than watching TV and not only still save money but get the chance to meet a lot of cool people as well (this is easier in the South, where strangers talk to each other).

Personally, I put the money saved towards loans I have instead of the café option, but the point is that there are ways to spend your money on “life,” and there are ways to waste your money.

But what are your thoughts? Is a satellite TV subscription worth it? Let us know if you’ve made a similar decision in the past in the comments below.

About Aden

Aden Tate is a regular contributor to TheOrganicPrepper.com and TheFrugalite.com. Aden runs a micro-farm where he raises dairy goats, a pig, honeybees, meat chickens, laying chickens, tomatoes, mushrooms, and greens. Aden has four published books, The Faithful Prepper An Arm and a Leg, The Prepper’s Guide to Post-Disaster Communications, and Zombie Choices. You can find his podcast The Last American on Preppers’ Broadcasting Network.

I Dropped My Satellite TV Subscription. Was it Worth It?
Aden Tate

Aden Tate

About the Author Aden Tate has a master’s in public health and is a regular contributor to PewPewTactical.com, SurvivalBlog.com, SHTFBlog.com, ApartmentPrepper.com, HomesteadAndPrepper.com, and PrepperPress.com. Along with being a freelance writer he also works part-time as a locksmith. Aden has an LLC for his micro-farm where he raises dairy goats, a pig, honeybees, meat chickens, laying chickens, tomatoes, mushrooms, and greens. Aden has two published books, The Faithful Prepper and Zombie Choices. You can find his podcast The Last American at Preppers’ Broadcasting Network.

6 thoughts on “I Dropped My Satellite TV Subscription. Was it Worth It?”

  1. I ditched my cable TV 5 years ago and haven’t looked back. Now I live in a city so an analog antenna doesn’t work as well here. However, I do need good Internet for my business anyway so a couple of streaming channels is FAR cheaper, plus I can watch what I like. Amazon Prime is actually a good deal, although I’ve learned to buy TV series and movies on disk rather than from them. I limit my streaming to 2 services for $25/month and it’s a much better deal than my cable bundle! Even adding in my Internet service I’m money ahead by cutting my cable.

  2. I bought a Vizio TV five years ago. With that came free movies with Tubi, Crackle, and watch free TV. I love it. Movies are plentiful and I can stream news for free. All it costs is the price of the Internet which I had anyway. I have enjoyed YouTube for free also on the big screen rather than my computer.

  3. We ditched cable TV back in the 90s when the kids were still here. Have an antenna on the roof which works fairly well. What little TV I watch is usually the old sitcoms from the 50s and 60s.
    Not really much on TV nowadays worth watching, especially the “news”.

  4. We dropped our satellite tv years ago. Don’t miss it. There was nothing on most of the time anyway.
    Now hubby is a dvd maniac lol And since we already have internet satellite we can watch tv programs for free online if we want to watch a certain program. There are websites that show all kinds of programs and movies.

  5. We have a patchwork history with television. As a child back in the pre-cable days (when there were only 3 channels available) I was a walking TV Guide. Aside from 2 years in an apartment with basic cable included the rent, and 1 year of satellite, we’ve done without cable and simply used rabbit ears or a roof antenna. In 2008, I couldn’t stand hearing obama’s on the commercials, so we went cold turkey. We have an extensive collection of DVDs and yes, even some old VHS movies. And we watch online. Our son gave us a Vizio television a couple of years ago, and sometimes I watch Pluto. Pluto can be watched free online, too, but the commercials are horrendous. It’s mostly not worth it. I’m cheap and netflix is way too woke.

  6. I grew up on network only. Had cable at university and it probably messed up my GPA pretty badly. I was so interested in all the offerings on the stupid babble box that I didn’t pay enough attention to the whole reason why I was there in the first place. Many opportunities wasted there.
    So, what do I do now? I’ll either buy the movies/series I want to see on DVD, and therefore get to keep the media, or will pay for the monthly streaming service that has the show I want, and then cancel when I’m done watching the things they have to offer. Works pretty well. As a bonus, sometimes I’ll want to watch something and already own it and not have to pay anything.

    By the way – watching older stuff is a great idea. Some shows were so good! I had a blast watching Miami Vice and am loving the Rockford Files. Really good stories and some class-act performances.

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