I am going to admit something terrible to you all. It's hard to type these words. I feel a little nervous putting this out there. Ok, here goes: we canceled cable. We Cut The Cord. We ARE cord cutters. Whew. I feel better just saying it outloud. Look, I know people have lived without cable for YEARS, decades, even. For us, this was a really hard decision to make and it wasn't until we were driving on the highway one afternoon and simultaneously saw the billboard for the Roku box that my husband and I decided it was time. We had considered it for a while but hadn't made the big move...cutting off cable. We did it and we haven't looked back.
Once upon a time we were hardened people, the kind of people who lived and died by their DVR and it's (limited) storage capacity. We loved flipping the TV on and using it as background noise. Fast forward a few years and a few kids and we knew it was time to make over our viewing habits. Our older child was way too obsessed with Disney Junior and we were tired of the constant noise and siren call of the cable box. So we researched our options and realized we could watch most of what we wanted online through Hulu Plus, Netflix or Amazon. We promptly called up our cable provider, cancelled our service, and bought a little itty bitty Roku box (we already had a PS3 which is also able to stream video).
You guys, it has been awesome. For one, we're discovering shows we never would have if we only had cable (Friday Night Lights, anyone?). We're being more judicious with what we watch and what we purchase to watch. For example, I am obsessed with The Good Wife and wanted to watch the past seasons. Unfortunately CBS is a tightwad network and doesn't allow much free streaming. So I made the conscious decision to purchase the whole season from Amazon for $35. I rationalized that purchase because I was paying for something I would actually WATCH versus paying a large monthly cable bill for MANY MANY MANY shows I would never watch.
Netflix has it's own separate kids section with tons of great programming and we love Hulu Plus for our usual comedies and dramas. We don't mind paying a monthly membership fee because we save so much in the long run. Our past monthly cable bill hovered around $120 whereas now our monthly bill is around $57 and that's only if I buy a full season of a show a month. So far I've only bought one season and we're already three months into going cable-free. That's HALF what we were paying before.
Now, this might not work for you if you or your significant other is a big sports fan and needs the NFL/MLB/NHL/ABCDEFG networks. Luckily for me my husband isn't a huge sports guy and can happily catch the best plays of the game the next day online. One way around this is to buy a cheap antenna that grabs your local HD channels and you can view anything that's being broadcast on those channels. The antennas are super tiny and unobtrusive now.
We're really happy with our decision to "cut the cord" and free ourselves from the cable monster. The extra money in our pocket every month is pretty great, too. Have you cut the cord or are you contemplating it?
(all images from Google Images)