Traditional cable packages and monthly subscriptions to different streaming services can cost you a sizable amount of money every single month. Fortunately, just like there are ways to save money on car insurance, it’s also possible to save money watching TV. Direct Auto is always looking out for you, so here are six ways you can still watch many of your favorite shows or sporting events for free or for less money every month.
Acquire an Antenna
Nowadays, using an antenna might feel a little old fashioned to some people. However, if you’re used to newer TVs, you might be surprised to learn that an antenna is incredibly useful and affordable. For a one-time fee of $10-$25 (depending on the brand and signal range), you can buy an antenna that will pick up major networks (like ABC, CBS, NBC, and FOX) and various other channels (like PBS, The CW, and MeTV). This includes many sporting events like the World Series (FOX), Stanley Cup Final (NBC), NBA Finals (ABC) and Super Bowl (CBS). Also, according to the Nielsen ratings, pretty much all of the most-watched TV shows are on the major networks. In other words, you’ll have access to many major programs that you can watch live!
If you’re looking to watch a few specific shows or sporting events when they originally air, you can always hop from free trial to free trial. With so many different streaming services (Youtube TV, Hulu + Live TV, Sling TV, fuboTV, and more) offering live TV, you have weeks or months of trial periods at your fingertips. Many of these services also offer some sort of digital DVR, so you can watch at your convenience. So sign up for a free week, two weeks, month, or whatever trial length they’re offering, and set a reminder in your phone to cancel before you get charged.
Sign Up for Free Streaming Services
In most cases, you’re going to pay for a streaming service. However, some services are completely free or have a free tier of programming with lots of content available to watch.
Peacock, NBC’s new streaming service, has paid tiers that remove ads or offer exclusive content, but they also offer hundreds of movies and thousands of episodes for free with ads. Many people are now familiar with Roku TVs, but did you know that there’s also a Roku Channel available for free that offers an “always-changing selection of free movies, shows, live news, kids’ TV, and more?” How does “100s of channels” for “zeros of dollars” sound? That’s what Pluto TV offers. If you’re willing to sit through some ads, you can take advantage of these services and others like them!
Get a Library Card
If you’re trying to binge an older show or catch up on a current show, check your local library. In addition to books, magazines, and other periodicals, many libraries have entire seasons of your favorite shows and copies of your favorite films to check out. As long as you don’t lose the movie or return it late, you’ll pay nothing!
Invest in Specific Affordable Services
We’ve focused on ways to watch for free so far, but sometimes, certain services might be worth your investment. If you love sports, an ESPN+ membership only costs $5.99 each month. If you have young children and need a way to keep them entertained, Disney+ comes in at just $6.99 per month. You know what things are worth your hard-earned money better than anyone, so evaluate your streaming habits and consider if spending on a few specific services is worth it.
Look for Limited-Time Deals or Bundles
Just like with any other product or service, there are always special offers or bundles available when it comes to the different ways to watch TV. For example, Disney owns ESPN and Hulu, so they currently offer a bundle with Disney+, ESPN+, and Hulu for $12.99 per month, saving you roughly six dollars. HBO Max launched earlier this year, and the big winners in this scenario were AT&T customers. Many of them were able to score up to one free year on HBO’s new streaming platform. Always be on the lookout for special deals like these because your internet or cell phone provider might offer something similar, like T-Mobile offering free Netflix with certain plans.