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Shop Around for Cable: DirecTV vs. Comcast vs. Verizon

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Zenith RemoteFinance blogs often explore how customers can save money on cable or even cut their cable, and while this can definitely save money, making such a big change can leave some customers without their favorite shows. Those who want to watch a number of sports on television or watch specific regional teams have few alternatives.

So if you don’t want to cut your cable and just want to know what packages are out there so you can try to negotiate for a better offer, we’ve put together some of the current promotions available from some of the largest carriers. If you have one of these competitors in your area, check out their regional offer and see if you can get your current provider to match it. If they won’t, switch!

And if you’ve previously cut the cable and want to have it again or you’re just planning to sign up, here’s a quick recap of what’s out there:

DirecTV

In terms of packages, Directv offers the simplest choices because you don’t have the option to bundle with other services as some of the other cable providers offer. Directv is also straightforward on their website; you can see exactly what you’ll receive as well as how much it costs during and after the promotional period. Comcast and Verizon offer limited information on their websites; you must call to get the full details, and rates vary by area of the country.

Entertainment Package $29.99/mo: This is the lowest priced package, but it may not be right for sports enthusiasts. It includes 140+ digital channels including all of the top entertainment and news networks as well as major sports networks. Take this package for 24 months, and the first 12 months are at $29.99; the last 12 months are at $54.99 a month.

Choice Package $34.99/mo:  This package includes a free season of NFL Sunday ticket (though there may be a regional sports fee) as well as 150+ digital channels featuring the same as the Entertainment package plus a few more. As a 24 month package, after 12 months, this package is $63.99 a month. Another perk to this package is that it includes free professional installation.

Comcast

Comcast offers the biggest savings if you want to bundle other services. You can choose to bundle Digital TV, Internet and phone (what they call the Triple Play), or Digital TV and Internet, or Internet or Digital TV with phone. If you are interested strictly in cable, there is also a plan available for that.

Digital TV $29.99/mo: Get over 80 channels and 3 months of free HBO. This rate is valid for one year; after 12 months, the rate becomes the standard rate, which varies depending on your location in the country.

Bundled Package of Internet and Digital TV $69.99/mo: Get over 100+ digital channels as well as free HBO for 3 months and Internet speeds of 12 Mbps. Again, after 12 months, the standard rate applies, which varies based on your location.

Verizon

With Verizon, be careful with the fees. You may face a $59.99 installation fee, and if you try to back out of your two year commitment, you could face a $200 early termination fee.

La Conexion $54.99/mo: Receive over 190 channels including English and Spanish channels. Rates may increase after two years.

FiOS TV Prime HD $64.99/mo: Receive 213 channels, music choice channels, radio channels and an extensive On Demand library. The same fees may apply for installation and early termination.

Verizon FiOs Digital Voice Unlimited & FiOS Internet 15/5 & FiOs TV Prime HD $99.99/mo: Like Comcast, Verizon offers the best discounts for bundling. If you bundle phone, internet and television, you will receive $15 off a month for 2 years plus get a $200 Verizon Visa prepaid card. For this price, you will get unlimited domestic residential calling, Internet at a speed of 15 Mbps, and 210+ channels.

Remember, these packages are often just a starting point. You can try to negotiate with the customer service representative and score even greater discounts, such as switching bonuses and other promotional offers.

(Photo: oskay)

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13 Responses to “Shop Around for Cable: DirecTV vs. Comcast vs. Verizon”

  1. Scott says:

    Or just get rid of cable altogether! There’s plenty of free network channels available over the air in most urban and suburban communities across the country. Nearly all are in HD too.

    • Bob says:

      Unless you like sports. Then you are pretty much out of luck.

      • DMoney says:

        Exactly,

        The networks and Cable co’s are colluding to prevent ANY scenario to watch all your sports w/o their involvement. The FCC should really look into this. It’s flat-out absurd.

        I was looking into having NBA League Pass stream on my Xbox, which would allow me to watch All NVA games sans cable. BUT, come to find out, NBA League Pass blocks out local and nationally televised games. SO there goes that option. Back to my overpriced, underused cable plan.

        I really hate how these companies are trying to delay the inevitable. This has to be more than money. This seems easy to monetize, so it has to be more of about principle, ego, pride or something.

      • Scott says:

        Should clarify your comment to be “Unless you like watching sports at home”. Actually playing sports or watching them elsewhere (friend’s house, bar, etc.) don’t require cable. Also, many sub-prime games are televised online now rather than on a network, so if you like less popular sports or teams, a good internet connection is all you need.

  2. Daniel says:

    That’s a nice summary of those options, but my wife and I cut cable TV service some 5+ years ago. We use Netflix and Hulu Plus for movies and to get the few shows that we actually watch, and we find that we don’t miss what we don’t have.

  3. John in PA says:

    I put up an antenna 4 years ago, like Danial says there is plenty to watch for free. I got tired of paying for a million commercials and who can watch hundreds of channels at the same time? I saved about $4000 already, I am never going back to “PayTV”

  4. Lee says:

    Verizon isn’t only one with installation fees. Direct tv involves installing a satellite dish, either out in your yard or up on your roof, and then running a hard-wired cable from it to your tvs. Comcast charges you to bring their service onto your street and you also pay per foot up your driveway. Comcast wanted to charge me $2500 for installation!!!

  5. MJ says:

    What about Dish Network?

  6. Chuck says:

    Just wanted to let your readers know that I am switching to FREE TV. Its just a box and antenna installed for a one time $200.00. I get all the local channels with a public movie channel. You do the math…

    • Scott says:

      We bought a refurbished DVR for about $170 and record most shows off the antenna. One of the best purchases we’ve made over the last few years.

  7. mm says:

    this article isn’t complete. There is Dish TV, AT&T, etc.

  8. daenyll says:

    I have never paid for tv once out on my own, only had cable when it came with the room(dorm/hotel). Broadcast or internet pretty much cover my entertainment, any extra channels would lead to my time being wasted


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