Wednesday, January 31, 2007

How I saved over a 1000 dollars with 3 phone calls.

I have the pleasure of traveling about 1-2 weeks every month due to my work. As such I decided to take a closer look at some of my expenditures. Within an hour I was able to cut down 1212 dollars per year. Whats the secret? Just look at what you're spending on and ask yourself if you are really using the service.

My first cost cutting measure was downgrading my Netflix plan (Ok, I did'nt call them but I used their website). Their service is incredible, but I was only watching one movie a month. There were a couple of months where I had the same Michael Moore DVD gathering dust. So I went from their $17.99 plan to the $4.99 plan. This plan still allows you to see 2 movies a month. By downgrading I got a saving of $13 per month or $156 per year.

My next call was to Vonage. Vonage is a Voice over IP company. They have an unlimited calling plan for $24.99. I realized that I use my cellphone for all my calling needs. The only reason I have Vonage for is long distance calls to Asia. I discovered that Vonage has a relatively obscure plan called the basic zero plan. Its only $4.99 for a month. They charge money per minute but thats pretty negligible (3.9 cents). Net savings: $20 per month or $240 a year.

My best call was to Comcast cable. I went from a $109/month plan that included HBO and broadband to a $41 plan. The new plan does not have HBO or the zillions of channels I was getting before, but it still has broadband and all the basic channels. Savings of $68 a month or $816 a year. Of course they only gave me this deal after telling me about two higher priced deals but in the end persistence paid. You have to keep asking the operator if this is the best plan available.

Total savings:

Netflix $156
Vonage $240
Comcast $816

For a grand total of $1212. How much can you save?