How to lower Internet bill—Easy to follow tips
Broadband Internet is not a luxury anymore. Most of us enjoy the perks of a high-speed Internet connection. More importantly, we grew accustomed to it, so whenever our pages don’t open in seconds, we tend to have a small fit.
With the average price of 60$ per month, we should expect nothing less than an excellent connection, which is not always the case. The quality of service varies depending on your location or the time of the day.
Many Americans pay up to 100$ for the Internet. With the prices of almost everything going through the roof, it is not a minor expense. If you are looking for ways to cut unnecessary costs, the Internet bill is a great way to start. So, let’s see what we can do about it.
Managing Internet bill with help from DoNotPay
If you feel that you need some help with managing your Internet bill, you can use the DoNotPay app to save time. The world’s first robot lawyer has helped lots of people untangle the knot when it comes to intricate bill management.
You can opt for a DIY style, but you should be aware that it requires a lot of research. DoNotPay is your virtual legal advisor that brings expertise and efficiency to the table.
The procedure with DoNotPay is simple and straightforward:
- Log on through your web browser
- Click on Corona Relief
- Choose Internet bills
- Let the app know what you need (waiver letter, extension letter, dealing with your provider’s support team on your behalf)
- Provide specific details regarding your request
Once you do that, DoNotPay will complete the task and get back to you as soon as possible. Our robot lawyer can perform some of those assignments in a matter of seconds. Follow the instructions and resolve the bill issue stress-free.
Understanding your Internet bill and checking for errors
Before anything else, you should try to read your bill carefully and understand what you are paying for. Most of us tend to take the numbers at face value, and just pay the requested amount. That’s a rookie mistake that can cost you a lot. It’s never going to be a considerable sum that you are overpaying—in annual terms, though, it’s not pocket change anymore.
Understanding the bill
It is vital to go through every item on the list and learn what it is. Some of the services that you are paying for are not obligatory, and you don’t use them at all. Googling every line item will help you demystify its meaning and what it does for you. ISPs like to add additional and unnecessary charges that often go unnoticed by the users.
Thorough research will show you what can be taken off your bill without endangering the quality of service or downgrading your experience. If you are not sure what is a mandatory fee, and what’s there simply to boost your provider’s profit, contact their customer support team and go through every item with their agent.
Checking for errors
Providers are not always trying to take your money on purpose. They sometimes make mistakes, so when going through the items, make sure that none of them are duplicated. It may come as a surprise that honest mistakes can happen when the bill is created, but that is not uncommon.
Always look for the following on your Internet bill:
- Duplicate items
- Services that you are not using
- Your name and contract number
You should be aware that if an error occurs, there is a possibility that they are charging you less than they should.
Lowering your Internet bill—DIY style
The first thing to think about is whether you are satisfied with your provider. If you are not, the solution to the problem is simple, and you should go ahead and change your provider. If you are satisfied, but you think that your bill is too high, then you should consider the options for lowering the bill.
There is also a third unfortunate situation. You are not happy with your Internet service provider (ISP), but you cannot change it. You could be in the middle of the contract, or it might be the only available option because you live in a small town.
Let’s say you are stuck with your current ISP. What you need to do is come up with a plan that reduces the costs of your Internet, but you still get to enjoy all the benefits of a solid Internet connection. Although it isn't the easiest task, it can save you money, which can be spent on more meaningful or fun things. So, consider the following:
- Reducing Internet speed
- Buying your equipment
- Bundling services
- Comparing prices from different IPS
- Negotiating your plan
- Reducing your cell phone data or canceling it completely
- Taking advantage of promotions and discounts
- Getting government subsidies
Speed reduction for a lower Internet bill
One of the most common problems is that you are paying for the speed that you don’t need. It happens more often than you think because most providers will suggest the best, most expensive option when you are signing the deal.
The truth is that average users don’t need a 1000Mbps plan to satisfy their needs. Emails, web-browsing, and watching Netflix or Hulu is not that demanding. You could probably do all that with a 100 Mbps plan.
To check the level of speed you require, consult the chart below. It will give you an idea of what you need, so you can adjust your deal accordingly.
|Online activity||Use of data|
|Email and web browsing||10-25 MB/hr|
|Social media browsing||150 MB/hr|
|Streaming music||150 MB/hr|
|Online gaming||300 MB/hr|
|Video streaming 480p||700 MB/hr|
|Video streaming 720-1080p||3 GB/hr|
Save on your Internet bill by getting your personal equipment
Most Internet deals allow you to rent modems and routers for a small monthly fee. Although the amount is usually pretty low, it is a neat way for providers to get some extra money from your package.
Since you are probably going to stay connected to the Internet indefinitely, it is much cheaper to buy the equipment. With the average fee of 10–15$, the Internet hardware costs can pile up to 240-360$ through the course of your contract (usually 24 months). The price of a decent router/modem combo is 200$, so the math is pretty simple. We broke it down in a simple-to-understand chart below.
|Average rent fee per month ($)||Rent for the average contract time ($)||Average buyout price ($)||Average retail price ($)|
In case you do opt for renting, make sure that it’s not just the modem that you get. You will need to buy a router separately if you need to add other devices without a wireless connection.
You should be aware that your hardware is not under warranty, so you will not get any technical support or services for it.
Bundle your services and get more for the same amount
This will not reduce your Internet bill, but it can give you more value for your money and reduce the costs of other services. It can be a powerful boost to your budget. Some providers offer discounts if you bundle your TV, telephone, and Internet bills, or they add extra services for the same price.
You can cancel your landline and TV, and switch to Internet-based phone and streaming services. It won’t lower your Internet bill, but it will cut down on other expenses. A lot of people are not willing to part with their landlines and cable TV, but once you give it a go, you will realize that the quality and the experience are the same, if not even better.
There are several things to watch out if you decide to try bundling your services:
- Check the TV channels included in the plan, and ditch the ones you will not watch (some of them tend to be quite pricey)
- Go back to the speed details and choose the suitable plan that you will actually use
Check the competition and prices
Don’t be lazy and do some virtual window shopping. Not all ISPs are the same, so you can benefit a lot from some research and investigation. Even if you are stuck with your current provider, it is good to understand what the competitors have to offer.
Most ISPs are trying to attract newcomers with low rates, and you can make a beneficial plan with a new provider. What would be fantastic is to get a price lock guarantee based on the introductory rate.
In case you can’t switch ISPs, you will have an idea of current offers. This will help you negotiate with your provider.
Negotiate your current Internet bill
Speaking of negotiations, most people have no idea that the bill and the plan can be negotiated. ISPs are fighting for every user because the market is highly competitive. You should take advantage of that and make the most of it. Remember that it’s better for them to lower your bill than to lose you as a client.
With this in mind, make sure you get ready for negotiations by following some simple advice:
- Make sure you know what you want–do your research and come up with a detailed plan regarding your needs and wishes
- Don’t bluff the bluffer–be ready to cancel your contract if you are not satisfied with what the provider is offering
- Talk to the right people–the Retention Department has the authority to negotiate the deals with clients, so don’t waste time with other employees
- Be polite–a little courtesy and kindness can get you what you want, especially with customer care agents
Reconsider your cell phone data plan
Your cell phone data plans might be an unnecessary expense. Before you start frowning, you should do a simple test to check how much of that plan you are using. Most of us choose the so-called unlimited plans, which are not really unlimited, and which offer much more than we actually need.
Our advice is to turn off the cellular data exchange whenever Wi-Fi is available. When you are at home, switch to your wireless Internet connection. Give it a one-month trial. When the trial expires, check how much data you used. Both Android and iOS have a data tracking option.
- For iOS, go to Settings, and then choose Cellular
- For Android, go to Setting, choose Connection, and then select Data Usage
You will realize that you use just the tiny portion of what you are paying. Compare the data with available cell phone data plans and switch to the one that fits you.
Promotions and discounts for a lower Internet bill
Holiday discounts are a fantastic way to get an excellent rate for your Internet, so try hunting for the best deals during the holiday season. Black Friday, Labor Day, Easter, Christmas, they are all great for taking advantage of promotions.
If you don’t want to wait for the next holiday, try closing the deal online. Most providers offer the best discounts on their websites. You can usually get free installation or activation.
Lower Internet bills with government subsidies
In case you didn’t know, persons enrolled in various federal assistance programs like Medicaid, can get low-cost Internet, or have some subsidies on their existing plan. Almost all providers will offer a special plan for beneficiaries of such programs. If you are using any of the government subsidies, check with your ISP what plans they can offer.
What happens if you don’t pay your Internet bill
Skipping payment on your bills can cause a number of problems. Your Internet bill may not be as important as your electricity or gas bills, but you are still obliged to cover it.
The worst-case scenario is that you get cut-off. This may be an issue if your TV and telephone are bundled up on your Internet bill because the provider will shut down all services.
You will typically have 30 to 60 days to pay the bill before it ends up at a collection agency. This is an even bigger hassle because you will have to cover the interest and the agency fee. If you are struggling to pay the bill, here’s a couple of things you can do:
- Get an extension date
- Negotiate the terms of payment
- Ask for a waiver on late fees
Get an extension date for your Internet bill
If you see that it’s going to be challenging to pay your Internet bill, you should contact your ISP as soon as possible and ask for an extension. This is a relatively easy solution, and it usually works.
In case you are not sure how to communicate this to your provider, you can ask our DoNotPay Robot Lawyer for assistance. Your virtual legal advisor will generate an extension letter for you, so you don’t have to spend days thinking about what to say.
The process is quick and easy. You should provide the details (dates, full name, provider), and DoNotPay will do the rest.
Negotiate the payment terms for your Internet bill
If you are not able to cover the full bill, you can try to make a deal with the provider to formulate a payment plan. There are a couple of options you can ask for:
- Discount if you pay immediately
- Payment in installments
- Permanent change of due date if the current due date is inconvenient
Our advice is to try to discuss this with your ISP before you use other options. Paying with your credit card or asking for a bank loan are last-resort solutions because you will end up paying a lot more.
Ask for a waiver on late fees for your Internet bill
In case this sounds too complicated, ask DoNotPay for help. Out Robot Lawyer will create a waiver letter for you. All you have to do is provide the necessary info.
Our goal is to assist regular citizens with administration and bureaucracy, so let us help you as much as we can. Cutting through the red tape can be so challenging that many people simply give up and choose an easier solution. Unfortunately, that is not always the best or the cheapest option.
What else can DoNotPay do to help?
It’s not just the Internet bills that can give you a headache. Most of us are walking through an unfair bureaucratic maze all the time. DoNotPay is your team of robotic lawyers that you can consult, in case you are facing a challenging administrative task. We are here to:
- Assist with various bills
- Help you fight speeding tickets
- Get revenge on robocalls
- Sue people and companies in small claims court
- Cancel any subscriptions or memberships
- Dispute parking tickets
- Make virtual credit cards to avoid being charged after your free trial
- Jump the phone queue when getting in touch with customer service reps
- Get compensation for delayed and canceled flights
- Get an appointment with the DMV faster
- Dispute traffic tickets