I haven’t been following my own advice lately.
A few years ago, I wrote about how to reduce the amount you pay for internet. For a long time, I never paid full price. I always made it a point to call customer service and see if I could get a better deal or at least get the same the promotional pricing that applied to new customers.
However, for the last year or so, I’ve been paying full price. I could probably make a ton of excuses like I’ve been busy working, I’m busy with the kids, I don’t have time because I’m doing yard work…but I just don’t have any excuse. All those things apply, but I just have been too damn lazy to handle it.
Calling customer service, even though I hate being on hold, doesn’t take that long. One quick phone call can yield a pretty decent win – and I haven’t bothered to do it. I guess that explains a lot of irrational financial behavior in a lot of people. They can’t be bothered. They’ve got more important stuff to do.
So at this point, I probably should pick up the phone. The only thing holding me back is if I continue to stay with AT&T, I will be stuck with them for another year. I have been debating trying out cable internet. My local provider is Time Warner, and like any other cable company, they have largely mixed reviews. From customer service to true internet speeds, and everything in-between, it’s hard to get a fix on what to expect (especially for services that have a legal monopoly).
One of my motivations is to avoid the equipment fee that AT&T forces you to pay for their “gateway.” I offered to purchase it, but they won’t let me. With cable, you can buy your own modem, as long as it is an “approved” modem or is on their list of compatible modems. Additionally, Time Warner is supposedly upgrading their networks and will introduce major speed increases in the area for no extra cost. That’s a huge benefit for me, but who knows how long it will actually take to roll it out in my area.
So, what to do? Call up Time Warner and get cable internet and employ the same technique to retain desirable pricing every year? Or call up AT&T to get lower pricing and get locked in for another year? I really have to make a decision, because this task has been sitting on my to do list for a long time.
If you have comments about either service, I’d love to hear about it before I lock myself in. Internet is more important than ever now that I’m working from home, and I’d really like to pay less for it – sooner than later.