Take a look at your cable/phone bill – chances are it’s not a pretty sight.   I meet a lot of customers who have bundled TV, Internet and home phone bills running into the hundreds of dollars.

There are alternatives to this though, with more and more people choosing to change providers for these kinds of services.

Let’s start with Internet.  There are several options out there now with different internet providers who might be able to deliver a better service at a lower cost.   You really want to be looking at 5Mb/s or more for speed so keep that in mind when investigating your options.   Another thing to watch out for is if the service is capped.   What this means is that you’re only allowed a certain amount of data per month.  If you’re going to be streaming TV (see below) then you really need an internet service which has no data caps.

So, onto TV.   So many channels and so little to watch!  When we moved to Canada, we chose not to have a Satellite or Cable TV subscription.  Now whenever I watch regular TV I’m so glad we made that choice.   It seems to be a never-ending stream of commercials with a few clips of TV shows in between.   What would take 30min to watch can take over an hour because of all the commercial breaks.  And the breaks make it difficult to watch a show without losing track because of the distractions.   So, what’s the alternative?  One word – Netflix.

If you haven’t watched Netflix before – you’re in for a treat.   There are thousands of films, documentaries and TV shows to choose from.   And you don’t have to wait for them to be broadcast.   You can watch all episodes of a series without having to wait a week for the next one to come out.   And you can watch when you want to watch – pause a program and come back to it later.  And the best part – no commercials.  None.   Zip.   Zero!   All this for $10.99 per month (there’s a cheaper $8.99 plan but this doesn’t include HD shows).   Compare that to your satellite/cable bill – scary isn’t it!   You can watch Netflix on a computer, Tablet, Smart Phone.   And if you don’t already have a smart TV, you can get a streaming TV box such as a Roku for around $40.

With Internet and Netflix, you get a lot more flexibility on how you can use your TV.   But what about phones?   I’m seeing increasing numbers of customers switching from home (land line) phones to cellular phones.   By switching from a bundle, to Internet/Netflix/Cellular, you can reduce costs “and” have the benefit of a cellular service.   Cellular gives flexibility in that you can take your phone with you when you leave the house.   A lot of cellular contracts have unlimited Canada Wide calling too, so your monthly bill will always be the same – regardless of how many calls you’ve made.   It’s also reassuring to have a cell phone when travelling as you can use it to call for help if you break down.   Worried about losing the home phone number you’ve had all these years?  Well, you can “port” your number to the new cell phone, which means you get to keep the number (something I didn’t realise was possible until recently)!

So more flexibility, cheaper (and more consistent) costs with less time wasted watching commercials.    Take another look at that bundled cable bill and maybe decide that it’s time to join the rest of the crowd who are “Cutting the Cord”.