How to slash your cable bill? Just ask

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    Ask for what you want and be willing to negotiate. You just might end up saving big on your monthly cable bill.

    I’m not a negotiator by nature – I dread price haggling. But I think we all know someone who has successfully negotiated a lower cable bill simply by asking for it. And with my bill rising seemingly every other month, I’ve often wished I could do the same.

    A great blog post about how a real cable customer negotiated his bill from $132.88 down to $89.87 (without any change in service!) inspired me to think about what it really takes to ask for and get that price break.

    Here’s what I learned.

    1. Be clear about what you want. Remember, it never hurts to ask. If what you want is a lower monthly bill, rather than more channels for your current price, be clear about that. Many of us are uncomfortable haggling over prices, but this is a conversation your cable service rep has had many times. To her, it’s simply business. Besides, often, promotional pricing is available that you would never learn about otherwise. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

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    2. Be polite and pleasant. Try to establish a rapport with the customer service rep before you start negotiating. Simply being pleasant goes a long way. Changes are, the person on the line with you has dealt with many challenging customer issues today and will welcome the chance to help a friendly customer.

    3. Do your research. If someone you know got a specific price break from the same company last week, mention it. If you know of a current promotional offering from a different company, be ready to cite those details. A customer service rep will be more willing to make a deal if she knows you’ve done your homework.

    Have you haggled successfully with your cable provider? Please tell us what worked for you!

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