Phone and Internet Bundles: Are They Worth the Money?
If you’re like most Americans, you use your phone and the internet on a daily basis. If you’re still paying for those two services separately, you might be paying more than necessary. Opting for an internet and phone bundle can allow you to pay a single price for both services. Not only is it more convenient this way, but you could also enjoy valuable cost savings.
Not sure if it’s worth it? Today, we’re breaking down how these bundles work and sharing a few top reasons why they’re a smart idea.
What Is an Internet and Phone Bundle?
Phone and Internet bundles offer users the opportunity to lump some of their most commonly used household services into one low, monthly payment.
These bundles are usually offered under the same provider, although this isn’t always the case. On occasion, two major providers will team up to offer internet and phone packages to current and future subscribers.
While most homeowners choose to bundle their phone and internet services together, these aren’t the only household services that you can bundle. For instance, you can also add television services or home security to your packaged deal.
If you’re only bundling internet and phone services or internet and television services, then the package is known as a double bundle.
If there are three different services grouped together, then it’s known as a triple bundle. If you go all out and bundle your television, home phone, cell phone, and internet, then that’s a quad bundle!
Understanding the Cost
According to one recent survey, nearly 60% of American homeowners have opted to keep their paid television subscriptions simply because they’re in a bundle. The low monthly price makes them feel as though they’re getting a better deal, even if they don’t use the TV as often as they imagined.
With the right setup, this can be the case.
Certain bundles can save you month each month. However, it’s important to think about how often you will access those perks. Providers will advertise bundle deals that require you to purchase multiple services at a time, offering lower prices in return for your loyalty and patronage.
If you use those services regularly, then it’s smart to bundle and save. However, if you aren’t careful, you could wind up spending too much on items you don’t actually need. In most cases, a bundle can save homeowners a little under $15 per month, or around $180 per year.
It might not seem like too much, but it can make a big difference over time. This is especially the case if you’re on a strict household budget. These savings will vary by the specific provider and will depend on a range of different factors, including your geographic location.
Differences in Service Levels
When you bundle your phone and internet services, does your service improve? If you work from home or rely on high-speed internet access for any reason, this is a valid question.
There’s nothing like walking all around the house trying to find a solid signal, only for it to go out right when you need it the most. Thankfully, most providers will verify that your internet speeds go up with a bundle.
If you were to pay for this upgrade in a standalone internet plan, you’d likely pay much more for the uptick in service.
For instance, an internet-only plan might start at $25, but a bundle plan includes higher-speed internet for just a little more money. This is one of the reasons why it’s smart to compare each option to make sure the lower prices don’t mean lower service levels.
Why Should You Bundle? Pros to Know
Are you on the fence about an internet and phone bundle? If so, it helps to know some of the benefits you can enjoy when you make the switch. Let’s take a look at a few of the best reasons to combine these services.
Centralized Point of Service
With a bundle, you can handle everything in the same spot. When you go with the same provider for everything, the devices are easier to install in your home. It’s also easier to move services onto this new provider from a former one.
Plus, if you ever need to reach out to customer support for any reason, they can pull up a single account to learn about all of your devices and services.
For instance, CenturyLink subscribers can access a CenturyLink Authorized Sales Agent to check availability in their area and learn more about their options.
Single Bill to Pay
Who doesn’t love getting fewer bills in the mail? When you spring for a bundled service, you only have to pay one invoice each month. This makes it easier to keep up with your payments, so you can anticipate and schedule them accordingly.
Access to Special Perks
Often, providers will pass along special savings to their bundled customers as a reward for purchasing all of their services through them. These deals are designed to make the bundles as attractive as possible and may include such promotions as:
- Waived monthly fees
- Free installation
- Premium programs
- Additional features
It’s always smart to ask about these promotions any time you sign up for a new bundle. While some are reserved for new customers only, others are available to any subscriber.
Improved Service Levels
As mentioned, you may be able to score access to faster internet speeds with a bundle. If you add television into the mix, you could even enjoy access to premium programming or more channels.
If you purchased these upgrades individually, they would likely cost you much more. This can be a great way to amplify your services without paying a ton of extra money out of pocket.
What About Drawbacks? Cons to Understand
While there are many advantages to home phone and internet bundles, they aren’t for everyone. Is there ever a reason why you shouldn’t look into these plans?
Let’s review the cons that might persuade you to stick with your current plan.
Restrictive Fine Print
It’s important to read the fine print carefully before you enter into any type of contract. This is especially the case with a bundled service contract.
Especially if your provider offers a discount, they may include restrictive terms that prevent you from taking full access to the services. Or, you may have to sign a contract for a set amount of time, ensuring that you will pay for the bundle throughout the duration of the timeline.
If you try to get out of the bundle or change your terms at any time, the subscriber might enforce hefty termination fees to discourage you from doing so.
When you first sign on to a bundled deal, you might be starry-eyed over the initial promotional price. These are usually offered as additional discounts on the already-low bundled price.
While you may be able to enjoy those savings for a short period of time, they don’t usually last indefinitely. At some point, the promotion will expire, and you will notice your monthly bill go up. Often, this change will occur without any type of notice, so it’s important to monitor your monthly statement closely.
While this can be discouraging to see, keep in mind that standalone services can also cost more over time. Sometimes, you can take advantage of new subscriber pricing by calling your provider and requesting the deal.
Comparing Different Bundles
Internet and phone bundles can look, operate, and cost very differently depending on the provider you choose. As you perform your initial research, take the time to compare the top few options to understand how they rank against each other.
Once you’ve found the one you want to go with, don’t automatically jump into a bundle. Instead, take a look at all of the extra features that the bundle offers, such as improved internet speed or better-calling features. Then, calculate how much it would cost to simply upgrade your current bundle to include that feature.
If it’s more than the price of the bundle, then it’s a smart buy. Some providers will even allow homeowners to customize their bundles to meet their specific needs.
For instance, if you don’t need the thousands of channels that come with your television bundle, you may be able to save money by choosing a slimmer version that only has the ones you actually watch.
Is an Internet and Phone Bundle Right For You?
An internet and phone bundle can help you save money and stress. However, be sure to keep your home budget in mind. You don’t want to pay for any services that you don’t need or won’t use.
When you find the right plan, try to lock in new member savings. Then, keep an eye on those prices and call your provider if you notice any changes down the road. Then sit back and enjoy your savings!
In the meantime, we’re here to keep you updated on all of the news you need. Check out our “Services” guides to learn more!