Is Cable Worth the Costs?

I am a Game of Thrones addict. I almost shed real tears when Rob Stark died, and really want a direwolf for my next birthday. Maybe you don’t watch, but if you do watch tv, then you do one of two things: You either pay for cable, or you don’t. If you are fresh into adulthood, than you are no strangers to bills either. Cable is definitely a large one. But is cable worth it?

is cable worth the costs

The Dilemma when Paying for Cable TV

Cable gives you the ability to watch more channels, see a wider variety of programming, and really enjoy all that television has to offer. But cable is expensive. A basic cable package + movie channels + hd + whatever else they tack on to your bill = a lot of money!! On the flipside however, cable allows you the freedom to watch what you want, when you want to for the most part.

Other Options: Online TV Streaming Services

If cable seems like it is out of your budget, than what are your alternatives? For starters, there are online streaming services like Hulu and Netflix. Hulu lets you watch primarily new shows on major networks, while Netflix has a gigantic collection of movies, tv shows, and documentaries that will definitely keep you occupied. Regardless, online services offer a cheaper alternative than traditional cable, will most of the same benefits.

The Verdict? Ask Your Budget

Just because you can afford cable, does not mean it necessarily a good idea. Evaluate whether or not it is something you can afford, and if that money could go towards other savings priorities. What does your current cable service give you that you could not get from a streaming website, the internet, and blogs? Is it a luxury that makes sense right now? These questions are not necessarily easy, but they can save you hundreds of dollars in the long run, and set you up for better fiscal decisions down the road.

What do you think? Is cable worth it to you? How do you supplement your cravings for your favorite shows? Let me know in the comments!

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About Jonathan Jackson

Jonathan Jackson is a 20something working on pursuing his dreams while beating debt at the same time, He is a recent graduate that is learning how to manage his finances, build a career, and craft his personal brand. When he isn't writing for Young Finances, he loves sneakers, working out, and finding his inner kid by building Lego sets. You can connect with Jonathan on Google+, Twitter, and his blog.

  • krantcents

    I don’t know if you can justify it on the basis of dollars and sense. I view cable as part of my entertainment budget. I already accumulated enough savings for retirement and my children are grown.

  • Jonathan Jackson

    @krantcents:disqus definitely agree! I think it is a matter of where you are in your life and your financial goals. For me, cable could be a part of my entertainment budget, but I could also use that money toward something else.I definitely have not accumulated enough savings for retirement and have no children, so my interpretation of where that money could go is different. You make a great point!

  • Glen @ Monster Piggy Bank

    I’m also a GOT addict and paid for cable just so I could watch the show. To me it is worth the cost just to watch the show, but if I was under financial pressure then I wouldn’t.

  • Your Daily Finance

    We enjoy having cable but could probably live without it. Honestly its the dvr and me being able to watch sports and the wifey able to record some of her shows. Is it worth the price its hard to say. If we needed the money it would be one of those things we would cut.

  • OutlierModel

    We have cable but only because it’s bundled with our $30/month cable and internet package. At $30 a month, sure, we’ll take cable. But we don’t watch tv very often at all….

    • LaTisha Styles

      In that case I would say that it might be worth it. But I tend to think that cable TV increases the desire for consumption, and I think advertisers would do anything to get in front of your face.

  • Monasez (@Monasez)

    Cable is definitely worth the cost. Online streaming sometimes doesn’t work well. Plus sites like netfix and hulu are overrated and hardly put up new movies and shows.

    • LaTisha Styles

      It is definitely something to consider for your entertainment budget. Some people value going out to eat more than staying in to watch TV. Everything in moderation, right?

  • EL @MoneyWatch101

    Cable is not worth it when you are living paycheck to paycheck and in debt. I would skip it until you could really afford that luxury item.