$108 – My Cost For High Speed Internet, TV, 2 Cell Phones, Home Phone, Long Distance, And Movies

My cost for high speed Internet, TV, 2 cell phones, home phone, long distance, and moviesI’ve been meaning to write a post for probably a year now on how much I pay all together for my communications and entertainment services on a monthly basis and while reading this post over at Add Vodka earlier today I was inspired to finally get doing it! I’ve written a lot here on how to save money on your monthly bills but I’ve never actually broken down my own costs as a real life example and I think that’s worthwhile, so here goes. All prices include taxes and fees.

$66.61 – High Speed Internet (50mbps Down / 30mbps Up)

Here in Atlantic Canada we have some of the best high speed internet service in all of Canada. We don’t have much competition or low cost providers, Rogers and BellAliant are pretty much it for choices, but Aliant has always been an early pioneer for high speed internet in Canada. My parents actually had 8mbps fibre optic high speed at their house all the way back in 1997!  Unfortunately, it was before its time and they later discontinued it in favour of much slower and cheaper DSL, but since 2009 fibre has returned with even higher speeds in their new FibreOp service!

I’m actually on the lowest speed at 20mbps 50mbps (they upped it for free), which is more than enough, but they also offer download speeds of up to 250mbps! Even better, there is no download cap so I can stream and download as much multimedia as I want. By calling and negotiating a better deal, I was able to get a $10 monthly discount off the regular rates. Keep in mind, I have no other services with them but internet so they don’t usually like to discount things too much unless you bundle multiple services together, so I think I did pretty well there to even get a discount.

Cost Breakdown: $68.95 – $10.00 + $7.66 tax = $66.61

FREE – Unlimited On Demand TV

I’ve been preaching about watching TV online for a long time now, but in case you haven’t heard it yet you at least need to consider all the ways you can save money on TV even if you aren’t ready to go with an online-only solution.

Want to get access to American Netflix, Hulu, and American TV Networks?

Unlocator is the best service for doing this. Try it FREE to see if you like it!

People are quick to come up with excuses why internet TV isn’t as good as cable, but with the right setup I actually think it is better because you can get all of the popular shows legally right on the network websites on demand. It works just like a PVR that you never have to set up to record, manage, or worry about breaking and it has unlimited hard drive space! The only downside is that you can’t skip the commercials, although you can fast forward, pause, and rewind, but it hardly matters because the commercials are far fewer and much shorter than on cable TV anyway. 30 seconds is the norm as opposed to the 3 minutes of commercials you typically get with cable.

The key pieces to the puzzle are having a good home theater PC and high download cap on your internet service. If you’ve got that, then you might as well call the cable company right now and cancel!

Cost Breakdown: FREE

Bonus: Ready to cut the cord? Grab this free PDF download of my step-by-step guide.

$30 – Two Smartphones With Features and Data

My wife and I have our cell phones with PC Telecom (President's Choice) on a prepaid plan that is pay per use for the amount of minutes and text messages you use. To keep the accounts active we need to buy a $100 top up card every 12 months with the unused balance carrying over. So theoretically we could each spend $8.33 a month if we didn’t talk or text that much but I’ve upped it to $30 to be more typical of our actual usage.

The prepaid service comes with free Caller ID, Voicemail, and 3 way calling. Local minutes are 20¢/min, long distance minutes are 45¢/min, and text messages are 15¢ outgoing and unlimited incoming. We use WiFi on our android smartphones that we got brand new and super cheap through Koodo with no contract for most of our data needs, but I also have 100MB of data on my phone which depletes $10 from my balance monthly.

Finally, there is no need to add tax to this total because I’ve been buying our top up cards at Superstore on the no tax weekends to save on that extra expense and it works like a charm!

Cost Breakdown: Min $8.33/mth per phone + $10 data + actual usage = ~$30

$3.33 – Home Phone With Unlimited Long Distance + Calling Features

With the amazing internet connection we have mentioned above, it only makes sense to use Voice Over IP for our home phone service instead of a typical landline that you would pay $30/mth or more for. There are literally hundreds of VoIP options out there, and some of them are even less expensive than magicJack or even free but even for a tech savvy person such as myself I found magicJack to be the best combination of cost and ease of use. When it costs so little, paying a little more to get a better product is easy!

In my review of magicJack I go into all the details about the service, but it is basically a small device that plugs directly into your router as well as your cordless phone system. You get a local Canadian number and it works almost identical to a regular phone except for it comes with unlimited long distance anywhere in North America. It also comes with voicemail and caller ID along with a bunch of other calling features at no additional cost. Note: I now have magicJack Plus, which is better than the original magicJack because it doesn't require a computer to operate.

Cost Breakdown: $29.95/year + $10/year for Canadian Number ÷ 12 months = $3.33

$7.99 – Unlimited On Demand Movies & TV Series

I have been a subscriber to Netflix in Canada since a month or two after it launched and I’ve found it to be a great service! We already have more free TV than we can handle as mentioned above so this is a definite luxury that we could cancel any time to reduce our costs but at $7.99 it is still uber cheap for what you get. I currently work from home and a family member looks after my young daughter here at home during the day so just the enormous supply of kids shows for her and movies for the sitter during naps is enough to make the service worth it.

My wife and I also enjoy watching entire TV series together when we get the chance and the odd movie. I honestly can’t see cancelling the service any time soon because I think it’s great! I’ve actually got a post coming up really soon reviewing Netflix Canada, so stayed tuned for that!

Cost Breakdown: Straight $7.99/mth (tax inc.) for unlimited content = $7.99

TOTAL – $107.93

Not ready to cut the cord but want to pay LESS? Get this 2-page PDF and learn the 5 steps to negotiate a better deal on cable.

How Much Do You Pay?

Based on my reading, even most savvy internet users pay more than I do for these services so there’s definitely no shame in that. I’m curious what you currently pay and if you would consider doing any of the things I’ve done to cut your costs or maybe do something else I haven’t thought of yet. I’m sure there are some readers who pay even less than I do, so let’s hear about that too!

Disclosure: Some links in this article may be affiliate links. We're letting you know because it's the right thing to do. Here’s a more detailed disclosure on how HTS makes money.

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Micah Peterson
Micah Peterson's picture

Great article! Are there Saint John, NB VOIP numbers available yet?

October 23, 2012 @ 10:35 am
SavingMentor's picture
After reading Lee's comment below, I checked on les.net and they only have Moncton area numbers and I also looked on magicJack's site and they only have 506.803, which is again Moncton so it doesn't look like things have changed yet.
October 23, 2012 @ 11:21 am
Lee's picture

Yes, great article! Would like to see a simple calculator so readers can compare and save!

@Micah Peterson - les.net and anveo offer NB 506 voip numbers.

October 23, 2012 @ 11:03 am
SavingMentor's picture
I'll have to check out those 506 number Lee but the thing is that 506 covers all of New Brunswick and a few months ago I could only find Moncton area numbers. There may be Saint John area numbers now too. New Brunswick was pretty much the last province to get on the VoIP bandwagon as the numbers were much too costly for VoIP providers other than Vonage to offer.
October 23, 2012 @ 11:15 am
Robb's picture

I dropped my landline a few years ago because we have two cell phones. My employer has always paid my cell phone bill, even when I switched jobs I made sure to negotiate that into my contract.

I complained about my internet to TELUS on Twitter and got it for $15.95 a month. My wife's cell phone costs $65 a month. Bell XPressVu Satellite is $60 a month. We borrow movies for free at the library.

So, in total we pay $140.95 a month.

October 23, 2012 @ 3:16 pm
SavingMentor's picture
Using the employer to cover some of your costs or claiming them as a business expense when possible is a great way to get some of these costs lowered even further! That's pretty sweet to get your internet for $15.95 I must say. I don't think I'd have a chance of that around here. Can I ask what your internet connection speed is Robb? I've been meaning to check out the library for some free stuff. I wonder if they would have new release movies not available on Netflix? :)
October 23, 2012 @ 3:19 pm
Robb's picture

Internet connection speed? I thought the only difference was between dial-up and high-speed? ;)

Ok, my wife tells me to go to speed test dot net, and it says my internet connection speed is 16.17 Mbps.

October 26, 2012 @ 1:42 am
SavingMentor's picture
Well that's smokin' fast for what you're paying!
October 26, 2012 @ 9:55 am
Joe's picture

Wow, Robb and SM, you totally have us beat on total cost!

#1 problem for us: we live in the country. Bell is the only internet provider. We pay MORE than in TO ($40-something after taxes; I negotiated a lot to get this price on the Rogers Extreme package) but instead of getting 120 gigs of bandwidth and an insane upload speed, we now have DSL quality service. Canada's oligopolies suck. And it's even worse when it's a local monopoly!

We definitely live/die by our computers when it comes to entertainment. There's something deeply satisfying about hooking your computer up to a 51" flatscreen with an HDMI cable. Soon enough, I can keep my HDMI permanently plugged into my XBox, because we're getting a free Sony Internet Player from the credit card deal :) actually we're getting 2 cause my partner got her own card. Good Xmas gift methinks.

As for local TV, we've been using free UHF/VHF for our TV but after the digital transition we get like one channel. We just got a free satellite receiver in the mail and we've got an installation scheduled for tomorrow. Shaw, under an agreement with the CRTC, has been running a program called the LTSS. If you live in an area with service degraded by the digital transition, look into this free program. It's like getting a very basic TV package for free :) I haven't paid a cent, they've never asked me for a credit card, it's awesome.

The real killed on our bills is our smartphones. I have a BlackBerry Bold 9900 and my girlfriend just got hers. We each pay $50 + HST monthly. Here's our packages:

-200 minutes local
-ultd calling to My10 (helpful when we have family members across the country)
-100 minutes long distance (my girlfriend only gets 30, this is the only difference in the packages I was able to negotiate)
-ultd texting
-1 gig data (the BlackBerry beats Android and iPhone re: data compression. I use the BB a lot yet I've never gone over)
-voicemail/call display

So our cellphones are the real kicker at $112.50 in total per month.

I've never had a landline phone. I could switch to a VOIP MagicJack but, for me, there are too many drawbacks e.g. keeping my laptop on all the time etc. I just like the convenience of my cellphone (latte factor?)

If either of us needed a ton of long distance, we both have the access phone number for a calling card company in our "My10". We'd just purchase a $5 card online using our phone and make calls.

So our total telecom bills are about $152.50.

October 24, 2012 @ 11:52 am
SavingMentor's picture
That's still pretty good Joe! Paying for the smart phones with data is definitely something that a lot of people do and is worth it for a lot of people. Nothing can beat the convenience and ease of use. I've tried to combine some of that with a reduced cost by going with the magicJack solution but there is no doubt that going 100% cell phone, as we used to do, is more convenient. One thing though, with the (relatively) new magicJack Plus, you no longer have to have your computer turned on to use it. It plugs directly into your router and the wall electrical outlet. Although, it probably wouldn't be ideal for you in a more rural area with a slower connection possibly with a higher delay anyway. There are other options nearly identical to magicJack that don't require a computer either like Nettalk Duo, and Ooma. Using a standard ATA coupled with a standard VoIP provider like Voip.ms also wouldn't require a computer. Does your TV only have 1/2 HDMI ports? Not sure why you'd have to swap it? Check out Monoprice.com for high quality and uber cheap HDMI cables if you haven't before.
October 24, 2012 @ 2:56 pm
Lee's picture

Hi Joe, have you checked out the Koodo Canada wide plans, for example, you can get unlimited Canada-wide calling with 1GB of data for $60. It's about the same as you're paying now, but you don't have to worry about local minutes, long distance minutes, calling cards, and MY10 or whatever. Just enjoy the latte factor :-)

October 25, 2012 @ 12:45 pm
SavingMentor's picture
Koodo is definitely the way to go for postpaid plans with no negotiation. They're almost always on top! I've been seriously considering their $30 75 minute plan with 250MB of data actually.
October 25, 2012 @ 1:45 pm
Steve @ Grocery Alerts's picture

Great breakdown of the price.

We use RingCentral (toll-free number, unlimited long distance and fax line and local number for $40 /month) for our business and pay $19.99 for Shaw Extreme (could be cheaper with Telus) and don't pay for cable (watch everything online).

We had a guest post that discussed a great free tool that shows all the shows available for Canadians online (great search engine) - http://www.streaming-guide.com/?src=ga

October 25, 2012 @ 2:14 pm
SavingMentor's picture
That's a cool site Steve, thanks for sharing the link.
October 25, 2012 @ 2:34 pm
30kto30million's picture

Cool post sounds like getting some good deals, especially on your phones..

As for me.. I am with Primus for $55.25/month (unlimited download cap) and have a speakout pay as you go sim in my smartphone which averages $10-$15 a month... for about $70/month..

Thanks for the handy info!

October 25, 2012 @ 11:34 pm
SavingMentor's picture
Love the avatar man, great idea you had there!
October 26, 2012 @ 9:55 am
Tracey H
Tracey H's picture

We pay $127 to our cable company for a bundled package of internet, phone, and television. And we pay $8.33/month for 1 cell phone that's seldom used. We're thinking of cutting out the TV part (we do watch some of our shows online), but there are lots of shows we like to watch that we can't get online or on Netflix so I think we're going to stick with it. $135/month seems like a lot, but I use the internet about 8 hours/day, have CBC Newsworld on in the background (and flip to the Weather Network as needed and watch HGTV home shows in the evening), so I guess it's not too bad for all that (plus we get a landline and a cell phone).

With Magic Jack, you can't keep your current phone number, can you?

October 26, 2012 @ 10:37 am
SavingMentor's picture
When they launched magicJack Plus they added number porting to their service. I don't know if I'd trust them with an important number you've had for decades or anything but the option is there. I mostly use my magicJack for long distance calls and calls to friends and family so if I ever lose that number I don't really care. I protect my cell phone number and use that for all things of extreme importance. You'd have to check with magicJack if they can port your number specifically, because there are some restrictions on it. You're doing pretty well at $135/mth. Some people pay that just for 2 cell phones!
October 26, 2012 @ 11:02 am
Sustainable PF's picture

TV - $0 (we watch tv and movies online at no charge)
Netflix - $0 (search for Netflix Sucks ;) )
Phone - $2.67 (magicjack plus - our annual bill was $32 this year)
Internet - $52 (100 GB cap)
Cell Phones $16.67 (2x Virgin $100 per year top up each, no data unless I plan to travel - so $10 so far)

Total $71.34 per month.

November 03, 2012 @ 8:45 pm
SavingMentor's picture
You're welcome :) How does your magicJack cost less than mine btw? Are you not counting the $10 canadian number charge or are they not billing you for it? I actually can't remember if I was charged for mine on the last renewal or not but I think they are supposed to. I'm also curious if you actually keep your cell phone usage to $100 per year or does your actual usage go over that? I was tempted to put mine at $16.67, but I figured that would be kind of like cheating because we sometimes go over that amount. Is your internet $52 tax-in?
November 03, 2012 @ 11:05 pm
Sustainable PF's picture

I will email you the invoice I got via email.

As per the cell phone - for the last 8 yrs I have put $100 on my phone, annually. It covers the year. My wife now has the same - so $200 per year. And we have "lost" money each year - we didn't use up our time. We never run out of this credit, lose it yes, stupidly, but never exceed it.

I paid $10 for "data" at the CPFC conference. So add about $0.90 to our monthly bill. I turned of that "data" before it expired.

$52 was the amount being deducted from my bank account.

I have been online since '88/'89 SM. Learned a lot of tricks to avoid the BS on the way.

November 03, 2012 @ 11:55 pm
SavingMentor's picture
Sweet! I think you win the prize for the lowest overall cost for the most services so far. You and I basically follow an identical plan but I can't get my internet costs down because I'm in a small city with no competition. At least I've got the high speeds and no cap to console myself with... If I could manage to keep my cell phone usage in line every month and I cancelled Netflix, I would be at $86.61 tax in.
November 04, 2012 @ 12:16 pm
Vanessa's picture

Wow, great breakdown! I love how you can save tax by buying your top-up cards at Superstore. I agree that internet TV > than real TV. The only problem I have is that there are 1 or 2 providers that offer unlimited downloads and neither of them offer high speed (well, they offer "high speed")

November 04, 2012 @ 11:15 pm
SavingMentor's picture
Yes, download caps are a pain. However, if you don't watch all that much TV, then it still an option to get all your TV through the internet. Where you do you live? Are there not many options in terms of internet service providers?
November 05, 2012 @ 9:06 am
Deb's picture

I am In the Ottawa area. Our home phone and Internet is with Bell, at a cost of approx $90.00 per month plus tax. Then we have Shaw for tv at approx $93.00 per month incl tax, but no movies. One cell is with Bell (blackberry) - 3 yr term and $45 per month plus tax, and one with Koodo (no data but unlimited tax and 50 phone minutes for $25 plus tax).

Any suggestions how to cut these costs down? Thanks

March 31, 2013 @ 1:46 pm
SavingMentor's picture
I would definitely recommend reading through all the articles I've written in the Bills section of my site. There is lots of information there on how to cut your costs on all these services. Just quickly I would try calling Bell and getting to the retentions department by telling them you are considering cancelling because of a good offer you've seen from a competitor (having a real offer helps). Then once you are speaking to retentions ask them if they can give you some sort of discount for being a good customer and to keep your business. $93 seems expensive for TV. I would also call them and ask for a discount or consider switching to free internet TV. I have written guides on that in the same Bills section. For your cell phone $45/month isn't that bad but I might consider going no contract with your phone after your term is up. Try looking for promotions just before Christmas at the end of November. That's pretty much the best time to get a cell phone plan or to purchase a new phone. I would look at Koodo specifically as they have been the leader in low cost awesome plans for the past couple of years. You might find a better deal by luck somewhere else, or at one of the discount providers that only serves small regions of the country, but Koodo isn't hit or miss like the rest of them.
April 06, 2013 @ 12:58 pm
Ali's picture

You can speak to bell "level 3" and they can give you tv internet home phone for 98 per month before tax and a cell phone plan with 100 minutes local for 20 per month before tax.

October 05, 2015 @ 1:32 am
Czechgirl13's picture
Hey there, I wish I could use the internet to watch tv. I wish I could use it at all. I live in the country and the only options available are laughable. I pay close to $65.00 for $10GB! I've tried to call every service provider around, and so far am stuck with Bell who love to charge me for any additional mb. Anyone have other options? I live in a hamlet close to Durham, Ontario. (Not to be mixed up with Durham region near TO) Thanks.
July 14, 2014 @ 3:50 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture
If you have a really small cap, then internet TV isn't really a viable option and you pretty much have to go with either satellite, cable, or over the air TV. You could look into satellite internet providers, but they typically have slower speeds, caps, and higher costs as well. I would suggest negotiating with your internet and TV provider, and trying to get them to give you a retention deal to keep your business.
September 28, 2014 @ 10:23 pm
neelie's picture

I know where durham is..when I head to owen sound first stop in mnt forest to see my brother then on to durham .stop at hortons before taking rd 4 cutoff up to owen sound.I live between tavistock and woodstock and I use..righttech communications.. unlimited and 34$ inc tax..check out their website to see if its available in your area? If not email and ask them who covers your area..there a different co for somewhere north of elmira. Hope this helps

July 04, 2016 @ 2:10 am
Dennis Walker
Dennis Walker 's picture
hi all and thank you -just received my bell bill today and found you folks on line - I think I win the prize for the highest costs (kind of like being the most honest golfer) .$232 for land line ,internet and t.v from Bell Plus $100 for two koodoo phones . Not sure if I am dumb or lazy or both but in spite of the good advice I am lost as to where to start .I would happily pay someone to sort it all out for me or give me step by step -I do not want to lose either my email address or phone numbers as it is how people contact me for work . thanks for any help Dumb and desperate in Burlington
September 26, 2014 @ 9:16 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

The easiest thing to do would be to find a good competitor offer, then call Bell and tell them you will be switching your land line, internet, and TV if they don't match or beat it. If you have the time to get more agressive, then you can try to get a good internet only deal and see if you can find all the TV you need online. Plug your laptop or home theater PC into your TV and watch that way. Check out my guide to free internet TV. $100 for 2 Koodo phones, depending on what kind of plans you have, isn't necessarily the worst. If you're able to cut down on cell phone usage, then you could look into prepaid plans where you top up once per year for around $100. This won't work for heavy cell users.

September 28, 2014 @ 10:27 pm
Jay's picture

@ Dennis Walker in Burlington, Jay here "next-door" in Hamilton:
the only way you are really going to get you Bell bill down is to ditch them. even if you call and get the bill reduced, you will likely find that they don;t actually decrease the fees for your device, but instead apply a discount (say, $20 off the internet portion per month). And then, they continue to raise your service rates because they never promised to lock those in, only promised the discount for x-amount of time.
Our Bell bill was up to $130 per month for home phone, North American long distance (I think it was something like 25 hours per month - my wife is on the phone a lot with her family on the other side of the country and in the USA), internet (Fibe 10, 25 Gb per month), and modem rental.
We finally gave Bell the boot over a year ago, switched to a smaller carrier (TekSavvy) and got 6 Mbps cable internet (75 Gb/month) (p.s. they offer DSL as well), VoIP home phone with all the standard call features plus some not offered by Bell like telemarketer screening (which is awesome to have!), unlimited North America long distance, for under $50 per month. That is a huge savings, nearly $1000 per year! We had to purchase some hardware upfront (modem and ATA adapter, $150 total), plus $50 install fee, but as you can see that was quickly recovered as savings.
The phone service has been flawless, clear lines, no problems with internet speeds.
Obviously, you needs will vary but there are other packages available with faster speeds and up to unlimited bandwidth.
As for TV, we use an antenna and get all the major Canadian networks in HD for free. In Burlington, you will also be able to get the US networks from Buffalo if you use a second antenna (I still need to do that). And now with the serge in new devices such as Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire HD, ROKU and apple TV, there's lots of options there to get shows and movies for less. We just ordered the Amazon Fire HD unit from the US but have not received it yet.
BTW Teksavvy also offers a digital TV service.
It really comes down to what you "must have" and how much you are willing to pay. Particularly when it comes to TV. But there are a lot of options out there for saving money on those services.

December 29, 2014 @ 11:33 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Great advice all around, thanks Jay!

December 31, 2014 @ 2:09 pm
Dennis's picture
Thanks Stephen I will start the bargaining process tomorrow !
September 29, 2014 @ 10:02 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

If you happen to check back, how did you make out?

December 31, 2014 @ 2:13 pm
Betty's picture

This has been interesting reading, even though I don't understand most of it. We are in the GTA, Ontario and are with Bell. We have the bundle, landline, internet, tv for a whopping $267.00 per month. As seniors and not at all understanding the "electronic age talk", we need help. I understand VOIP is good but can be confusing to folks not knowledgable. Hubby loves the sports channels and I like old movies and some US tv shows. We pay 61.85 for phone, 63.90 for Internet, 121.50 for TV plus taxes. We get a bundle credit of 10.00/mo. We live in an apartment that does not have HD service but I understand that can be purchased - but where and how I have no idea. We have two boxes for tv - 10.00/mo total and a modem for for internet fo 4.95 /mo. How can we get this down to a reasonable amount? HELP PLEASE.
I don't know any of the technical words you use - so we need help. Thanks a bunch.

July 24, 2015 @ 1:34 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

The easiest thing to do would be to call and ask for a discount. Paying $267 this day and age is just inexcusable. I would go on Bell's website and see if you can find a package there similar to what you get. I can't imagine it would come to that much. I hope you don't pay $61.85 just for home phone. Hopefully you are talking about cell phone(s). If you just mean home phone, then you need to do something to get that price down. Pay more than $20-$30 is just way to much. If you use something like magicJack, your cost will be $3-$4 per month with all features and long distance included.

Unless you want to get somebody a little more technical to help you out, then you will be best served by aggressively shopping around, watching ads and websites for new customer bonuses and discounts, etc. Once you have a good deal from a competitor, call and threaten to cancel and see what they offer you. Tell them the specifics of the offer you have in hand. If they won't negotiate (make sure you are talking to someone in the retention department), then actually cancel and go with the competitor's deal.

You could also try splitting your services up, getting internet from a cheaper provider like Tekksavvy, getting TV somewhere else, and getting phone somewhere else. The $10 bundle discount is a joke considering how high your prices are marked up.

July 28, 2015 @ 7:09 pm
Shauwn's picture

Mine is high i supose :(
2 cellphones with Telus shared data of 2 GB = 150$+20$ unlimited india calling + taxes.
TV = Indian Dish = 25$ per month
Internet with Telus = 21$ per month until i can again negotiate after sept 2015
total bill = rip off , i mean 216$ !!!
cant imagine life without data plan!
kudos to all you folks!

July 28, 2015 @ 8:05 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Well your TV and internet costs are fantastic, but your cell phones are way overpriced. Why not do your Indian calling from VoIP or a home phone and go a little lighter on your data package to cut your cell cost. Try to use WiFi when streaming video and audio and just use cell data for normal web browsing, email, etc. You should be able to get away with 1GB or less of data when doing that.

My bills have changed and gone up some since I wrote this post because data is necessary for me too. I managed to score an amazing deal with Fido that gives me 450 anytime nationwide minutes, unlimited evenings/weekends starting at 5pm, caller ID, voice mail, and 600MB of data for $29 per month. I have two of these because I got it for my wife too. I'm going to keep this plan as long as they'll let me unless they come out with a reasonably priced plan with 5GB+ worth of data.

July 29, 2015 @ 1:19 pm
Monique Ashby
Monique Ashby's picture

I bought a Koodo phone from Future Shop last fall for $300 no activation fee + I got $100 Future Shop Gift Card + because of another worker's mistake I got a $25 Gift Card because she thought I was getting a plan from Telus. The phone is worth $500. An LG Nexus 5 phone.

I just paid off my phone to get a new phone plan because I wanted the Data. For $45+ HST I get 750 Canada Wide Minutes unlimited evenings after 5 pm and weekends 750 MB of Data, Call display, Unlimited Text.

My phone is with Cogeco with Caller ID and 7 cents a minute long distance plus my Internet is Turbo 30 with 175 GB limit for $95 tax included.
I would love a better Cell phone plan without that many phone minutes but enough Data. I keep my home phone because of my Security Alarm System.
I got rid of cable because wasn't watching it enough. Online Bell is now blocking a lot of their channels but I still get CNN for free from some other website and I get Crackle and some other programs elsewhere.

August 16, 2015 @ 9:41 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Sounds like a great deal you got on the phone through Koodo. They do offer some amazing deals from time to time. Your cell plan looks reasonably priced for what you are getting. I don't know of anything better in the current market right off the top of my head but since you aren't under a contract, always keep your eyes open for a better deal. That's the beauty of not being tied down with a contract.

Your internet and phone prices are a bit high. Have you considered going with a lower cost provider like Cogeco or downgrading your speed a bit? Also, have you seen my Free Internet TV article? It's getting a little out of date (I will be updating it soon) but it still has a lot of good information for finding tv shows legally online.

August 18, 2015 @ 2:49 am
terry's picture

I am currently paying 250.00 for high speed, cable, phone and a cell phone. Any ideas how to cut costs?? these companies are crazy

How do I reduce my internet that is the most costly

September 27, 2015 @ 10:06 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Internet is the hardest one to cut because companies know that it is the most essential service these days so it is their bread and butter. As people cancel or reduce their other services, they know that no one is going to cut their internet.

That said there is competition out there. Depending on your region, you might have a low cost provider in your area like TekSavvy. You can check out my article on saving money on Internet service here.

Other than that, I'd look at new customer offers, try to find a good long term fixed priced bundle. Right now in Atlantic Canada Aliant and Rogers are competing and offering 3 year guaranteed pricing plans that have very fast internet, cable + pvr, and home phone service for $99 per month. If you don't want to switch providers, calling retentions is a good option too.

September 28, 2015 @ 11:19 am
Catherine's picture

I'm in Ottawa. Stopped directly using Bell and Rogers years ago.

VOIP and high speed internet = $40/month with TekSavvy

Unlimited long-distance service across Canada = $4/month

TV/Video = I stream it using laptop

Netflix = Not for me, I read instead

Smartphone = $100 top-up once per year prepaid with Virgin Mobile (Bell), I use it only when I travel

November 04, 2015 @ 9:45 am
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Nicely done Catherine - you've definitely got me beat there. We don't have great options for good quality and cheap internet in my region unfortunately. Discount providers like Teksavvy haven't set up shop here.

November 04, 2015 @ 11:19 am
Jenn's picture

I'm too embarrassed to even tell you what I pay but trust me it is WAY more than anyone here. It starts with $250 for TV and Internet and goes up from there...I've been interested in Internet TV for a while but nobody I asked seems to know how to do it, if it's legal, or even where to find out so I am very thankful to have found this website!!

One question I have is about using my Xbox One: I've noticed it has Internet TV in the menu and it's listed in your article about Internet TV - but as software only. Do I still need a computer (forget the technical term but you recommended ASUS as one...maybe HPTV? Seems to me my Xbox basically is a computer. Maybe it's all I need?

February 13, 2016 @ 11:23 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

The Xbox should give you access to some apps like Netflix that you can use for some internet TV. I'm not sure how capable or user friendly the Xbox browser is for browsing the internet and flash based websites for streaming video. You'd have to try out some of the Canadian network sites to see if you could stream content using your Xbox or Google around for more information on that.

Yes, it is most certainly legal if you aren't downloading movies and other copyright material by using torrenting programs. If you are accessing the content directly through network sites, then you will be viewing some commercials and it is 100% legit. My article on free internet TV is the best place to start:


February 14, 2016 @ 9:14 pm
rhonda's picture

where can i get all these services for the 108.00 you talk about,what is the provider,cause i am paying 189.00 per month sometimes more..please help,i live in Ottawa,ont

February 22, 2016 @ 8:30 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I think if you read through the post, you will see where I mention the different service providers I am using. Not all the offers I mentioned may still currently be available, but you should be able to get an idea of how to assemble a similar collection of services yourself from reading the article carefully and checking out other articles under the "Bills" section of the site.

February 23, 2016 @ 10:26 pm
Andy's picture

Hi guys. I've been meaning to lower my costs for some time now and this article has motivated me. Mostly looking to go cheaper on TV, internet and home phone. My cell is $33/mth (tax in) for unlimited talk, text and data so that's fine for me. Currently paying about $125 for the 3 services from Bell. I would like to keep my home phone number.
I've been looking into teksavvy and their $40 plan for 15mbps cable internet seems good (400gb cap and unlimited between 2-8 am). Does anybody have experience with them in the GTA area? If that works, I can get rid of cable TV for Internet TV.
Thanks in advance for any help.

May 07, 2016 @ 2:13 pm
Jenny's picture

I use Ooma.ca at $4 a month, which includes free long distance across Canada. It will "port" your number so there is no need to get a new number.

August 09, 2016 @ 12:13 am
Curtis's picture

High speed internet: $55/mo
Two unlocked phones we own already, and two tablet plans from bell: $20 each phone, 1 GB data each, per month.
Fongo free calling and long distance app, basically free calling anywhere in north america and only pennies international calling. Note that Fongo uses 0.5 MB of data per minute (2000 minutes calling on 1 GB), or if you are at home, it uses no data at all. You can also port your phone number to Fongo for $25, or sign up for a free number. Texting is $10 for 6 months, or if you are me, just use whatsapp. Incoming texts are free even if you don't pay for their text package.
Netflix: $8/mo
No need for land line
With Bell mobility, you can just ask for the tablet sim cards, be sure you know what size you need, most phones now take nano sims. Also be sure in your phone settings to make it so that unknown incoming calls are blocked under the Parental Controls of your phone. Tablet sims still have a phone number associated with them but you don't want those calls happening. Just use the Fongo app.
Total: $103/mo, and arguably better combo (lots of data) than the blog post.

July 23, 2016 @ 2:31 pm
Chris's picture

Koodo has $20 per month for unlimited canadawide long distance. You buy the hub and sim card for $50 and you own it.This service would replace a landline and you can port your number. they also have cell plans right now for $50 for 2 gigs of data and 500 minutes of daytime talk time or $55 for 2 gigs and unlimited canadawide minutes. $60 gives you 3 gigs and $75 for 4 gigs. This is a promotion they are running right now.

August 18, 2016 @ 5:46 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

I'm going to stick with MagicJack - but that sounds like a decent deal from Koodo as well.

August 29, 2016 @ 9:24 pm
Krista's picture

How do I Get this cheep offer?

August 23, 2016 @ 12:09 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

It depends on what service providers are in your area. This is just an example of what you can achieve on a tight budget if you try hard.

August 29, 2016 @ 9:24 pm
Terry's picture

Hi. we're here in Northumberland County Ont (E. of T.O.).
Just read this now as we are investigating how to reduce
our TV / Internet / Phone expenses (currently $184/mo +
about to be raised to $198). This excludes mobile which we
are quite happy with (VirginMobile).
MagicJack looks quite interesting, however in checking out
how it connects : it appears that the "ethernet" cord from the
supplier's modem has to connect into the MagicJack box. We
currently use a router which the ethernet cord plugs into.
Does this mean the we would be unable to use our router
if we were to use MagicJack. Any advice would be appreciated.

November 29, 2016 @ 4:00 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Your router should have multiple ports in it. You just need to use one of the ports for magicJack. If you run of ports, you can buy a basic "hub" which basically just makes more ports for you. You plug the hub into one port in your router, then you have 8 or 16 news ports you can keep plugging stuff into.

November 30, 2016 @ 2:40 pm
Darren's picture

I found the best provider for Cell Service, in N.S. was www.koodo.mobile- and I suspect they would be MUCH CHEAPER than the Major Competitor in Other Provinces ass well..

Unfortunately, there is VERY LITTLE FOR HOME PHONE and INTERNET PROVIDERS in Nova Scotia...!
Magic Jack would be a Long Distance Number for other to call me.

As far as I know - Eastlink with Surf and Talk which comes to about $70.00/ month is the best I can find.. and that is the Lowest High Speed Internet & Home Phone.

I will Caution you that they add things to your Bill without you consent. I had to call because they were charging me for a Long Distance Plan - Which I did not ask for!!! They would only Credit me for 6 months that they had charged me.

I had all to often seem "POP UP" on my Internet as well.. Saying I've been Selected to participate in a Survey!!!
I had messaged them on FB and they deny it is from them.... Yet is say something to the effect "AS an EASTLINK CUSTOMER- you've been selected....." As well, I think EASTLINK should be Providing a Secure HTTP/HTTPS Internet Connection.

I don't appreciate having my internet HIGHJACKED and I thought that was Illegal!!!

December 05, 2016 @ 12:39 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Thanks for sharing your experience in Nova Scotia Darren!

December 08, 2016 @ 9:38 pm
Lisa Ponjee
Lisa Ponjee's picture

I live in Abbotsford, BC. I have a flat rate $40 plan with Fido, which includes unlimited Canada wide and 1 gig data. Prioir to that I was with Chatr, $25 Province wide + $10 for 500 mb. I use Lightspeed Internet, a small local company, which offers DSL for $29.95 a month for 6 down/1 up internet and 325 Mgb monthly allowance. This lets me watch 10 hours a day (if I want to) of streaming internet. I used to have MagicJack, but cancelled it and downloaded Fongo, a completly free Canadian voip, which gives you a free local phone number and all your calls accross Canada are free through WiFi.
I watch all the local TV stations (CBC, 2 CTV channels, Global, City, Omni & Joy) with an over-the-air antenna for free. For movies (don't watch much) and US & international news (which I really like) I have the Roku stick, all free.
So my total cost: $70.

December 18, 2016 @ 4:33 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Nicely done LIsa - you're saving a fortune!

December 20, 2016 @ 2:58 pm
Max Bork's picture

Can you keep your land line home phone number with MagicJack?

December 25, 2016 @ 12:40 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

They do allow number porting but they don't support all area codes so you have to check with them to see if it will work for you.

January 02, 2017 @ 10:26 am
Nancy Timmermans
Nancy Timmermans's picture

I have a question for my mother, she's 87. She only has a wireless Home phone, phoning to her kids in The Nedtherlands and Germany and a sister in Zwitserland cost her a lot of money! She used to have one of these weird accounts that make you dial about 15 nrs. or more, plus the phone nr. But if you made a mistake you have to start all over again, plus you have to pay with a cell phone or online, so she always had to get someone to do that for her. Last month she phoned her sister in Zwitserland twice, who had been operated she never talks long on the phone because ti's too expensive but iT cost her more than $70!!! Why is it so expensive? What can she do to save money? Thank you

June 12, 2017 @ 2:14 pm
Stephen Weyman
Stephen Weyman's picture

Calling cards or an international phone package are probably the best options. If she can use a computer, then getting a package to call on Skype to regular landline phones would help.

There isn't much you can do other than really shop around and compare long distance rates.

June 19, 2017 @ 11:03 pm

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