How To Get $90 Off Your Comcast Bill

Reader Matthew just cut his Comcast bill in half with a single phone call. He received a flier from one of Comcast’s competitors that boasted a much better price than the $175 per month he was paying. When he called Comcast and told them about the better rate, he was swiftly transferred to “customer retention” which must be a place of magical wonderment because by the time he got off the phone his Comcast bill had been reduced by $90. How did he do it? His letter, inside…

While we all love to hate Comcast (and boy have I had my issues with them), I’d like to give them kudos for having a responsive and effective customer retention department (at least for Chicagoland).

I came home today, and found a RCN cable flier hanging on my door. Long and short of it was that they’re offering my Comcast-equivalent level of digital cable for $35/month and high-speed internet for $35/month for new customers for the first 12 months.

I called up Comcast’s 1-800 number and explained the flier and I was thinking of switching to the guy I got on the phone. He told me that Comcast definitely wants to keep me as a customer, and could I please hold while he transfers me to “Customer Retention.”

After about 30 seconds, an extremely polite woman named Shelia comes on the line. We reviewed my account (I have their digital silver package, with 3 DVRs/outlets, and basic high-speed residential internet). Prior to tonight my monthly bill was touching $175/month after taxes.

After about 5 minutes of playing around with the computer she got me a 12 month deal for my current services and boxes for about $86.44/month AFTER tax for cable, internet, and DVRs. No contract extension, no hassle, just an honest attempt at giving a good customer a fair deal.

When I called I expected to have to fight and bitch and moan to get to about $125/month after taxes; imagine my complete surprise when I didn’t have to fight, the CSR actively worked WITH me to get to a number I could live with, and did it while treating me with respect, courtesy, and acknowledging that they were asking for my money, and I had a right to get the best deal I could. At the end of the call, I asked to speak to her supervisor to tell him what a great job she had done, and that she had easily kept me and my wife as customers…and he seemed genuinely happy to hear it.

God knows Comcast has their problems, but every once in a while I interact with a person there that really does get it, and makes sure that I, as their customer, gets a fair shake. Even beyond saving me almost $100/month, the way she treated me has earned them a great deal of good-will from me.

Comcast should look to CSRs like Shirley, because it’s the Shirley’s of their workforce that will help turn them around.

Congrats, Matthew. It’s nice, albeit strange, to hear something good about Comcast. We believe that if Comcast can make someone happy then anything must be possible. Maybe there can be peace in the Middle East and maybe that Manson guy just needed a hug. It’s amazing how saving $90 per month can turn your frown upside down. Hopefully when your bill actually arrives it still reflects Shirley’s magic. We’ll keep our fingers crossed.

(Photo: Tom Simpson)

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. trecool95 says:

    I’m thinking they were so helpful since they have a direct competitor in the area. I think I’d be SOL if I tried that.

  2. Oface says:

    That’s great and all but here Comcast is the only option. Yay monopoly.

  3. gamehendge2000 says:

    same deal here once Fios came to town

  4. comcastic.

  5. Coelacanth says:

    Who’s Shirley? I thought it was Shelia who provided the great customer support.

    Good to hear somebody has a positive customer experience with them.

  6. theblackdog says:

    Won’t work for me, Comcast is the only cable provider in my area.

    Come on FiOS!

  7. Rupan says:

    I just dumped Comcast for AT&T Uverse. AT&T gave me a rate that was equal to my “special” rate with Comcast and I get more channels. So far I really like it.

  8. unklegwar says:

    $175 per month? Holy crap! Hell, even the post-reduction $85 per month is ridiculous. Read a book, get a hobby, damn.

  9. GotanOrange says:

    @unklegwar: stop crapping on people.

  10. Scuba Steve says:

    I pay 65 bucks for basic cable and internet.

    I’ll cancel when they try to charge me 90 dollars for that service.

  11. BigElectricCat says:

    I’d like to know if this magical rate reduction actually happens or not. Have Matthew get back to us in a few months with a report on whether or not the new, lower rate actually took effect.

  12. buckfutt says:

    I make this call to Charter (internet service only) once a year, when my bill for 6-meg broadband jumps from around $40 to nearly $70. I just ask why I should pay more than the DSL price for the same service, and they eventually back down and give me the old rate for another year. “You’ve already had a promotional rate, and you don’t qualify for another one” is a line the first-tier reps always use. My response: “That’s Charter’s problem, not mine.” They then send me to a retention rep who invariably gives me the lower rate. I’m going on four years of doing this now, and when/if they don’t agree again, I’ll drop them like a bad habit and go back to DSL. And then I’ll start playing the DSL weasels off of Charter…

  13. homerjay says:

    I know a way to get 100% off your Comcast bill. :)

  14. Joedragon says:

    direct tv is better more HD and NFL + BIGTEN + speed and other channels that you have more to get with comcarps sports tear.

  15. Ryan Duff says:

    @Oface: I’ve pulled this same stunt before by taking my DVR into the local office and telling them I would like to cut my service back to Basic Cable and Internet (~$70/month). The CSR there worked with me to bring my $150/month bill down to $65/month for 6 months and $85 for the next 6 months after that.

    When they ask why you’re cutting back, just let them know that you need to cut back so you can pay your other bills that are more important that watching TV.

  16. Be nice to your retention specialist and they’ll be nice to you. (as long as you have a major competitor in the area)

  17. startertan says:

    I managed to do the same thing after FIOS became available at my house. I called and spoke with a rep at the regional office, I tested him with knowledge of restaurants across the street from him, he gave me the usual “switch to triple play” lines but I said I don’t need any of that. So I went from basic digital/hi-speed internet @ $125/month to basic digital (with HBO, Showtime, and Starz)/hi-speed internet @ $92/month. It’s a small victory but I’ll take it.

  18. That-Dude says:

    @homerjay: do tell. . . ;)

  19. heavylee-again says:

    Yeah. I called Comcast’s Customer Retention Dept about 4 years ago (when SatTV was the only competition) and cut $50 off my monthly bill. I was told that once that promotion ended I had to go back to paying full price. 4 years later, I haven’t gone back to paying full price. I just call them each time the promo ends to be placed in another.

    They key is to be polite and persistent.

  20. Chadarius says:

    I’ve done this for 3 years running. The first time I did it I got 5 months free. It was a strange setup. They only charged me every other month for 10 months. The second and third time I went online and did some research on competing products and called them. There is always some new charge or change in the bill to complain about so just use that as the reason you are going to switch.

    I got $40/month off my bill for 12 months this last time and I couldn’t be happier.

  21. BuddyGuyMontag says:

    Seriously, it’s Sheila. Don’t call her Shirley.

  22. Nearsite00 says:

    This same exact thing happened to me over the weekend, as I called to cancel my Comcast internet service which I was paying $59.99/month to switch over to ATT DSL at $35.00/month. They transferred me to customer retention or whatever they called it and a very polite lady (not sure of her name) lowered my internet bill to $33/month for the next 12 months! A week prior to this I called to cancel my Comcast cable TV altogether and they lowered that bill by almost half as well!

  23. everclear75 says:

    Comcast actually gave me the $30 a/month
    deal just by asking. I’ve been w/ TW-Comcast for the last several years, and the only decent thing has been the internet service. Don’t even get me started on that fraud promo they call triple play.. WHAT A SCAM!!! So, currently I’m paying around 30 bucks for internet and “basic” cable.. The cable is an “added” bonus, if you know how..

  24. LoLoAGoGo says:

    I tried doing that for the Northern VA area and got turned down, despite the fact we have accesses to Veirzon Fios/DSL in the area. Several times actually. I guess it just depends who you talk to.

  25. miball says:

    Yeah you know the funny thing here is that Verizon is very close to signing a franchise agreement in my area. I had a comcast rep come to my door the other day and offer my free shotime & HBO. He also said that he is my representative if I have any issues I can call him directly. Kinda funny what it takes to get good customer service these days, some competition

  26. highmodulus says:

    Customer Retention- the second most powerful service people (short of the Executive Customer Service types).

    Sadly, regular reps are under-trained and stuck on script (over pain of termination). Sadly, I do not see the trend improving at any of the Telco’s, Cable or Satellite companies. Not until regime change occurs at the FCC.

  27. AlmiraFantazmoto says:

    Comment on How To Get $90 Off Your Comcast Bill I use Comcast for internet only, and I call the Customer Retention
    department religiously. I pay the $29.99 6-month promotional price for
    internet, and when my 6 months is running out, I call and ask for
    customer retention. Just tell them that you have other alternatives,
    like DSL, and they are cheaper. They’ll try to point out that Comcast is
    faster, and just tell them bluntly, I don’t care, I just surf the web,
    DSL is plenty fast, I want the promo rate extended or I’m leaving. It
    works every time.

  28. Murdermonkey says:

    Just call to cancel saying its just to expensive. I do it every 6 months to a year based on the deal they give me usually saves me about 45% a month.

  29. Lazlo Nibble says:

    It’s legit. When we called Comcast a few months back to drop Showtime, they countered by dropping the price for basically the same service (swapping HBO for Showtime and adding the sports tier where they moved Fox Soccer Channel — otherwise identical) by almost $60/month.

  30. angrychicken says:

    I just called Comcast (in Chicagoland) and mentioned that I was thinking of switching to RCN. They shaved $50 bucks off my bill for 6 months and gave us free Showtime for 6 months.

    Of course when she was going over the details of the bill it came out that Comcast has been charging me for three DVR’s instead of 2. Leave it to Comcast to piss me off even when they’re doing something I want.

  31. stevegoz says:

    Well played, sir!

    When I tried this with the old “our bill is kinda high and the dish is looking good” approach, I was only able to get our three digital boxes knocked off the bill, leaving us at 132 bucks/month for a ridiculous amount of television programming (we don’t do internet or phone through Comcast) on our five sets.

  32. I just called Comcast to cancel my cable and Internet, and they seemed quite pleased to do it. Didn’t even try to retain my business.

    I am pleased to switch to switch to another provider.

  33. runpete says:

    I called Comcast about 3 months ago. I told them their prices were too high and I wasn’t interested in keeping their services. As a result, they knocked about $30 off my monthly bill, and gave me a free upgrade to HBO plus and some other channels.

    Today, I called just to cancel. And like corporatemaericabites said, they did nothing to keep me. They said “Thanks for using us!” But, I needed to leave anyway. All for the better.

  34. StevieD says:

    So why don’t the cable company give that same price to everybody?

  35. Damaris148 says:

    I’d heard this trick before, so I called to do the same thing with comcast, as I’d received a flyer from AT&T Uverse $80 less than what I was currently paying. I asked them to match it.

    Comcast told me “since AT&T is offering you such as good deal, you might as well just switch.” (very nastily)

    So we did. And we’ve been very happy every since.

  36. I have Cablevision… FIOS is here. I should’ve tried this when Verizon was offering that free LCD TV, but we’ll see what Cablevision says when we threaten to move over to FIOS.

  37. Jevia says:

    I wish we could switch providers. While we could do dish or Verizon, we’d have to give up Sixers and Flyers games. I wish something would be done about Comcast being able to own sports teams and thus have a monopoly on televising their games.

  38. heavylee-again says:

    @Jevia: Do I smell soft pretzels and cheesesteaks on your breath? It’s easy to smell our own kind.

  39. dlab says:

    I recently called Comcast Tier 1 to have them “reset” my modem like I have to do every week to fix my connection, and the CSR was very nice. Sickeningly nice, so much so that I was unable to get her to troubleshoot my issue since she was so wrapped up in being nice and apologizing for how much they suck.

    She had me on the phone for 10 minutes before telling me that there is an outage in my area…

    It’s sad how these big companies (I also work for a company with a large customer service organization) will try to stop sucking so much by trying to “improve their soft skills” instead of fixing the actual problem of service suckage, installer suckage, and CSR incompetence.

  40. jsonmercer says:

    @StevieD:

    Because Comcast basic strategy is “Bait and Switch” because switching costs are high. IOW, you take a low intro deal which keeps you from going to the competition, then after a year they raise your rate. It’s such a pain to change providers that most people just cringe and pay rather than go to the trouble to switch. The few that threaten to switch get a temporary deal to placate them until the next time. Meanwhile everyone else pays the higher rates.

    It’s like those rebate coupons for ‘free’ products. So few people follow through on the hassle to redeem them, that the vendor keeps almost all the money.

  41. MightyCow says:

    I tried the same thing today, the rep was helpful, but told me there were no current deals better than what I had, which is crazy expensive, and said he completely understood if I wanted to switch to a different company.

    At least they’re honest, if un-helpful.

  42. crankitupyo says:

    do you all understand that when you sign up for Comcast that you are under no contract and because of that prices are subject to change. If you were under contract like Dish network you would be subject to the original price of the service no matter how bad it is. If you hate the service you are able to leave at anytime.