Consumer Reports: How to save on your internet bill

Consumer Reports found determining the true price of the internet proved to be challenging

How much are you paying for your internet? If you grabbed your bill but are confused and still can’t find the answer – guess what, you’re not alone.

We’re working for you to explain why the results may get you to take action to save money.

“Knowing how much you pay for it is important so that you can budget on a month-to-month basis of having this essential service,” said Consumer Reports’ Jonathan Schwantes.

Consumer Reports spent more than 8 months analyzing more than 22,000 internet bills people from all across the country submitted.

Amidst lines of charges and fees, Consumer Reports found determining the true price of the internet proved to be challenging.

“A lot of consumers bundle it with their tv or their phone service,” Schwantes said. “And some providers have a separate line item for internet service but others do not. They have just one price for bundled service and you can’t really tell on that sort of bill what part of that bundle is paying for your broadband service.”

The NCTA Internet and Television Association, a trade group, disagrees and said, “Cable providers continue to provide consumers with transparent billing information on their websites and promotional materials.”

CR also found prices for internet service varied widely.

“We found people paying for subpar broadband service, like 5 to 10 megabits per second download speeds, were paying on average the same as people getting 100, 300 megabits per second,” Schwantes said.

Here’s how to make sure you’re getting the best possible deal. First, make sure you’re getting the speed you’re paying for.

CR said you can use internet speed tests at Speedtest by Ookla or M-Lab.

Next, call your provider to find out what you’re actually paying each month, then start to negotiate with your provider - CR’s members consistently find lower prices by haggling.

CR said to buy a top-rated router to avoid recurring monthly rental fees.

About the Authors:

You can watch Brittny during the week anchoring the 5, 7 and 11 p.m. newscasts on WSLS 10 and reporting on news that matters to you.

Lauren Helkowski joined WSLS 10’s digital team in August 2022, but has held a passion for storytelling long before.