If you haven’t noticed from your junk mail, there is a lot of competition these days for your phone, internet and television business as the lines blur between the companies that offer these services. Additionally, these companies have spent so much money to acquire new customers that they will go to great lengths to keep you. If your current phone, cable or internet plan is over six months old, chances are you are overpaying. Call your provider and tell them that a competitor has offered you a better deal to switch over and you are thinking taking the offer unless they can match it or do better. A good rule of thumb is to shoot for 20-30% below what you are paying currently and to name the competitor i.e. Comcast, RCN.
If they won’t budge, ask to speak with the cancellation department and tell them you want to cancel your service. These are the folks who are empowered to make a last ditch effort to keep you. Case in point, when I recently switched to Verzion’s new FOIS service, the retention department at RCN called me and offered a package that was 50% of what I was currently paying. You may have to go all the way with the bluff, however you can always pick a cancellation date a few weeks out and then call and change your mind. They will be more than happy to keep you as a customer, so you have nothing to lose.