Frugal Living

The Ultimate Guide: How To Haggle the Best Deals with your Communication Providers

Best Retention Deals Rogers


Getting the best promotions for your cell phone, home phone, internet and cable from your communication providers helps keep monthly budget expenses low.

I’m going to show you today how we score some great deals and how you too can get the BEST deals for your communications bill.

Do you call your cable company annually to negotiate a better deal?

We do and if we don’t get the number that fits our budget we CHOP THEM and we let them know it.

 If your answer is no you don’t call annually I want you to know that with a single phone call you CAN lower your communications bill sometimes by 30-50%.

It actually amazes me how many people don’t haggle with their communications providers when there is so much competition on the market.

Haggling with various communications providers may seem like a pain in the backside but it’s worth the time it takes to talk to a customer retention agent.

Doing Business with Rogers Communication Providers

Every year I shake my head when I do the yearly round-up of our expenditures with one of our communications providers, Rogers.

 I must admit that I have lowered these costs over the years but am possibly looking to downsize them.

Sure I have some of the best Rogers retention plans but sometimes they make it difficult to want to continue being a long time client.

The cancellation department also handles the retention phone calls for customers who have promotions coming to an end.

Essentially all they are is a customer service representative with retention strategies to try and keep you as a customer.

They are the people who can boost your savings opportunities based on your needs and customer loyalty.

Rogers client retention may not seem like a big deal when you are 1 customer but if everyone decided to move to another company that could put a dent in their earnings.

Rogers is one of the leading communication companies in Canada with continued revenue growth up 3% according to their 2012 Quarterly report located on their website with adjusted operating profit up 7% and earnings per share up a whopping 33%.

Rogers Retention Plan 

It just so happens that it’s the time of year where I make my annual phone call to our communications company as our Rogers promotions are coming due.  

Typically a Rogers promotion will last anywhere between 1-2 years and in some cases a 2 year promo is not a bad idea if you score a great deal. We once got our home phone for only $9.99 a month loaded with options. 

That was worth it to us as you never know if your cell phone battery dies or if the electricity goes off.

The Rich Offer

This post will depcit what Rogers calls the best “rich offer” they can give us for all of you to compare your deals.

Our end of promotion total bill for the 2012-2013 year was $149.71.

Our new bill will be $153.55 which is a bit more but last years promotions were far better than what they are offering today.

I’m still not sure what we will do with this promotional deal they offered us however it’s still a good deal for us.

Below is what Rogers offered us for the 2013-2014 year of promotions.

Our Rogers Wireless Cell Phone Retentions Deals

  • Cell Phone $31.12 includes 200 Weekday and Unlimited Weeknight and Weekend
  • 100 Any time Canadian Long Distance Minutes
  • 6 pm Early Evening Calling
  • Call Fwd, Call Transfer, Call Answer, Call Display Bundle
  • Bundle Discount
  • Total $31.12 (this is apparently the cheapest cell phone plan with Rogers)

Rogers VIP Cable Retention Deal

  • VIP Digital Cable
  • 1 FREE PVR (Personal Video Recorder)
  • HDTV Channel Pack
  • Bundle Discount 20%
  • Total $66.55

Rogers Home Phone Retentions Deal

  • Change from Classic Plan which is no longer available to the Favourites Plus Plan $19.99 month plus tax for 2 year promotion not a contract. It will cost $45.00 a month when the promo is done (I’m sure this will change as prices always go up)
  • 500 North American Long Distance Minutes (it will cost $5.00 extra when the promo is done)
  • Loss of Rogers to Rogers switching from Classic to Favourites
  • Total $22.95

Rogers Internet Retentions Deals

Our internet access deals bounce around from year to year but we tend to look at speed and value for our money.

  • Rogers High Speed Lite
  • Bundle Discount 30%
  • Modem Charge $4.00
  • Total $32.93

Previous Rogers Retention Deals

Here is one true example back in 2010 we were paying just under $200 a month for 4 services or $2400.00 per year. In 2012 I received the same 4 services plus more for $159.68 or $1916.16 per year by calling retentions.

In 5 years at the 2012 rate we could have put $9580.80 down on the principal of our home. In 20 years that’s a whopping $38,323.20 although we know this cost will increase over the years. It really puts it into perspective when you see the average numbers over the long-term.

There are always price hikes with Rogers (most companies for that matter) for one reason or another so always keep in mind that your promotional price likely will go up over the course of the year.

There is nothing they can do about it so you have to suck it up or leave which might mean you break a contract although their service agreement states:

If a change to a Month-Month Service of a Term Service entails an increase in your obligations or a decrease in your our obligations and if you do not accept such a change, you may terminate the affected Services without a Cancellation Fee by sending us a notice to that effect no later than 30 days after the amendment takes place.

So make sure you read the service agreement which you will find at the bottom of the Rogers Home page. It pays to stay informed because you can’t turn around and say you didn’t know if they offer it to you.

If you are late paying your Rogers bill they will charge you a 2% late fee per month calculated and compounded monthly on an account that is not paid to the tune of 26.82% according to their service agreement.

Chop The Services You Hardly Use

Do we really need all those services?

Ask yourself the above question and if the answer is no cut out some of the services.

We are looking at chopping some of the features we pay for this year such as a bundle pack on our cell phone. 

However, we might cancel the VIP cable for Basic cable and find internet services elsewhere depending on whehter we get quoted a better price.

Before We Call Our Cable Retention Department

The first thing we do is sit down with our budget spreadsheet and look at our yearly total for our communications bills.

Take the time to add yearly costs of your Cell Phone (s), Cable, Internet and Home Phone so you have the exact numbers.

You can’t haggle a deal with any communication providers if you don’t know what you previously were spending.

If you are a new customer you might have more ammunition for better start up deals so don’t be afraid to ask, they do want your business after all. 

If you have just completed this task I bet you are surprised to see costs in the thousands if not more per year for these services. In 2011 we spent $2030.09 for our Rogers services for the year.

The next year in 2012 we paid$1807.25 to bundle our services with Rogers for the year through the retention department promotion pricing.

That was a difference of $222.84 for the year which is better than nothing and for some a month of groceries in their grocery budget.

So, we have home phone, cell phone, internet and cable with Rogers.

Your communication costs are all variable spending habits, meaning we really don’t need them at all.

They are a luxury but one that shouldn’t break the budget in order to have them.

How To Negotiate With Your Communication Providers

If you want to learn how to negotiate with Rogers or whoever your communications provider is remember it’s a business.

As a client you want to be professional and at least be prepared to make the phone call to haggle with them.

Below is how I go about tackling my annual call to our telecommunications company.

  • Write out your year to date totals for your communications bill and review your current bill for pricing.
  • Know when your service contracts are due and write this information down so you can prepare your negotiations ahead of time. ( I like to call the retention department one month or more before our promotions expire)
  • Keep junk mail from other cable and phone companies as you may need this information.
  • Search the internet for companies in your area that offer the services you need.
  • Call or Email these companies to get quotes on comparable items that you receive from your provider.
  • Tell them that your contract is coming to an end with your current provider and you are looking for the best deals.
  • Bundling your services with one provider may end in a better price but not always, research is best.
  • When you have all this information in front you then you are ready to do the next step, haggle with your current provider.
  • Typically there is a customer service number you can call to discuss your services. I like to call and ask for the Retention Department when calling Rogers or you can ask the cancellation department for retentions as they are the same people from what I was told from an agent today. Rogers Communications 1-888-Rogers (7643)-1
  • When I reach the retentions associate I tell them I am potentially considering cancelling my services because I have found a better deal unless they are willing to negotiate with me. I am being honest as this will be my intention if they cannot match or beat a competitive quote that I have. It’s not a means of blackmail it’s just the way business goes just how they tell us there will be an increase in price for our services. Don’t just call and act like you are owed something, be considerate.
  • Be polite to the retentions agent on the phone, use their name just like they use yours as you are not aiming to cause a confrontation as they are simply doing their job.
  • Let them know what quote you received from a competitor comparing apples to apples(meaning for the exact same services) and for how much and ask them if they can meet or beat it.
  • If they say no you can either continue to negotiate, cancel your services or call back another day until you get the answer you want.

Almost 99% of the time these retention agents have given me better promotions than advertised or others have received. If you have been a long-standing customer with an excellent account use this to your advantage.

Tell your communications providers how dedicated to the company you have been and wish to continue but pricing is important.

Although I’m pretty sure it will be obvious as they can see your account history, provided they look.

There’s nothing wrong with reiterating your commitment to the communication providers you do business with. 

Arm yourself with information and numbers as it will be your best defense to get the best promos and deals available.

At the end of the day it’s your money, so spend it wisely.

Discussion: What other tips do you have for someone who is looking to lower their telecommunications bill?

Photo Courtesy of:123RF

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