Frugal Hack #16: How to Negotiate a Great Deal with Dish Network

Updated September 3, 2020 by Kyle
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If you’ll recall, and nobody will, that my first ever Frugal Hack was about a secret Dish Network programming plan that they don’t advertise which gets you 50+ channels for only $19.99 a month. Pretty darn good deal, right? I know many of my frugal readers have already cut the cable cord, but if you’re a sports fan, like me, your options are pretty darn limited.

After all, you’re not going to get ESPN with the $19.99 plan, or the Discovery Channel, or Fox News, or TBS, or TNT. By knowing how to negotiate a deal with DishNetwork, you’ll learn how to get many of those channels without a significant increase in your bill.

Also, it is worth mentioning that the strategy I’m going to describe will work for any cable or satellite TV company. If done correctly of course!

Here is what my goats think of my once expensive Dish Network bill:

Do Your Research

The first thing you have to do is analyze your situation. Are you currently under contract with your cable or Satellite company? If so, this hack is going to be much more difficult to pull off.

Next, find out what the competition is currently offering. If you know this info like the back of your hand you’re going to get some serious street cred when talking to the rep.

In my case, DirectTV was offering a special promotion of $29.99/mo. for 12 months for something they call the “Choice” package. It offered 150+ channels, including ESPN, and was going to used as my ammo when shooting for a better deal.

UPDATE: – DirectTV is ridiculously expensive these days and doesn’t give you much power to negotiate anymore. Instead, when you make the call to Dish to negotiate, tell them you plan on using Hulu Plus and Netflix along with an HD Antennae. I just did this and got the screaming deal of $45 off my bill for 12 months with the America’s Top 120+ package.

Make the Cancel Call

Next, you call the DishNetwork 1-800 number and tell the first person you speak with that you want to cancel your account. They’ll ask “why?” and you’ll say “I have found a better deal with a competitor of yours.” They’ll immediately put you on hold and send your call to the customer loyalty or customer retention department.

The name varies by company, but the bottom line is you’ll want to talk with these guys as they are the ONLY ones authorized to give you the kick-ass deal you’re going to ask for.

Be Polite, But Persistent

Here is how the convo went:

Me: “Yeah, hi, I want to cancel my service today.”
DishTV Rep: “I’m really sorry to hear that. Is there any particular reason you want to cancel?”
Me: “I found a better deal with Direct TV and want to switch.” I then explained the package I mentioned earlier.
DishTV Rep: Silence. Then she says “Well, we’d really like to keep your business. For you to get a similar package with us, it would be the America’s Top 120 and it typically is $49.99 per month. But today I can lower that to $39.99 per month. Would that be OK?”
Me: “Well, I appreciate that offer, but like I mentioned, DirectTV is offering a very similar package for $29.99 per month. So I guess I’ll just go ahead and switch.””
DishTV Rep: “Let me talk to my manager and see if we can come down any further.” Silence and some whispering. She comes back on and say, “I have authorization from my manager to offer you $35.99 which is $14 off the regular monthly price.”
Me: “Well, I appreciate that but I think I’ll just go ahead and switch.”
DishTV Rep: “Let me ask again if we can meet the $29.99 a month deal.” More semi-silence. I don’t think she was actually talking to anyone, just playing solitaire on her computer while pretending too. She finally comes back on and says,”Yes, I have authorization to offer $29.99 a month for a 10 month period.”
Me: “That is awesome, thanks so much! So, after the 10 month period I’m not put into a contract to pay $49.99 a month or something?”
DishTV Rep: “No, you are not under any contract at any point.”

I got off the phone, immediately did my happy dance, then wondered how low she would have gone. Maybe $19.99 a month? Maybe a bunch of free movie channels as well? Has anyone gotten a better deal than the one I got? I’d love to hear about it and how you pulled it off.

After the ten months are over, I plan on calling them up and doing it again.

I was on the phone for a total of 5 minutes and ended up with a $49.99/mo. programming package for only $29.99 a month. I saved a total of $200 over the 10 month period.

So stoked to finally have ESPN, especially with the start of the college basketball season!

Ask the Reader: Do you pay more than you would like for cable or Satellite TV? If so, it’s about time you did something about it before your goat takes matters into her own hooves.


By Kyle James

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Bob Boise

Has anyone tried just getting local channels? the info says $6.00/mo w/o ‘qualifying package’. Why not just go w/ local, then add an a la carte package, if you want more?

Sterling R Sherwood

I tried for a better deal. Got someone that could hardly speak any English. I had the top250 package. He told me I could down grade to the top200 package and would save $5 month. Kept asking if I was having trouble paying my bills. And that I could take it or leave it. I left it. Switched to TWC for a triple package deal and getting about the same and saving 30 a month plus now have a faster internet speed and a home phone. After I switched they kept e-mailing me to come back and they would knock 10 off a month for 10 Months, but had to sign up for another 2 year commitment. Some deal.

Sarah

Will this work if your going into second year of contract? My promotional pricing is about to end. Our local century link is offering internet and direct TV for $55/12 mths but I will be paying $116 just for Dish Alone! Thanks.

Jaime

This trick works equally well with SiriusXM. Twice, I’ve called a day or two before the contract ends, telling the rep that I’d like to cancel service because of the cost. Both times, I’ve gotten a smokin’ deal.

Linda

I have been doing this very thing with SiriusXM for 9 years and works every single time! Will definately be trying with Dish in a month when my 2 year contract is done. Fingers crossed they are the same!

Linda

Finally got around to doing this today. Not only cut my price by $16/month but upgraded my package and locked in for 2 years! FYI they also have a promo for Military and veterans a few added channels and your first On Demand rental a month for free, ask about it!

Tl

My DirecTV contract just expired. I am fed up with DirecTV, and want to go back to dish. Any ideas for how to negotiate the best deal with them before joining? I used to have dish, for over 10 years, before I switch to go to DirecTV for certain technological aspects. Just want the best deal, preferrablt contract free

TS

I am with AT&T U-Verse and my contract recently expired. I am thinking to switch to satellite TV (never used it before) and Dish is an option I am trying to explore.

I am interested in Americas Top 120+ package for 3 TVs.

How can I get the best promotion as a new customer? Does Dish provide any discount if I provide someone who already has Dish service and get extra discount for their referral?

Thanks in advance!

Krystal

I just read all of these wonderful little comments as I was talking to DISH. I am currenlty out of contract and paid 80.0 this month. I called and asked to cancel and right away they started with a $10 discount. I told them that was not enough as I had recenlty been offered $15 with them for 3 months. I told them I wanted to cancel because a local company was offerring me better deals. He then proceeded to ask what channels I watched so he could see if there was a better package. I told him lets just cancel and he then got back on the phone and offered $20 off.I conteroffered and said do $25 for 8 months and this call is over. BAM!!! I got my deal of $25 off for 10 months and free HBO (because I asked for it). He said in 10 months to call back and they woudl work out a deal with me then. I will be asking for more of a discount after reading everyones comments. GOOD LUCK TO ALL!

Joe Nick Manchin Rahall

Friends, both Dish and Directv have good points. Directv, however, has some bad points if you aren’t fully informed before you deal with them. How to get fully informed? Well, sometimes a Directv existing customer is informed enough to help. Most of the time, unfortunately, no, because they didn’t know what they should have done with Directv. Sometimes I’ve thought I should open a service, telling people how to deal with either Dish or Direct. Or both for that matter.

Daniel

So I was hesitant to try bluffing my way to a better deal since I’m a new customer only 11 months into a 24 month contract, but low and behold it worked. They extended my introductory pricing for another 6 months and told me to call back at the end of that to negotiate again. I was trying to get an extra full year at the introductory price since Dish is now offering 2 year price lock for new customers but they called my bluff and started the cancellation proceedings. I had to backtrack and take the 6 month offer, which wasn’t too bad really.

jhoch

just got my bill reduced $30!!!! Thank you!! I told him i wanted to cancel and he gave me a discount on my hbo and $$ off my service!!

Shirley

Just dickered wih dish told them bill to high, going to hulu or netflix, got my bill lowered by $40 for 1 yr. YAAAA

Joe Nick Manchin Rahall

If you’ve got the Welcome Pack, and maybe an add-on like Heartland or Epix, you’re paying less than $30 per month. Sure, no sports, but are sports worth the extra $30 – $50? If it is, then you don’t need the Welcome Pack anyway. If you live in a crappy area with locals that are from the ’50’s, then maybe the Welcome Pack might be too small. The Welcome Pack is for people who’ve got tight budgets or just don’t watch much tv or can get decent locals. Take a area with a tiny population and the locals aren’t worth much, but an area with a half-decent population and the locals rock. So, Welcome does better with half-decent locals.

Mikki Potter

I tried this a few months ago and the lady on the phone was very rude. She told me I could lower my package to get a lower bill. I told her I didn’t want to do that and I would cancel my service because I have netflix. Her reply was “do you want me to cancel it now”. I asked to speak to her supervisor and she said that her supervisor was busy.

Phill

I called dish told them I wanted internet. Rep tells me I have to get tv first. We live deep in the ozarks so dish is our only option for Internet. So I agreed. They sign me up for tv and tell me to call back in 15 days for the Internet. 15 days later I call they inform me that Internet is not available in my area. So I tell the to cancel the tv. They tell sure but it will cost me 400 dollars. WTF. 2 months later I call they say Internet is now available. I have it installed. It’s so slow I can’t stand to use it. And now my cancellation fee is up to 700 dollars. I would rather poke a sharp stick in my eye as have to deal with them crooks ever again!! August contract up I’m a free man. FCK DISH

Darris Guildsmith

Here is the best way I have found. DISH has a special toll free number to entice new customers or people looking to switch out at 877-640-8878. If you call that number you can set up a new contract at a great low rate. The only trick in it is being beyond your commitment. I got my bill cut in half by calling it.

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