January 27, 2020
These days no one is a stranger to the subscription lifestyle. Maybe you started slow with a music streaming service and a box of beauty supplies delivered monthly to your door, but by now your subscription count has likely tripled. Smoothies, dog treats, vitamins, and assorted butters from around the World—yes, that’s a real subscription—can now easily find their way to your front porch on a monthly basis. It’s easy to see how we got here. Subscription services are SO easy and SO customizable that they find a way to fill a need that you didn’t even know you had until you saw it. Here are a few ways to make sure you’re not reaching subscription overload.
What Should You Do?
Get rid of services and subscriptions you aren’t using. This can be as simple as going through your monthly bank statements and finding all of the charges you may have overlooked. Maybe it’s an online newspaper you used to read or a gym membership that you no longer use. According to the Wall Street Journal, in 2018 the average American spent $237 a month for subscription services. With all of those subscriptions, it’s safe to say if you take the time to look you’ll find a service or two you’re no longer using.
Cancel those “free trials” that you signed up for and forgot to cancel when the grace period was up. They might have gotten you for a few months, but you can still cancel! Even if it’s just $5-$10 a month—it adds up quickly.
Change the frequency of your subscription. Maybe you don’t want to cancel completely, but the razor refills and shaving cream are really starting to stack up. You can cut down on costs and waste by changing up your subscription.
Change how you pay for your subscriptions. It’s easy to set your subscriptions to pay monthly off of your credit card, but that’s also a good way to lose track of what you’re spending. Set it up to come directly out of your checking account so that you can keep a better handle on what you’re spending.
Don’t forget to audit digital subscriptions, too. Make sure you do an audit of services like Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, etc. It’s easy to forget about a subscription if a product isn’t arriving on your doorstep each month.
Subscription services aren’t going anywhere and that’s not a bad thing! Convenience is a service that I for one, will usually opt to pay for. The key to successful subscribing is keeping close track of how much you’re paying each month and making sure you only subscribe to services that are useful and beneficial to you.