Why You’re Paying an Extra $450 Per Year to Your Cable Company

A new study shows hidden fees are on the rise

Cable TV
A myriad of unexpected fees are upping your cable bill
Glenn Carstens-Peters / Unsplash

Cord cutting might not save you money — a fact cable companies should exploit to their advantage, instead of gouging customers with hidden fees.

As a new Consumer Reports survey notes, a not-so-nice 69 percent of Americans say they’ve experienced unexpected fees from telecom services in the last two years — these include surcharges related to broadcast TV and regional sports rights, along with fees for set-top boxes, DVR service and more.

CR’s analysis of cable TV bills showed that these fees add an average of $37 per month to the advertised base cost of a customer’s TV package, a whopping 24 percent increase.

And there’s not much you can do about it, since you’re probably locked into a one- or two-year contract. ““These confusing, often misleadingly named charges continue to drive up consumer bills, even if you lock in a promotional rate,” says Jonathan Schwantes, senior policy counsel at Consumer Reports.

The cable companies doing the most damage? According to CR readers, it’s Comcast’s Xfinity service, (although this writer would add RCN, which raised his service price nine times in one year).

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