Football is upon us, everything pumpkin spice is here, and the days are slowly — very slowly, this Southern Californian might add — but steadily getting colder. This means a lot of us are beginning to spend more time indoors and will do so even more as fall officially settles in and we begin bingeing spinoffs like Andor and House of the Dragon along with an abundance of fall programming. And while it’s true that most streaming services don’t cost very much, we all know that those monthly subscription fees have a way of adding up in the long run. Before you know it, you’re spending as much on streaming as you would on cable.
If you’re trying to cut down on your expenses (and who isn’t these days?), you don’t necessarily need to unsubscribe from everything. In fact, we’ve found a few ways for you to save on a monthly subscription. It turns out a variety of platforms, including Disney Plus and Hulu, are offering deals right now, some of which are even available to new and returning subscribers alike. Below, we’ve curated some of the best deals going on right now so you can enjoy streaming your favorite show or movie without worrying about breaking the bank.
Quick note: keep an eye out for free trials and student discounts
Most streaming services offer free trials that typically range from a week to a month, no matter whether you buy an annual or monthly subscription. In all instances, you will have to provide your credit card information in order to sign up. You will also be charged once your trial is over, so make a note in your calendar to cancel if you’re unhappy with the service.
Some platforms, though not all, also offer student discounts as well. These include Hulu, Paramount Plus, YouTube TV, Amazon Prime, and more. You’ll have to prove your eligibility and generally be enrolled in an accredited Title IV college or university to get these deals.
Best streaming deals
Hulu offers both ad-supported and ad-free plans. No matter which you buy, you’ll be able to access all of Hulu’s TV shows and movies on multiple devices, including originals like The Handmaid’s Tale and Pam & Tommy as well as non-Hulu content like Parasite and Akira. The service also allows two people to stream simultaneously, and you can have up to six user profiles. However, buying the ad-free plan means you won’t have to deal with commercials and you can also download content so you can stream it later offline. Right now, the ad-supported plan goes for $6.99 per month, but that price will increase by $1 starting on October 10th. Meanwhile, the ad-free plan will go for $14.99 a month. If you’re a student, you can also buy an ad-supported version for $1.99 or a bundle that combines Spotify Premium, Showtime, and ad-supported Hulu for $4.99 per month.
Hulu also sells an ad-free and ad-supported subscription that bundles together Live TV, Disney Plus, and ESPN Plus. Right now, Hulu is offering a great deal on said package, offering the ad-supported Hulu with Live TV subscription for $49.99 instead of $69.99 per month for three months. The deal is available to both new and returning customers who have not been Hulu subscribers in the past month and will last through 11:59PM PT on October 5th (or 2:59AM ET on October 6th). With the bundle, you’ll be able to access over 75 live sports, news, and entertainment channels as well as Hulu, ESPN Plus, and Disney Plus content. You can also record live shows with unlimited DVR and take advantage of the same features the standard, ad-free, and ad-supported Hulu plans offer.
Meanwhile, a number of wireless carriers are offering customers discounts when they buy premium phone plans. For instance, you can get the Disney Plus bundle — which includes both Hulu and ESPN Plus — for free when you opt for Verizon’s “Get More Unlimited” (which starts at $55 per month) and “Play More Unlimited” (which starts at $45 per month) plans. In addition, those on the Sprint Unlimited Plus plan (which starts at $60 per month) can also get free access to Hulu’s ad-supported tier.
With Disney Plus, you can stream popular Marvel films and shows like Thor: Love and Thunder and She-Hulk: Attorney at Law along with the full Pixar catalog and Star Wars shows like The Mandalorian and the upcoming Rogue One spinoff, Andor. A monthly Disney Plus subscription currently costs $7.99 a month, although you can save $16 if you opt for an annual membership for $79.99. Disney also offers a $13.99 monthly subscription that bundles together the ad-supported Hulu and ESPN Plus, while paying an extra $6 per month nets you the ad-free version of Hulu. It’s cheaper than buying all three streaming services separately, and it’s the wisest route to go since it will save you at least $10 a month. Just note these prices will soon increase; Disney Plus plans to offer an ad-free plan for $10.99 per month starting on December 8th, along with an ad-supported tier for $7.99.
As previously noted, you can get the Disney Plus bundle, which includes Hulu and ESPN Plus, for free when you buy Verizon’s “Get More Unlimited” and “Play More Unlimited” phone plans, both of which start at $55 and $45 per month, respectively. You can also get six months of Disney Plus free when you buy Verizon’s “Do More Unlimited” (which starts at $45 per month) and “Start Unlimited” ($35 per month) plans. In addition, Fios home internet subscribers can get six months of Disney Plus free when they opt for the 1GB plan for $64.99 per month.
Disney is offering both new and eligible returning subscribers one month of Disney Plus for just $1.99 instead of $7.99 until 11:59PM PT on September 19th (or 2:59AM ET on September 20th). The streaming service offers popular shows and movies like Thor: Love and Thunder, She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, Moon Knight, and more.
Paramount Plus and Showtime
The recently combined Paramount Plus and Showtime streaming app grants you access to live sports and a wide range of movies and shows from both platforms, including Halo and Yellowjackets. Right now, you have two options: you can subscribe to either the ad-supported Essential plan or the Premium plan (which is ad-free except when it comes to live content). The latter also offers more live sports, local CBS programming, and the ability to download content for offline viewing.
Thankfully, now through October 2nd, you can buy the ad-free streaming bundle for $7.99 a month instead of $11.99 or the Premium bundle for $11.99 instead of $14.99. An annual subscription will run you $79.99 a year for the ad-supported tier — thus saving you $64 on monthly payments at the regular price — or $129.99 ($50 off) if you prefer the ad-free version.
Alternatively, you can subscribe to Paramount Plus as a standalone service. The ad-supported Essential plan goes for $4.99 per month, and qualifying students can get 25 percent off and a free Fire TV Stick Lite if they subscribe before September 30th. The ad-free Premium tier, meanwhile, costs $9.99 per month. As for annual subscriptions, the ad-supported plan costs $49.99 annually and saves you $10, while the ad-free annual plan goes for $99.99 and saves you $20.
In addition, those who subscribe to one of T-Mobile’s mobile plans — which start at $45 per month — are also eligible for a discount. The wireless carrier is currently offering customers complimentary access to Paramount Plus for a year.
HBO Max is home to Game of Thrones and its spinoff, House of the Dragon, along with shows and movies like The Batman, Succession, Harley Quinn, and more. The platform offers both an ad-supported and ad-free plan, which run $9.99 and $14.99, respectively. Unlike the ad-supported plans, however, the ad-free tier also lets you download content and stream in 4K UHD.
HBO Max also offers an annual subscription that’s currently on sale. Both new and returning subscribers can get 30 percent off a one-year subscription to HBO Max if they pay in advance before October 31st. That means you can subscribe to the ad-supported plan for $69.99 instead of $99.99 or opt for the ad-free plan for $104.99 instead of $149.99. Just be mindful of the ongoing Warner Bros. megamerger, which has led to the cancellation of a lot of shows and movies, like Batgirl, and could lead to more.
In addition, wireless carrier Cricket is offering some customers complimentary access to HBO Max. Specifically, those who purchase the Unlimited Plus 15GB Mobile Hotspot phone plan, which costs $130 a month, will be able to get the ad-free version of HBO Max free.
A Netflix subscription grants you access to thousands of movies and TV shows as well as a limited number of mobile games. Notable shows and movies include Stranger Things, The Crown, Knives Out and its upcoming sequel, The Sandman, The Witcher, Don’t Look Up, and much more. The well-known streaming service offers three plans: Basic ($9.99 per month), Standard ($15.49 per month), and Premium ($19.99 per month). The more premium tiers allow for higher resolution and let multiple users watch content on a variety of devices at the same time, with only the Premium plan supporting Ultra HD content.
Netflix itself isn’t currently offering a discount, but T-Mobile is offering a deal to those on its Magenta unlimited plans (which start at $120 per month). Magenta customers with two or more lines can sign up for a Netflix Basic subscription for free, as can Magenta Max customers with a single line of data (which starts at $85 a month). Meanwhile, those with two or more lines of data on a Magenta Max plan (which start at $140 a month) are eligible for a Netflix Standard subscription.
Peacock is NBCUniversal’s streaming service, one that offers next-day programming from NBC (and Bravo). The platform also grants access to live sports like WWE as well as movies like Jurassic World: Dominion and shows such as Yellowstone and The Office. Beginning this week, it will also be the home of Saturday Night Live and Law & Order. As far as packages go, Peacock offers the ad-supported Peacock Premium for $4.99 a month as well as an ad-free Peacock Plus tier for $9.99 a month. Only the latter lets you download content for offline viewing, however.
Right now, new subscribers can subscribe to a year of Peacock Premium for just $19.99 ($30 off) when they enter promo code ONEYEAR at checkout. Alternatively, they can pay $1.99 per month for a monthly subscription when they apply promo code SEPTEMBER. Both deals will last until September 30th.
You can also get a free year of Peacock Premium if you’re an Xfinity Flex owner (free with Xfinity Internet) or Xfinity X1 customer — or if you’re a video customer subscribed to Xfinity Internet (which starts at $50) or a Digital Starter TV package (which starts at $60 per month). Meanwhile, cable company Charter, which owns Spectrum, is currently giving Spectrum TV customers a free year of Peacock Premium, while Spectrum Internet customers get 90 days free. Both plans start at $49.99 a month.
Peacock grants access to next-day programming from NBC and Bravo as well as live sports like WWE, movies like Jurassic World: Dominion, shows like Saturday Night Live, and more. Until September 30th, new subscribers purchase an annual subscription to Peacock Premium for $19.99 when they use promo code ONEYEAR at checkout. Alternatively, you can pay $1.99 a month for a monthly subscription when you apply promo code SEPTEMBER.
YouTube TV grants subscribers access to live sports and a number of major news and entertainment channels, including PBS, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, NBC, ABC, FOX, CNN, and more. It also comes with unlimited recording for a maximum of six accounts, all for $64.99 per month. The service also offers a separate Spanish-only plan that’s $24.99 a month for the first six months, and then $34.99 once the discount period ends. You can buy optional add-ons as well, like a 4K Plus add-on that’s $19.99 a month and makes it possible to watch select content on YouTube TV in 4K. Other add-ons range between $2 and $65 a month and include access to services like HBO Max, Starz, and NBA League Pass.
For a limited time, new subscribers can opt to pay just $54.99 a month instead of $64.99 for their first three months, which lowers the total price of the three-month subscription from $195 to $165. It’s a small discount, sure, but it remains one of the biggest we’ve seen.
Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video is an on-demand streaming service owned by Amazon. Its library includes a range of movies, some live content, and shows like The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, The Boys, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and more. You can also watch certain titles in 4K and take advantage of deals on rentals and purchases not included in the subscription. There’s also an option to add extra channels with Prime Video channels.
Amazon Prime Video is included with an Amazon Prime membership, though you can sign up for the service for $8.99 a month without one. Right now, customers of Metro By T-Mobile’s unlimited plan (which starts at $40 per month) can get a free Amazon Prime membership, which means they can access various Prime benefits — including Prime Video — for free.
With Starz, you can stream a variety of shows and movies, including Gaslit and Venom: Let There Be Carnage as well as originals like Outlander. The platform only offers a single ad-free plan that costs $8.99 a month, and you can stream on up to four devices at a time and download content for offline viewing. Returning subscribers can opt for a year of Starz for $20, while new subscribers get 10 months for $20 for a limited time.
Sling TV is a streaming service that functions as a more affordable alternative to YouTube TV and Hulu with Live TV. You can watch a range of live and on-demand TV channels like ESPN, CNN, Fox, NBC, Comedy Central, Cartoon Network, and more on multiple devices. The platform offers three plans, all of which come with fifty hours of DVR storage: Sling Blue ($35 a month); Sling Orange ($35 a month); and Sling Orange and Blue ($50 a month).
If you’re into sports, you may want to opt for Sling Orange over Blue as it grants access to ESPN channels but only on one device. However, Sling Blue offers a greater variety of channels Sling Orange lacks, like access to Fox News, MSNBC, E!, Discovery, Bravo, and local NBC or Fox affiliates. You can also subscribe to a bundle that includes both Sling Orange and Sling Blue, which offer all of the channels the first two plans feature.
Right now, Sling TV offers a variety of deals for new subscribers. For instance, you can get the first month of any of the aforementioned plans for half-off, with the option to add Sports Extra so you can stream football and other sports. In addition, Sling currently offers a premium package that includes a free month of Showtime, Starz, and Epix, which you can add to your first-month discount. Lastly, you can get a free AirTV Mini streaming device or an HD antenna when you subscribe to two months of Sling in advance. If you buy three months ahead of time, you can get both.
Apple TV Plus
Apple TV Plus is a service owned by Apple that streams original shows and movies in 4K HDR, including Ted Lasso, The Morning Show, Coda, Severance, and Finch. The platform also currently allows you to watch Friday Night Baseball games (which are free to all for a limited time), and next year will be the streaming home to Major League Soccer. The service costs $4.99 a month.
There are a couple of promos to make note of when it comes to Apple TV Plus. If you buy an Apple device, for instance, you’ll get a free three-month subscription. Apple TV Plus is also included in Apple One, which lets you bundle up to five other Apple services and pay a single monthly subscription starting at $14.95. As far as carriers go, T-Mobile offers various deals to all of its customers, with those on the Magenta and Magenta Max plans eligible for the largest discounts. The company is currently offering Magenta customers six months of Apple TV Plus for free, while Magenta Max plan subscribers get the service for free. T-Mobile’s Magenta and Magenta Max plans start at $70 and $85, respectively.
Apple’s streaming service has a variety of original programming, including live MLB games and standouts like Severance, Ted Lasso, and Coda. A subscription normally runs $4.99 per month with a seven-day free trial; a three-month subscription is also available for free with the purchase of an Apple device.