BUT, I do love saving a few bucks on introductory offers and taking advantage of them. I've got my cheapskate moments.
Canceling after that introductory offer though? Not always easy. And I HATE having to call customer service, so here are some ways I get around that!
- For services where I have the option to "skip" a month, I put an alarm in my phone calendar, so I never miss it and never get autocharged. This is great for subscriptions where you think you MIGHT want to pick it back up again at some point, but just don't need it every single month.
- This doesn't work for every site, but using a prepaid credit card in the amount of that first box, is a great way to make sure it doesn't matter if they try to auto-renew your service next month. That card is EMPTY beyotch! (Some services can tell that the card is prepaid and not a real credit card though, so this is very hit or miss)
- Use PayPal to pay for your subscription if you can. Why? Because if you end up wanting to cancel, you can do it directly through your PayPal account, and avoid dealing with the company AT ALL. How? Go to your settings, then to "Website Payments" (on the left hand side, bottom), and then you'll see "My Automatic Payments" on top. Click "update", and you'll come to an overview page. Click "My Preapproved Payments" and from there, you'll see your subscription services, all listed out. Click on whatever subscription service you want to no longer pay for. On the next screen it'll show you "Billing Details". Right under the billing ID, you will see the status: Active and Cancel. Click "Cancel" and you are DONE! PayPal will NOT approve their auto-renewal for your subscription service.
- Never use your debit card if you can help it. Why? In the event they "accidentally" charge you for a service you canceled anyway, if it's your debit card they charged, it is a much longer process to get those funds back, and since it's your REAL money versus a line of credit, you are in a spot where you might not have access to funds you need for bills, food, etc. depending on your budget. When I've had my debit card compromised through identity fraud and my bank account got emptied, it took 10 business days to get back thousands of dollars, and I had to scramble to get my mortgage paid in time. NOT FUN. With a credit card, your funds are reversed within minutes, and since it's not your actual cash, you can still pay your bills.
- Another reason why you should use a credit card when trying out a subscription, is that in the absolute worst case scenario where you can't figure out how on earth to cancel, you can literally just get your credit card number changed and then they can't bill you anymore. I ordered some skincare products that you could only buy on subscription, had a terrible allergic reaction, and couldn't cancel due to there being no contact info, no phone number, only an email, and they were NOT helpful in the email at all. So I called up my credit card company and pretended my card got stolen, so they canceled my card (the one that the subscription would have charged to), I received a new card in the mail, and it didn't matter that they were impossible to cancel with. I went around their stubborn asses and fixed it myself, by getting an entirely new credit card. BUT, if you did this with a debit card, you won't have a way to spend your actual money for the 2 weeks it takes for a new card to arrive. With a credit card, it's not that big of a deal.
I hope this doesn't scare you off from trying out a product just because it's a subscription service. I have had lots of fun trying out new products from subscription services, and feel zero guilt about canceling right after if I just didn't really feel it.
Just stay on top of it, and don't forget that the service exists! Put the dates they pull payment into your calendar so you're not surprised. Put the dates you need to cancel by into your calendar as well, so you aren't charged for more than you actually wanted. And know all the different ways you can cancel, if their customer service is utter garbage.
So get out there and take advantage of some cheap leggings or beauty products or seamless thongs or whatever! I have a list on my sidebar with my favorite subscription boxes if you need a place to start!