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Over 55s get raw deal on TV subscriptions

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
Consumers aged over 55 waste nearly £400 a year on TV subscriptions and channels they never watch.

Adults in their 50s are getting the worst value for money when it comes to TV subscriptions as they spend an average of £41 per month but typically watch less than a quarter of the content available.

New research from free satellite TV service, Freesat, found that over 55s are wasting about £380 a year on channels they never watch.

And many are aware they’re overpaying for the service (58%), while 47% feel negative towards their package provider as 47% claim they’re being taken advantage of by regular price hikes.

The study of 2,000 consumers also found that older viewers are far more likely to get drawn into expensive packages with 20% saying they pay between £51 and £70 every month.

This compares with just 6% of 18-24-year-olds and Freesat said this generation gap is thought to be owing to a lack of awareness among older consumers about the different TV services available.

Freesat spokesperson, Jennifer Elworthy, said: “Many older consumers are getting poor value for money as they don’t realise how many TV options are out there. Most of the country’s favourite TV programmes are available on free-to-air channels, yet over-55s are spending hundreds of pounds a year for other channels they may not watch.

“With the price of TV packages always on the rise, the money that consumers waste on services that don’t suit their needs is only going to increase.”

Top tips to ensure you get value for money

Here are three top tips from Freesat to ensure you don’t pay over the odds for the TV content you want to watch:

1) Review the channels and shows you’re watching

If you’re paying out hundreds of pounds each year on a TV subscription, it’s worth reviewing which channels you actually tune into and the shows you are watching. If you’re mainly watching channels that are free to view, consider cancelling your paid for TV subscription in favour of a free satellite TV service.

2) Check out comparison sites

If you’re unsure of the deals and products that are out there, check out price comparison sites such as uSwitch and Moneysupermarket. These sites will provide impartial information about each service provider and how much it will cost you.

3) Review the provider before signing up

If you’re thinking about your TV subscription or renewing, make sure you review each provider to ensure you know exactly what comes with the package. Nowadays it’s not just the channels that people want, it’s other services including On Demand, Netflix and roll back TV. You may find that the channels and services you require are cheaper or even free elsewhere.

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