Done With Netflix? Try These 7 Cheaper Alternatives

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  • You can find multiple streaming platforms with lower monthly fees than Netflix, especially if you're willing to watch the occasional ad.
  • Paying for an annual subscription often substantially lowers your monthly cost.
  • Cycle services to keep up on all the latest shows and movies across platforms.

You can stay entertained without breaking the budget.

Ever since they sent DVDs to our mailboxes, Netflix has been a big part of our home entertainment. But while Netflix may have been our first streaming platform, its ever-increasing prices have driven many folks to the competition.

And there is certainly a lot of competition. Most major networks and production houses now have their own platforms -- and many of them are cheaper than Netflix.

Before we dive into the alternatives, let's take a look at what a Netflix subscription costs:

Netflix Basic Standard Premium
Cost (Monthly) $9.99 $15.49 $19.99
Simultaneous Streams 1 2 4
Video Quality SD HD HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing Yes (1 Device) Yes (2 Devices) Yes (4 Devices)

As of now, the cheapest Netflix plan is their $9.99 a month basic plan. While somewhat affordable, the quality of what you get is poor. You're stuck with standard definition -- which looks terrible on modern screens -- and you can only stream on one device at a time.

While Netflix is close to releasing a cheaper ad-supported option, it has yet to be released. We also don't know how much it's going to cost, or what you'll get with it. Will you have HD, or be stuck with SD like the Basic plan?

Even with an ad-supported plan, many folks are simply ready for some fresh content from a new streamer. Either way, let's take a look at some of our other options:

1. Hulu

Hulu is the go-to alternative for many previous (and some current) Netflix users. It offers a huge selection of TV and movies, as well as award-winning original content. Its ad-supported option is cheaper than even Netflix's Basic plan. If you don't want ads, opt for the No Ads subscription, which gives you multiple streams and HD content for less than Netflix's comparable option.

Hulu Ads No Ads
Cost (Monthly) $6.99 $12.99
Cost (Annual) $69.99 N/A
Simultaneous Streams 2 2
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing No Yes

2. Disney+

Disney+ is home to many of the most popular entertainment brands in the world, including Star Wars and Marvel. It's also a great place to find a variety of Fox shows, as well as Disney content going back decades. 

The monthly cost of a Disney+ subscription is less than even basic Netflix, and you can cut it down even further with an annual plan. That said, Disney+ doesn't have the vast, dynamic content library of a Netflix or Hulu, so it may not be a great option for a single-service home. If you want more content, bundle Disney+ with Hulu and ESPN+. You'll pay $13.99 a month for Disney+ / ESPN+ / Hulu (Ads), and $19.99 a month for Disney+ / ESPN+ / Hulu (No Ads).

Disney+ Disney+ Monthly Disney+ Annual
Cost $7.99 $79.99
Ads No No
Simultaneous Streams 4 4
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing Yes Yes

3. Peacock

Fans of NBC Universal television shows and movies can find a lot to watch on their Peacock streaming service. It's also one of the only major services with a free option, which includes a few live TV channels and a good deal of content. 

The Premium option gives you ad-supported access to all of the platform content. Add a few extra bucks to kick the ads. If you opt for the annual Premium+ plan, you'll get ad-free, HD-quality streams on up to three screens for less than the price of a basic Netflix subscription.

Peacock Free Premium Premium+
Cost (Monthly) $0 $6.99 $12.99
Cost (Annual) $0 $49.99 $99.99
Ads Yes Yes No
Simultaneous Streams 3 3 3
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4k) HD (Select 4k)
Offline Viewing No No Yes

4. HBO Max

Once a channel mostly for movies and comedy specials, HBO's current streaming platform is now far more. You can find not only movies and original programming, but also a wide range of popular television shows. While the With Ads plan is the same price as Basic Netflix, you get HD quality and three streams. The Ad-Free version is cheaper than the comparable mid-tier Netflix plan. And if you pay annually, you can save quite a bit on either plan.

HBO Max With Ads Ad-Free
Cost (Monthly) $9.99 $14.99
Cost (Annual) $99.99 $149.99
Simultaneous Streams 3 3
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing No Yes

5. Paramount+

Another network-turned-streamer, Paramount+ is a solid option for CBS fans. You'll find the whole range of Star Trek movies and shows, including all of the newest creations. There's also Paramount's catalog of movies and decades of TV shows. The ad-supported Essential plan is half the price of a Basic Netflix subscription, and you can get ads (plus HD and multiple streams) for the full cost. Or, go annual and get Premium at a discount.

Paramount+ Essential Premium
Cost (Monthly) $4.99 $9.99
Cost (Annual) $49.99 $99.99
Ads Yes No
Simultaneous Streams 3 3
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing No Yes

6. Amazon Prime Video

If you're an Amazon Prime subscriber, you may already have access to a decent Netflix alternative, as Amazon Prime Video is included in your Prime Membership. Without a regular Prime subscription, you can still get access to a ton of content with a standalone Prime Video subscription. The Video-only sub comes in less than a Basic Netflix plan.

Amazon Prime Video Prime Video Prime (Monthly) Prime (Annual)
Costs $8.99 $14.99 $139
Ads No No No
Simultaneous Streams 3 3 3
Video Quality HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K) HD (Select 4K)
Offline Viewing Yes Yes Yes

7. Your local library

Depending on how much content you go through -- and whether you need the latest big show -- your local library could be your most affordable Netflix alternative. With your handy dandy library card, free from your local branch, you can access the Hoopla and/or Kanopy apps (access may vary by region). This unlocks access to stream TV shows, movies, and even music.

Cycle services for ultimate savings

If you're struggling to make a single service work, don't waste money on more content than you can watch. Instead, cycle services. Get a month of one, watch what you want, then move on the next month. This ensures you always have access to the latest binge-worthy content without the high cost of multiple services. Charge it to a streaming rewards card to save even more.

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