The Average Cable Bill Is Now Over $250 Per Household in 2023 [UPDATED]

Updated for 2023:

  • The average cable bill in the US is now $253
  • This is a 15.5% increase over the last four years
  • Inflation and cost increases for service are most responsible for price increases over the last 12 months.

In an economy where everything seems to only be getting more expensive, so too has the monthly cable bill seen price increases over the last year.

Analysis conducted over the last three months by the GammaWire data team has found that the average US household is paying over $250 for their cable television and internet package.

Most monthly internet bills are floating between $98-$104 per household and television packages with an average of 2.5 premium additions end up putting the bill over $251 in total.

More likely than anything, inflationary pressure is causing these prices to trend upward and will likely continue to do so over the coming 12-month period, with little expectation that costs of services will decline. The only potential impact would likely come from consumers opting out of the optional packages, channels, and internet speeds available from most major cable television and internet service providers.

“We do not expect to see any decline in cable bill costs over the next 12 months, but when consumers suffering from ongoing inflationary pressure look to cut costs, we will likely see reduction in service levels and premium package sales. We expect that the average bill might go down but only because of cancellations and reductions, not monthly service fee decreases.”

– Andrew Willins, GammaWire analyst.

Initial offer programs, commonly seen as 12-month deals, listed on most ISP and cable television websites drastically balloon after one year, resulting in sticker shock for many consumers who thought they were signing up for a more permanent and higher rate.

Over the last four years, this has resulted in a 15.6% increase in monthly costs when starting with a base measurement of $217 provided by Consumer Reports back in 2018.

While conducting the study, GammaWire spoke to several cable subscribers around the US. While people in large cities seemed slightly less concerned about the increase, rural areas with less competition expressed concern that they felt price-locked with little power to change the prices available to them.

“This lack of choice can’t be good for me as a customer,” said one respondent.

“What am I going to do if my internet company raises the prices $10 bucks a month? I work from home. I need internet. I don’t have an alternative,” said one person who responded mentioning that they have noticed their bill increasing over the last year. “They sent me an email alerting me to the price increase and that was that.”

The cable industry is one with relatively low competition in comparison to other major consumer products and services, with many people around the United States limited to one or two realistic options for home internet and cable TV.

“This lack of choice can’t be good for me as a customer,” said one respondent.

For those looking to save money on their monthly cable bills, there are a few options likely available:

  1. Call and ask about better deals that come with a 12-month promotional period. Cable companies want to keep you as a consumer, so if you call and ask about retention deals, it can often result in at least a temporary cost savings.
  2. Consider not subscribing to cable television, and use 1-2 streaming services instead. While many consumers have found the cost of multiple streaming services to be comparable to traditional cable television, those who maintain some disciplne and only subscribe to 1-2 services find they can save upwards of $50-100 per month.
  3. Decrease internet speeds. While fast and reliable internet is practically a requirement these days, many people pay for better service that they don’t actually need. Consider how much internet speed you require to accomplish what you need (streaming TV, playing online games, video chat, etc), and work to sort out potential savings on lower service tiers.

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