Rotating streaming services

Over the past several years, I’ve heard people complain that there are too many streaming services. They complain that it’s too expensive to subscribe to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney Plus, HBO Max, Paramount Plus, etc. all at once.

Did it never occur to those people to subscribe to just one at a time and then switch to a different service each month? Each service has more content that I want to watch than anyone can possibly have time to watch in a month. (If one streaming service at a time isn’t enough, then one can subscribe to two at a time and then rotate each month.)

For so many years, people lamented that cable/satellite TV had no cheaper a la carte option. The proliferation of so many streaming services is a de-facto a la carte option.

Here’s how I do things. I get the paid services only during Couch Potato Season (the colder months of the year), because that’s when I spend more time watching TV shows and movies. I subscribe to one service for a month, switch to a different service when the month is up, and then rinse and repeat until spring arrives or there’s some reason I cannot get my money’s worth (like if I’m going out of town). During the other months of the year, I watch my own DVDs, borrow DVDs from the library, rent a DVD from RedBox, and watch free ad-supported shows and movies. I do NOT get a paid subscription if I’ll be out of town that month. I also do NOT get a paid subscription during the warmer months of the year, because that would encourage me to be a couch potato at a time when I wouldn’t normally be one.

I’m surprised that more people aren’t doing something similar to what I’m doing. A twist that might work better for some people is to have fewer subscriptions during the months they watch less and more subscriptions during the months they watch more.


Great idea. I kinda do this with SHOWTIME. When there is a series I want to watch, I’ll optimize the subscription date so that I can binge watch over a one month subscription time. I pay the $15(or so) monthly juice to HBO, however, as I like to watch Bill Maher each week in realtime.

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That’s pretty much what we do. We have Prime/imdb all year, YouTube during certain sports seasons, and network-specific ones when and if there is a series we’re interested in sitting through. Almost never more than two at the same time.