2021 : My Year of Free Trials
So this year's resolution, yes I know it’s March, is my year of free trials. If there was a free trial to win a million dollars I would sign up. Now I know nothing is free, but in some ways things actually can be free and enjoyable as long as you remember to cancel before being charged money. I started the year off signing up for a free Amazon Prime trial. It’s 30 days and a ton of useful things are included. You get free music, free 2 day, sometimes even one day free shipping.
Now the real reason I wanted to sign up for Amazon Prime’s free trial was for Prime Video. I got to watch the premiere season of the amazon original called The Wilds. It’s kind of a modern take on Lord of the Flies except the stars are all female living on a deserted island. It’s well produced but also kinda corny. They could have made the season be only 2 or 3 episodes because there was excessive character backstories and not a whole lot happens on the island. But it is good for a nice well developed series that introduces some new actors.
After being overwhelmed with all of the options on Amazon Prime Video, I quickly moved on to another free trial. This time it was actually a trial within a trial. Amazon tries to upsell other platforms. They got me to sign up for a 7-day free trial of CBS All Access. As of March 4, they call it Paramount +. This was not such a great experience for me. Not only is 7 days way too short of a trial run for a streaming platform that has been around for awhile. If you are a Big Brother Fan, then I am sure you tried out the CBS All Access for the 24 hour coverage of the little gerbils being spied on living in a house not being able to go outside into the real world. The thing I hated about this service were the commercials. They were about 90-120 min in length and as a viewer you can see the countdown. To me, it made 2 minutes seem like 2 hours. I am not sure if Paramount + is any better, but they do offer a 30 day free trial and then it’s only $5.99 a month. But if they kept the same format for how they show commercials, they are in deep trouble.
The third and final, so far, free trial I signed up this year was YouTube TV. I wanted to watch the latest seasons of MTV’s The Challenge. This show is a reality competition show that has been around since 1998 and most of the stars are from the Real World and lately they have included people from Big Brother and the Amazing Race. So when I originally tried to sign up for YouTube TV, they made me sign in on my tv by doing some puzzles and signing up and confirming, but before I could even sign up for the free trial I noticed a detail. It was only for 2 days! Oh hell no!! You could sneeze and then poof the trial is over and you forgot to cancel and now you owe about $65!!! That is insanity!
So what happened was that I decided to walk away and didn’t complete the sign up for the free trial. But...then 3 days later I looked in my email and YouTube sent me an email saying that I can have a super long extended free trial that is 2 weeks. This made me laugh. Why not just offer the 2 weeks and get me hooked faster? So now I have the free trial, but they also try to upsell 20 other services, like Showtime and HBO. I ended signing up for the 2 week Showtime trial because I wanted to watch the latest season of Shameless. I just couldn’t wait until Netflix decides to finally release season 11. It could be another year.
So I would suggest to anybody reading this to try and sign up for free trials also this year with me. Join my fantastic journey into FREE-dom.
Now just make sure you do some things. Read the fine print. Never pay anything up front. You may need to have a credit card on file but you will remember to cancel by the time they charge you. All you need to do is go into your calendar on your phone or computer and set a reminder to cancel before your free trial runs out. I try to cancel a day or two before just as a buffer in case something was miscalculated on my part. Amazon says it will send a message before to remind you, but who knows if you can trust that. And if signing up for free stuff scares you, just sign up for things that charge $5 or less.
*Full Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.