A longtime reader named Glenn wrote in with a dilemma many of us face.
Hi, Julia. How is everything? I’d like your expert opinion. I recently stopped my newspaper subscription after I discovered that they raised my rate from $35 a year to $52 without notifying me. I had been paying $35 a year for the past several years. I know that $1 per week for daily newspapers isn’t that bad, but I didn’t like that fact that my annual subscription jumped nearly 50%. There are other sources for news, and I can look up all the major retailers and drug stores weekly ads online. True, I won’t be getting the Sunday coupon booklets any longer. But to be honest, I found that the types of coupons and their values to be in steady decline (in terms of what appeals to me) lately.
Q? Do you think I was hasty in canceling my subscription? What would you have done?
You acted hastily, perhaps fueled by frustration. The paper erred by declining to notify you – is it possible your dog ate the letter? Either way, a call to the subscription desk will iron things out.
It’s not too late to call and ask to re-start your subscription at the old rate. You are a loyal reader who always paid your bill on time, no? They can understand how frustrated you were when you received no advance warning of the increase, right? I’m guessing you’ve received excellent customer service in the past and hope they can help you out now.
If that doesn’t sway them, ask if setting up auto-pay with a credit card entitles you to a discount. If that doesn’t work, find a discount being offered by a rival paper and ask them to match it. Another tactic is to go without a few weeks or months in hopes that they will send you a coupon to subscribe.
Let us know how it turns out!