I have subscriptions to a number of services, not just magazines. These include things like computer programs, hosting services, home supplies, groceries and so on. I’m sure vendors love this.

Within the past two weeks though, I have canceled three subscriptions when the vendor started playing games at renewal time. It usually went down like this:

  • I get notification of a renewal at an (often substantially) increased price. Increases of 30%+ are not uncommon. With no increase in benefits or service.
  • I send a message that I do not plan to continue the service because of the price increase.
  • They send a reply that they will offer me a “special” discount for renewing. The discount is usually not that great.
  • I say “Thank you for the offer, but no.”
  • I find someone else offering the same or better service for a better price, sometimes lower than what I had subscribed at originally.
  • I sign up for the new service.
  • I get a message from the original vendor offering to renew at the original price that was offered when I last subscribed.
  • I have to inform them that I have already moved on.
  • The original vendor loses my business.

For many of these services, I have subscribed for years and was very satisfied, even recommending them to friends. If the vendors had just been upfront, rather than trying to gouge me, they would still have my business. These kinds of games just leave a sour taste in my mouth.