Shootout at the XM Corral

Tara texted me this morning about an automatic bank withdrawal.

SiriusXM just charged $22. Is that monthly??

Because there were two question marks, I knew this displeased my wife. And honestly, it displeased me, too. For the past year, the monthly charge had been $7 and some odd change. I figured my one-year promotional period had just expired. That’s what these companies do: they reel you in, hook you, and then jack up their fees.

I’ve really grown to love SiriusXM. But not enough to justify $22 a month. We’re not in any sort of dire straits financially, but we also don’t wanna be givin’ away money for nothing.

See what I did there?

It’s the principle of the matter. I can just as easily listen to Spotify in my car, or even—in a pinch—the radio. My work commute is 15 minutes, which is no more than three songs anyway. Or one, if that song happens to be, just to pick a random long one, “Telegraph Road” by Dire Straits (14 min. 18 sec.).

Man. I’d better listen to Brothers in Arms or something.

So, I went online, pulled up my account, and hit CANCEL. Checked the “But why?” box that said “It costs too much.” Thus commenced a standoff, as I knew it would.

First, SiriusXM suggested I switch to a lower-cost plan. Seemed reasonable, but the channel selections were limited. Neither had my go-to channels (The Spectrum and SiriXMU). And cheaper, yes…but still $8-$15 more than what we’d been paying. I declined the offer, and that’s when the automated system switched over to a chat with a live person.

Good news, she said. I can get you the Platinum subscription for only $12 a month. That’s a 43% savings!

A lesser man might have flinched at this point, but not I.

Not good enough, I said. Please proceed with the cancellation.

My nemesis, Anna was her name, fired one last shot. What if I gave you the same plan you’ve had for the same price you were paying for another year?

Now we’re cooking with gas!

I could do that, I guess, I said. Gotta play it cool, you know? I’m going to be going through the same rigamarole one year from now, after all. That’s just the way it is with these things. At least you no longer have to get on the phone and actually talk to somebody, like I used to do with Comcast every year. It’s so much easier to be an outlaw when you let your fingers do the talking.

My daughter, Audrey, and her fiancee Anna (no relation to the SiriusXM rep…I don’t think!) flew back home to the PNW this morning after a three-day visit. We hadn’t seen Audrey in over two years, so it was really nice to catch up in person.

They arrived Thursday night, and the next two days we were on the go. Friday, we hit pretty much every tourist hot spot in western South Dakota: Custer State Park, Needles Highway, Cathedral Spires, Sylvan Lake, Mount Rushmore, and Crazy Horse.

Apparently we didn’t get our fill of adventure, because on Saturday, we headed out again. We hit Sturgis and Spearfish Canyon, but our main destination was Deadwood.

By Sunday, we were plum tuckered out, so we just hung around the house. Watched a football game we won’t discuss and a couple of movies.

Between all the sightseeing, some great food, and fun conversation, it was a nice visit, and they were both impressed with South Dakota. Not enough to move here or anything, perish the thought, but enough to want to come back again in the future.

27 thoughts on “Shootout at the XM Corral

  1. Your daughter is so pretty! And all those places look like a lot of fun to visit. I don’t really know much about Wild Bill and Calamity Jane other than their names are very famous. It was interesting to read those info plaques about them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think my Sirius subscription is up for renewal soon, I may have to try your negotiation plan. I’m charged yearly though, $200.
    Looks like a great weekend of exploring. Gotta get out there someday…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Our first Sirius subscription ended during the Lockdown, so I called and said we were no longer commuting in our cars and they gave me the same deal as we’d started with. This year I called to cancel, but the best deal I got was for $22/month for two cars and we are now able to listen inside our house/anywhere, which was in a premium package before. Still not sure it’s worth it. . .

    Looks like you gave them the grand tour!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. That was what my original deal reverted to, only in one car. I don’t think it’s a bad price given everything you get for the money…but I’m stingy and wanted to pay less.


  4. Hulu just did the same thing to me when I went online to cancel. They needn’t worry. I’ll be back as soon as the next seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale and What We Do In The Shadows are available.

    You’ve got some nice stuff over on that side of SoDakistan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m thinking of adding Showtime to Hulu because “Dexter” is back and there’s a special three-month introductory price. Guess I’d better get ready to do this song and dance again soon, eh?


  5. The standoff. Goodness, I went through it a few months ago trying to cancel the DISH network at our GA place. I was traumatized by it. Then last week I went through it with DirecTV; trying to cancel at our FL home. But his time I had a game plan (the sympathy card) and it worked.
    I also love The Spectrum.

    Nice to have a visit with your daughter; she’s lovely by the way!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m order to cancel the service you have to have a sob story or they’ll try every tactic in the book to keep you as a customer. Even saying you’re moving out of the country doesn’t work since they’re worldwide! I pled personal and health issues with a downtrodden attitude. It worked!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m glad you got to see your daughter after all this time. She looks smart and pretty. We have SiriusXM and like it. Over the years it’s gotten more expensive every year, little by little. I don’t know what $$$ amount will be the tipping point… but it’ll happen eventually. It always does with these [greedy] services.

    Liked by 1 person

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