It's been exactly two years.
Two years since I switched my phone plan to Fido from Telus. With the change came a sweet promotional trial offer. Two years free Spotify Premium.
My two years is up. I've been "cut off", my music trust fund has been severed and iron earplugs have been welded on my ears. I have to listen to ads, tons and tons of ads. I can't stand it.
Free Trials Suck You In
Now that I've been using Spotify for 2 years I don't know how else to listen to music, every other way is a substantial downgrade.
How often do you get a telemarketer call you and tell you that you can have a 30-day free trial? It's no cost to you, and if after a month you don't like the service you can cancel. I usually don't even bother signing up for free trials because I never wanted the service and usually don't need it. The most common one I get offered is credit card balance insurance, but I never carry a balance on my credit cards and never spend more than I have in the bank. So it's extremely unlikely I'll get caught in a bind where I can't pay off my credit card bill.
The difference with Spotify is that it's a pretty useful service. At first, I used it maybe once a week, but now I'm using it every day, sometimes all day. Any music I want, when I want, and as easy as a couple clicks. No more downloading and transferring of files to an mp3 player. Streaming really is the best way to listen to music. With a valuable service like this, Spotify is in the driver seat. They cancel you, you don't cancel them. So the moment my premium account was downgraded to a free account I felt like getting down on my hands and knees to beg to be let back on the other side of the fence. I felt my standard of living drop today.
$10 a month is $120 a year more than I want to pay, but a life without music may be too sad.
I'm going to give this free account another chance, but if it doesn't work out, I'm going to have to look into paying for a music streaming service. I debating between Spotify and Apple Music.
It's not going to be cheap, but giving up 3-4 dinners out with the wife is probably worth a year worth of music. I can already see myself taking the tradeoff in 2018. Music is that important to our lives. Spending intentionally means, your budget has to change as your intentions change. Changes can happen mid-year when you haven't budgeted for it. Be flexible and strict at the same time to ensure you spend when and where you need to, but save where you can.
Save Money Retire Early is written by Jon Lo, a barely 30 something change optimist, and personal finance guy. I believe anyone can be rich or poor, it's what you save that makes the difference.