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Trying to save some cash? If you’d like to slash the amount of services you pay monthly fees for, many of the most popular ones — including , , Apple Music, Grubhub and DoorDash — can be swapped for free alternatives. You might not end up with the exact same product, but you can often get pretty darn close.
Unlike their paid counterparts, many of these free services operate with ads and the streaming services won’t let you download content to watch or listen to them offline. But some have deals and decent free trials that you can take advantage of now.
Here’s how to replace many of the services you pay for with the best free subscription services we’ve found.
You can sign up for the free version of Peacock without a credit card. You’ll need to upgrade to premium (which costs $5 a month with ads, or $10 a month without ads) to watch full seasons of new original series, like and the Psych movie This is Gus. You won’t find a ton of brand-new movies, either. But the free tier is a great way to discover shows and films you might have missed the first time around, or want to watch again.
Watch Peacock on Apple devices like the iPhone and Apple TV, Roku devices, Amazon Fire TV devices, Google devices like Android phones and Chromecast, Xbox and PlayStation consoles, Vizio SmartCast TVs and LG Smart TVs.
Replaces: is an ad-supported streaming service that offers movies and some TV shows, including original content. You can find a variety of flicks old and new including Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Lion, The Big Chill, Dr. Strangelove, Glory, Black Friday, La Bamba, The Natural, The Social Network and Star Trek: First Contact. In terms of TV, you’ll find more than 100 different shows, including a lot of sitcoms such as All in the Family, Roseanne and Who’s the Boss. But not every series has all seasons available.
You can stream on Crackle without signing up for an account, and can watch on virtually any device, with apps for all mobile platforms, game consoles and any major streaming device. If you do create an account, you can save favorites, get recommendations and resume playback if you switch between devices.
Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET
Replaces: (or your whole cable subscription)
One big caveat here: Much of the programming on Pluto isn’t the same live TV channels you’ll find on pay cable or satellite, even if the channels have the same names. So, while news junkies will find live programming from CBSN, NBC News Now and Bloomberg TV, Pluto’s versions of MTV, AMC and CNN are time-shifted or alternate programming from those providers.
Ultimately, none of that matters, because you’re still getting a wealth of streaming video that’s truly free (it’s ad-supported, of course). And because there are literally dozens of in-progress streams to toggle through in real-time, Pluto offers the best analog to flipping through the myriad channels on a traditional cable system (or paid streaming alternative, like Hulu). You can also browse channels by categories like news, sports, comedy and movies, and find on-demand TV content, though it’s mostly crime and reality shows.
Pluto works on desktop browsers, through a Windows client, or through apps for Android, iOS and different smart TVs and channels for Apple TV, Fire TV and Roku.
thanks to its easy-to-use interface, extensive catalogue and device compatibility. Plus, you can always listen to its full music catalogue for free, with ads. If you do want to upgrade, you can choose between (including a ) for yourself or to split with others.
If it’s your first time subscribing to Spotify Premium, you’ll get a month free trial.
Best for ordering food
Just call the restaurant
Replaces: DoorDash, Grubhub, Postmates and Uber Eats
I know, it’s not exactly a service. But often charge big delivery and service fees that add to your bill — not to mention the and the . The best option when you’re trying to save money and support local restaurants is to call the restaurant directly to pick up your food or see if it has an in-house delivery service. Lots of restaurants now offer for staying safe and healthy.
Nike Training Club
Replaces: Your gym, or is a free app for iOS and Android with a variety of home workouts and programs to help you set a workout schedule. You can filter workouts based on what equipment you have at home, and find bodyweight-only exercises, yoga and training programs.
Replaces: Online classes
MasterClass offers thousands of online lessons taught by veritable masters in their fields — we’re talking Gordon Ramsey on cooking, Ken Burns on documentary making and Helen Mirren on acting. While an annual membership costs $180, you can find a series of free courses called available now. These include a session on building suspenseful thrillers with Dan Brown, the importance of science with Neil deGrasse Tyson and beauty tips from industry mogul Bobbi Brown.
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