The Hidden Costs of Cox Cable
Getting cable TV is fun. There’s always something to watch with tons of channels, on-demand movies, current sporting events, and twenty-four-hour news programming.
Getting the bill? Now that’s less fun.
TV providers’ promotional prices are purposefully appealing, but you need to watch out for second-year price jumps. And because installation fees, equipment fees, and premium channel fees can vary based on your plan, you generally won’t see them included in the introductory pricing either.
While these are simple truths of the cable TV and internet industry, that doesn’t mean you have to sign with a provider without knowing what you’re getting into. We’re here to tell you about every cost you may encounter when Cox Communications is your provider.
Data effective 07/29/2019. Offers, pricing, and availability may vary by area and are subject to change.
Cox Plans and Promotional Prices
It’s standard for plans to rise in prices after a year-long promotional period. But don’t worry that you’ll be forced into these raised rates—Cox plans don’t have contracts, so you can leave or change your plan at any time you feel it’s too much.
Cox TV Plans Summary
|Package name||Channel count||12-Month introductory price||Ongoing price|
Cox Internet Plans Summary
|Package name||Download speed||12-Month introductory price||Ongoing price|
|Internet Starter 10||10 Mbps||$19.99/mo.||$44.99/mo.|
|Internet Essential 30||30 Mbps||$29.99/mo.||$65.99/mo.|
|Internet Preferred 150||150 Mbps||$49.99/mo.||$83.99/mo.|
|Internet Ultimate||300 Mbps||$69.99/mo.||$104.99/mo.|
For 12 months with 1-year service agreement. Data as of 7/29/2019. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.
TV + Internet
If you’re looking to bundle services, the Double Play bundles below are what you need.
Cox TV and Internet Bundles Summary
TV + Internet + Phone
Cox also offers Triple Play bundles, which include TV, internet, and phone plans. Note that while Double Play and Triple Play are priced the same for the first twelve months, Triple Play plans are more expensive than Double Play plans after the promotional period.
Cox TV, Internet, and Phone Bundles Summary
|Package Name||Channel Count||Download Speed||12-Month Introductory Price||Ongoing Price|
|Bronze Triple Play||140+||100 Mbps||$89.99/mo.||$196.97/mo.|
|Bronze Triple Play||140+||300 Mbps||$109.99/mo.||$283.93/mo.|
|Bronze Triple Play||250+||300 Mbps||$129.99/mo.||$301.97/mo.|
Sign up for the plan that best fits your needs rather than going for the largest one you can afford. When you check out Cox’s channel lineups, note that most bundles come with the Contour TV plan, except for Gold bundles (which come with Contour TV Ultimate).
Taxes, Fees, and Surcharges for Cox Plans
Just like buying groceries or clothes, Cox TV and internet services will cost you a bit extra for taxes and fees. In addition to federal taxes, you may also have state and local taxes, as well as video broadcast or regional sports surcharges.
These fees vary across the country, but the ones for your service area will be noted on your bill.
Cox Installation Fees
|Plan type||Self-installation cost||Professional-installation cost|
|Single Play||$20.00||$75.00||Learn More|
|Double Play||None||$50.00||Learn More|
|Triple Play||None||$25.00||Learn More|
Cox bases its installation fees on the type of plan you purchase. If you get only one service from Cox, you’ll have to pay the full price for installation. But if you bundle with a Double Play or Triple Play, self-installation is included and professional-installation fees go down.
Cox Equipment Fees
Your Cox internet and TV service require specialized equipment, and wouldn’t you know it, Cox is ready to offer you a modem/router and Contour cable box—for a price.
Take a look at the prices below to decide if leasing equipment from Cox is your best option or if you’d rather get third-party equipment elsewhere.
Cox TV Equipment Fees
|TV Equipment||Monthly Cost|
|Record 24 DVR||$29.99/mo.|
|Record 6 DVR||$19.99/mo.|
|Record 2 DVR||$12.99/mo.|
|Cox wireless cable box||$10.00/mo.|
|Cox cable box||$10.00/mo.|
DVRs come with equipment and service fees, but the convenience of recording shows and movies to enjoy later can make those costs worthwhile. There are three Cox DVR services to choose from, but Cox doesn’t require you to get one.
DVR or no, you’ll need a Cox Contour cable box, which works as a receiver for your Contour TV service. You’ll need at least one cable box in your home—they come in wireless and wired varieties—but you can use the cheaper mini boxes to set up service to your other TVs.
If you already own a DVR or cable receiver, you can opt for a CableCARD, which decrypts Cox’s signal while letting you enjoy your own equipment. This is especially useful if you’re interested in a super-powered DVR like the TiVo BOLT VOX.
Cox Internet Equipment Fees
|Internet Equipment||Monthly Cost|
|Panoramic WiFi Modem||$9.99/mo.|
To keep your internet equipment simple, you can opt for Cox’s Panoramic WiFi Modem, and Cox will update your equipment as technology changes. But if you’d rather save by purchasing your own modem/router, look for other DOCSIS 3.0+ equipment like this one from Motorola.
An additional service you may want to watch out for is Cox Complete Care, which is $10.00 per month. Its advanced technical support promises to help with any computer troubles or wiring repair you may need. That level of service is helpful for some, but if you’re computer savvy and looking to save, we’d say pass on this one.
|TV pak||Sample channels||Monthly cost|
|Variety Pak||Disney Jr., Disney XD, Nicktoons, Nat Geo Wild, MTV2, Oxygen, and BBC America||$12.00/mo.|
|Movie Pak||ENCORE, Sundance, EPIX, and Fox Movie Channel||$12.00/mo.|
|Sports and Information Pak||ESPN Classic, FOX Business, GOL TV, H2, and NHL Network||$10.00/mo.|
|Sports Pak 2||NFL Redzone, NBC Universal Sports, World Fishing Network, and Outside TV||$10.00/mo.|
|Latino Pak||Telefutura, Galavision, Discovery en Español, CNN en Español, FOX Deportes, and ESPN Deportes||$10.00/mo.|
Also, note that EPIX is also available as a stand-alone premium channel for $10.00 per month, but if you’re a movie lover, you may want to spring for that extra $2.00 per month and go with the Movie Pak instead.
Cox Premium Channel Fees
Whether you love Game of Thrones, Westworld, or American Gods, premium channels are where it’s at for the hottest shows. Cox’s Gold Double Play and Gold Triple Play come with premium channels included, but if you’re getting a different package and want to add them on, refer to the prices below.
Cox Premium Channel Summary
|Premium channel||Monthly cost|
Cox Cancellation Fees
Cox plans don’t come with a contract, so you won’t have to worry about cancellation fees. Feel free to leave if you ever feel the costs of TV and internet are weighing you down.
Cox Late Fees
If you miss a payment, Cox can cancel your service, but it’s more likely it’ll try to collect your payment first. The amount you’ll pay in late fees can vary based on the action Cox takes, but it’s likely to charge you $25.00 for taking extra action.
There’s not a lot of wiggle room on this one, and that’s fairly standard for the industry, so make sure you pay your bills on time!
Cox’s Bronze Double Play is simple but really a thing of beauty. It’s a good price, and it’s easy to add Cox’s TV Paks to get all the extra channels you want. With 100 Mbps download speeds, households can enjoy the internet with multiple devices running at once.
If you want faster internet speeds, check out the Silver Double Play. Or if you’re going to spring for a lot of TV Paks and premium channels, it will be cheaper to go with the Gold Double Play. And if you want phone service, a Triple Play is better suited to your needs.
Otherwise, the Bronze Double Play is a great package that we think will meet most people’s wants and needs.
Don’t let fees scare you away.
We’ve broken down the hidden costs of Cox, but most of these come from building the best package for you. If you want only the basics, your extra costs will be few and far between. But if you like to live large, your monthly bill will reflect that.
Cox’s streamlined TV package and simple bundles are solid offers at competitive prices. Adjust them to exactly what you want for price, TV channels, and internet download speeds, because at the end of the day your satisfaction is the most important thing.