A comparison of their leading consumer plans and programming options
Choosing the right programming plan usually comes down to a balance between budget and entertainment needs. If you’re interested in DISH, you’ll find they offer a wide variety of plans but other than the total number of channels, it’s not always an easy comparison. So, which to choose? In this report, we’ll profile DISH’s most popular packages along with their key features and advantages.
For starters, we like to analyze satellite TV plans based on 3 categories:
1) TrueCost: the actual monthly cost (all fees included) you’ll pay during the promotional period and thereafter
2) Channel Value: our subjective, relative score of ALL the channels found in a particular plan
3) Bonus-added: if there’s a significant sign-up bonus currently available for a plan, we’ll give it a rankings boost
In the table below, we’ll cover each of those three categories as well as the pros and cons of DISH’s most popular plans (keep in mind price, channels and promos change frequently throughout the year, so check back often for the latest):
DISH Plan Comparison
Frequently Asked Questions
How/when can I switch plans?
DISH lets you change plans at anytime, for any reason. Simply give them a call and the new plan will usually be active within seconds. There’s no fee involved and your new rate will be pro-rated for the remainder of the month.
What other plans are available?
On the English side, the only other plan is America’s Top 120+ ($34.99/mo). It’s basically the Top 120 plus Fox Sports 2, FXX, Longhorn Network and the SEC Channel. Spanish-wise, there are 5 different plans available, ranging from $29.99 – $39.99/mo (promo pricing). 28 other international packages are also available.
Do I have to pay the HD or DVR fees?
Nope, they’re both optional. Currently, HD is free for life with most plans, so there’s really no reason to opt out (not to mention the MUCH better picture quality). Regarding the DVR (digital video recording) service, while you can also decline, it’s sort of a painful process if you change your mind. In most cases, you’ll need a new, DVR-capable receiver shipped to you, then have to activate it on your own. At just $10/month, we almost always recommend the DVR option to our clients – not only will you save a TON of time watching select shows on your time, but it’ll help you discover cool new programming (e.g., browse the program guide and record upcoming shows to give ’em a try).
How do DIRECTV’s plans compare?
In general, both providers offer similar channels sets, but DIRECTV’s packages tend to feature more sports in the lower-level plans (sub $35/mo). Toss in their exclusivity with the NFL SUNDAY TICKET, if you dig your sports, you may want to consider them first.
When do the special offers expire?
Each new promo usually runs for 3-6 months, depending on the season. If spotted on this page, it’s still active for the time being :).
How quickly can I get DISH installed?
In most cases, you can usually get a new system installed in as little as 24 hours (depends on your location). The installation process takes 1-3 hours and is free for up to 6 rooms.