Cable and WiFi advice?

Hello Everyone,

I just started hosting on Airbnb a few months ago and have had some success early on.My problem is, I am finding that most of my guests tend to not be home during the day and I am looking to get rid of my cable. Paying $100+ per month for cable and WiFi seems a bit much.

My question is, what is the best route to take? I would like to keep WiFi (a cheaper option) but get rid of the cable and maybe switch to a House Netflix account or something along those lines. I also have another property that I will be listing on Air soon as my 2nd property and wasn’t sure if there was a way I could have one account that would work for both properties.

I would love to hear any suggestions and I appreciate the advice!


I pay about $60 per month for internet, and then I have an Amazon Fire TV Stick hooked up to the TV with an active Sling subscription, which offers around 25 live cable channels for $20 per month. It’s been totally worth it to me because I can check off the “cable TV” box on the listing. Most of my guests are for 1 or 2 nights at a time. My place isn’t that popular with tourists since I’m kind of outside the city center. People rent my place if they’re in town for business or just visiting friends or family, and I’ve found that a lot of them enjoy being able to flip on CNN or ESPN or Comedy Central and just zone out.

Edit: I also have an antenna connected to the TV that picks up all of the local stations, and many of the stations from the adjacent media market. Something weird that I’ve noticed is that travelers seem to enjoy watching local news…

Hi @nml5129,

When you say you are paying for WiFi, what do you mean exactly? Usually people have cable internet or DSL. I think Netflix, at least in the US, is a better and cheaper option than cable, though it doesn’t offer things like daily news. But your guests may or not may be interested in news. You could poll them to ask their preferences.

I have an apartment above our garage I rent out. It has TV/DVD combos and basic antenna service. I keep a list of movies we own in the apartment that our guests can borrow. I’ve heard now from several guests on our comment card I leave where I ask for suggestions and rankings of improvements we’re considering (bigger TV, adding cable or Netflix, etc) that none of them (even our 2 week stay people!) think cable is necessary because we have local TV and have free movie rental. Whew! That saves us $60/month! I think a good wifi connection is necessary though, and you can’t have 2 buildings on the same account, definitely not on 2 properties. We wanted to connect our house’s cable to the detached apartment and we couldn’t. Thankfully our wifi signal is strong enough that we don’t have to pay extra for internet too.

Hey. I don’t have cable, live in a remote area so no local channels either.
I do have only one TV, it’s in the living room.
I have a ROKU 3 which allows free streaming from many sources.
I do have a Netflix account, it is possible, and reasonable, to have a netflix account with more than one profile on it.
For instance, I share my Netflix with my friend and her daughter (who live in a completely different state), I just pay for the upgraded version (4 profiles) meaning, 4 people can be watching from that same account at the same time. I think the cost is $13/month. Very reasonable.
Only a few of my guests have actually used my TV. For one thing, it’s very small. And I have my listing and photos pointing out that my home is best for people who want to go out an explore nature, and that my home is normally quiet without the blare of a television.
It took many tweakings of the wording in my listing to attract guests who are not couch potatoes looking to sit and watch movies all day :slight_smile:
I still have resisted putting a TV in the guests bedroom…because I really do not want to encourage people to stay inside…I want them out and about :slight_smile:
But for you, if not on the property, I guess it doesn’t matter.
In any case, there are many choices, not just the ROKU.

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Looking to restart this conversation!

We currently have cable but they “upgraded” our service to enhance our internet speed and in doing so cut the number of channels we get on the tv. (Customer -(no)service did not explain this consequence to the change. Led us to believe we would get 3 additional channels. Yeah but they are ones we would never use and we lost several that were favorites. Told it is not possible to go back to the old service.) Also they “forgot” to mention that we would need to upgrade our router - another expense/consequence we would have liked to know BEFORE deciding to make the irreversible switch. (Sorry for the rant - I am really angry!)

Anyway - looking for opinions on Sling-TV, Netflix, and Hulu. Our guests are mostly 1 to 3 day stays. What do you use?

I’m also interested in this conversation. I have Direct TV mostly due to my American football watching habits. I’ve recently bought antennas to get local stations and I have internet connections for my 2 TV. Where I’m stuck is the Airbnb room. It’s not a smart TV but it’s a fairly new HDTV. I have an Amazon Fire stick I could use but I think I’ll get a Roku and maybe Sling TV. Guests can use their own accounts for Amazon or Netflix if they have them. But I want it to be simple so I don’t have to help guests figure it out. I’ve held onto Direct TV for far too long just because of Airbnb.

We recently ditched our cable service and now only pay for internet and YouTube TV. It still comes out to around $100/month, but it would’ve been around $180/month if we kept our previous setup. We also already had Netflix. Both Netflix and the YouTube TV service are installed on an Apple TV in the room.

Our guests seem to really like it.

Also, this may or may not be the case for you depending on your location and such, but we get to deduct 50% of our Airbnb expenses from our taxes each year, so that makes these expenses a little bit cheaper all said and done.

Like @KKC. I’m glad to see this conversation restarted. I’m sharing my experience below and hope others share their experiences. If it better than what I do, I want to copy it!!!

Over the past 18 months I think my guests have become more “cut the cable” savvy.

In the rentals, I have level 1 TV channels (no premium). (I personally use Sling TV - no cable)

I added high-speed Internet access with Wi-Fi. On a rainy day, my medium bandwidth couldn’t support the guest working remotely, PLUS two TVs streaming NetFlix AND two children streaming videos on their two I-pads. (Guests were mom, dad, 2 children, & 1 Grandmom)

Recently a guest couldn’t access the internet due to a 90 minute area outage. I thought he would burst in frustration.

NO ONE complains when TV service is unavailable. It is a major event when the internet isn’t available.

Most guests are familiar & comfortable with Netflix. Sling TV provides a nice selection of channels.

Access to Netflix & Sling via a Smart TV is easy.

I find navigating NetFlix, Amazon prime, & Sling TV via an Amazon Firestick clunky and not intuitive for someone who is unfamiliar with it.

Cost: Uverse Internet & Tier 1 channels $80 + Netflix (1/4 of $17.99)

If internet only: $60 + Netflix (1/4 of $17.99) + $20 Sling TV

And doubly frustrating if that also means no TV or movies.

That and Roku are supposed to be the easiest to use. :sob:

Another option for me, and the one I think I’m going to try is suspending my service on DirectTV instead of cutting it completely. Then try Roku, Sling and the antenna and see how it goes. If it isn’t going well I’ll put the DirectTV box back in the guest room and turn the service back on while I figure out my next move.


In my home, I have a “not-smart” TV & a firestick. I have Amazon Prime mainly because I shop heavily via Amazon so the Prime video & music are bonuses to me.

I think (I could be wrong) Amazon Prime is required for use with the Firestick. I’ve had occasions when I needed to select my Firestick input -hdmi 2 (usually it stays selected) before content could be viewed.

To use Netflix & Sling, the apps needed to be installed before the first use. To select the correct app, you must go to Home, make a selection, it loads then you can scroll & watch. Selection of a TV show to watch on Sling isn’t difficult but it is a very different process than traditional TV.

Food for thought. Try out the Sling TV on your computer or tablet for the FREE trial period to see what you think of the navigation & content. I’m a History Channel & HGTV junkie so I tend to stick with those.

History Channel is home to the most boring show and I LOVE it—The Curse of Oak Island. They are looking for treasure. Usually one good thing happens each episode and they manage to stretch it into 1 hour of viewing.

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We are in the UK. We provide a 32" flat screen TV with access only to free-to-air channels (called Freeview). We have had no complaints but I don’t think the market demands satellite/cable or internet TV services here. The last guest brought her own Apple TV though.

We have a Chromecast on one TV an Amazon Fire Stick (which also has cable) on another in our house. We’re not tempted to share.

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We don’t have TV in our home at all. Easy like that. You are offering WiFi and there is plenty of movies and news online. Netflix account is also good option. You can have extended account for more users and devices. Then you can use it on different properties. It doesn’t cost that much more.

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