Sunday, April 30, 2006

A Newspaper Hack: How To Cancel a Newspaper Without Them Knowing

There is a major metropolitan newspaper here in Los Angeles that will make your life a living hell if you cancel your subscription. They will call you morning, noon, and night for the rest of your life, doing whatever needs to be done to make you so miserable that you will beg them to let you pay them to drop a wet plastic bag on your driveway.

I've found another way.

I have subscribed to this newspaper for years without getting a paper or paying or getting a call or speaking to a human.

It's called Vacation Hold.

I discovered it two years ago, when I wanted to cancel, but found out I couldn't do it online. I needed to call them. I realized that meant I'd have to hear a sales pitch, and if I still cancelled I'd probably go onto a "CALL THIS GUY FOREVER" list.

So instead I just went to the Subscriber Services part of the website and put myself on a six-month vacation hold. The website asked if I wanted to hold my billing or donate my paper. I selfishly chose to hold my billing.

Six months later, the paper showed up, soggy, in the middle of the street in front of my house.

So I went back online and chose another six-month vacation hold.

Two years now. No calls. No paper. No charge. And when someone outside Vons asks me if I want to subscribe, I can honestly say, "No, thanks, I already do!"

Try it.


Sydelle Pearl said...


gina said...

Oo, you're sly.

Russell Arch said...

Yes, but can "vacation hold" stop the Mormons, the Scientologists, and those disadvantaged kids selling candy bars?

peeky said...

It can in my tiny, deranged little fantasy world.

Michael Markowitz said...

Jesus, Russ, I'm solving one problem at a time here! Give a guy some credit...