How to choose a streaming service during the cost of living crisis

person watching Netflix

With inflation causing financial stress in Australia and most other parts of the world, people are desperately trying to find ways to cut down on costs.

According to Kantar’s statistics, 666,000 streaming service subscriptions were cancelled in the first quarter of 2022, with a further 16% of people planning to cancel one of their current subscriptions. Homes with younger people (under 25s) have also felt the impact of the cost of living crisis, with a 4% drop being reported between the first and second quarter of this year.

Popular streaming platform Netflix has also suffered, with the company reporting earlier this year that they had lost subscribers for the first time in a decade. They lost over 1 million subscribers in the first quarter of this year.

Additionally, Kantar has found that in homes that have subscriptions to more than one streaming service, Netflix share has fallen from 80% to 78.8% between the first and second quarter of 2022. Despite this, Netflix still remains the most dominant streaming provider worldwide.

While Netflix subscriptions are falling, other streaming services seem to be growing in popularity, particularly Amazon Prime Video. In the second quarter of this year, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ saw the highest percentage of new subscriptions. In addition, 6% of new subscribers to Prime Video said that they simultaneously cancelled another service.

These findings show that although Netflix remains popular, people are increasingly getting rid of additional streaming subscriptions and steering towards cheaper options to save money.

Picking a streaming service

If you only want to subscribe to one streaming service but aren’t sure which to choose, it really depends on what you are looking for. There are a wide range of options available in Australia, each unique in their own way.

Although Netflix still has the largest streaming library, other competitors have a good range of content that might be better value for money. So, here are the options and their costs so you can make an informed decision on which platform will suit you the best.

Bear in mind, most of these streaming services offer free trials so you can sign up and explore the content library for free before committing to pay for the platform!

Amazon Prime Video:

Amazon Prime Video is the cheapest streaming service in Australia and the price also includes free express shipping on items from Amazon Australia.

  • Who it’s good for: someone wanting to save money but still have access to a wide range of content. 
    Free trial
    : 7 days
    Popular content:
    Nine Perfect Strangers, Luxe Listings Sydney (2021), The Truman Show (1998), Back to the Rafters (2021), Conversations with Friends (2022)
    Prime Video only has one plan option which costs $6.99 per month for access to Amazon Prime.


Binge is also a popular streaming service with a range of unique content to choose from.

Who it’s good for: someone who wants something different!
Free trial: 14 days
Popular content: Sex and the City, Big Little Lies, Game of Thrones, Downtown Abbey, Chernobyl

Basic Subscription: 
$10/month for SD quality and one screen
Standard subscription: 
16/month for HD quality for up to two screens


You can access Netflix’s unmatched library of content including classic movies and popular Netflix originals from just $10.99 per month. Netflix also has a kids option that includes a wide range of popular children's shows that will keep young kids entertained. 

  • Who it’s good for: a single person, a big family or a family with young children.
  • Free trial: No
  • Popular content: Stranger Things, The Crown, Squid Games, Friends, The Queen’s Gambit, Harry Potter Movies


  • Basic subscription: $10.99/month for SD streaming and 1 screen
  • Standard subscription: $14.99/month for up to 2 screens at a time
  • Premium subscription: $22.99 per month for up to 4 devices at a time


Similar to Netflix, Stan has a wide range of content and it also has a kids option with a range of shows for young children. 

  • Who it’s good for: a single person or a family with small kids. If you are struggling to pick between Stan and Netflix, it really depends what you prefer - Stan has a wider range of Australian content as well as new TV shows, whereas Netflix provides exclusive access to Netflix original content and has a larger collection of movies. 
  • Free trial: 30 days
  • Popular content: Saved by the Bell, Gangs of London, Breaking Bad, Bel-Air, The Great, Dr Death


  • Basic subscription: $10/month for 1 screen and SD quality streaming
  • Standard subscription: $14/month for 3 screens and HD streaming
  • Premium subscription: $19/month for up to 5 screens and HD streaming
  • Paramount+:

    Paramount+ is a relatively new streaming service to Australia that offers unique content. With a Paramount+ subscription, you can also watch sporting games available on CBSN including the A-League, FA Cup, Socceroos and Matildas.

    • Who it’s good for: People who want something other than Netflix, with a range of original content and soccer fans. 
    • Free trial: 7 days
    • Most popular content:  Dexter, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Harry Potter Movies, Lord of the Rings series.
    • Prices: $8.99/ month or $89.99/ year

    Apple TV:

    Apple's very own streaming platform Apple TV offers a range of original content.

    • Who it’s good for: Someone who wants original content that isn’t available on other streaming platforms. 
      Free Trial:
      7 days
      Popular content:
      Morning Wars, Ted Lasso, The Oprah Conversation


    Disney+ is the home of original Disney movies and original content.

    Who it’s good for: families with kids or Disney movie lovers
    Free trial:
    Popular content:
    The Nightmare Before Christmas, West Side Story (2021), Encanto (2021), The Beatles: Get Back (2021), Bambi (1942)
    $11.99/ month or $119.99/ year. With both of these subscriptions, you can watch on four screens at once!


    Hayu is Australia’s home for reality TV shows

    Who it’s good for: reality TV lovers
    Free trial:
    7 Days
    Popular content:
    Keeping up with the Kardashians, Below Deck, The Real Housewives of Beverley Hills, Botched, Million Dollar Listing New York
    $6.99/ month, $33.99/ 6 months or $61.99/ 12 months. However, you can only watch on one screen at a time with a Hayu subscription.

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