The Best Guide to Cable Packages and Alternatives

Mediacom Cable Packages

Mediacom cable packages provide cable service to many otherwise underserviced areas, including Iowa and Illinois.

The somewhat redundantly-named Mediacom Communications Corporation has received some flack in recent years, receiving low ratings in customer satisfaction surveys. However, it is important to remember the context of their service. Mediacom provides service to low-population-density areas of the United States, which means that they must provide more infrastructure per client. As a result, in order to compete, their service is not quite as high quality as other companies.

Nonetheless, their difficulties are in some ways a matter of overreaching. Instead of trying to maximize their service to areas they provide service to, they have instead broadened their coverage area rapidly. Their service has been improving because they have slowed this expansion somewhat and because of the competition that they have faced from satellite companies.

Mediacom Cable Package Options

Mediacom digital cable comes in a number of different packages, depending on your priorities.

Basic Cable: Like all cable companies, Mediacom is required by the FCC to provide basic analog cable. This cable is significantly cheaper than other options, because the price is set by the government. The cost of basic cable depends on your area, but should be around $20 per month.

Digital Cable: Note that basic cable and what Mediacom calls “digital cable” are two quite different things (which is a little confusing because all cable is, strictly speaking, digital). “Digital Cable” refers to all of the other packages available.

Mediacom VIP Paks

Mediacom offers a savings to new customers who wish to purchase all three of television, internet and telephone. These are referred to as their “VIP Paks” (that’s the actual spelling). Their VIP Paks come in two tiers, the VIP Pak and the VIP Pak Extra:

VIP Pak: The VIP Pak comes with standard cable channels, plus a number of channels, such as A&E, ESPN and the History Channel. One of the most common complaints about Mediacom is their lack of channels, and one can see that issue here, as their selection is fairly standard, without any of the bonuses, you’d expect from other companies.

In addition, the VIP Pak comes with up to 12 Mbps of internet speed and 11 email accounts. Their phone service is really quite nice, and includes unlimited long distance to Canada, the United States, and the U.S. territories.

The VIP Extra Pak: Currently, Mediacom offers a free upgrade to the VIP Extra Pak, which is fairly close to the regular Pak. However, the Extra includes 15 Mbps of internet speed and Web Boost, a custom program designed to increase browsing speed.

The VIP Pak costs $89.85 per month for the first year of service, at which point the price increases by $30 to $119.85 per month.

Note that this is actually somewhat expensive for what you are getting, and if you browse around, you will find that other companies offer better service for the same price. However, Mediacom services a number of areas that are not covered by many other companies, which is why their service is so expensive. They aren’t really gouging, either. The problem is that servicing underserviced areas is simply more expensive per unit, leading to higher prices.

A La Carte Bundles

Aside from their VIP Paks, Mediacom doesn’t really offer many bundles. However, you can, of course, purchase their various services a la carte and combine them for a custome bundle.

Television Packages: Mediacom offers a wide range of television packages. In each case, you purchase their “Family Cable”, and then you can add additional channel packages ranging from $12.95 to $61.80 per month additional cost. The cost of the Family Cable varies by area, so you will need to contact them to find out how much it will cost you.

Internet Packages: Mediacom offers high speed internet at 12 Mbps for $49.95 for the first year and then $69.95 for each year after this. Needless to say, this isn’t a very good deal unless you don’t have any other options.

Telephone Packages: Mediacom also offers telephone with the same unlimited calling listed above. This costs $49.95 per month, but this decreases by $10 for each other service you purchase. In effect, this is where you can make your own bundle. For each service you add, you get an additional $10 off, provided you have purchased their telephone package.


All things considered, one can see why Mediacom has not been ranked as highly as other cable companies. The channel selection is weaker and the price is higher. However, this is the result of their servicing of underserviced areas, not an attempt to simply gouge the consumer. As Mediacom settles, they will work more on the services they have and provide a good if not great option if they are the only company in your area.

For more information, you may visit their official site.

Related Articles

Mediacom Internet Service: Mediacom internet service is offered at three different speeds, provides some additional options, but has been criticized for its weak customer service.