What to Do if You Forgot to Cancel a Trial Subscription

forgot to cancel a trial subscription

There are so many great free trial subscriptions out there. Sometimes you sign up for one to see if you like the service or product. If you do, you’ll keep the subscription. However a lot of times you just want to enjoy the free option while you can. But what if you forgot to cancel a trial subscription that you never budgeted to pay for? Now you’ve been charged. Here’s what you can do.

First, Cancel The Subscription for The Future

Cancel now, before you do anything else. At least this means you won’t face this problem again! In the future, whenever you sign up for a free trial, you should immediately cancel it. Almost all services will still allow you to use the trial period without renewing it when it ends.

Next, Request a Refund

You may or may not get the refund amount if you simply ask. Contact customer service by phone or chat first. Use email and/or social media as a backup.

The sooner you notice that you forgot to cancel a trial subscription and got charged, the better. It’s more likely you’ll get your refund if you request it the same day or the next day than if time has gone by.

Ask About a Pro-Rated Charge

If they deny your request, ask about canceling the service now for a pro-rated charge. For example, let’s say that you forgot to cancel a trial subscription that renews with a year of service. Three weeks into the charges, you realize it. Sometimes you can get a pro-rated amount, so that you only pay for those three weeks (or for one month, depending on their billing practices.) Then they cancel the account, and you don’t have to pay future charges.

Read Your Terms of Agreement

If you’re not getting the results that you want, then make sure that you’re armed with information. What exactly does your Terms of Agreement say? It might say that you have a grace period of three days during which you can cancel. Are you in that grace period? Call the company back and make them aware that you have the right to cancel.

Get Tips from Forums

A lot of people forgot to cancel a trial subscription; it isn’t just you. Therefore, this is a popular topic on forums. Do an online search for the issue as it applies to your particular service. For example, look up “forgot to cancel a free Google Play trial” or “forgot to cancel a free Netflix trial.” Each company is different. Your peers sometimes have helpful tips for getting your refund.

Ask Your Credit Card Company for Help

Some credit card companies have protections in place to assist you with exactly this issue. Therefore, if you aren’t getting anywhere with the company that provided the trial subscription, then you might want to check with your credit card company. Dispute the charge on your account. Provide them with all relevant information. For example, you might explain that you forgot to cancel, but you haven’t used the service, and you’re seeking a refund. Sometimes they can resolve the issue for you.

Tips To Avoid Forgetting to Cancel a Trial Subscription in the Future

If you don’t want this to happen again, then follow these tips:

  • Use a virtual credit card to sign up for trial subscriptions. These are one-time or short-term credit cards that expire after brief use. Therefore, the company that offered you the trial subscription can’t then use it to renew without actions on your part.
  • Alternatively, pay with a credit card that requires billers to notify you before renewing subscriptions. Mastercard has some options for you.
  • Cancel trial subscriptions right after signing up. Review the terms of the agreement. If the rule is that they’ll terminate the service immediately, then this won’t work well. However, if they’ll allow you to complete the trial then this is the way to go.
  • Set reminder alerts for yourself to cancel trial subscriptions. For example, set a reminder on your phone for one week or one day before the subscription runs out. When the alarm goes off, immediately cancel the trial.
  • Only choose trial subscriptions that you would be willing to pay the cost for. At least that way if you forgot to cancel a trial subscription then you wouldn’t be quite as upset.

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