How To Cancel Your DirecTV Service

by Daniel Smith | Updated 12/30/23

The best time to cancel your DirecTV bill is today.  The second-best time is tomorrow. 

Unfortunately, DirecTV puts a lot of roadblocks in terms of canceling your directv bill and the process has changed a lot since DirecTV split off from AT&T.

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Can I Cancel DirecTV Online?

DirecTV doesn’t let you cancel online.  The only way you can cancel is by calling (800) 531-5000.

I guess they feel that canceling online is too convenient and they want to put a human in the way before they let you go free.

Directv Cancellation/Early Termination Fees

DirecTV sometimes charges a $15 one-time deactivation fee.  You’ll also need to pay $20 each month for each remaining month of your agreement.

That means that if you signed up for a 2-year agreement but still have 4 months left, you’d need to pay $95: $80 for the early termination fee and $15 for the deactivation fee.

If you’re moving to a part of the country where DirecTV doesn’t provide service, most of the time these fees will be waived although you’ll need to provide proof that you actually moved.

how to cancel your directv bill

DirecTV wants you back as a customer in the case you’re ever in their service area.  It’s been our experience that if you ask, they’ll generally waive the termination fee even months after your service has been totally disconnected.

Steps To Cancel DirectTV

  1. Collect Account Infomration
  2. Talk to a retention specialist on the phone
  3. User the right phases and keywords
  4. Don’t settle for a temporary account suspension
  5. Pay the cancellation fee or have it waived

Now that you know what the key steps are to canceling your DirectTV, let’s take a closer look at each of these steps in greater detail.

Collect Account Information

You’re probably in a hurry and asking “I want to cancel my DirectTV right away.” But before you can proceed, you need to collect all relevant information relating to your account.

For example, you need to know what your account number is. And you’re going to need any relevant PIN numbers.

Keep in mind that if you’ve been a DirectTV customer since before the AT&T merger, you may need to dive into your email to retrieve accurate information.

They won’t let you cancel your account unless you verify that you’re the account holder.

Directv Cancellation Number

To cancel your DirecTV account, simply dial 1-800-531-5000. As you might imagine, you will first land in an automated phone tree asking you which department you would like to speak to.

However, here’s the trick: most of the departments (such as billing or technical support) won’t be able to help you cancel DirectTV.

The specific department you are looking for is the retention department. To reach them, tell the phone tree you want to “cancel service” or some variation of this.

Once you are connected to a human being, the first thing you should do is ask if they are with retention. If the answer is no, ask them to transfer you or start over from the beginning of the phone tree if there’s a long hold time.

Use the Right Language

With a name like “customer retention,” you know what this department is all about. You are talking to them because you want to cancel DirectTV. And they are going to do everything in their power to convince you that you don’t actually want to disconnect DirectTV service.

What does this mean? Basically, the person you speak to has been trained to offer counterarguments to the different reasons for canceling you may give them.

If you say the service is too expensive, they will offer you a new DirecTV package that will save you money.. If you say you don’t watch as much TV lately, they will take the time to point out all of the great TV shows and movies you’ll miss out on when you disconnect DirectTV.

Just stick to your guns and politely tell them you only wish to cancel your service. But if you would like to avoid getting the hard sell from the retention specialist, you should simply tell them you are moving to an area that is outside of the DirectTV service area.

Don’t Settle for Temporary Account Suspension

If you really want to cancel DirectTV, we’ve already discussed the importance of sticking to your guns when they try to convince you to stay. And it is also important to know what other common DirectTV tricks are to make you stick with their service.

One of the most common tricks is that they will offer you a “temporary account suspension.” This is normally meant to help families temporarily turn off service while they go on a vacation or summer trip, but it can also be used to indefinitely suspend service for someone who is tired of paying their DirectTV bill.

Why should you never settle for this temporary suspension? The short answer is that it still retains you as a DirectTV customer and makes it easier for them to contact you and convince you to turn services back on.

Just stick to your guns if you want your service canceled entirely.

Lower Your DirecTV Bill With BillSmart

We hope our guide on canceling your DirecTV bill saved you a little time and money.

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About the author

Daniel Smith is the CTO of BillSmart. A graduate of UC Berkeley, he's worked for top tech companies like Adobe and Palantir. In his free time, he enjoys messing around in crypto and playing strategy games.