DIRECTV vs DISH Local Channels Comparison
For most new subscribers, local channels are a must. In addition to the quality programming, they help connect you to your community and neighborhood in ways few other media outlets can. Years ago, both DIRECTV and DISH used to charge extra for local channels, but they soon realized just about everyone wanted them and they were much better suited as part of their core service.
So, nowadays, provided you’re in the >98% of the U.S. where local coverage is available (some very remote rural areas excluded), you can get all your favorite network channels at no additional charge. Check out the table below for all the details.
So to clarify, local channels are absolutely free?
Yes. Although a small portion of your bill (few dollars a month) likely goes to their collective carriage fees. Since just about all TV providers include local channels free in their base plans, their cost is relatively meaningless when comparing prices.
If I never watch locals, can I remove them and reduce my bill?
With DIRECTV, nope, but since locals are super helpful when emergencies in your area happen, it's always nice to have them around. With DISH, you can remove locals and reduce your bill by $12/mo.
How often do new local channels get added?
Every so often but for the most part English-language locals are here for the long haul. Spanish local channels change a bit more often, depending on demand and licensing fees.
If I have an antenna for local channels, can I import that into DIRECTV or DISH?
Not on the Genie or Hopper program guide so the next best option is to use an extra input (HDMI, DVI, etc) on your TV and navigate back and forth via remote. Of course, only DISH subscribers without locals really benefit from this.
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