Diversity of Products or Services
Product or Service Quality

People, people!

Complaining about companies that engage in deceptive practices won't help you after the fact (but thanks for sharing, so those of us who might otherwise have been unaware are brought into the loop.) The answer is to fight fire with fire--which is to say, you gotta deal with them in a MORE deceptive way than they coming at it to you. I've got just the way--pay with a Prepaid Visa or Mastercard Debit Card.

I'll give full disclosure--I have not gone through the process of purchasing a car that comes installed with a Sirius radio--so I'm not completely certain of how personal information about you gets handed over to Sirius. All new cars with Sirius radios come with some length of "free service". Opt out of allowing the dealer to turn over your personal information to them (they can't FORCE you to sign up for service). I assumed the lease of my current car 14 months after the original lessee took delivery of it. He had prepaid 18 months, so I had 4 months of service on his dime before it simply "shut off" (they had no idea he transferred the lease to me).

When that happened, I called up to get service in "my" name, but only after I researched what best deals were being had by other smart, informed listeners--which is about $25 for six months of service, not including the mandated royalty fees and taxes (which adds a couple bucks a month). Four bucks a month is A LOT better than $14.95. (See: http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/hot-deals/929342/)

Of course, its their game to get you "signed back up" for a rock bottom rate, then have you make it up when the full rate goes into effect at renewal. But out-deceiving them means not putting yourself in a position to let that happen. You see, the beauty of using a prepaid Visa/Mastercard is the ability to register it any way you like. You simply go to the support website of whatever card you purchase and enter your card's account information. You're then prompted for your registration information. DON'T USE YOUR REAL INFORMATION. Unlike signing up for say, cable or dish service where the cable or dish company HAS to know where you live, all Sirus needs is your radio's ESN to activate/deactivate service. Sirius makes the assumption you're providing them with your actual name/address/credit card information. The assumption is validated when the card information you provided "clears"--they'll put through the full amount for whatever rate/term you come to an agreement upon and it'll validate because the account will have sufficient funds to cover that charge. What you won't tell them is that's about all that card is ever going to cover! Just before than 5, 6, 12 month term expires, their billing system will attempt--and keep attempting--to put a charge through for the full rate. If you provided them with an email address you actually use/check regularly, you'll most definitely here from them. You be barraged with emails--first warning you that you're about to lose service... and should you do nothing, they'll change to "how sorry we were we had to cut off service".

By going this route, you put YOU in the drivers seat--not them. YOU dictate (or not--don't be afraid to "walk away") the terms you'll settle for and pay to continue for another finite term--because if they don't, they'll be losing you as a customer. They don't really know you... they just think they know you. But if you never give them your real name and an actual credit card that the can put through whatever charges they feel like, they're at YOUR mercy.

These days, prepaid Visa/Mastercard/AMEX cards are available EVERYWHERE. Every gas station, grocery store, drug store, Lowes/HomeDepot, mom & pop shop--they all sell them. And yes, they all come with some kind of "activation fee"--for $2.95 or so up to $7.95 or $8.95--a cost anyone who's been put through the *** a company like Sirius put customers through billing them full one year in advance renewal, like it or not. But if you time it right, about every other month, Staples offers a deal where you can end making a little money purchasing prepaid Visa/Mastercard debit cards--in exchange for buying two or three them (i.e. a $100 and $200 prepaid Visa/MCs with $5.95 & $6.95 activation fees--for a total of $12.90, they'll send you a $20.00 prepaid Visa Rebate card--essentially you're making a little over $7 on the deal.

I'll end this on further disclosure--I'm not an attorney and cannot speak to the extent this crosses any legal boundaries. To me, it seems the most serious allegation one could make is fraud--misrepresentation of your real identity for financial gain. I don't think it holds water as this is not some method to elicit receiving Sirius service without paying for it. I have no problem at all paying to get service--I simply want it at the lowest price they're willing to offer it and I want the opportunity to "renegotiate" the terms at each term's conclusion--not accept their jacked up "sucker" rate. I've been doing this for four years now and not once have they ever taken to scolding/berating/threatening etc. me. What it boils down to is they have a business model that obviously works for them--one that may make for some rather irate/disgruntled customers, like those of you expressing what you think here--but they're are going to be a few angry/pissed off customers just as they're going to be a few who informed customers like myself who play them back at their own game. They couldn't sustain their business if most of their customers fell into either of these two groups. Most of their customers likely don't even look at the details of their credit card bills--and simply pay any charges put through by companies like Sirius.

If you actually read through all this, now have all you need to know to go from a "pissed off" customer to "getting the best deal" customer.

This reviewer shared experience about fair pricing and wants this business to read this review and look into the issue (if any). This person is overall satisfied with Sirius Xm Radio. The most disappointing about positive experience at Sirius Xm Radio was horrible customer service , but reviewer liked howard stern. Reviewer wants customer support to reach our to him or her for further discussion of this matter.

Also, you can continue reading comments about Sirius Xm Radio.

Check out the best and the worst companies in Telecommunications category for more informed decision or compare Sirius Xm Radio to other companies on our site.

Do You Have Something To Say ?
Write a review


Terms of Service
Post Comment
San Francisco, California, United States #1195169

Whew. Did you ever think about writing for The Onion?


Quite frankly, I can bet that you didn't do what you wrote.

Full disclosure: I have a brain.


Funny post.

Newark, New Jersey, United States #1184233

Thanks for the info...however it's pretty useless. Sorry.

Go to the store (like Best Buy) and buy a SXM gift card.

No surcharges.

No games.

Did you ever think of writing a book? However, make sure you put it under the category of "Partial Fiction".

Dubuque, Iowa, United States #1182753

Wait a minute, if you signed up for the Select package, you DON'T get Howard Stern. That's only available on the All Access package....yet in your "What I Like" section, you put that you like Howard Stern.

So something doesn't sound right with your post. I'll assume you just LIKE Howard Stern, but are not actually listening to him with the Select package.

Your post was funny...kind of like reading a report that my 4th grade son did once. Full of funny stuff that really doesn't make any sense, or is even a little but useful.

Here's some advice: Go to Best Buy, buy a Sirius XM Gift Card (no surcharge), then call an negotiate your best deal.

Repeat before the service expires. Period.

Oh wait, Full Disclosure: What I said, is actually what I currently do for my SXM service!

Newark, New Jersey, United States #1178711

Very entertaining post. Your post doesn't sound viable or believable, but none-the-less, it was fun to read!

Quite an imagination. Full disclosure: I am a normal guy.

The solution to your story is simple: go to Best Buy and buy a Sirius XM gift card, then call them to negotiate a deal. I have ALWAYS gotten a discount, which is 6 months for $25.00 for the Select package.

Just remember to call about a month before the expiration and re-negotiate.

Works every time!

I would never use a fake name either. That gains nothing and I don't really think you can get away with it, especially if your radio is a factory installed model in your car.


The lowest they will go is $100 for the year. I called in and said my brother and parents all pay $100 thats all im willing to pay. It was $112 with taxes and just have to call before end of year to renew at $100 for year again.

Beaverton, Oregon, United States #1148619

Great post to read and laugh about but not too informative though. Like some respondents did, if you go to Best Buy and buy a SXM gift card there, you save all the hassle you wrote about.

However, your post was very entertaining, but quite frankly a little unbelievable.

Why go through that enormous amount of effort, some of it dubious, to get a discount? I'm not 100% sure, but I think that SXM can very easily figure out who you are by the ESN, and its link to your car PIN.

The best thing to do is keep calling every 4 to 5 months to get the new discount. Tedious? Yes.

More ethical? Yes.


Doing all the things you say are not smart. Buy a SXM gift card from Best Buy and be done with it.

Using fake information is not good either because I'm sure they can figure out who you are, especially if you have a factory installed radio in your car. Quite frankly, most of the post is just hot air...but it was fun to read


Huh? Very good and entertaining post, I think.

I would personally save all the energy you've exuded writing, an just tell everyone to use a gift card.

Not using your real name is just, well, dumb.


Quite a long and convoluted post to say to not use a real credit card. We get it.

You don't need to use all the current buzz words like "full disclosure", etc...

I would not use a fake name though. This serves absolutely no useful purpose whatsoever. Sirius XM can easily figure out who you are by contacting the dealer.

Despite what you wrote, your car radio's ESN is registered to YOUR car. It is also somewhat fraudulent.


You don't have to pay a fee for a prepaid Visa or MasterCard card. go to bestbuy.com and buy a Sirius XM gift card and pay with that.

You May Also Like