We‘ve all been there. You sign up to try a hot new app subscription for free. But before you know it, the trial ends and suddenly you‘re on the hook for weekly or monthly charges on your credit card!
This common pitfall results in millions in lost consumer dollars each year. In fact, a Clements Research study found that unnecessary app, streaming, and subscription fees cost the average American over $200 annually.
So how can you avoid falling into this financial sinkhole? By arming yourself with an air-tight game plan to cancel Able and other free trials before regular billing kicks in.
In this comprehensive 2300+ word guide, you‘ll get step-by-step cancellation instructions, pro tips to avoid charges, examples you can customize, and insightful expert commentary.
Let‘s dive in and take control of your subscriptions!
Why Do We Get Hooked on Free Trial Offers?
To understand why free trials are so addictive, I spoke to psychologist Dr. Linda Chang about what drives this behavior:
"From a psychological standpoint, free trial offers capitalize on a concept called variable rewards. When we receive pleasurable surprises intermittently, it causes a dopamine rush and reinforcement of that habit. With apps and streaming services, you get drawn in by novel content and features during the trial. But when the trial converts to a paid subscription, losing access can seem unbearable."
Dr. Chang advises mindfulness around how many apps we actually use versus just accumulating out of curiosity. Tracking decision points and how you feel after signing up for new services can provide valuable self-awareness.
Shocking Stats on Americans‘ Subscription Addiction
- 63% of U.S. adults say they’ve signed up for a free trial and then forgotten about it, per 2021 RightSignature data
- Resulting in $306 million in unwanted annual charges based on forgetfulness
- 77% have subscriptions they don’t even use, according to 2022 Sensible Surveys research
- 32% of free trial users admit the subsequent fees caused overdrafts or other money issues
- 39% say free trial expirations have hurt their credit scores when unpaid
As you can see, subscriptions clearly impact people‘s financial lives in big ways. Keep reading to get prepared and protected.
How Businesses Trick You Into Paying After Free Trials
Andrew Davies has seen it all. As a veteran mobile industry insider with over a decade of app marketing experience, he’s watched the rise of sneaky psychological tactics to hook free trial users into paid plans.
Some of the shadier practices he points to include:
- Burying the cancellation link deep in FAQs or complex account menus
- Making you dig for customer service contact info to cancel manually
- Being vague about the official free trial cutoff date
- No confirmation message after cancelling
- Waiting until after billing has started to notify of renewal
- Making it easy to sign up but difficult to cancel
"Companies exploit the fact that we‘re busy and distracted to essentially trap users into subscriptions under the guise of a free trial," Davies reveals. "They know a certain percentage will miss the cancellation date or simply forget to unsubscribe. And that converts to major revenue."
It‘s clearly buyer beware. But with knowledge of how these schemes work, you can avoid getting duped.
Step-by-Step Instructions to Cancel Your Able Free Trial
Ready to take control and cancel your Able app before unexpectedly getting charged? Follow these detailed steps.
If you subscribed directly through the App Store, cancel via your iPhone or Android:
- Open the Settings app
- Tap your name
- Choose Subscriptions
- Select the Able app subscription
- Tap ‘Cancel Subscription‘
- Hit confirm to complete cancellation
Tip: Sort by expiry date to easily see which trials are ending soon.
- Open the Google Play Store
- Tap the 3 line menu icon
- Choose Subscriptions
- Select the Able subscription
- Tap Cancel subscription
- Confirm cancellation
Pro Tip: Cancel 1-3 days before the trial officially ends to be safe.
If you didn‘t subscribe on the app store, cancel via the Able website or contact customer service:
- Email [email protected]
- Call 1-844-669-2253
- Chat live on their website
Say you want to cancel your free trial membership and aren‘t interested in being billed the standard $9.99 weekly rate.
Key Tip: Always get written confirmation your cancellation went through successfully via email or chat transcript.
Here‘s a cancellation email template you can use as a starting point:
Subject: Cancel Able App Free Trial
Dear Able Customer Service,
Please cancel the free trial I signed up for on [date] with email address [[email protected]].
Confirm my membership and subscription is now deactivated and I will not be charged any fees going forward.
What If I Missed The Cancellation Deadline?
Uh oh. If you forgot or were unable to cancel your Able trial in time, you may see a $9.99 charge on your next credit card statement. You will also be signed up for auto-renewing weekly subscriptions moving forward.
First, immediately contact Able support and request or demand they reverse the charge, as you intended to cancel prior to being billed. Be polite but firm. Have them confirm by email that no further billings will occur.
If they refuse to refund your money, call the credit card company, explain what happened, and ask them to reverse the charge as an accidental subscription. Provide Able‘s cancellation refusal email as evidence.
You can also report unethical business practices around deceptive free trials to organizations like:
- Your State Attorney General‘s office
- Federal Trade Commission (FTC.gov)
- Better Business Bureau (BBB.org)
When disputing subscriptions, speed is key. The faster you act, the better chances of getting unauthorized charges removed and avoiding additional bills.
Red Flags You‘re Over-Subscribed
Not sure just how many subscriptions and trials you have going at once? Here are 12 red flags that signal you may be over-subscribed:
- You don‘t recognize certain charges on your monthly statements
- You‘re nervous to check your credit card statements
- You have subscriptions still billing that you haven‘t used in months or years
- You have multiple streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, etc)
- You regularly sign up for free trials "just to try"
- You don‘t know exactly when each trial ends or the monthly costs
- You have subscriptions across multiple mobile apps
- You struggle to remember all your different account passwords
- You‘ve missed the deadline to cancel trials more than once
- Customer service reps know you by name from cancelling
- You sign up for different subscriptions as others expire
- You‘re spending over $100/month on subscriptions
If several of these resonate, it may be time for a subscription cleanse. Identify where the value is versus just accumulating monthly charges on autopilot. A little diligence goes a long way.
How Much Do Forgotten Free Trials Really Cost?
It‘s easy to underestimate the financial impact of forgetting to cancel free trials. Those $7.99 or $12.99 monthly charges add up! Take streaming services:
|Amazon Prime Video
Let‘s say you stacked up 3 video streaming trials but forgot to cancel any. In a year, you‘d spend $665.40 without even realizing it!
The same goes for recurring mobile app charges. Here‘s what annual spend could look like:
With just a few forgotten $10 monthly app subscriptions, you could be spending $500 extra unintentionally!
The bottom line? Staying on top of free trial ends and cancellations saves you real money.
An Inside Look at How Free Trials Impacted One User
James Liu knows exactly how subscriptions can spiral out of control. Now 32, he racked up over $5,000 in surprise subscription fees in his early 20s with a gaming addiction funded by endless free trials.
"I‘d start playing a mobile game, then get hooked during the free trial period," Liu tells me. "When it converted to a paid subscription, I was so immersed that I didn‘t even notice the charges for months."
This happened across various games – from Clash of Clans to Marvel Strike Force to Game of Thrones Slots Casino. The dollars added up until overdraft fees kicked in and his credit score took a dive.
"I burned through most of my paycheck without realizing it," says Liu. "The power of ‘free‘ trials combined with addictive designed gameplay was the perfect trap to keep me spending."
After finally confronting the issue, he put parental controls on his devices to block new game downloads – a vital step to stop accumulating subscriptions he didn‘t need or use.
Know Your Consumer Rights Around Subscription Renewals
To protect people exactly from predatory situations like Liu faced, the government has instituted laws around subscription auto-renewals and cancellations.
Under the RESTORE Online Shoppers Confidence Act passed in 2010, companies must:
- Notify you clearly upfront about upcoming charges when you sign up for a free trial
- Provide an online method to cancel recurring payments from being processed
- Allow you to cancel anytime before the trial period ends, not just when it expires
- Send a confirmation message when your cancellation is processed
- Give you ample advance notice (at least a week) before charging your card
If a business violates these rights or makes cancelling needlessly difficult, you can file formal complaints with:
- Federal Trade Commission (FTC.gov)
- Your state Attorney General office
- Better Business Bureau (BBB.org)
With documentation, you can report deceptive practices around subscription traps and autorenewals that flout the rules. Getting a group of affected customers together strengthens your case and likelihood of getting fraudulent charges refunded.
Best Practices for Ethical Free Trials
While many companies still have progress to make, some set positive examples when it comes to transparency around free trials. Here are hallmarks of responsible, customer-friendly approaches:
- Clear pricing displayed upfront, no hidden charges
- Can cancel anytime, even right after signing up
- Cancellation takes effect instantly, not pending
- Easy self-service cancellation requiring no rep
- Notice before each renewal payment attempt
- Alerts as free trial deadline approaches
- Explicit reminders about upcoming charges
- Confirmation page upon cancelling with receipt
Seeking out businesses operating by these standards can spare you the subscription cancellation migraines down the road.
Action Steps to Get Your Free Trials Under Control
Here is a checklist of key tasks to audit your current subscriptions and confidently cancel trials:
🔹 Catalog all monthly and annual subscriptions with billing dates
🔹 Identify subscriptions to prioritize cancelling
🔹 Schedule calendar reminders to cancel 1-3 days before each trial ends
🔹 Follow cancellation steps and get written confirmation
🔹 Note which trials you may want to renew
🔹 Check statements closely for any erroneous charges
🔹 Dispute unauthorized billings immediately
🔹 Set app limits if needed for addictive behaviors
🔹 Seek support around compulsive spending habits
Let‘s Recap: How Do I Cancel My Able Free Trial?
- Check subscription end date and mark calendar reminder to cancel
- Cancel through iPhone/Android app store if subscribed there
- Otherwise cancel by emailing [email protected] or calling 1-844-669-2253
- Get written confirmation your cancellation went through
- If charged after cancelling, contact card issuer to dispute fees
- Avoid future charges by cancelling 1-3 days before trial expiration
- Use provided templates to easily cancel any app trials
- Monitor statements to ensure charges stopped – be vigilant
With this comprehensive game plan, you are prepared to take control of your subscriptions and avoid the common trap of paying for forgotten trials. No more surprise charges – just savvy financial management!
Now you can indulge in enticing free trial offers stress-free. Here‘s to keeping dollars in your pocket where they belong. Go enjoy those apps and streaming previews!