Not every offer is a scam

So often in the world of the internet — we see ads that are too good to be true. We get pitches on the phone or in the mail for services that represent blatantly false advertising. I alert you guys to scams. You tell me about scams. I check things out for you.

Here are three deals I came across recently that are NOT scams. Let’s keep it positive for a change.

1. Chase bank – Southwest Airlines credit card
The offer: Two free round-trip tickets if you spend $2,000 during your first 3 statement cycles
When: This is offered by Southwest / Chase occasionally. It was offered in December and my wife applied for it
Who is it for: People who like to travel Southwest Airlines. Southwest is a domestic airline. They don’t fly to to Canada. With their partner Air Tran, they fly to a few spots in the Caribbean.
Disclosures: $99 Annual Fee. You do get offsetting bill credits when you book on Southwest with your card.
How do I know it’s real? : My wife received the card in late December. She put $2000 of ordinary expenses on the card during the first three billing cycles. 50,000 points were awarded to her by the April 5 statement. A few days ago I helped her book round trip tickets for my wife and daughter to the west coast. All that was due were the $20 in taxes, also disclosed up front.

2. Comcast Internet Plus — A TV + Internet offer
The Offer: Comcast Performance Internet. Performance is their “standard” package that most of you have. The speed is rated for 25 mbps. Comcast Limited Basic TV + HBO. Limited basic includes: CBS, NBC, ABC, CPTV (PBS), FOX (local), other local channels such as the CW and My Network TV, Catholic channel, TBN, NECN (New England Cable News), plus Music Choice channels, On Demand + all 7 or so HBO channels with on demand access for 69.99 a month
When: Available now. You may be able to get this bundle for 59.99 with a 2 year contract.
Who is it for: People who want fast internet, minimal channels plus HBO’s original shows and diverse lineup of movies.
Disclosures: There is no CNN, FoxNews, MSNBC, ESPN, or regional sports netwoks with this package. $8 rental for the cable modem or you can buy your own. Standard cable box included. HD cable box + $10 per home.
How do I know it’s real?: I signed up for this plan in March. I was able to get the 59.99 offer with a 2 year contract. If you have or will be getting HBO, check out the award winning series “Enlightened”. Although they won’t be airing a 3rd season, you can watch Seasons 1+2 via onDemand, AppleTV or on the computer.

3. Over the air digital TV antenna / receiver (Amazon brand or other)
The Offer: Recently I got sucked into watching a very polished infomercial for a company called Clear TV. They want to sell a $20 box offering Free TV for life. There is nothing shady about this offer. People have been watching over the air TV for years. Since 2009, all broadcast TV has been digital
When: Available now. People have been receiving these digital signals since 2007 or 2008 with a receiver and antenna.
Who is it for: People who only want local channels. Cord cutters — people who don’t want to pay for TV.
Disclosures: This is an indoor antenna. It can be mounted near the TV or near the window. In central Connecticut, you will probably get CBS, NBC, CPTV and Fox. ABC’s tower is in Hamden and you may have trouble receiving it. Buying an antenna only will work if you have an HDTV. If you have an older TV you will need a receiver box in addition to antenna. The clearest picture you can ever get for a local channel is via an over-the-air antenna signal.
How do I know it’s real?: I’ve seen it with my own eyes. I’ve set up these antennas / receivers for others. I’m not advising to get the Clear TV brand. You can find good indoor antennas on Amazon, at WalMart or Target. Amazon sells this one under their own brand and its looks like a winner
If it doesn’t work, you can always return it.