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7 Netflix tips and tricks for better bingeing

Raise your streaming game to match Netflix's price hike.

Your next Netflix bill will be a couple bucks higher. Since you'll be paying more to stream your favorite shows and movies, let's make sure you are getting your money's worth. Here are some tips and tricks to get the most out of Netflix.

Find shows faster

My least favorite part of settling into an evening of Netflix is choosing what to watch. My wife and I quickly get lost in Netflix's endless grid of thumbnails. We become paralyzed by choice. There are many sites that attempt to make sense of Netflix's vast catalog of shows and movies, but two of my favorites are Flixable and JustWatch. Each site shows you what's new and popular on Netflix with helpful filters that let you drill down to find something to watch. And as a shameless plug, allow me to suggest you try CNET's Netpicks to find what to watch.

Unlock hidden genre categories

Netlfix displays a handful of genres -- comedies and dramas to reality and romance -- but there are hundreds more hiding below the surface. You can search manually by looking up the code for each subgenre or use a Chrome extension to access them. Learn how to access Netflix's hidden genre categories.

Keyboard shortcuts for laptop viewers

If your laptop is your go-to Netflix screen, then there are some useful keyboard shortcuts you need to know:

  • Space bar or Enter: toggle pause/play
  • Tap Right/Left arrow key: skip ahead/back 10 seconds
  • Hold down Right arrow/Left arrow key: fast forward/rewind (hit Space bar or Enter to start playing at new spot)
  • Up/Down arrow key: raise/lower volume
  • M key: mute/unmute
  • F key: toggle full screen

Delete embarrassing binges

Your embarrassing binges need not stick around. You can delete your moments of weakness and nostalgia from your history to remove any chance of future shame. And in doing so, you'll improve recommendations from Netflix since it won't use your recent Fuller House binge as a guide for future suggestions. Learn how to delete shows from your Netflix history.

Stop next episode from auto-playing

Once you start, it can be hard to stop. If you find your Netflix binging habits are spiraling out of control because Netflix starts up the next episode of a show immediately following the completion of the current episode, you can put an end to its auto-playing ways. Go to your Account page, click Playback settings in the My Profile section and toggle off Play next episode automatically. You can turn off auto-play for each profile, which means you can continue your binging ways but turn it off for your kids' account.

Opt out of ads

If you are seeing trailers for other Netflix shows in between episodes of an auto-play binge session, then you can disable these experimental in-house ads and get right to the next episode. Netflix tests different features from time to time on various segments of its subscribers, and you can opt out of such experiments. Learn how to opt out of Netflix ads.

Download shows to go

Netflix lets you download shows so you can watch when are on the go. I strongly urge you to work in the downloading of Netflix show into your packing routine for any family car trip longer than two hours. Learn how to download Netflix shows.