I pay I think about $8 for my domain names and I don't know what for private reg, but it's not much.
I pay that extra buck to work with a company that doesn't have a history of holding people's domains hostage and demanding money to get them back. And I get to deal with a company who's employees I've met in person and who've supported this community in the past. That's worth a buck or two to me. If you're happy there, keep smiling.