With the cost of unlimited calls, text, data, and the price of the phone itself, a cell phone plan can cost you $100 or more a month. Luckily, there are less expensive alternatives that can provide you with the same service!
Brand new phones from well-known manufacturers can cost as much as $500, but if you shop around, you can find less costly phones with similar features. You could also consider purchasing a second-hand phone to save.
Most of the larger carriers also require you to sign a contract for two years or more. There are other carriers, however, that do not have this requirement. You can just pay month-to-month and switch carriers whenever you like.
Even though the larger companies entice you into a contract with a good price on an expensive phone or other benefits, a contract is usually not the best way to save on your phone bill.
Consider these downsides of a contract:
- You’re stuck with this phone service provider for a while. It’s expensive to get out of your contract before the time is up, even if you want out because you don’t feel like they live up to the service they promised.
- There are usually less pricey options available. The rate you get when you sign the contract might look good at the time, but next month you might find a better one elsewhere.
- Most contracts include a Smartphone, which you end up paying for in small monthly installments. Your Smartphone will be outdated by the time you’re done paying for it – if not before then.
Look Into Smaller Companies in Your Area
You can save a lot by avoiding the largest phone providers and choosing a smaller company instead. These cellphone service providers use the networks created by large telecom companies, which means the quality of the service is the same.
Look for small companies with plans similar to these:
- Ting. Ting charges you only for what you use. This provider charges you $6 per line and your monthly bill would only be $20 if you use less than 500 minutes and send less than 1000 text messages.
- Republic Wireless. Republic Wireless offers low cost plans in the $10 to $40 range that include talk, text, and on-demand data. The downside is that you need to purchase one of their phones. The main advantage of these plans is that you get a discount on your bill for the data you did not use.
- Airvoice Wireless. Airvoice Wireless has plans that start at $10 a month for 500 texts and 250 minutes. If you would rather have an unlimited plan with talk, text, and data, this company has plans that start at $30 a month.
More Ways to Save
Data is one of the most expensive elements of a cellphone plan. You can reduce the amount of data you use by using your own Wi-Fi when you’re at home and by being mindful of the apps you install on your phone. Some apps, such as social networking apps, will automatically check for updates every few minutes, which will increase the amount of data you use.
Remember landlines too! If you have an Internet connection at home, your plan probably includes a landline. All you have to do is connect a phone to it and start using it to make or receive calls when you’re at home. This is a good way to cut down the number of minutes you use on your cellphone if you don’t have an unlimited plan.
Your perfect cellphone plan really depends on your needs and habits. If you don’t spend hours talking on the phone every day, and don’t browse the Internet a lot while you’re on the go, your plan could cost you $20 a month or less! You can still cut your bill in half if you use your phone a lot by simply switching from a contract to a smaller phone provider with more affordable rates.