Cell phones these days are less a modern luxury and more like an essential tool necessary for us to function. However, while cell phones grew in popularity, their cost did too. You’re probably spending way too much on your phone bill, so where do you even start in reducing it? Luckily, you can spend much less without giving up any major parts of your phone plan by following these simple tips.
Here’s how you can lower your phone bill:
Don’t Lock Yourself Into a Contract
It’s tempting to sign up for the two-year plan in order to get your hands on the latest iPhone, but in the long run it will end up costing you more. Rather than locking yourself into that contract, find a plan where you can pay off the handset in no-interest monthly installments. Once the phone is paid off, you can see your bill drop by up to $30 a month.
Be Sure To Shop Around
Your current provider may be telling you that it’s giving you the best deal, but don’t take their word for it. Add up the things you need from your provider, and research different companies to see who will best suit your needs. By doing this you’ll avoid taking out a plan where you’re paying for things you simply don’t need. While shopping around for new cell phone plans, I came across Ting. They only make you pay for what you used at the end of the month – no pre-payments for your usage.
You may think that all providers offer fixed prices, but in fact their quotes can be negotiable. This is true especially of people who are long-term customers of a particular provider. By simply calling them up and discussing what you need from your plan, you can drastically cut your phone bill.
If You Can’t Cancel, Make a Switch
Some people may be able to cancel their cell plans and switch to better ones, but it’s not possible for everybody. If high cancelation fees are stopping you, you can still reduce your bill until your plan runs out. If you call or check your plan online, there may be options available to you that can reduce your bill. For example, you may be able to switch to a plan that gives you half as much data allowance at a much cheaper price. Use caution, though, as some companies will extend your plan when you do this. I’m currently using AT&T, and I realized that Cricket runs on the AT&T network (they’re owned by AT&T, surprise surprise). So if I do switch to Cricket, that means I won’t have to compromise the quality of my network service.
Use Employee Discounts
Your employer may not advertise it, but you may be able to gain a good discount on a cell phone plan through them. If you’re not sure whether your company offer anything like this, speak to your HR department. Similar deals may also be available through student discounts, so if you’re at college be sure to investigate whether you’re eligible.
Think Twice About Added Perks
Your provider may offer insurance for your handset, roadside assistance or another perk as part of your plan. Think about whether you need those perks, though. It may be cheaper to insure your handset yourself, and many credit cards offer roadside assistance as part of their service. By refusing these offers you can knock a substantial amount off of your bill.
Keep an Eye on Data Usage
In the age of music streaming and video on demand on our cell phones, it can be easy to get carried away and not notice how much data we’re actually using. Streaming an HD video can use up to 6MB a minute, and streaming music can use up to 1MB a minute. When added up over the month, this can get costly, quickly. The best way to avoid racking up huge bills is to use Wi-Fi wherever possible, and use an app like My Data Manager to keep on top of how much you’re using.
Take Advantage of Family Plans
Family plans can often work out cheaper for everybody on them, but did you know that the definition of family in cell phone plans is actually quite wide? You don’t actually have to be a blood relation with someone in order to reap the rewards. Rope in your friends, roommates, teammates or anyone who you trust to be on a plan with you, and you can all enjoy cheaper phone bills.
It really is so simple to reduce your cell phone bill, and all in a matter of minutes. Take the time to work out what you really need from your plan, strip out anything unnecessary and reap the rewards of your newly slimmed down bills. I’m still looking around to find the best cell phone plan for me, so maybe I’ll post an update with whatever choice I end up going with.
Even if you’re content with the plan you’re on right now, it’s still probably worth it to take a look at other available options.