Easy and free ways to save money on your cell phone bill.
Your smartphone may be getting slimmer, but your cell phone bill is likely expanding. Plan designs, text fees, apps and accessories all add up—and fast. But there are ways you can save money while still enjoying the features that led you to purchase the phone to begin with.
- Compare plans. It’s easier than you think and several websites do it for you—for free. Check out BillShrink.com or savelovegive.com. Simply enter your current plan usage and costs, or provide access to your account. The sites will then analyze your bills for you and provide options that can help you save.
- Bundle your services. If you can move your cable, Internet and cell phone to one service provider, you’ll likely reap the benefits of a discounted price.
- Use free texting apps. Get rid of those text charges by using apps that let you text for free. Services like imo, KaKao Talk, and WeChat offer free texting and other free services including instant messaging, group chats and voice messaging.
- Look for hot spots. To keep your data usage—and your bill—down, avoid streaming any type of media unless you’re in a wi-fi hot spot. Also consider disabling automatic updates of programs unless you are in a hot spot.
- Beware of service contracts.Signing up for a multi-year contract in order to snag a deal on a phone is tempting. But you may spend more in the long run than just purchasing the phone outright.
- Look for discounts. Check if your employer offers any cell service discounts—many do. And, if you’re a senior, you may qualify for a discount through your service provider. Not all providers advertise this discount, so be sure to call and check if yours does.
- Know how you use your phone. Do you tend to make most of your calls in the evenings or on weekends? Do you consistently go over or under your data plan? Find the right plan to fit your needs—and your wallet. And if those you call most frequently all use the same service provider, consider switching. Some providers offer discounts or free perks when those you call are on the same network.
- Skip the phone replacement insurance. You’ll need to pay a deductible anyway, and your replacement phone likely won’t be new.
- Be smart about accessories. A cell phone skin or case is probably a good idea if you tend to drop your phone a lot. But be careful how much you spend on your phone’s accessories—and where you spend it. Rather than buy your accessories at the cell phone store, check out Amazon and other online retailers for better prices.
- Negotiate. Your service provider doesn’t want to lose you, so call them to see if they can give you a better deal. It never hurts to ask.
This article contains general information. Individual financial situations are unique.
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