Cell phones have changed our lives for the better in multiple ways. We can contact loved ones in an instant, we can share photos, and even work from our cell phones on the go. The capabilities of our handheld computers are becoming endless.
However, while the capabilities and quality of cell phones are increasing, so are the expenses. It’s not uncommon for families to see cell phone bills that rival electricity bills! They are now creeping into being hundreds of dollars a month. That’s insane!
How can you keep up with technology while not spending a ton of money on a cell phone bill? Keep reading to see 17 ways to save money on your cell phone bill!
1. Keep your phone as long as possible
The first thing you can do to reduce how much you spend on your cell phone bill is to keep your phone as long as possible. This means keeping it protected by using a case and being wise with how you store it on the go to prevent it from being stolen.
Keeping your cell phone means you don’t have to buy a new one, and a new phone is where they get you! You can easily spend hundreds of dollars on a new phone, and with it come new charges. Save money on your cell phone bill by saving your phone!
2. Buy an Older Model Cell Phone
People have been mistakenly told that in order to be cool or in the know, they must have the most recently updated edition of their current cell phone. This is the best way to waste money, my friend. Your current cell phone works fine, as did models three or four years ago.
If you must buy a new phone, consider older models that companies are trying to sell-off. You may even be able to save money by not buying from your cell phone provider, but instead from other retailers. This will prevent new charges from being added to your bill.
Look for older models to save money on your cell phone bill.
3. Consider a Prepaid plan
If you constantly find your cell phone bill is spiking and you’re having a difficult time anticipating your monthly spending, consider going with a prepaid plan for your cell phone bill. With a prepaid plan, you can pay in advance, and it’s a great option for many people.
If you have a teenager that needs reins on how much she uses her phone or an elderly parent that only needs a phone in case of an emergency, a prepaid option may be just what they need. Save money on your cell phone bill by using a prepaid plan!
4. Set Alerts for Data Usage
One of the most common ways cell phone companies rack up money is by penalty charges when you go over your data limits. If you have a set data limit with your cell plan, the charges for surpassing that are painful!
Don’t waste money each month by surpassing your data limits. Set an alert on your phone that indicates when you have reached a certain threshold of your plan, so you can taper it for the rest of the month.
This is a huge money saver, and it only takes a few minutes to implement! Set an alert and stay on top of your data usage for the month!
5. Check if your ISP offers Cell Phone Plan
It used to be that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and cell phone carrier were two separate bills, but if you look around, you may find a joint plan available. Check your current ISP to see if they offer phone plans. You may find that bundling is the best option.
Many of these companies want as much of your business they can get! See if it makes sense to combine or bundle, and do some negotiations while you’re at it!
6. Use a Mobile Virtual Network Operator
Mobile virtual network operators (MVNO) are some mighty players in the game of cell phone carriers. It’s common to go for the mega-giants when considering cell phone plans, like Verizon, ATT, or T-Mobile, but did you know there are smaller companies that use the same network?
These smaller providers have some of the same benefits as the larger carriers, but are less expensive by far. If you want to save money on your cell phone bill look into MVNOs and make sure they have coverage for your area. Then, watch your cell phone bill decline!
7. Negotiate your Rate
It’s easy to sign up for a cell phone plan, fall into the habit of paying your bills, and fail to notice creeps that happen gradually. The next thing you know, your cell phone bill is $20 higher per month and you didn’t recognize it!
Especially if you signed with a promotional plan, your rates may change drastically after a year. Don’t be afraid to call and negotiate your rates with your current provider in order to reduce your cell phone bill. Remember, they want to keep your business!
8. Take Advantage of Eligible Discounts
Check your plan to see if you are eligible for discounts that you could be missing out on! If you are a senior or a student, many providers offer discounts that can save you money, and all you have to do is provide proof of age or enrollment.
It is also worth checking if your employer has discounts with a cell phone carrier and if you can adjust your rates based on that discount. Don’t miss out on saving money each month on your cell phone bill!
9. Add Friends and Family to your Current Plan
As counterintuitive as it sounds, adding a line to your current plan may actually drop your cell phone bill. Most people think of adding family lines, but you can also add friends or non-immediate family members, such as grandparents, as well.
Adding a line reduces your bill because most carriers know the more people they have using their services, the more money they make in the long run. However, that may mean significant savings each month on your cell phone bill. See if adding a line can reduce your bill.
10. Drop your Cell Phone Insurance
There are times when insurance absolutely makes sense, like with your health, car, or home. However, when it comes to your cell phone, it is oftentimes not worth it. Usually the insurance plans only cover a few issues, and it’s money you’re paying that you lose.
Instead, to cushion the blow of something occuring, save money each month in an account to cover the cost of repairs or a new phone. Plus, you can save yourself the struggle of haggling with the company for your right to use it if they say your issue isn’t covered.
11. Sign up for AutoPay
If you are diligent about keeping an eye on your data and feel comfortable with your monthly bill, look into signing up for autopay with your cell phone company. Many companies are offering discounts for signing up for autopay.
It still makes sense to monitor your bill for charges each month, and keep an eye out for any fees that may sneak up, but it may be a benefit as one less thing to remember each month. Save money on your cell phone bill with autopay!
12. Buy your Phone Upfront
While your cell phone provider may convince you that they can rope in charges for a new cell phone into your monthly bill, this can cause your bill to spike significantly. You’re better off having a small amount of money set aside to pay for a phone outright instead.
Buying your phone outright also means you own it, and you’re not essentially renting it from month to month. Don’t overspend by making payments on your phone.
13. Change to a Cheaper Data Plan
Another way to save on your cell phone bill is to analyze your data usage and see where you can save. If you’re surrounded by wifi all day but are using your cell phone data, that may be costing you more money each month.
Do a trial run to see where you can connect to wifi for a month, and analyze how much data you’re using. See if a smaller data plan will work for you and if you’ll save money by switching. Don’t waste money by paying for more data than you need!
14. Shop Around for a Different Carrier
It may be that you need to consider a different carrier to save money on your cell phone bill. If you have already negotiated or feel you are getting the best rate, it may be time to consider other options for a cell phone provider.
Going with a different carrier may mean you can take advantage of promotional rates, as well, that can be good for a year or so. You can mark your calendar to make sure you take a look at how your bill will change before it happens, and make another switch if you need to.
Also, other carriers may pay off the remainder of your plan with your current carrier, just for switching. Make good use of the market competition and grab those promotional rates while you can to save money on your cell phone bill!
15. See if you Qualify for Employee Coverage
If you need a cell phone for your job, it may be worth seeing if your cell phone bill (or at least some percentage of it) can be expensed to your employer. You can pay your monthly bill, but expense it and be reimbursed in your next paycheck.
Definitely check this out, and even if you are eligible, make sure you understand any gotchas. Another option could be for your employer to provide the cell phone, but make sure you’re comfortable with either arrangement.
16. Analyze your Bill for Hidden Fees
When you sign up with your cell phone provider, it’s not uncommon to sign under the premise that you’re paying $60 per month for your plan, only to receive your bill and discover you’re actually paying more per month. Why is that? Well, in short, fees!
Your cell phone bill more than likely contains fees that you never accounted for, including taxes. While some of these, like emergency services, probably cannot be removed, you may be able to negotiate down administrative fees specific to your carrier.
If you decide to change carriers based on your fees, make sure you get the number up front from the new provider you’re considering. That way, you’ll have no surprises!
17. Use Coupons Sites to Save on Cell Phones and Phone Accessories
Another way to save money when it comes to cell phones is to get a deal on the phone you are purchasing or any needed accessories. While you can save while owning your phone and accessories instead of leasing, there’s no need to pay full price.
Check out stores that commonly carry phones and accessories to see if there are any coupons or deals before you buy. Stores like Best Buy, Samsung, and Apple frequently have deals that can save you hundreds of dollars.
And, it never hurts to think outside-of-the-box and search sites like Newegg or retailers like Belk for protective phone cases, or stylish earbuds. Save money by keeping your eyes open for coupons and deals for your cell phone.
FAQs on How to Save Money on your Cell Phone Bill
How can I save money on my AT&T cell phone bill?
How can I save money on my Verizon cell phone bill?
Save money on your Verizon cell phone bill by going with a prepaid plan option, or by joining a family share plan. Also, don’t forget to use Verizon coupons and deals to save more on cell phones and services that Verizon offers.
How can I lower my cell phone bill?
Make sure you’re using a data plan that is right for what you actually consume, and ask yourself if extra charges like insurance are really worth it.
What discounts can I get on my cell phone bill?
There are discounts like student, senior, and employer discounts you may be able to take advantage of. See if you qualify for discounts with your provider today, and what steps you need to take to get those discounts immediately!
Why is my phone bill so high?
More than likely, you are paying for more data than you need. If you’re constantly going over your data plan, it may make sense to get an unlimited package, but if you’re taking advantage of wifi for your cell phone, you may be able to lower your data plan.
How can I negotiate for a lower cell phone bill?
By understanding your bill entirely, you may have a bargaining chip in lowering your cell phone cost. Have a few months of examples ready on what you can shave down. If your bill has been increased, let them know you’re in a position where you need to save money.
Don’t overpay on your cell phone bill by forgetting to stay aware of what you’re being charged. Stay on top of what you’re using your cell phone for, and if your current situation makes sense to maintain, or if some small changes can save you big bucks.
And, as always, check out Koopy.com for the latest ways on how to save!