Simple Tips for Reducing Your Monthly Phone Bills
Monthly Phone Bills: A handful of people still have a landline exclusively. But these days most of us have a cell phone, if not a Smartphone. For some, it’s a cell and a landline. Either way, your monthly phone bills can add up quickly. Luckily, there are a lot of ways to minimize your spending and cut down drastically on your bill. Whether it’s the latest Samsung, a dinky old cell or your trusty landline. Here are a few tips.
Change your carrier
Some cell phone carriers charge more than others. Or they have little-hidden feeds that work their way in through the month. Check over your bill to make sure you know what you’re being charged for. If you make lot of calls, look at a plan that offers free calls to the same network. Or lower rates inside certain hours. On a landline, you can likely negotiate lower rates for local calls. And different price structures depending on your usage and whether it’s for home or business use.
This mostly applies to smartphones, and partly to more basic cells. Whether you’re on prepaid or contract, you have four different options – dollars and cents, minutes, data and SMS’s. If you load your phone with actual money, you can use it for anything. Like calling, texting, internet – but it’ll cost you. If you convert that cash into talking time, SMS bundles and megabytes. You’ll pay less for each, but you can’t convert it back again. In case you have WiFi access nearly everywhere you go, you don’t really need to worry about data. And if you instant message, through WhatsApp or similar, rather than SMS, you can probably drop the texting bundle too.
Out of Bundle
If your plan gives you a certain amount of minutes or data but doesn’t notify you when you exceed it and lets you keep calling and browsing, you’re in trouble. The out of bundle rates on most networks are pretty extreme. Set notifications on your phone so you know when you’re reaching your limit, or opt for a plan that actually cuts you off when you hit your limit. This way you can top up when you need to and won’t be caught by surprise when your bill comes in the mail.
No matter what plan or network you’re on, international calls are going to cost more than local ones, usually a lot more. If you find yourself needing to make international calls, and it’s convenient for both parties to be at their computer, try a Skype call instead of a phone call. The downside to this is it usually requires some prearranging as the person you’re calling has to be online. The quality of the call may also not be great if your internet is slow.
To call on your phone, look at getting a prepaid international calling plan like that offered by EnjoyPrepaid. They give you a code to enter before you dial internationally, and you can use it on your landline or cell. The rates are much lower than they would otherwise be and you can top up your account as and when you need to use it.
Whether it’s your own phone, your chatty teenagers, or your mother-in-law who calls and texts without realizing how much it actually costs, you can cut the costs quite easily. If it does happen to be your teen’s phone bill that drives you nuts, set a monthly limit and has them pay their own way if they go over it – don’t worry, they can still call 911 if they’re in trouble, it’s toll-free.