How to Lower Your Cell Phone Bill

by | Mar 12, 2020

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Reducing your spending and lowering your bills requires a team effort from every aspect of where your money goes every month. Whether you have some debt to reduce or you just want to live a savings lifestyle, minimizing your spending requires creating “good” money habits. 

Lowering your cell phone bill can make an impact on your monthly spending. In 2018, the average cell phone bill in the U.S. was $99 a month, or $1,188 for a full year of cellular and data services. It’s easy to feel locked into an expensive plan or a phone you can’t seem to pay off.

However, there are ways to reduce how much you pay for data and calling or text plans! Keep reading to learn how to lower your cell phone bill. 

Change Service Providers

Loyalty is an admirable thing—unless your cell phone carrier continues raising your rates every year. Much like cable TV service, sticking with your service provider year after year doesn’t mean you’re automatically saving money in the long run. In many cases, your rates go up despite your loyalty to your provider. 

However, new customers can often benefit from subscriber incentives. When learning how to lower your cell phone bill, leaving your current cell service provider and starting as a new customer with a different carrier can accomplish that. 

Be sure to read the fine print. New customer benefits often have an expiration date. At the end of your “new” term, your rates could go up. 

Consider Low-Cost Providers

When it comes to low-cost carriers, you don’t have to risk good quality coverage. The Big Four cellular service providers also own low-cost providers that use the same mobile services and towers owned by the Big Four. 

If these lower-cost providers are available in your area, you’ll often find lower rates for the same cellular coverage!

  • Cricket Wireless (owned by AT&T) 
  • Visible (owned by Verizon)
  • Boost Mobile (owned by Sprint)
  • Metro by T-Mobile (owned by T-Mobile)

Many Americans rely only on a cell phone for personal and business communication. With a lower-cost carrier, you can save money on your wireless bill without losing the coverage you need to stay connected!

Change Your Plan

Sometimes, you don’t have the option to change to a new provider. Your area could have limited cell phone service options. If you have the best connectivity and customer service success with your current provider, you might not want to risk changing to a new provider.

If you need to stick with your provider, consider changing your plan with your current service. Most cell services offer an Unlimited Data Plan that makes it easy to bundle phone, text, and data services into one nice monthly fee. However, if you don’t use that much data, you could be overpaying for “unlimited” data that you don’t use. 

Review all of your plan options. Take a look at the amount of data you use every month. If your monthly data usage falls into a less expensive plan with a lower data allowance, you can save money by switching to that plan. 

Use Auto-Pay

Signing up for auto-pay with your provider can save money in a few ways. 

  • Some providers offer a discount on your monthly bill if you use auto-pay. When customers use this feature, it saves the company time and money to process payments. 
  • Avoid late fees. How many times have you forgotten to pay your cell phone bill on time? Late charges can make a reasonable monthly fee more expensive. 
  • Improve your credit. Paying your monthly bill on time every month can help build your credit! 

When using auto-pay, be sure you review your bill every month before the payment hits your account. Look for unauthorized charges or unexpected rate changes.  

Hang On To Your Phone (Part 1)

Today’s cell phone contracts and payment plans make it easy to upgrade to the latest smartphone as soon as it hits the market. This pattern can also mean many cell phone users never stop paying off a phone. 

If you pay monthly for your phone, it’s an additional charge on top of your monthly plan fees. When your current phone payment plan ends, consider if you really need to upgrade to the latest phone. 

Holding on to your current phone can save money every month. If your old phone is in good condition and can still handle regular software and firmware updates, keep it! Wait until you really need a new phone before adding the expense. 

Hang On To Your Phone (Part 2)

How often do you drop your phone? If you have trouble hanging on to it, invest in a good quality phone case and screen protector. 

Choose a case that can absorb drops from a variety of heights. If your phone isn’t water-resistant, consider a case that protects your phone from an accidental drop into a sink or swimming pool. 

When you buy a new phone, invest in phone insurance. It’s cheaper to protect your phone with a good case and screen cover than it is to repair or replace it at full cost. With cell phone insurance, most providers will repair or replace a damaged phone for free or a service fee. 

Create (or Join) a Family

Do you have a family of cell phone users? If not, create a “friends and family” group and join a family plan! Adding users to a cell phone plan is less expensive than setting up separate plans for everyone in your family. For some providers, “family” doesn’t have to pertain to blood relatives. 

Divide the plan’s costs between paying members of the family, but remember that you’re sharing data and call minutes. Make sure to use your resources wisely!

Lower Your Cell Phone Bill and Enjoy Savings!

Use these strategies to lower your cell phone bill and enjoy money savings! How will you use your savings? Whether you pay off your car, a credit card bill, or treat yourself to a shopping spree, there’s no need to overpay for your cell phone service. 

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