Save on Cell Phone Plans

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cellphone-bill

Chances are your wireless bill is higher than it should be, whether you use your cell phone for personal or business or both. Here’s how to save on cell phone plans and to make sure your plan fits your calling habits.

1. If you send or receive more than one text a day: Sign up for a texting plan (prices start at around $5 a month; most companies have comparable plans)and you’ll avoid the average 20 cents per text charge. If you have a teenager, you need an unlimited-messaging plan. But anyone with a teenager already knows that!

2. If your phone usage spikes after dinner: Ask about extended calling hours. For an additional $5 – $9 a month, some carriers, such as Sprint and AT&T, offer packages that allow you unlimited calls after 6 PM or 7 PM compared with 9 PM for most typical plans.

3. If you talk for fewer than 200 minutes monthly: A prepaid plan is for you and could be the best way for you to save on your current cell phone plan.

4. If you call overseas: Go toaitelephone.com, which offers rates starting at less than 1 Cent a minute to more than 200 countries. Choose a plan (prepaid or receive a bill), then dial from your cell using a 1 800 number.

5. If you signed up for phone insurance: Slash this cost immediately, even if you’re clumsy. That $5 – $8 monthly charge adds up, and you’ll still have to pay a $50 deductible if you need to replace a broken phone. The replacement, which is often just a refurbished used phone, will cost about the same as a new one.

Quick tip: Go to billshrink.com or fixmycellbill.com to see if you are on the right plan and to see more ways to save on cell phone plans.

Source: Money Wise by Lindsay Funston, Real Simple July, 2009.

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