The phone bill is one of the most common and persistent expenses for most Americans. And, with the use of mobile phones constantly growing, the costs of the average phone bill continue to rise as well. Finding ways to keep this cost down and saving money on your phone bill can be challenging with the complicated packages and pricing options offered by most internet, cable, a phone providers. However, there are several tried and true methods for keeping that phone bill down and staying on top of those expenses.
Take a look at these 5 practical tips for saving money on your phone bill:
1. MAKE FREE CALLS
VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) is a way of using an internet connection to make phone calls, and can be used to save on minutes or data depending on how your phone bill is calculated. Theoretically, it is possible to make all calls over the internet for free, provided you have access to a public internet connection like those provided at public libraries, coffee shops and at some businesses. By using free calling apps like Skype, WhatsApp,Facebook Messenger, or Google Hangouts, you can place an unlimited number of calls from your computer.
Unfortunately, you might not always be near a free source of internet, so you might want to look into the cost for internet in your own home. Many Internet Service Providers have unlimited data plans, so you it might be a good idea to compare your current phone bill to the cost of internet access and see how much you could save by switching from a phone plan to an internet plan. Even if you do decide to switch to an internet service to make many of you calls from home, you might still want to make calls or send texts from a mobile device when you are out and about, which is why you’ll want to check out our next tip.
2. BUY THE RIGHT MOBILE PLAN FOR YOU
Many mobile plans come with unlimited data, but you might be paying a premium for a service you’re not even using. If you already have a mobile plan, you should first take a look at your overall data usage to see how much data you use per month. If you’re not using more than one of the less expensive plans that has a limited amount of data, consider switching to this plan since you aren’t using more data anyways. If your data usage varies widely from month to month, you might also consider switching to a “pay-as-you-go” plan. The cost for each megabyte of data might be higher on a plan like this, but you may end up saving more anyway if you have months where you rarely use your mobile phone.
3. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR DATA USAGE
Since most phone companies include texting and internet browsing in the amount of data you use, it will be crucial to first determine how much data you are actually using to make phone calls. Most companies will provide you a breakdown of how you are using your monthly data allotment, so if you’re not sure how much of your data plan is being used up by calls vs texting or internet, be sure to visit the website of your service provider and look into the way you used data last month. From thee you can set reminders or alarms to let you know when you are getting close to your data limit if you’ve decided to switch to a smaller data plan. You can also install apps on your phone to help you keep track of your data usage and alert you when you are getting close to your limit. This will help you get a better understanding of where your money is going and make changes over time to decrease your costs.
4. CUT DOWN THE SURPLUS FEATURES
Once you have a good understanding of where your data is going and what your phone plan is actually paying for, you can start to eliminate many of the unnecessary services you may be paying for. For example, are you paying extra for an international plan but never travel abroad? Or are you using most of your data by streaming video from your mobile device? When trying to save money on your phone bill, take a hard look at the services you are using and ask yourself if you really need them or if there’s a cheaper way to get what you want. If you’re watching a lot of movies or browsing Facebook on your mobile device, you might be paying way more for those services than you would be if you were in a wifi zone. Before continuing on to our next tip, be sure you’re only paying for what you really need on your phone since it is normally more expensive to perform activities on your mobile device than it is to perform the same activities when connected to wifi or using a desktop computer.
5. USE A SIMILAR PLAN AS YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS
When trying to save money on most products, you may want to consider buying in bulk; your phone bill is no exception. Most phone companies decrease the cost of their service as you buy more of it, which means you might actually save more if you buy more data rather than less even if you don’t need that much data. To recoup your losses on that extra data you purchased, consider inviting a friend or family member to join you on your phone plan and share that extra data with them. Or, if your friend or family member already has a phone plan, ask i they would consider adding you to theirs and increasing the data limit. By joining multiple accounts on the same bill, you can purchase more data for a lower price and split the cost between the both of you. THe more people you add, the cheaper it will become for each person, though you will need to ensure you have enough data to go around and that everyone isn’t using more than their fare share.
1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voice_over_IP 2. https://www.fcc.gov/general/voice-over-internet-protocol-voip 3. https://lifehacker.com/five-best-mobile-voip-apps-1580922421 4. https://www.reviews.org/mobile/best-cell-phone-plans/ 5. https://www.whistleout.com/CellPhones/Guides/The-Best-prepaid-Unlimited-Data-Plans 6. https://www.techrepublic.com/pictures/8-apps-to-help-you-monitor-data-usage-on-your-mobile-device/ 7. https://www.consumerreports.org/cell-phone-plans/best-low-cost-cell-phone-plans/