A woman holding a cellular phone.

Slashing Your Cell Bill

Cell phone bills can get out of control in a hurry. All those little charges and the phones themselves can add up to a big monthly expense. Ready to cut that bill down to size? Here are some ways to do just that.

Ways To Cut Your Bill Down To Size

If you are looking to slash your monthly expenses, your cellular phone costs are a great place to look. It represents a large part of your monthly budget and there is a lot of wiggle room to save. Here are 4 ways to do just that.

1. Switch to a pre-paid plan.

Pre-paid plans are not just for those with bad credit. They can get you the cell service that you need at a fraction of the cost of a traditional cell plan. The only real difference is that you pay your bill at the beginning of the month.

Pre-paid service providers use the same lines and towers that the big providers used. In fact, many of them are owned by the major providers. This means that you get the exact same service without all of the high fees. Having said that, yes, it is true that they will prioritize data for their first tier clients, slow downs are rare.

Besides the lower costs, another advantage of going pre-paid is that you are under no contract. You are free to cancel or put your service on hold at any time with no penalty. Anytime that you can get by without a contract obligation, you should do so.

2. Keep that old phone.

Cellular phone manufacturers are famous for coming out with model after model. It seems like they are releasing a new and improved version of their phone 2 to 3 times a year. If you are a tech hound, this can be a financially disastrous attraction.

Instead of replacing your phone every year, why not hold on to it. Phones are better than ever these days and your high end phone is probably capable of lasting 3, 4 or even 5 years. Not buying a new phone for 800 dollars each year has some pretty obvious financial benefits.

Next time you are tempted to buy that new phone, ask yourself if the extra little features are worth it. Will the picture difference with the upgraded camera really be noticeable? Is the extra speed from the bigger processor going to make your life that much better?

Most new features from the latest model will get old very quickly. Keep that old phone as long as possible and, if needed, simply replace the batter every few years.

3. Share a plan.

If you are in a household with multiple phone users, why not split up a family plan? Get the same service or even better for a fraction of the cost.

An individual plan at a pre-paid service could be $50 a line while a family plan might be $90 for 4 lines. Splitting that cost up among 4 users would more than cut your phone bill in half. The savings could be even more profound if coming from a top tier phone provider.

The only disadvantage to splitting a plan is the billing. One person would have to take charge of the bill and be reimbursed by others. A bit of a hassle but well worth the effort.

4. Pick the right plan.

What good is having an unlimited amount of apples if all you can eat is one day? The same goes for data and minutes.

Phone providers love to push the unlimited contracts but you might be paying for services that you do not need.

Take a look at your data usage over the last few months. If you use a lot of data, stick with the unlimited plan. If your usage falls in line with a smaller plan, make the switch.

Choosing the right plan, depending on your provider could save you 30 to 40 dollars a month. That could be over 400 dollars over the course of a year.

Wrapping Up

Keeping that budget in line and costs down is all about the little things. It might not seem like a lot but your cell phone plan is a huge part of your budget. It is very easy to get a bill that is out of control. With all of the extra charges and phone expense, if you are not careful, bills can get into the hundreds each month. Take control of that phone bill and your budget now. If you are desperately need money, it is a great place to start.

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James Car is a finance, loan and budget expert based in the United States. After attending Brookhaven college, he went on to become a successful entrepreneur. He now enjoys writing articles that help people save and make the most of their money.