Plans with major carrier cell phone plans tend to be costly, but it is possible to save big on your monthly cell phone bill with these tips.
Did you know that according to Statistics Canada “Households spent an average of $1,731 in 2010 on communications. This included an average spending of $388 for Internet access, $511 for landline telephones and $731 for cellphone expenses.”
Where does your household fall in spending?
Do you want to cut your Telecommunication bills considerably while maintaining your current services?
- Bundle your Services.
If you are able to use the same provider for your other services like phone, internet or tv, ensure that your services are bundled together on the same bill.
If you aren’t bundling your services it is kind of like going to McDonalds for a hamburger, Wendy’s for fries and Burger King for a coke. You end up spending far more than you need to.
Most service providers offer a pretty decent discount for customers with more than one line of service.
- Review your cell phone services regularly.
Let me start this off by saying that I have worked for two different telecommunication companies in the past and it never failed to blow my mind just how much people were wasting by not reading their bill.
People paying $20 a month on unlimited long distance for years meanwhile they make little to no long-distance calls was the biggest one.
The next big one I saw was people on old, overpriced, and useless packages for their services.
Get online to your companies’ website and go over their current packages now and then and see if there is a better package out there.
Call customer service now and then and ask if they can save you any money on your bill while still maintaining your current features.
- Shop around and don’t be afraid to haggle.
A huge way to take a chunk off your bill is called the Retention Department.
I recommend going this route as long as you are not currently in a contract.
First you need to shop around.
Take a look at what other telecommunication companies are offering for a similar package.
Then call customer service and tell them you are considering switching and you want to talk to their retention department to see if they can do anything to keep you with them.
You will almost certainly be given a much better deal on your current services without the hassle of actually switching.
Just keep in mind that you need to threaten to cancel rather than just ask for discounts and be nice about it.
If you do decide to switch companies keep in mind that many companies actually require a 30 day notice of cancellation.
- Cut back on your monthly plan.
Look over your current services and compare to your usage.
Do you really need everything you are paying for? How much do you really use? If you are using on average far less than your limit and you never come close to that cap why are you paying for such a high limit?
You can easily reduce your bill by going over your usage and reducing your limits to something more realistic.
If your usage isn’t on your cell phone bill you can call in to your provider and ask for a few months information on usage.
- Monitor your data usage
If you do not have unlimited data on your cell phone there are ways to make sure you don’t see overage charges.
Set up an overage alert so you can be notified before you reach your limit.
Switch to wi-fi whenever possible. Don’t download or stream any movies, podcasts or music unless you’re on Wi-Fi. Do not run updates unless on data.
Limit your background data use. Go into your settings and look over the Cellular Data Usage and Background App Refresh for each of your apps and turn off the ones you don’t regularly use.
- Dump the cell phone insurance.
Most carriers offer a variety of protection plans ranging from basic to more premium services. You are looking on average at around $120 a year in insurance on your phone and insurance providers typically still charge large deductibles when you do make a claim.
From my own personal experience, I was paying $12 a month for phone insurance through my carrier and when I did break my phone I still had to pay $300 for a refurbished replacement phone.
Save yourself this expense and instead consider if you are buying a phone outside of your budget. If that is the case, then purchase a phone you can afford to replace if the worst happens.
- Keep your old phone longer.
Cell phone carriers bank on customers wanting the latest and the greatest as soon as their 24 month contracts are up. Most people do immediately upgrade to a new phone, even if their current phone is still in great working condition.
This is easily the best way to cut back on your cell phone bill. Just hang on to your old phone until it actually needs to be replaced.
Keep track of your cell phone bill and other monthly expenses with our free monthly budget envelope system.
Elizabeth Lampman is a coffee-fuelled Mom of 2 girls and lives in Hamilton, Ontario. She enjoys travelling, developing easy recipes, crafting, taking on diy projects, travelling and saving money!
Sunday 7th of February 2016
Awesome tip about the long distance, since we all have cell phones we are going to consider losing the home phone altogether.
Monday 13th of August 2012
Great tips, Thanks!
Sunday 12th of August 2012
Thanks for posting this! Def things to think about!
Sunday 12th of August 2012
I agree about not reading the bill, you reminded me, I need to check it out, thanks!
A Helicopter Mom
Sunday 12th of August 2012
Definitely some great things to think about. Thanks!