How ‘All-In’ Pricing Can Save You $100 on Your Cellphone Bill

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Most cellphone carriers advertise competitive prices without mentioning the “extra costs” of taxes and surcharges that will appear on your bill. When it comes time to pay up, federal and state taxes and local fees typically make up nearly 18 percent of the bill total, according to a 2015 Tax Foundation analysis.

However, some good news has arrived: A few carriers now offer “all-in” pricing. Carriers such as T-Mobile, Metro PCS, Cricket and Boost now include all monthly taxes, surcharges and fees in the price of the cellphone plan. So, the price you see advertised is what you’ll actually pay each month.

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For example, if you’re looking at a plan from AT&T, Verizon or Sprint, you should automatically tack on an extra 15 percent to 18 percent on to the advertised price to get a better estimate of what you’ll really pay each month — especially when you’re comparing them with the upfront plan prices of “all-in” carriers like T-Mobile, Metro PCS, Cricket and Boost.

Example: Let’s say you see T-Mobile and Verizon advertise a line of unlimited data for $70 and $75 respectively. Know that the true difference between these two plans’ prices is not $5.

T-Mobile’s all-in price is really as advertised — $70. But add on another estimated 18 percent — or $13.50– to Verizon’s $75 plan. That means $88.50 is closer to what you’ll be pay each month when the federal taxes, state taxes and surcharges are included.

Therefore, the real difference between these two plans’ prices is not $5 but closer to $8.50! Spread that out over a year, and you’ve got a $102 discrepancy.

Check out these ‘all-in’ pricing plans and save

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