Photo (cc) by MLazarevski
If you can’t live without your smartphone, but you’re tired of paying a monster cellphone bill, you’re not alone.
Americans are devoting more of their household budgets to cellphone bills these days. In fact, the average monthly phone bill in the United States has been on the rise for years, with Americans spending more than $100 per month on their cellphone plan, MoneyWatch reports. That’s a whopping 50 percent more than we paid in 2007.
But your phone plan doesn’t have to drain your bank account.
If you have a standard phone plan from one of the big four wireless carriers, you may want to consider other options.
“Pay-as-you-go and prepaid options are well worth checking out,” Anum Yoon wrote in Money.
According to Yoon, these are three ways a prepaid phone plan could help you save money:
- More control: Because many phone plans have preset minutes, data and texts included, it can sometimes be difficult to pick a plan that best fits your needs. Yoon said a prepaid smartphone typically allows you to pay solely for what you use, so if you end up using your phone more than you thought in any given month, you can simply add funds to the phone balance.
- Set budget: It’s not fun when unexpected charges show up on your phone bill. You can typically avoid that with prepaid plans. “Prepaid plans are extremely helpful if you’re very frugal or if you just want to more easily maintain a household budget,” Yoon said. Many prepaid plans are offered for a flat rate and include set services. It’s obviously easier to stick to a household budget if you know exactly how much you need to pay for your phone bill.
- Flexibility: If your phone usage varies greatly depending on the month, Yoon recommends that you check out Ting, a prepaid smartphone company that tracks your usage on your devices and puts you in a pricing tier that matches your actual usage.
You can likely save yourself some cash if you do your homework before you commit to a phone plan.
After all, “people who are willing to dig deeper and look at alternatives usually find it’s easier than they expected to slash smartphone spending,” writes Yoon.
Check out “4 Steps to Cut Your Cellphone Bill in Half.”
Have you ever used or considered a prepaid phone plan? Share your thoughts below or on our Facebook page.