Secret Cell Plans: Savings Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint Don’t Want You to Know About

Cell Phone Girl
Photo by Kinga / Shutterstock.com

Ever been somewhere with the kids and wanted to pretend they weren’t yours? That’s how the big four cellphone providers feel about their offspring.

They’re called sub-brands or discount carriers and they all have one. AT&T has Cricket, Sprint has Boost Mobile, T-Mobile has GoSmartMobile and Verizon has Total Wireless.

The sub-brands use the same towers and systems as the major brands, but at a lower price and with no contract. Although you should check first, the parent network phone should be compatible with the sub-brand service. If not, simply buy a good used phone or a new one that’s unlocked and compatible.

As we explained in 4 Steps to Cut Your Cellphone Bill in Half, phone prices are dropping, so there’s no longer any reason to be locked in a contract for an extended period of time simply to get a subsidized phone. Discounters typically offer phones for less than $100.

SaveOnPhone.com says these “secret cellphone plans” can save consumers 60 percent to 75 percent off their monthly bills.

Example: As I’m writing this, Verizon’s site says that a single-line plan that includes unlimited talk, text and 2 GB of data is $75 a month on a two-year contract. But go to Total Wireless, which uses Verizon’s network, and you’ll find a contract-free plan that includes 5 GB of data for just $35 a month. More than twice the data, less than half the price!

Click here to compare dozens of plans in seconds with our free tool

There can be subtle differences: For example, according to consumer advocate Bob Sullivan, Total Wireless customers get 3G service while Verizon customers get faster 4G. In addition, the $75 Verizon plan includes a phone. But if you’re with Verizon now, wouldn’t you want to switch to the discount carrier when your contract is up and your phone is paid off?

So, if you have a contract with one of the Big 4, you might want to compare prices with a discounter and see if changing makes sense.

All you have to do is check out the latest addition to our Solutions Center: A comparison tool for cell phone plans. You describe your needs, it searches dozens of plans to show you the best deals.

Got ideas of your own? Comment below or on our Facebook page. And if you like this story, please SHARE it by using one of the buttons above!

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
30 Purchases That Will Start Saving You Money Immediately
30 Purchases That Will Start Saving You Money Immediately

Sometimes, you’ve got to spend to save. These canny deals are a good bet for savings.

10 U.S. Jobs That Are Disappearing Fastest
10 U.S. Jobs That Are Disappearing Fastest

Think twice before pursuing these shrinking occupations.

27 Things You Should Never Pay For — and How to Get Them for Free
27 Things You Should Never Pay For — and How to Get Them for Free

When you know the tricks, you can save big on all kinds of useful things that others pay for.

21 Purchases You Should Never Skimp On
21 Purchases You Should Never Skimp On

With some items, it makes sense to pay a little more rather than hopping on the lowest price.

Stop Overpaying for These 10 Common Purchases
Stop Overpaying for These 10 Common Purchases

The best price for many of these items is “free.”

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
9 Mistakes Everyone Makes When Shopping on Amazon
9 Mistakes Everyone Makes When Shopping on Amazon

Are you losing money due to any of these missteps?

7 Changes Coming to Social Security and Medicare in 2021
7 Changes Coming to Social Security and Medicare in 2021

Recently, both Social Security and Medicare made some major announcements about benefits for 2021.

Can a Divorced Widow Claim Her First Husband’s Social Security Benefits?
Can a Divorced Widow Claim Her First Husband’s Social Security Benefits?

The rules are complicated when it comes to eligibility for survivors benefits.

Can a Twice-Divorced Woman Claim Social Security Survivors Benefits?
Can a Twice-Divorced Woman Claim Social Security Survivors Benefits?

Understanding survivors benefits rules is the key to getting the most from your benefit.

These Are the 10 Worst Cars for Depreciation
These Are the 10 Worst Cars for Depreciation

Two types of vehicles are especially likely to see steep plunges in value.

9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

10 Things I Always Buy at Trader Joe’s
10 Things I Always Buy at Trader Joe’s

From snacks to sweets to side dishes, stock your cart with these time-tested favorites on your next TJ’s run.

Longer Trips to This Type of Store May Raise Coronavirus Risk
Longer Trips to This Type of Store May Raise Coronavirus Risk

An airborne-disease expert recommends exiting these stores within 30 minutes.

5 Ways Social Security Will Change in 2021
5 Ways Social Security Will Change in 2021

These adjustments will affect both workers and retirees in the new year.

11 ‘Disposable’ Items You Should Be Reusing
8 Things You Should Buy at Restaurant Supply Stores
8 Things You Should Buy at Restaurant Supply Stores

You don’t have to be a chef or a restaurant owner to shop here.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

There are easy high-paying majors available in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required. We’re here to help you find easy degrees that pay well.

Stop Buying These 19 Things Online
Stop Buying These 19 Things Online

The internet has changed how we shop. But for some things, you’re still better off buying the old-fashioned way.

Cut These 11 Expenses Now If You Hope to Retire Early
Cut These 11 Expenses Now If You Hope to Retire Early

Like the idea of financial independence? Part of the FIRE equation is cutting costs.

4 Tax Credits That Will Be More Generous in 2021
4 Tax Credits That Will Be More Generous in 2021

If you are eligible for these tax breaks, they will slash your federal income tax bill — dollar for dollar.

7 Tips for Building an Emergency Food Supply
7 Tips for Building an Emergency Food Supply

A pandemic or natural disaster could leave you reliant on your existing emergency food supply. Is your pantry well-prepared for emergencies? Knowing what to stock up on for emergencies can be a difficult task and we’re here to help.

15 Things You Can Get for Free in December
15 Things You Can Get for Free in December

December is here, which means it’s your last chance to take advantage of fabulous freebies in 2020.

These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020
These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020

Medicare Advantage customers themselves rate these plans highest.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.