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Looking at a big phone bill

20 Ways To Lower Your Phone Bill

In today's fast-paced world, skyrocketing phone bills are a common frustration. Many people are desperately seeking effective ways to cut down on these expenses, often unaware that they’re paying for services they never use.

Why spend more when you don’t have to? With a few smart strategies, you can significantly reduce your phone bill and put those savings to better use. So, let's explore the most effective tactics to help you keep more of your hard-earned money where it belongs—right in your pocket.

Key Takeaways

  • To lower your phone bill, it is recommended to shop around for cheaper providers, VoIP plans, or even prepaid phone plans.
  • Lowering your phone bill means more money in your pocket each month. These savings can be redirected toward more meaningful financial goals like savings, investments, or paying off debt, which enhances your overall financial security.
  • Reducing recurring bills simplifies your budget management. With fewer expenses to track, you gain better control over your finances, making it easier to plan for future expenses and use your money efficiently.

Why Is It Worth It To Lower Your Phone Bill?

Lowering your phone bill from a major provider like Verizon, T-Mobile, or AT&T is more than just a way to save money each month—it's a smart financial move that can provide long-term benefits. Here are several compelling reasons why it's worth the effort:

  • Financial Freedom and Savings. Cutting down on your phone bill means more money in your pocket. Even small savings can add up over time, creating a significant impact on your overall budget. This extra cash can be redirected towards savings, investments, or paying off debt, enhancing your financial stability and security.
  • Avoiding Unnecessary Charges. Many phone plans include services and features that you may not need or use regularly. By carefully reviewing your bill and identifying these extras, you can eliminate unnecessary charges. This not only reduces your expenses but also helps you understand your usage patterns, allowing you to choose a plan that better suits your actual needs.
  • Better Budget Management. Reducing recurring bills like your phone bill can simplify your budget management. With fewer and lower expenses to track, you can gain better control over your finances. This streamlined approach makes it easier to plan for future expenses and ensures that your money is being used efficiently.
  • Increased Financial Flexibility. Lowering your phone bill can give you greater financial flexibility. With reduced monthly obligations, you’ll have more disposable income to allocate towards things that matter to you, whether it’s a family vacation, a home renovation, or simply having a cushion for unexpected expenses.
  • Reducing Financial Stress. High recurring bills can be a source of constant financial stress. By lowering your phone bill, you can alleviate some of this pressure, leading to a healthier, more relaxed approach to managing your finances. This peace of mind can improve your overall quality of life, allowing you to focus on other important aspects without the constant worry of overspending.

Lowering your phone bill

1. Switch to a Prepaid Plan

A lot of people are spending money that they could be saving by paying a fixed monthly fee on their phones, rather than setting up a prepaid plan that only covers the things they need. You should therefore make sure you assess exactly what you’re using on your plan, and only pay for this.

If you need advice, you can call Verizon or AT&T and they should be able to discuss your needs with you, creating a prepaid plan that suits your needs precisely. This can shave money off your monthly bill very effectively.

2. Negotiate With Your Current Provider

Some people assume that their existing plan is at a fixed price and there’s no room for negotiation, but this is often not the case. If you call your service provider and discuss your rate with them, you may find that they are willing to reduce it. It may not be by a huge amount, but even a small reduction on a monthly bill can be a big saving over the course of a year. If they take $5 per month off, that’s $60 in a year!

The worst your provider can say is “no,” so this is worth doing, especially if you’re a good negotiator. Some sources recommend negotiating for a lower price about a month before your current contract ends, as this shows you may move elsewhere if you don’t get a good deal.

3. Switch to a Family Plan

Family plans (mostly offered by larger providers like Verizon and T-Mobile) can be another effective way to save money. If you can share your plan with family members or even friends, you might all be able to get a better deal.

It is important to read the terms and conditions if you’re going to do this, because you may not be allowed to share a contract with friends – but some providers may let you. If in doubt, call and ask; their staff should be able to advise you and help you identify a family plan that will work for you.

4. Use Wi-Fi Calling

If you pay for calls, it’s worth looking at alternative approaches that will let you reduce your reliance on cellular networks. This can cut down on your spending in a day. Some phones allow you to turn on a feature called “Wi-Fi calling,” and this will reroute calls through your internet service, saving you money.

This won’t work when you’re out and about, but it can make it cheaper to place calls from home.

5. Use a Free Texting and Calling App

If you don’t have a feature for Wi-Fi calling or it doesn’t seem to be working well, certain apps are a good alternative. WhatsApp, Skype, and Google Voice will all let you make calls through your Wi-Fi service, and this can be much cheaper, and give you access to additional features like video if you need it.

These can also be used out and about if you’ve got plenty of data, so it might be cheaper to use them than to text or call through your service provider. It’s surprising how much money you can save with this approach, especially if your current plan comes with plenty of data.

6. Bundle Services

If you’re paying for multiple services from different providers, there may be an opportunity to realize further cost savings here. Often, a provider will give you cheaper rates if you have more services with them, so this is well worth exploring.

Call your current providers and find out what deals they will give you if you bundle together things like your phone, internet, and TV services. Very often, the combined cost will be lower than you are paying for these services individually. You may be able to shave quite a few dollars off for each month, giving you a much better deal overall.

7. Opt for a Cheaper Phone

For many people, a good portion of their monthly cost is due to the cost of the phone, but this doesn’t have to be the case. If you choose a cheaper phone or a model that has been out for a few years, you may be able to knock your price down significantly.

This could represent some big savings over the course of a year or two, and while it does mean not having the best smartphone out there, there are plenty of older models that are very serviceable.

8. Monitor Your Data Usage

Most service providers will charge you quite a big chunk of money if you go over your data limit for a day, so it’s important to avoid this. Keep an eye on your data usage, especially toward the end of the month, and make sure you aren’t about to go over the limit.

If you aren’t able to stay within the limit, it’s worth thinking about expanding your plan. It will cost more upfront but could work out cheaper if you are frequently paying additional data charges. The other option is to be more cautious about your data usage throughout the month so you don’t pay the extra.

9. Use Wi-Fi Whenever Possible

You can cut back on your data use by making the most of Wi-Fi networks, both at home and when you’re out and about. For example, if you’re at a friend’s place, you might want to get connected to their Wi-Fi network instead of using your data, especially if you’re streaming movies or listening to music.

You can also use public networks when you’re out and about, but make sure you’re careful about security if you’re going to do this. Don’t send any sensitive information while you’re logged into a public Wi-Fi network.

10. Turn off Mobile Data for Certain Apps

Sometimes, apps that are running in the background are using up data without alerting you to this fact, and this is an annoying drain that can see you going over your limits and having to pay more for your plan.

It’s worth taking the time to disable background data usage for apps that you’re not likely to be using on the go. This is usually done via your settings; if you go into “network and internet,” you’ll see something like “Data Saver,” which will give you a means of limiting your apps. This is an effective way to cut down on wasted data use.

11. Consider a Data-Only Plan

Many people these days rely on their data, rather than on texting and phone calls (especially if you utilize the earlier tip about apps). If that’s the case for you, you may wish to check out data-only plans that have minimal or no texting and calling options. These are often cheaper and could be a good option for you.

12. Use a VoIP Service

A VoIP service also lets you use the internet instead of your cellular provider’s towers, which can be another alternative service. You can use VoIPs at home and while on the go, and this is another way to avoid using the calling or texting options on your phone.

VoIPs are pretty easy to set up and a lot of people depend on these to reduce their phone bills without losing access to calling abilities. You’ll often get cheaper calling rates by using this kind of service.

13. Look for Discounts Through Your Employer or Organization

If you’re struggling with the high cost of your phone bill, you may want to check whether your employer offers any deals. This is particularly likely if your work requires you to have a working phone for any reason, but could be an option even if they don’t.

You will likely be more limited about which provider you can use, but this is still worth considering, as the discount could be reasonably significant. Of course, you will lose the discount when you leave the employer, but the cost savings are probably worth the hassle!

14. Switch to a Cheaper Carrier

If your employer doesn’t offer any discounts, it’s still worth looking around to see what your options are. There is a surprising amount of difference between the costs of different providers, and some carriers offer much better rates than others.

Make sure you look at plans that specifically suit your needs, though. There’s no point in switching to a carrier that is cheaper on calling if you only ever use your phone to text. It may take a while to do this comparison, but you could make some big monthly savings. Small carriers like Boost Mobile, Mint Mobile, and Visible frequently provide better rates and not that much change in service.

15. Pay Your Bill On Time

On a different note, paying your bill on time is another key aspect of keeping your costs down. Most carriers will charge you fees if you’re late paying your bills, and these can add up quickly. You can avoid them by making sure you pay your bill promptly.

If possible, set up an automatic monthly payment to the cellular company to cover your phone bill. This removes the risk of you forgetting and ensures the bill is paid on time. However, you do need to make sure there’s money in your account.

If you need some additional money to make sure you can pay your bills on time and avoid late fees, a loan from Fast Simple Loans could be worth exploring, as it will give you a lump sum directly into your bank account.

16. Keep an Eye Out for Promotions

If you’re looking to change providers, you should definitely look out for deals and promotions. Many providers will give you discounts if you’re a new customer, and these could be significant. It may mean switching providers every few years to make use of these promotions, but it can shave money off your costs.

17. Opt for a SIM-Only Plan

Some people already have phones, either that they have bought separately or from a previous contract. If that’s the case for you, a SIM-only plan might be a cheaper option than a traditional contract.

If you don’t already have a phone, consider whether purchasing a second-hand one could let you utilize a SIM-only plan and its cheaper rates. This gives you more flexibility and may reduce your monthly bill by a significant amount because the phone’s cost won’t be rolled in. Second-hand phones tend to be inexpensive, so this is a great option!

18. Use Your Phone’s Native Features

One of the annoying things about using your phone when you’re on the go is that some of your data usage will go on ads – which you don’t necessarily even want to see! However, some smartphones have built-in features that will allow you to block these.

We mentioned above the “Data Saver” setting, which you should check out. This will maximize your data usage, preventing waste and giving you more for the areas that you need. If you turn on your Data Saver, your apps will only be able to get background data when you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network (although they’ll still use data when they are active).

19. Avoid International Roaming Charges

If you’re planning a trip any time soon, this is a very important aspect to consider: roaming charges can very quickly add up and you may face some high fees. It’s important to talk to your provider in advance to see what your options are.

If your provider can’t give you any good deals, you may want to consider using local SIM cards, which are often cheaper. It’s important to compare your options thoroughly to see what the cheapest approach is, but make sure you do this before you leave, as roaming charges are often significant – especially if you use data while abroad.

20. Consider a Landline or VoIP Service for Home

If you pay high costs for calls, you may find that either a landline or a VoIP service is more cost-effective, especially if you spend a lot of time at home, rather than on the go. People who work from home, for example, frequently find that this works out cheaper than paying to make calls from their cell phones.

Again, you’ll need to compare the costs and determine how much use you are likely to get from a landline or VoIP service before you commit to them (as they are an additional bill every month). Hopefully, you’ll find this is a cheaper solution to making calls!

It's Worth a Shot

As you can see, there are plenty of ways you can reduce your phone bill each month. Different methods will prove effective for different people, and you’ll need to consider how you use your phone before you decide which of these is right for you, but they should help.

Almost anyone can benefit from negotiating their bill, switching to prepaid plans, and minimizing their data usage, but hopefully, the other suggestions on this list will also help you save money every month, giving you more spending power for the future.

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