How to Find the Cheapest Cell Phone Plans
July 31, 2008 by John
Cell phones are really cheap these days, you can really find the cheapest cell phone because the prices may vary due to seasonal and supply fluctuation. However, finding the cheapest plan is easy. Here is the a simple three steps you should follow. First, select a carrier that offers more “bars” in your area – you are going to use the phone to call somebody, right? Make sure the reception is good if not great. Cheap voice quality is not what we are looking for. We are looking for cheap price per minutes (keep in mind we are not just talking about price alone here) and excellent voice and data quality. One way you can find out which carrier works best in your neighborhood is to go to their websites, type in the zip code. They should have a coverage map that tells you whether your area is cover and the voice and data quality in that area. Second, after you select a carrier, choose a minute plan that fits between the maximum talk time and minimum talk time you believe you will use each month. You don’t want to underestimate the monthly talk time. Even you receive a 5 second call, that will still count as 1 minute. Third, select a message and data plan. Chances are you will be using data once a while like checking emails and weather. If you are a heavy user of email and data, we suggest you to pick a unlimited data plan ranging from $15 to $30. Txt plan typically starts at $5 for 200 to 500 message a month. Teenagers love to use txt these days, adding unlimited plans can be smart start. Remember that data, txt, and email features are something that you can change every month to suit your preference. What about plan minutes? Carriers used to be very strict on the voice plan, you were only allowed to upgrade to more minutes rather than downgrading to a plan with less minutes. Nowadays carriers are more flexible, you can either upgrade or downgrade to different plans without lengthening your contract. So, what’s the cheapest plan you can get? Let’s assume that you already select AT&T as your carrier. The cheapest rate plan offered by AT&T starts $39.99 with 450 minutes. That’s sound reasonable for people who don’t talk a lot on the phone – 15 minutes a day, 0.088 a minute. The next available individual plan goes for $59.99 for 900 minutes, basically 30 minutes a day. That’s not bad, averaging 0.066 a minute. One thing you need to keep in mind is that these plans include 5000 or unlimited night and weekend minutes. So, if you talk more at night and during weekend, good for you.