6 Tips to Lower Your Phone Costs

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6 Tips to Lower Your Phone Costs

Staff Writer · Oct 26, 2009

One of the ways to reduce your expenses and save more money is to lower your phone costs. Here are 6 tips you can use.

Use a Prepaid Cell Phone

Using a prepaid cell phone is the best option (in most cases) for cell phone use. A regular cell phone is just too expensive, and you can find yourself yoked to a contract long after you find out you’re not satisfied with the service. A prepaid cell phone puts you in control of how much you want to spend in cell phone charges. The best part is there’s no bill. You pay as you go, adding however many minutes you see fit. You can also earn free minutes by joining a supermarket’s rewards program, where you get minutes as a reward for buying over a certain dollar amount in groceries.

Eliminate Useless Home Phone Features

What happened before caller ID was invented?  How did we ever get by? You should seriously consider the added features you have on your home line and see whether you can live without them. If you only receive or make a few calls per day, you may not need call waiting, especially if you also have a cell phone. You can also use an answering machine to screen calls if you must.

Eliminate Cell Phone Protection

Cell phones are very inexpensive these days, so it can be hard to justify signing up a protection plan to replace your phone if it’s damaged. You’d be able to buy a $20 phone new or at a yard sale instead of paying 10 times more with a lengthy contract. The costs are only a few bucks per month, but that’s money that can go towards your grocery bill or laundry costs.

Use Email

Instead of getting charged for add-on text message services, consider sending an email. The spontaneity of sending and receiving a text message won’t be the same, but you’ll save money and they can read the email soon enough. If the person has to know right away, pick up the phone and call them. You can even go back to using instant messaging.

VOIP

Voice Over Internet Protocol, also known as VOIP, is a technology that allows you to make and receive calls over the internet. Most people who want to lower their long-distance charges use Skype and similar services. They save money because they avoid the higher fees charged by phone companies. You may not be able to use VOIP if you don’t have internet access in your apartment, or if the cost to get high speed internet makes the cost of VOIP just as high as using a phone company.

Use a Calling Card

If you have a home phone, the best deal on long distance calls might be a phone card from your local market. You can buy cards that charge as low as $0.02 per minute to make state to state calls. Read the fine print though, because you might get charged a higher rate for making long distance calls in the same state, and connection fees might apply.

Follow these 6 tips and you won’t have to worry about high phone bills again. Put the money you save towards something more valuable, such as your savings account or getting out of debt.

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