Wednesday, February 8, 2012

One Goal for the Year - FAIL

I wanted to decrease our cell phone bill.  I just couldn't believe that we were actually getting the best deal.  It seemed ridiculous the amount we were spending.

The plan we had was for 2 lines at 1400 minutes, with 10 "friends and family" numbers that were unlimited.  If you looked at our minutes...we only used a few hundred minutes at most.  But of the 10 special could be 1500 or more.  Texting was a cobbled together plan.  Long story.  We also had the data plan, and insurance on G-man's phone.  We got a discount on ONE line (15%).  With taxes, we were at $148 a month.

We spent 3 weeks going through all the plans and companies.  What we found out was that what we really wanted in a plan....we sort of already had!  No other plan gave us what we already were using, or at least not at a significant cost increase.

The only way to keep the talk usage the same...was to go unlimited with other companies.  And that was almost $200 just for that.  Texting...again, we would have to go unlimited.

We looked at Metro PCS, but there coverage in our area was poor.  AT&T was too expensive and limiting for what we wanted.  We ALMOST switched to Sprint, and the cost would have gone down a tad, but again, the coverage was poor.

In the end, we decided to stay with Verizon, and keep what we had in plans.  The only differences in the plans now are:

  1. The plan includes 2 lines (vs one line plus one line as before) at the same price, EXCEPT our discount will now be on both lines.
  2. Texting was costing us $30 a month with the cobbled together plan.  We switched to unlimited, for the same price, EXCEPT our discount will now be applied!
Data plan became the issue.  Companies are really moving towards smart phones, and you are required to have a data plan. So with the new data plan to support our new phones....the bill will go up about $35 a month (taking the discounts into consideration).

We now are the proud owners of a Samsung Stratosphere.  We are a little overwhelmed at how much the phone can actually do!!!  But we were able to get both phones for $150 (which includes the $100 rebate).  We are happy with our purchase.

So, as for decreasing the cell phone bill....FAIL.  We tried, but for what we wanted (yes...WANTED), it wasn't going to happen.  Moving on the timeline of goals is the Will and Life insurance!


  1. I don't think I would call it a fail, you worked on it and spend time trying to reduce the amount.

    dO you know if you have or can get a corporate discount through one of your employers? Our company uses AT&T so we are eligible to get 20% off every month. Look in to it..

    We pay 138.xx per month with AT&T, that includes 700 shared minutes, unlimited texting and free mobile to mobile (verizon, sprint, tmo) and two iPhone data plans, 2 GB and 200 MB for spouse.

    What I like about AT&T is the unlimited mobile to any cell and the rollover minutes, I think we have 5000 that we can use.


  2. We get a 15% discount for government, which Verizon offers, but AT&T doesn't. 700 minutes isn't enough for us. There have been months I have used over 2000 minutes. Part of the problem is calling landlines. I have to call a landline for one person because she has such limited minutes on her cell plan.

    As it is working out now, the lines are $90 (minus 15%), Text is $30 (minus 15%), Data is $ we are at $162 with discount. Add in insurance (which we MAY drop) and tax...and we are at about $180 for the month.

  3. The Government came in and broke up Ma Bell because people were being charge huge long distance rates and they had a monopoly. Not American pay an average of 3 times these rates with all of the necessary add ons.
    I really hate it. I am so looking forward to my kids getting off our plan. But it will be a awhile.

  4. do you have a home phone as well? The reason I ask is that if you have a home phone all that is flipping well expensive. Mind you I rarely use my cell phone and thankfully it is only $17 a month taxes included. I don't even know my cell phone number!!!

    Gill in Canada

  5. @Kim - My kids aren't on the plan...YET.

    @Gill - We do have a landline, that is $35 a month. It is hardly used and we keep debating on getting rid of it. Our issue is that we don't want the kids on our phone

  6. Do not give up the insurance plan. That is asking for trouble. As for the minutes, there has to be a better way to manage the minutes.

  7. thats about how much we spend on cell service too $148 and that includes my employee discount. I think that's a heck of a lot of money but again, it's the best plan for us...

  8. @Rhitter - If you look at the minutes per month, it is between 1500 to 2000. Other than getting an unlimited plan, the only option is talk less! Sure, that is possible. But when your BFF lives long distance, it is tough.

    @Erika - OK, glad to hear we aren't the only ones with this kind of bill.

  9. Interesting. I knew cells were expensive but didn't know they were so much. Do you consider it a business expense or just something you want to have? I had one once and couldn't stand it. People were calling wherever I was. It was annoying and distracting. But, I can see that they are great tools for businesses on the move such as real estate agents.

  10. @Carol - it isn't a business expense. However, G-man and I work opposite shifts, so we spend ALOT of time texting each other. It is our main form of communication. As for the talking....I work, heavily involved at the kids' school, and constantly running for the kids. So I am talking to someone frequently.

  11. Hard to imagine we survived our teenage years without cellphones. I could live without one. The only reason I have one is because my husband insists on it. He has a Sony daughter(13 years old) has an Iphone 4S and I have an ancient nokia flip phone. I could have "upgraded" for free at the end of our 3 years of bondage(contract) with Rogers(canadian) but I actually would have had to pay for a data plan. I told the guy in no uncertain terms that Rogers would not get one penny more from me. I would rather do without a phone then pay them more. Sometimes, I really miss the old days.

  12. Mysti - I had a BFF that lived a long distance. We would just talk when the minutes were free. Look at that option.

  13. I've tagged you in my latest post :)