Choosing a Cell Phone Plan
There are so many different plans available today that it is not difficult to find a plan that fits an individual’s needs and works well within the budget. Of course, cell phone features are important, but the first consideration when buying a new cell phone plan needs to be the cost. How much money is it worth a month to get all convenient additions available to have in a cell phone plan? Once a price range is determined, the next step is comparing the plan options. PhoneDog is the perfect tool for comparing different cell phone plans and check out new phone options. With the easy to use analysis tool, looking for a new cell phone plan will save both time and money because you are able to weigh your options.
Types of Cell Phone Plans
When looking into buying a new cell phone plan, there are four major types of plans to consider. These three options have to do with how many people need a cell phone on the plan, and whether you want to agree to a long term contract with a company or not.
An individual plan is good for someone that does not have a spouse or children that are going to need a cell phone as well. This plan typically consists of a single cell phone line that gives the user minutes to talk, text, and data usage at a set rate.
Family plans may seem to cost a bit, but with all the options this plan provides it will be a great choice if more than two lines are needed. If this type of plan is needed, most carriers allow each line to choose the cell phone to be used on the plan as well as the features for each line. Family plans tend to share minutes, texts, and data usage, but there are plans that allow the users unlimited access to some of these features as well. Make sure that the plan decided upon fits the family’s communication needs.
Signing into a contract cell phone plan usually locks the deal for two years. Some cell phone companies do offer the consumer the chance to sign into a one year contract. Monthly bills are sent, and it is expected that the monthly obligation will continue for the length of the contract. Regardless of the length of the plan entered into, if the contract is broken there are penalties. Early termination of a contract takes the time remaining and adds a percentage of it on top of the fee for actually breaking the contract. Make sure that a cell phone plan of this nature is something that is doable for the entire term of the contract.
Prepaid or No Contract Plan
These types of cell phone contracts are flexible. Since no contract is involved, cell phone usage can be paid for on a monthly basis, or minutes can be simply added when you run out. Most no contract phones can be purchased at a store and can be used within minutes. There is even the option of obtaining one of the new smart phone models, but these may carry a small fee. This may be great for a person who has minimal cell phone usage, since minutes can last well over a month with no extra charge.
Cell Phone Plan Features
When considering a new cell phone plan the next important consideration is the features included in the plan. Most people will want to consider three items, talk, text, and data. Make sure the plan decided upon fits the usage required by the family using it.
This feature determines how many minutes are available on the plan. Some plans have unlimited minutes, but others put a cap on this communication venue. If the limit is exceeded, there is often a price to pay for each minute of overage. Those using prepaid plan options will have to purchase more minutes to continue phone conversations.
Texting is another feature that can be endless or be limited. Most plans today do feature unlimited texting, but having one that does not will assure that each text sent will cost additional money. If texting is a family tradition in the household, it may be a good idea to have this feature unlimited. If texting is not popular amongst those who will be utilizing the plan, maybe it is not needed.
Data usage on a cell phone plan typically charges per megabyte or gigabyte. Most carriers do not offer consumers an unlimited data usage plan option. If the usage goes over what the plan offers, there are often consequences that involve expensive overage charges. Make sure to keep track of any data usage, and choose the plan that fits the requirements of the people that will be using the plan.
Some phone carriers allow you to get a phone with the signing of a contract and pay it off on a monthly basis. This allows consumers who would not be able to get a top of the line phone the opportunity to enjoy the new hot cell phone technology. When it is time for a contract renewal, some companies offer free or low cost phone upgrades if another contract is agreed upon. This is a great way to keep with the latest cell phone technology, especially if the cell phone company and the chosen plan remain agreeable.
Mainstream Cell Phone Carriers
Verizon offers family and individual plans that can be a shared data plan or unlimited talk and text. They also offer prepaid plans that do not tie the consumer down with a contract.
AT&T is one of the largest cell phone carriers and they offer almost every type of plan. Family, individual or prepaid plans that contain a contract or do not are available with both limited and unlimited talk and text options. Data options allow a huge amount of usage, and overage costs are not that bad.
T-Mobile is known for having plans that involve no contracts. Individual and family plans are offered with unlimited talk and text. Data usage is considered unlimited, but after a certain amount of usage it can be throttled.
Sprint offers several different individual and family plans with unlimited talk and text, the new family plan even includes lines for multiple friends and family members. Sprint is one of the companies that offer unlimited 4G LTE data usage to its customers without throttling the connection.
With all of the cell phone plan options available today, it is difficult to make an informed decision. PhoneDog is a tool that was designed to make the process easier for consumers. Just enter any cell phone usage habits into the analyzer and PhoneDog will search the existing cell phone plans on the market to find the perfect fit. When the results appear, just sort by price or feature and choose a plan.