Saving Money on Cell Phones

Trying to save money on your cell phone plan can be a confusing and exhausting process. Don't give up, there are ways to cost cut. This is a guide about saving money on your sell phone plan.

October 3, 2014 Flag
17 found this helpful

In filling out one of those endless surveys online the other day (don't take them, they truly are endless), one interesting thing came out of it. A window popped up advertising a federal program offering completely FREE cell phones and service.

I thought it was a scam at first, but after much curious research, including a call to a county office, I discovered this is for real! It is Q Link Wireless, the link is below. Or, you can call them toll free at 1-855-754-6543.


I looked up the qualifications and you must either meet federal monthly income guidelines or participate in any of the following programs: Medicaid, Temporary assistance for needy families (TANF), Food stamps/Supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP), Federal housing/Section 8 assistance, Supplemental security income (SSI), Low income energy assistance program (LIHEAP), National school lunch program.

What a blessing for those who cannot afford a phone, or who would benefit greatly from an additional one. I just thought everyone should know this is available.

Source: internet surfing


October 20, 20140 found this helpful

I have heard about these but did not know that a person on social security would be eligible. Thanks for the info!

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October 31, 20140 found this helpful

September 15, 2014 Flag
12 found this helpful

Ok. How many remember the TV show "Laugh In" from the late 60s - early 70s? The title of my tip originated from that show. I have a small cell phone. It's not a smart one, but it's fine for what I need it for. Anyway, my husband had purchased me a nice $15 case for it and I had the case for several years. Then I lost it and I would not spend another $15 to get a replacement case. Instead, I bought a pair of toddler socks. The phone fits perfectly down inside the sock and is easy to see in my purse. It protects my phone and serves its purpose. The added plus is I have a "spare case" if I should lose the sock. So "Sock It To Me."

September 18, 20140 found this helpful

Ha, ha! I DO remember Laugh In! I haven't heard the phrase "sock it to me" in a long time! This is a cute idea, and very clever. You got my vote! Alternatively, if you're a crocheter (or knitter), you can make your own case from scrap yarn, which I did for my little cell phone.

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September 22, 20140 found this helpful

August 5, 2013 Flag

Cell phones are many times reduced to anyone receiving any kind of assistance: Lower income families, SSI, food stamps, Medicaid. I believe this service is available in many states in the US.

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July 13, 2010 Flag
13 found this helpful

If you are out on the water, particularly in smaller vessels such as jet skis, canoes, kayaks, etc., take note of the following tip. Place your cell phone inside a drink cozy and then place inside a plastic zip top bag.

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October 30, 2009 Flag
4 found this helpful

You can get a cell phone for absolutely nothing. It is for low income people, every month you get 80 free minutes.There is no catch, no hidden charges. If you lose the phone, they will send you another one for free. I just got my replacement phone.

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January 3, 2013 Flag
3 found this helpful

I dropped my monthly cellphone charges by getting a 20 dollar cellphone.

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September 12, 2008 Flag
0 found this helpful

Tips for saving money on cellphones as suggested by the ThriftyFun community. The main thing you have to be careful of with a cellphone company is whether or not you'll have good coverage.


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March 26, 2013 Flag
2 found this helpful

I recently noticed an ad for a free Verizon smart phone and was about to upgrade two of my family's older technology smart phones when my son pointed out to me that in doing so, I was giving up my unlimited data plan.

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March 29, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

I remember when cellphones came out. My dad had one in his car but most people didn't have one. I would walk down the street in the city I lived in at the time and saw these business people with them, they were the size of a walkie-talkie and very ugly-looking. I thought people looked ridiculous walking and talking and I swore I'd never get one.

Not a decade later, I found myself in a cellphone store (late nineties) and purchasing one with a plan. Even then, not everyone had a cellphone so our costs were really low. We used them mostly to contact each other (my partner and I) if we were meeting up somewhere or plans changed. It was very convenient but we didn't live by them. I think sometimes we forgot we even had one. And text messaging wasn't what it is now, most people didn't text back then.

Then fast-forward another decade. I don't know anyone who doesn't own a cellphone. Even friends of mine who swore 5 years ago that they'd never get one, have one. It has become commonplace. Many of my friends who live in apartments don't have a LAN line and just use their cell as their home phone.

On one hand, I like the convenience but on the other hand I really hate them. I don't spend a lot of money on mine but many of my younger friends are constantly glued to their phones, especially since Blackberries and IPhones came out. It seems as though I can't have a coffee, dinner or even a nice day out with someone without them having to text or call someone or even taking a call.

Please consider shutting your phone off when spending time with friends and/or family. I love going to Holland since many restaurants there have a no-cell usage sign on their door. I am then guaranteed quality time with whoever I am with as I know their cellphone won't be dining with us.

All this being said, we are obviously using our cell a lot more than before which means our costs are probably a lot higher as well. So how do we cut costs? Have you ever received a ridiculously high cellphone bill? Are you on a budget and still spending $100 a month on it? Here are a few things you can do. We lived without cellphones before, we can still do it now. It's OK to have a cellphone but it's not OK to deal with its usage like we'd deal with a drug addiction. Do you find yourself texting, facebooking and calling people constantly? Try turning your phone off during peak hours. Tell friends only to text or call you if it is truly needed or else just tell them to use email and you can check it when you get home. Send emails on your computer, text only when it's absolutely necessary. If you must pay for incoming text messages, tell people not to text you but to call you instead (at times where it's free for you to receive calls)

Change Your Plan As Your Life Changes

Cellphone companies have plans depending on our usage. Sometimes one plan is good for a while but then life changes and that plan no longer works. I used to have a 5-faves plan when my friends lived in the city. These are people I would call on a regular basis and I didn't call others as much. So I could text, call and receive calls from these people constantly and it wouldn't cost me a dime. Everyone moved away so I had no use for this anymore. I changed my plan and am now saving $20 a month.

Look at your bill, figure out when and who you call and pick a plan that is appropriate for your life. Believe it or not, some companies have plans that they don't advertise so it's a good idea to call, tell them what your needs are and find out if they have any suggestions. They are trained to do this and will look at your bill for you to determine what's best for you. Don't let them talk you into something you don't need though. Make a point of saying that you want to stay with that company but that you need to reduce your costs.

Get Pay As You Go

A lot of people won't like me for suggesting this, but it's the only way to closely monitor your usage. I knew a lady who bought a $15 card monthly for her phone. Once it ran out, she didn't buy another one till the month was up. This was her way of monitoring her costs. She then realized when she really needed it and when she just wanted to use it.

The nice thing about Pay as You Go is that all services are included and you won't run up a bill. It's like being on a cellphone diet. Some people I know hated it because it limited their usage but that's the whole point. Do you really need to text your friend to say that there is a good sale on at the clothing store or that you ran into an old friend?

Don't Bring Your Cell When Traveling Overseas.

Unless you are there for work and your cell is paid for, leave it at home! The roaming costs are ridiculous overseas. When we visit my partners parents in Holland, we have a Dutch Pay as you Go (we have a used one his mom gave us) and get a card for it.

My mother does the same thing when she goes to Spain for a month every year. She has a Spanish pay as you go and just gets a card when she arrives. The nice thing about European cellphones is that all incoming calls are free, so even if we have run out of minutes on our card, his parents can still call us on it. It might cost you 30 euros to get a cheap phone and card but that's a lot cheaper than paying roaming charges. If I am only going out of the country for a few days, I just turn off my cellphone and don't use it at all and use payphones or my laptop to send emails.

Get Work To Pay Part Of Your Bill

If you have a personal cell but find that you are using it for work sometimes, talk to your employer and find out if you can expense some of your usage. I know a friend who used to do this and part of his bill was paid for by his company. If they refuse to pay, tell them that you can no longer afford to take work calls on your cellphone, they might change their minds.

Get A Basic Phone With No Bells And Whistles.

Most of my friends are serious tech geeks so telling them to get rid of their Iphones or Blackberries is nearly impossible. Myself, I have a basic phone with no data plan, I can just call and text, that's it. It's not very exciting looking but it does the job. I can text easily and it works perfectly. There is no need to get the latest gadget to keep up with the Jones'. I got my cell company to block the internet portion of it so I wouldn't use it. My bill is less than $30 a month right now and believe it or not I am still trying to find ways to reduce it.

Send Text Messages Online.

There are a number of free text messaging services online such as or You can also text message from the cell providers website. I have done this before when I didn't have a text plan way back when. Texting your friend's cell from your computer will save you money. Some people have their cellphones set up with MSN so you can text someone's cellphone if they are not online and it goes right to their cellphone.

Cellphone usage has become a scary addiction, I really wish most people I knew would go on a cellphone diet because it has not enhanced my friendships at all, if anything I feel as if it has made them less personal. I always feel less important than their cellphone. We have this obsessive need to be connected to everything and everyone at all times. I don't think it's healthy. Although I do find them useful, I do think it's time for most people to reevaluate their usage. Not only to save money but to enhance personal connections.

Good luck!

Source: Written by me and taken from my blog:

By freya1970 from Halifax, NS

April 1, 20100 found this helpful

I have a 10 dollar a month, no contract deal with Consumer Cellular. It costs me 25 cents a minute for usage. I don't text and I don't give out my number. It is strictly for emergencies. It stays turned off most of the time. I use my house phone for yapping. My cell bill never goes above 14 dollars a month. It was only 20 when I was using it when my new grandson was born. When Ike hit Houston I ran up a 30 dollar bill because my cordless phones didn't work without electricity. For the most part this plan works great for me as an old person. This company also has a selection of free phones available.

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October 27, 20100 found this helpful

January 19, 2010 Flag
5 found this helpful

Did you ever notice that a cell phone plan/contract is 2 years and the phone only works for a year? Instead of spending a ton of money to buy a new phone, buy a Go phone (prepaid phone) for $15-$20. DO NOT have it activated.

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March 21, 2011 Flag
2 found this helpful

Looking for ways to lower cell phone bills? I have a generous Data Plan but my kids kept going over the megabytes allowed and increasing my payments. Since the text message plan we have is unlimited, my kids now mostly text message instead of BBM, lowering my costs.

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April 26, 2010 Flag
2 found this helpful

If you are on a cell phone plan that offers Family and Friends calls, update your list before taking a trip. Family and Friends phone numbers are the same as mobile to mobile and there is not a charge for the call. This list updates within 24 hours.

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December 18, 2009 Flag
2 found this helpful

I have a cell phone that I use for business purposes and have an unlimited plan that is very expensive. I have found out through my service provider (Verizon) that they offer a favorite five like another company.

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April 24, 2010 Flag
0 found this helpful

What is the most economical cell phone plan for a light user with no texting?

By Flowery Trail from Chewelah, WA

April 29, 20100 found this helpful

I have an Alltel (now Verizon) prepaid phone, and it's great. $7.50 a month, and even though you don't use texting, it's included. (Though I'd recommend using Google SMS with your text can get the weather and all sorts of info via text when you're on the go.)

If you go to a place like Wal-Mart or Target, they have lots of phones with cheap plans. Tracfone isn't the only one; I switched from Tracfone to Alltel/Verizon, and I like this a lot better.

(Plus, if you buy a Tracfone, it could be a refurbished phone, esp. if you buy it from their website--so beware.)

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January 23, 20110 found this helpful

March 25, 2011 Flag
0 found this helpful

I need a cell phone with minimum features and a low monthly service fee. I just want to make and receive calls, maybe a couple of times daily. Please recommend a phone model and service provider.

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