Choosing a Prepaid Cell Phone may be your Best Call:
By Debra L. Karplus
Think back to the last millennium, perhaps ten or so years ago, if you can remember that far into the past. The terms “apps” and “texting” and even “24/7” hadn’t yet crept into the vernacular. Cameras and telephones were two completely separate devices. Internet and email could be used only while seated at a computer somewhere, usually at your desk at work or at home. “Friends” were actually people you had met, and had gotten to know and cherish over time. And games were played face-to-face with other human beings. Amazingly, some people didn’t even own a cell phone back then. Can you believe it!
It’s difficult to imagine such a world. But much to one’s surprise, people were able to interact with each other, sometimes even in complete sentences and using appropriate body language and visual cues, and the world, at least in terms of communication, seemed to function just fine. That scenario may make you want to reconsider your cell phone plan, with all its gadgets and services, and the monthly cost affixed to it.
A prepaid cell phone may provide you the best compromise between having a cell phone that does everything, and not having a phone at all.
Shop online, at your local phone store, and at the big box and discount stores to see what prepaid cell phones are available, and compare prices. With a prepaid cell phone, you are not locked into any type of contract, one of the many advantages of these phones. The phone itself may cost as little as about twenty dollars which includes a battery that should last for several years.
Refill the minutes every three months for twenty-five dollars plus tax and you’re good to go. That provides you about nine dollars a month to talk. If you use your phone discriminately, you will end up accruing unused minutes that are good forever.
At approximately twenty-five cents a minute, or ten cents a minute during evenings and weekends, you won’t want to linger on the phone to catch up with an old college friend, share sports scores, or discuss details of the upcoming sale at the mall department store.
But prepaid cell phones are perfect for relatively short, quick calls such as getting roadside assistance, conferring on travel or meeting plans, calling home to check on the kids, and for various emergencies. You’ll just need to modify your cell phone using habits.
Before dumping your current cell phone plan, try one busy day without using your cell phone. It’s easier than you think. When your contract ends, don’t renew it. Treat yourself to a prepaid cell phone. You’ll notice the savings immediately, and will be pleased with yourself for utilizing this dollar stretching idea.