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Old 03-29-2010, 12:12 AM   #1
diamondintherough
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Default best cell-phone plans?

I've had Virgin Mobile for a few years (pay as you go dealie , but I've had a problem where some company has been able to steal my minutes. VM doesn't pay me back and when I call the company they insist that I've signed up for a "subscription" They regularly change their name and re-enter me on their subscription list.

ANYWHO...I usually buy a $30 top-up card every other month, but I've noticed that I'm spending a lot more than that lately because I'm using the phone a lot more.

My son just got Straight Talk and seems happy with it. It's either $30 a month for 1000 texts or minutes or $45 a month for unlimited. Seems like a good deal, but I was wondering if there's anything else out there. Money is a factor.

I've also been considering what a "family plan" would look like. Ideally I'd like to get ds14yo and dd13yo a phone to reach me while they are out, but I also need to save $.
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Old 03-31-2010, 12:55 PM   #2
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

I don't know anything abut those plans. Just make sure you take into consideration that when you call each other on a prepay plan, you are both using minutes. We have a Verizon family plan, it's $95 per month after taxes for 3 phones and 700 minutes to share. We get unlimited calls to other Verizon customers as well as nighttime and weekends.
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Old 03-31-2010, 04:14 PM   #3
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Originally Posted by Hermana Linda View Post
I don't know anything abut those plans. Just make sure you take into consideration that when you call each other on a prepay plan, you are both using minutes. We have a Verizon family plan, it's $95 per month after taxes for 3 phones and 700 minutes to share. We get unlimited calls to other Verizon customers as well as nighttime and weekends.
Oh, that's interesting...

So, the 700 mins are to people outside the network? Calling each other doesn't cost anything?

I'm still leaning towards of going with the Straight talk. That way I don't get stuck with a contract either and my personal information (like ss#) doesn't get out. Ds19yo is using the unlimited cards at least for now ($45) so that won't rack up his minutes, just mine if I go with the $30 card each month instead of the unlimited myself. It seems like a good deal, but I really take my time making these decisions.
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Old 03-31-2010, 04:22 PM   #4
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Originally Posted by diamondintherough View Post
Oh, that's interesting...

So, the 700 mins are to people outside the network? Calling each other doesn't cost anything?
Yes, that's correct. We have the Verizon Family Plan, too. Our contract is up this summer & I've been researching pay as you go plans to switch to. Unfortunately, since they all have minutes that expire, the per minute cost is comparable to Verizon. But when I consider that we can call each other without using minutes, and we can also call on weekends (and evenings, I think) without using minutes, Verizon's plan seems best.

for more ideas.
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Old 03-31-2010, 04:29 PM   #5
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Originally Posted by mommylove View Post
Yes, that's correct. We have the Verizon Family Plan, too. Our contract is up this summer & I've been researching pay as you go plans to switch to. Unfortunately, since they all have minutes that expire, the per minute cost is comparable to Verizon. But when I consider that we can call each other without using minutes, and we can also call on weekends (and evenings, I think) without using minutes, Verizon's plan seems best.

for more ideas.
Thank you for sharing your perspective. See, the thing is that as of right now I'm the only one getting a phone. Ds already has his phone and is in charge of paying for it, etc. It was something he wanted to do and I'm all for him becoming more independent at age 19 I've been toying with the idea of my 2 "middlers" having one if they're out, etc. Not convinced it's a good idea yet. If we do do that, seems like a family plan will work better.

The cool thing about a contract being up is that (as I understand it) you can still continue on with the same plan each month. At least that's how it used to be.

Dh has Verizon for work and has never had a contract with them.
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Old 03-31-2010, 04:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

as far as the contract....once its up you are just on the same plan but month to month. its usually a 2 year contract and they try to get you to resign for another 2 years by offering a free phone/upgrade.

we pay $85 to sprint for 2 lines, 800 shared minutes, 300 texts each plus after 7pm, weekends and calls to other sprint mobile phones dont count against the 700 mins. we never come close to the 700 as we mostly call each other and other family also with sprint. for a while we had a third line and it was just a flat $10 per month. it also shared our same 700 mins.
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Old 03-31-2010, 05:17 PM   #7
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Originally Posted by abh5e8 View Post
we pay $85 to sprint for 2 lines, 800 shared minutes, 300 texts each plus after 7pm, weekends and calls to other sprint mobile phones dont count against the 700 mins. we never come close to the 700 as we mostly call each other and other family also with sprint. for a while we had a third line and it was just a flat $10 per month. it also shared our same 700 mins.
Just FYI on Sprint I loved them when I lived in MN - great coverage great plan etc, and when I moved to VA I still had them and it was the most awful cell phone reception I've ever seen. Unless I was literally driving down I95 I got no reception at all. Their customer service was awful I went round and round with them one guy finally admitted to me that yes he realizes from his data that I'll never be able to get a signal while living in that area they won't be doing anything about it and I'm stuck paying the cancellation fee or having a phone with no signal. Possibly things have changed since then in other areas but I know even now every cell carrier gets a signal at our house except Sprint.
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Old 03-31-2010, 08:04 PM   #8
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

I've got a T-Mobile family plan. It's 3 lines with 1000 minutes and unlimited mobile to mobile for $60 a month ($50/mo when we only had 2 lines). We don't get anywhere close to the limit since we mostly talk to each other, but I haven't found anyone that can beat the price.

I would check all the major carriers in you area's web sites and find what would be the best deal for your family. I'm amazed at how much my friends pay for service just because they've never bothered to shop around.
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Old 03-31-2010, 11:32 PM   #9
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

My Verizon plan is old, we're on month to month. So, I can't be sure if you'd pay the same as we do, but I think so because we had to upgrade in order to add my son to the plan.
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Old 04-01-2010, 05:25 AM   #10
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Originally Posted by michelle3802 View Post
I've got a T-Mobile family plan. It's 3 lines with 1000 minutes and unlimited mobile to mobile for $60 a month ($50/mo when we only had 2 lines). We don't get anywhere close to the limit since we mostly talk to each other, but I haven't found anyone that can beat the price.

I would check all the major carriers in you area's web sites and find what would be the best deal for your family. I'm amazed at how much my friends pay for service just because they've never bothered to shop around.
Wow! That's a good deal and worth looking into.

The person I call most besides my family is on AT&T, but I don't think I will use 1,000 mins a month. I do wonder if I get the "middles" a cell whether they would go over the limit and thus cost me more in the long run.
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Old 04-01-2010, 07:10 AM   #11
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

Do you travel a lot? If not you might look if there is Pocket or Cricket in your area. I have Cricket and pay $35 (plus taxes) per month for unlimited minutes anytime and free US long distance. Free unlimited text messages,too. No contract. I hear it can get dicey, though traveling. I have no personal experience there, though, as we don't.
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Old 04-01-2010, 07:16 AM   #12
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

I have Cricket and I pay $35/month for unlimited talk and text, with long distance. I love the unlimited factor as I am not good at keeping track of minutes.
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Old 04-01-2010, 10:09 AM   #13
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

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Do you travel a lot? If not you might look if there is Pocket or Cricket in your area. I have Cricket and pay $35 (plus taxes) per month for unlimited minutes anytime and free US long distance. Free unlimited text messages,too. No contract. I hear it can get dicey, though traveling. I have no personal experience there, though, as we don't.
I like that price a lot! It's even $10 cheaper than Straight Talk. Off to check and see.

P.s. I do travel a fair amount on the East Coast.
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Old 04-01-2010, 10:11 AM   #14
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

Look at their map. I think they have decent coverage. Though I will say , I find more dead zones with cricket than I did net10. But I still like them.
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Old 04-01-2010, 10:17 AM   #15
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Default Re: best cell-phone plans?

We just got Verizon and it - although we do pay a fair amount each month. But - that's because we live in Canada, and travel frequently all around the US and Canada, so we had to have a plan that worked everywhere for that.
However, I did notice that you can put parental restrictions on additional lines - so if you got a cheap family plan w/Verizon, you can actually control who your kids can call on their cell phones - so they can't run up a huge bill
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