Cell phone stores’ plans and service can be extremely frustrating and costly. And with the current financial climate in mind, it’s more important than ever to get the most bang for your buck when it comes to your cell phone and related expenses.
The key to unlocking savings is knowledge. The saying goes, “knowledge is power.” This is true when it comes to understanding how cell phone stores work and what you should do when you need service or repairs. If you know what the cell phone stores know, you can negotiate fair deals and avoid spending money unnecessarily. By having a few pieces of valuable information, you can level the playing field.
To get you in the know today, here are five secrets cell phone carriers don’t want you to know:
1. Don’t Buy That App
Carriers today sell a variety of smartphone applications you can get elsewhere for free. A good example of this is a navigation program that uses your phone’ GPS to give you turn-by-turn directions. While the carriers charge for navigational apps, there are a number of third-party navigation apps that are free.
Carriers also have their own programs for downloading music and ringtones to your device. With all the better options available now, like iTunes, the only way carriers can retain their customers is to lower prices. However, until carriers start offering free programs, it is obviously cheaper to use a third-party app.
2. You Can Negotiate
When it comes to cell phones and cell phone plans, it’s common to feel like you are at the mercy of the carrier you choose. In reality, you have more bargaining power than you think. You might be surprised to hear that you can negotiate the cost of a new cell phone. You can even negotiate the perks of your calling plan.
There are two best-case scenarios in order to get the carrier to be more flexible with you. 1) if you are a new customer, and 2) if you are out of contract. Carriers love new customers and will do just about anything to get their business. For example, in some cases, a carrier will cover the cost for you to break the contract with your current carrier. The more lines of service you have, the more valuable you are to them.
If you are already a customer and out of contract, your negotiation power increases significantly. To keep you as a customer, they will reduce the price of a phone. They will add a one-time credit to your account, and even provide your account with bonus minutes free of charge.
3. Know the Ways around a Contract
Cell phone companies generally require their customers to enter into a one or two year contract. If you break the contract early, you must pay the dreaded early termination fee. If you don’t want to be locked into a long-term contract, you do have some options. First, you can purchase a prepaid cell phone plan. Smartphones are available with prepaid plans. You pay month-to-month as long as you want the service.
Apart from prepaid plans, cell phone companies lock you into a contract in exchange for giving you a substantial discount on a phone. Most companies offer a one-year contract price on a new phone and a two-year contract price. If you go for the two-year contract, then the phone is less expensive.
There are two ways you can avoid this lock-in altogether. The first is to pay full price for the phone. Phones are not cheap, which means paying full price could be a lot more than you want to pay. If you don’t want to cough up several hundred dollars for a new phone, then try buying a phone from Craigslist, eBay or from a friend. As long as the phone has not been reported lost or stolen, you can activate a used phone on your line. You do need to ensure that the phone works with your carrier. And the phone also has to be E911 compatible. That enables 911 emergency services to locate the phone if needed.
4. Charge the Purchase and Cell Phone Bill
If you use a cash-back credit card, you can automate the payment of your monthly cell phone bill. The charges are automatically added to your card each month, and you earn the points, miles, or cash offered by your card. This is a convenient way to pay your bill and rack up some credit card rewards at the same time.
5. Get out of Your Contract
There are a few instances when you can get out of your contract early and not be charged an early termination fee. One instance is if you move to an area where your current carrier does not provide service. For example, if you are living in the coverage area of your provider and then move to an area where they can’t provide service for you anymore, they will let you out of your contract. Carriers will also allow you to cancel service early in the event the account holder or one of the users on the account dies. This is not exactly the desired outcome. However, it’s good to know if you are handling the estate of a loved one.
North Georgia Cell Phone Stores
At North Georgia Cell Phone Repair you can get one-on-one advice and an accurate estimate before any cell phone repair work is done. And, our technicians offer fast turnaround time for repairs. At our store, you can also get a free estimate for repairs up-front so you can make a smart decision about your repair options.
For a free estimate and to learn more about working with cell phone stores call 770-569-2002 to reach the pros at North Georgia Cell Phone Repair today. We can fix that phone!