Pay-as-you-go cell phone plans are convenient because they don’t lock you into a lengthy contract. You can purchase phones and plans from different locations and, in most cases, they’re much cheaper than other carrier deals.
Although the popularity of pay-as-you-go cell phones has increased in recent years, there are a few misconceptions about these plans. Because of these misconceptions, some people don’t give these plans the attention or consideration they deserve.
If you’re in the market for a new cell phone and plan, here are some common misconceptions about pay-as-you-go that might make you think twice.
1. Plans only include a poor selection of phones.
Most people use their cell phones for just about everything, including email, social media, research, finances and even online shopping. So naturally, you want a cell phone that can handle heavy usage.
Some people don’t give pay-as-you-go plans a second thought because they think these plans come with inferior phones. It’s true that some prepaid phones are cheaply made and inexpensive, which might work for people who don’t want to spend a lot on their phone. But high-quality options are also available.
With a pay-as-you-go cell phone plan, you can choose a low-cost basic phone, or purchase a higher-quality unlocked phone. An unlocked phone can operate on different networks, which is a win-win if you’re looking to keep your phone bill within a reasonable range, but you also want a high-quality smartphone.
Purchasing an unlocked phone means paying full price, since a carrier isn’t subsidizing the cost of the phone. If you don’t care about having the newest version of a particular smartphone, you’ll find plenty of gently-used, unlocked smart phones on eBay and other sites at cheaper prices.
2. These phone are only for people with bad credit.
Pay-as-you-go cell phone plans don’t involve contracts or credit checks, making them ideal for people with no credit or bad credit. But having credit problems isn’t a prerequisite for these phones.
You might have excellent credit, but may not want a credit inquiry on your credit report, or you might just hate cell phone contracts. Either way, a pay-as-you-go phone plan provides the service and terms you’re looking for.
3. You have to buy a card to refill minutes.
When pay-as-you-go cell phones first came on the scene, customers had to purchase a refill card to add minutes to their phone. Refill cards still exist today, but aren’t the only way to add minutes to your plan.
Many plans include the option of recurring payments and auto-refills. Simply create or login to your account and add a credit card or checking account number. From there, you can set up a one-time refill or auto-refill. This way, you don’t have to continually buy refill cards or worry about running out of minutes. Everything is digital and requires little effort.
High cell phone bills can wreak havoc on your budget. If you’re looking for a way to save money on phone expenses, going with a prepaid or pay-as-you-go account might provide the savings you need. There are many options to choose from, including Virgin Mobile, Boost Mobile, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. Shop around, compare phones, and then choose the plan with the price and features you need.