Sunday, April 16, 2017

Phone Discount - Slice that Phone Bill in Half Two-Ways!

I know it's been a while, but life definitely has not slowed down since my last post. Here's a little information for those of you who want to cut down on that expensive telephone bill in the USA!

I'll tackle this in two categories:
Home Phone...
If you're paying more than $40 a year for a home phone line, then you're paying way too much! Get a magicJackGO. Right now, they're running a deal where it only costs $35 for the first year (Including the device! This is normally $60).

Each year-after costs $35 for 12 months. This includes unlimited local / long distance calling. Ditch the cable packages! Plus, you can port your number (A $20 one-time fee).

Some of my initial concerns were:
  1. Do I have to plug the Magic Jack into a computer? No, the Magic Jack can plug into an outlet for power, and the phone lines are run through the magicJackGO device 
  2. What would the call quality be like? After a year of use, the call quality is remarkably clear!
Some things to take note of:
  1. Sometimes when calling the Magic Jack number, I don't hear a ring tone, but the Magic Jack customer will hear their phone ring 
  2. The device is portable, so you can take your "House" phone with you where ever you go. 

Mobile Phone...
I've perused the many cell phone 3rd and 1st party plans for over a year, and have narrowed down one company that worked best for my goals: Consumer Cellular

Here's the quick takeaway from them:
Customizable plans let you pick your Talk and Connect packages, and the account owner can add 1 to 7 lines. Number porting is free, and you can bring your own phone. Plus, if bringing your own phone, the Consumer Cellular SIM card is free!

Snapshot of the Plan Rates as of Today:
Talk Options: 
  • $10 (Bill-Per-Use $0.25 Per Minute)
  • $15 (250 Minutes)
  • $20 (1,500 Minutes)
  • $30 (Unlimited Minutes)
Connect Options (Text and Data Bundled Together):
  • $2.50 (300 Texts / 30MB Web Data)
  • $5 (2,000 Texts / 200MB Web Data)
  • $10 (Unlimited Texts / 500MB Web Data)
  • $20 (Unlimited Texts / 1.5GB Web Data)
  • $30 (Unlimited Texts / 3GB Web Data)
  • $40 (Unlimited Texts / 5GB Web Data) 
Per Line Cost (Note: All lines share Talk and Connect Options):
  • 1st Line: Free
  • 2nd to 7th Line: $10 Each
 Note: Here are some cools things I learned being a customer of theirs!
  • Consumer Cellular uses T-Mobile and AT&T SIM Cards
  • Bring Your Own Phone: If it supports a SIM card and has 3G or greater network, bring it!
  • Turn off data usage on individual lines via Consumer Cellular's website or app
    • Note: When data usage is turned off for a given line, the user can still receive multimedia messages. They come in as a SMS with a link to the media message. When the user has access to wifi, that link will display their picture/audio/video.
  • No overages! Automatically upgraded to the next level if you go over and each month you can reset the plans
  • AARP members (Can be the account owner of line member) net a 5% discount on the entire plan
  • Buy a "Like-New" phone from Consumer Cellular for 20% off the actual price tag. Consumer Cellular guarantees "Like-New" phones are 100% working, tested for any flaws and are in superb condition.
  • Right now, you can get an IPhone SE for $200 brand new!
  • All phones on the plan can Talk and Text each other for FREE

So In Summary: Saving Almost $1,297 Annually!
  • Before Switching (Using Comcast and AT&T)
    • Home Phone: $50+ Monthly
    • Mobile Phone: $106 Monthly (3 Smartphones, Unlimited Talk / Unlimited Text + 300MB Web Data)
  • After Switching (Using Magic Jack and Consumer Cellular)
    • Home Phone: $2.92 Monthly
    • Mobile Phone: $45 Monthly (3 Smartphones, 1,500 Talk / 2,000 Texts + 200MB Web Data)
So glad I switched!
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