Many consumers opt to pay a monthly fee for their phone service, but prepaid cell phone plans are becoming more common. People are choosing them due to their increased convenience, potential for savings, and in order to avoid restrictive contracts. That may seem like enough of a reason on its own, but there are advantages that many people fail to realize until they try a prepaid plan for themselves.
People who rarely use their phone will save money on a prepaid plan. Heavy users might lose money, so it’s important to track the number of minutes that you use before switching to prepaid minutes. If the cost of buying that many minutes is lower than the flat monthly bill, then you can expect to save money. If not, switching over is only worth it if you want the other benefits.
Prepaid plans are a sound choice for people whose usage varies. Monthly plans often include data caps, and it’s often cheaper to buy minutes individually than to exceed those caps. On the other end of the spectrum, prepaid plans don’t involve paying for unused minutes during months of low usage, which is likely if you need a monthly plan that can cover periods of heavy use.
Many children and teens have their own phones, but parents don’t want their kids to use them excessively. A prepaid cell plan will restrict the time they can spend on their phone, but they will still have access to emergency numbers if they are out of minutes. This is a useful compromise between unlimited access and denying them a phone, and they can learn valuable lessons as they practice budgeting their minutes.
Avoiding Restrictive Contracts
Many people want to avoid contracts that lock them into a specific cell provider for months at a time. Prepaid plans are usually less restrictive in that regard, so they are perfect for people who want more freedom. They also work better with unlocked phones, which makes it easy to change carriers without getting a new device.
Avoid Credit Checks
Many monthly plans require credit checks before purchase. That isn’t a problem for some people, but young individuals without a strong credit history can often have trouble getting an affordable plan. Since carriers don’t need to worry about prepaid customers missing a payment, those credit checks play no role in most prepaid plans.
Phones often get lost or damaged while traveling, so many people buy a cheap phone for vacation. Since it is only intended for temporary use, a long-term plan wastes a huge amount of money. A small number of prepaid minutes will cover the needs of most vacationers at a fraction of the price.