I’m always looking for ways to trim spending. Ten years ago we ditched cable for the savings, and we haven’t looked back.
Our newest target: the cell phone bill.
A few months back Renate suggested we switch from AT&T to Ting. Several friends had switched and recommended it as well. After some research and planning, I switched us over in early January.
The results? Based on our current usage, we should save roughly $40 – $50 a month.
With Ting, you pay only for what you use each month. Make fewer calls, send fewer text messages, or use less data, and your bill goes down. Play around with their rates to see what you might spend.
- Make sure your phone is compatible if you want to bring it and your phone # with you. Otherwise you can just buy a Ting-compatible phone. (We brought our iPhones and numbers with us.)
- Pay off any payment installment plan for the phone. Carriers won’t unlock phones that are under some type of contract. We still owed a few months to pay off our phones, so that required some up front $ — but our monthly savings will pay that back in a few months.
- Wrap up your cellular service plan. We were on a month-to-month service plan with AT&T, so opting out was easy — we just left. Ting will also help buy you out of a multi-year contract.
- Have your carrier unlock the phones, which can be done online at no charge. It may take a few days for the carrier to process the request.
- In the meantime order a SIM card from Ting for your phone ($9);
- When your phone is unlocked, activate the SIM card on Ting’s website, then put it in the phone (very easy);
- adjust a few settings on your phone, and you’re done.
Ting makes it super easy to monitor your current usage, almost in real time. Both your online account and a phone app will show your current bill and usage. You’ll see when you’re approaching a new pricing tier. I love it.
The only thing we’ve lost is visual voicemail on the iPhone, which… meh. Not a huge loss.
If you’re a heavy text / data user, you may be better off with a standard plan from one of the big carriers. If you want to save some money, this is the way to go. If you’re interested, my referral link gives you $25 towards Ting — and I’ll get some $ too 🙂
Have you found any pockets of savings in your budget? Let me know!