Author Topic: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan  (Read 1638 times)

Travis

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I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« on: September 29, 2018, 04:45:22 PM »
One of my employees is in a financial bind right now (please see my latest journal entry) and has a cell phone plan that I haven't encountered before.  It's an AT&T plan where he's paying $180/mo for two lines of service.  Both phones are IPhone Xs.  He says he's "leasing" one for $17/mo and the other was buy-one get-one free.  Like a car lease, AT&T has him positioned so that he'll have to lease from them in perpetuity.  He also says he not allowed to buy the phones outright and his only alternative to the lease is to give them back*.  I want to put together a menu of options for him to get a couple affordable phones and a better plan.  I explained to him that I'm on Ting and two EBay-purchased older models, but I don't want to just say "do what I'm doing."  He lives in Glendale, AZ and works in Phoenix.  He's cash-poor for the next 6 months so I don't think putting down a couple hundred dollars for alternative phones is an immediate solution, but it could be once he frees up some money.  Any thoughts?


*I gave him the homework assignment of giving me the details of his phone plan so we know exactly what his terms and conditions are.

Stache-O-Lantern

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2018, 06:38:27 PM »
I bought a Samsung Galaxy S3 (hottest phone of 2012!) new this year from newegg.com for $100.  Newegg has a lot of good deals for anyone looking for technology that's a few years old.

I got a $10/month pay as you go plan from Red Pocket that has 500 voice/500 texts/500 mb.  More than I need, but I'm not a heavy user.  I think the Red Pocket unlimited plan is $25/month.

Travis

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2018, 06:59:26 PM »
I bought a Samsung Galaxy S3 (hottest phone of 2012!) new this year from newegg.com for $100.  Newegg has a lot of good deals for anyone looking for technology that's a few years old.

I got a $10/month pay as you go plan from Red Pocket that has 500 voice/500 texts/500 mb.  More than I need, but I'm not a heavy user.  I think the Red Pocket unlimited plan is $25/month.

As I think about it more, I suppose the answer is until he can afford enough cash to actually buy a couple phones he's going to have to keep paying what he's paying.  When he has some options I'll steer him towards a few MNVO options.  Even if he insists on keeping AT&T, there have to be better plans than what he's paying now.  When I'm confident in his budget, I'll spend some time discussing his call, text, and data usage.


Jesstache

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2018, 07:19:17 PM »
He could switch to two $45/month straight talk pay as you go plans that are unlimited talk, text and data, plus either buy two reconditioned iphone se's for $69 each or get any of the 24 month phone payment plans if he insists on a newer iphone 7 ($24/mo each) or something and still pay less per month that will only go down from there in 2 years. 

https://shop.straighttalk.com/shop/en/straighttalk/phones

Cheaper options also abound.


dang1

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2018, 11:20:56 PM »
$10 Pay As You Go 3 month plan with Airvoice, and 2013 Verizon Moto X - around $90 on ebay, and since it's unlocked it works on Airvoice. I should know, this is my backup phone setup currently, and my Moto X is working well.

MrsPete

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2018, 07:42:25 AM »
I suspect he's locked in tight with those phones until his contract runs its course -- but could he reduce (or cancel) the data plan portion?  Does he have any memberships that would give him a discount on his data?  I get 10% off my data for being a teacher.  My daughter gets 10% off her data for being a hospital employee.  I know, I know, it's only a couple dollars a month, but that's a couple dollars per month! 

I had that Samsung Galaxy 3.  Best phone I ever had -- until it just STOPPED one day.  It was old though. 

MayDay

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2018, 08:17:58 AM »
One option might be Cricket. We use them, it's ATT network, so that part should work.

When we switched they had lots of free or cheap choices- under 50$- for new customers.

Even if he has to buy 2 phones at 50$, that's cheaper than a month of his current service. Then he owns the phones outright and his monthly cost going forward is much lower.

HipGnosis

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2018, 12:39:28 PM »
You / we need to know how many voice minutes, texts and how much data he / his family uses avg & max each month, and if he has WiFi at home (to use instead of cell data).

Cassie

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2018, 01:51:50 PM »
We switched to cricket from AT&T and had to buy new phones. Then when we were in a town 50 miles away where we always had gotten reception went there and no service. Thatís because AT&T doesnít own those lines.  We also tried another cheaper carrier with many issues. Finally went back to AT&T but chose a plan for 2 people that costs 120/month.

sparkytheop

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2018, 06:03:32 PM »
If one was bogo free, why is he leasing a third phone for two lines?  What happened to the "free" phone?

thunderball

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2018, 06:10:15 PM »
Fam of 3 (+ grandmother) were all on AT&T with older (paid-for) Apple iPhones, paid about $160 for a 6GB shared plan.  Switched to Cricket last year for a flat $100/mo for unlimited everything and would never go back.  Haven't noticed a difference at all - except for the ~$800 annual savings.   

ThatGuy

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2018, 09:08:22 PM »
Someone on here mentioned this service https://www.mintmobile.com/ I haven't tried it yet but I plan to soon.  Buy a couple inexpensive unlocked phones and your employee would save a fortune.

kpd905

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2018, 07:26:50 PM »
As I think about it more, I suppose the answer is until he can afford enough cash to actually buy a couple phones he's going to have to keep paying what he's paying.

He is paying enough to buy a phone every month.  He just needs to convince himself that he doesn't need the newest iPhone.

lbmustache

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2018, 05:21:20 PM »
Something does not sound correct about the way he is describing his plan. I think *I* have this plan (go ahead, facepunch me!).

The phone is $1000.

You either pay $1000 upfront, or $41/24 months. After you pay off the phone in 24 months (or pay in one lump sum at any time), you own the phone. Zero interest charged. I can hold onto this phone forever.

The fact that he is saying his phone is $17/mo is suspicious to me. Does he have bad credit - maybe AT&T does have a true "leasing" program for those who don't qualify for what I listed above. The average iPhone is easily $30+ a month on the regular zero interest plan. Definitely a good idea to get info on what his plan actually is.

Rosy

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Re: I know someone who...has an odd cell phone plan
« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2018, 05:56:47 PM »
There are all sorts of odd cell phone plans - good ones and bad ones.
Until you fully understand the details and possible consequences (the contract will spell it out) I wouldn't think about strategies.

I never could make one of the cheapo plans and phones work for us, there was always some hiccup why we couldn't do it and have decent service and internet.
We chose T-Mobile over ten years ago and I keep changing from one plan to another. Currently on the fifty plus plan, unlimited everything for two lines - about $80 with tax etc. Tablet didn't count as a third line. I use an unlocked phone - no issues, he got a good deal on a T-Mobile phone 4 years ago.