Budget buster: cellphone and tv

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by flying_babyb, Jun 23, 2009.

  1. flying_babyb

    flying_babyb DIS Veteran

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    What is the cheapest cellphone plan you know of? What is the cheapest tv service you know of. Im so frustrated with paying close to $60 a month for using 200 minutes and 800 text messages. I am also frustrated with paying 90 for tv and internet. I need to cut these expenses.
     
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  3. CyndiLooWho

    CyndiLooWho DIS Veteran

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    When we moved back to the US, we ditched the cell phone contracts and went to TracFone instead. For around $50 you can get a phone with a free "doubler" that allows you to double all minutes purchased for the life of the phone.

    A 12 month, 450 minute card is around $100, and a 3 month, 400 minute card is around $80. If you alternate those cards, phone service is just over 10 cents per minute, and texts take 1/3 of a minute. So, I spend about $12/mo on my phone service. Dh pays less, but he couldn't use up 900 minutes in a year if he tried, so we just buy him a 12 month card each year. If he hadn't gotten the doubler free with his phone, I'd have skipped it for him (around $40 if purchased separately).
     
  4. swilshire

    swilshire DIS Veteran

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    Our tv is free, though we did have to buy a converter box when it all when digital recently. Ditch the cable.

    As for the Internet, we just cancelled our dialup networking. We will probably sign up for something high speed, but I'm not in any hurry. The kids don't need it for school right now. We can use the library. I travel some and use the free hotel sites while there.

    Sheila
     
  5. cglaura

    cglaura DIS Veteran

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    I have Comcast Basic Cable (most channels but the special ones like FLN or Oxygen, but we get around 70 channels), plus Comast HS Internet, my bill is $56.01 per month.

    Now for cell, this is more a conscious effort on my part. I use Virgin Mobile, it is $20 every 90 days, so about $6 per month. I say an effort on my part because I use my landline as much as I can. I only use the cell for urgent calls away from home or to text once in awhile. Basically, I try landline first, then if leaving them a message is not good enough and I'm trying to get them asap, then I will text them. I don't chat on the phone while out and about, I save that for home.
     
  6. Sarah_Rose

    Sarah_Rose DIS Veteran

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    We pay $100 a year for our cell phone - it's T-Mobile Pay As You Go and you get 1000 minutes for $100, good for one year. We only use it for emergencies and traveling, and use our landline for everything else. Our landline includes long distance within the US and Canada and is bundled with our high speed internet through Qwest for $70 a month for both. We do not have cable, but our TV is hooked up to our computer and we use Hulu to watch new tv over the internet, through our regular tv. It's great!

    You have to decide what your priorities are! We don't watch a lot of TV and I hate those people who walk around with their cell phones glued to their ears, so it was an easy decision for us!

    Sarah
     
  7. flying_babyb

    flying_babyb DIS Veteran

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    I watch tv pretty often. Then again its only fox, lifetime, tvland, A&E,TBS and Wbay. LOL
     
  8. wall*e2008

    wall*e2008 DIS Veteran

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    Prepaid cell phones for emergencies only. Antenna for free TV.
     
  9. LKHomemail

    LKHomemail Mouseketeer

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    in slickdeals, i saw a deal posted for phone and basic cable for 25 a month for 6 months. VOIP phone. In so far as a cell phone goes, find out when you can terminate your contract. you can often get a better deal starting up a new one. often they do not offer existing customers an incentive for remaining customers. you get a lower rate by leaving for a year and then coming back when your other contract expires. shop , shop , shop ..... it's so worth it.
     
  10. englishteacha

    englishteacha Have courage and be kind.

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    We have Tracfones. I put a $20, 60 minute card on every 90 days. I have double minutes on my phone so I get 120 minutes every 90 days. We only use our phones when we're traveling, and occasionally when I'm at work and need to make a call. Texting is .3 minutes, but I never text. Since my husband's cell is also a Tracfone, we try not to call each other. Tracfones you pay for incoming and outgoing calls. :) When I'm at my mom's, for instance, he calls her house instead of my cell.

    A friend purchased an AT&T Prepaid phone because all his friends had AT&T. He can call everyone who has AT&T, and text them, for very low cost and gets free incoming calls from them. Who do you call most? Perhaps that will help you make a decision.
     
  11. jagfanjosh3252

    jagfanjosh3252 #1 fan of the Jacksonville Jaguars

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    I don't know if you have one where you live. But MetroPCS is only $50 a month for unlimited text and calls. Can't beat that.
     
  12. HM

    HM My tag from the Tag Fairy is now too long to use.

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    My DD has a Kajeet phone. She is paying $19.99 a month for unlimited texts and 150 minutes of talk. It is a month to month and can be changed or cancelled at any time. This is the best deal we found for both text and talk.

    I know you aren't a child, but its great for parents as they can also active a GPS on the phone to find out where their kid is and can also keep track of who they are calling and who is calling them at the account online.
     
  13. Chicago526

    Chicago526 <font color=red>Any dream will do...<br><font colo

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    Ditto as far as T-Mobile goes. I use mine for long distance calls too, as it's cheaper than the basic long distance plan on my landline. Actually I'd ditch the land line except I need a number I can send and recieve faxes from for work. I simply don't use a telephone that often outside of work!

    We are considering ditching our cable TV and getting a digital antena, and just watching cable tv online, as most shows can be found on the internet now. This means we'll have to keep the high speed internet, but that will cut our cable/internet bill down from $130 a month to about $50 a month. The antena costs around $100, I think, so in just two months we'd be ahead.
     
  14. flying_babyb

    flying_babyb DIS Veteran

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    contract expires next year (but its cheap to cancel). I work odd hours, a phone is nessacary (for more than just emergencys). With the digital conversion how many channels do you get with antenna?
     
  15. OctMtnWoods

    OctMtnWoods That's where I want to be.

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    Eliminate cell phone completely. Once upon a time, people actually lived without such luxuries and used home phone, work phone or pay phones.
     
  16. OctMtnWoods

    OctMtnWoods That's where I want to be.

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    That all depends on where you live. Only people near you can probably answer that.

    Contact DIS poster Bicker. He posts on a board & was helping people with conversion questions recently.

    As for cheapest cell plans, again, it won't help you for others to post about a cell plan from FL. Only the ones in your area will be able to help.

    Good luck. Again, remember, back in the day, people had more money because we didn't have all these utilities bills that we have today. Some things we pay for monthly, we used to just buy once & be done with. Some bills today are repeatitive. Cell & house phones.

    Can you just watch your tv shows online & get rid of cable completely if you can't get the show by antenna?
     
  17. flying_babyb

    flying_babyb DIS Veteran

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    Im thinking about that. I mean internet is only 30 a month. I cant just go with home phone. Im never home and Im on the road ALOT!
     
  18. swilshire

    swilshire DIS Veteran

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    It depends on your location. Even in our house, it varies. DS15 who has the front bedroom gets two channels (total of 12 in a rural area) that we don't get in the family room in the back of the house. The kitchen gets one less.

    Simplest thing to do would be buy a converter and maybe a better antennae and play around with placement for an afternoon. It took some experimentation for us to decide how to point the antennae. There is a website that's supposed to help you with that.

    If you're not satisfied with your results, you can just return the converter and antennae and move on. At least you'll know your options.

    Sheila
     
  19. 1PrincessMomma1

    1PrincessMomma1 DIS Veteran

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    We've come full circle with our cell phones and are happily back with tracfone. 2 years of paying $90 a month for something we rarely used was a hard lesson. TV is our spurge with Directv @$90 a month but we don't go to the movies or eat out so we enjoy it.
     
  20. JB2K

    JB2K DIS Veteran

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    ...since the OP's favorite channels all seem to be those found on basic cable (plus FOX, which is over-the-air), why not stip your TV service all the way down to basic cable?

    When I say basic, I am talking CATV service without that clunky converter box (which is basically only useful for Pay-per-view, anyway).

    You should be able to get all your favorite channels with no trouble.
     
  21. mom2faith

    mom2faith DIS Veteran

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    We did the exact opposite recently and ditched the land line. Our Land Line was $100/month (which included "rural" fees and long distance). Isn't that ridiculous!!!

    DH's cell phone is $40/month for 300 daytime minutes and unlimited text. Evenings and weekends are free.

    Mine is paid by work, but I am responsible for the minutes used, so I cannot abuse it, but it also has evenings and weekends free.

    When are we at home?? Evenings and weekends. When is our cell plan free? Evenings and weekends. It made sense to us to just ditch the land line altogether. Paying $100/month for telemarketers to call you was just too much!!:lmao:

    As for TV - I am kind of in the same boat as you. I do not know how to cut it any lower than the $80/month. Becuase we are rural, we only get 3 channels without the cable. Cable is $80/month for basic - yes seriously that is what it is!! Satellite (what we have) is $80/month for their basic package as well, but it includes a lot more channels.

    We are thinking of cutting the satellite for the summer....we are not inside enough to watch TV.
     

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