Cell phone plans for family on a budget

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by unicorngirl, Dec 17, 2008.

  1. unicorngirl

    unicorngirl Earning My Ears

    Nov 18, 2007
    I need to find a cell phone provider that charges a reasonable monthly price for shared family minutes and unlimited texting. I also would rather not deal with rebates. Any budget friendly companies that you would recommend?:confused3
  2. OhMari

    OhMari WDW PreTrip and Trip Moderator Moderator

    Apr 23, 2000
    We have U.S. Cellular. Our Family plan has 2 on it for $69 a month. We have an addition 2 more people on our family plan for $10 each. We have free nites and weekends starting at 9:00, I wish it was 7:00 and we pay $10 for mobile to mobile. Our unlimited text used to be $20, but they just upped it to $25. We have nation wide, since our dd is in Georgia for 6 months and now NYC for another 6 months.

    You can probably get a cheaper plan if you don't need "nation wide." We share 1100 minutes and we never go over our minutes.

    The website is www.uscellular.com. Take a look and see if they are in your area.
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  4. msmayor

    msmayor Finding my beach...

    Jun 29, 2005
    I have T-Mobile My Faves for me and my two kids, so three phones total. Nationwide calling with no roaming fees, 700 shared minutes per month (we use maybe 50 total) and unlimited texting.

    Each of us chooses 5 phone numbers to put in our "My Faves" list which means calls to/from those people are NOT charged against our shared minutes. The 5 people can be on any network, not just T-Mobile...and we don't all have to have the same 5 people. We can change our lists as we want, once per month.

  5. Darcy03231

    Darcy03231 DIS Veteran

    Nov 1, 2006
    I have US Cellular too. Our nights and weekends start at 7 pm. Incoming calls and texts are free. We have a national plan, 4 phones, unlimited text messaging and 1400 anytime minutes. Our bill is around $130/mo.
  6. HeatherC

    HeatherC <font color=blue>Alas...these people I live with t

    May 23, 2003
    We have Sprint. Just renewed with them since dd is getting a cell phone from Santa.

    We are paying $96 a month for 3 people with 1500 minutes and unlimited texting and no roaming charges. I think it was like $115 for the month, but dh gets a discount through work. Didn't think this was too bad since I didn't want to worry about the texting aspect once my 12 year old gets her hands on her new QWERTY keyboard! LOL!
  7. Shmily1

    Shmily1 DIS Veteran

    Oct 23, 2007
    We have AT&T. I have two teens on ours so unlimited texting became a must after the $900 cell phone bill!!! :scared1: Our bill is for 800 minutes with free nights and weekends. First phone is $59, each additional is $9.95, and unlimited text is $19.99 for the family. We wear that thing out!!!!

    They did have some free phones when I looked for DD17 a new phone the other day.
  8. Crystal0608

    Crystal0608 DIS Veteran

    Feb 20, 2007
    We have 2 phones with Alltel. It is right at $95 month and includes 900 anytime minutes to share, Nationwide free roaming in most of the US, unlimited mobile to mobile & to anyone with a Alltel #, unlimited after 9pm & on weekends. I also have 10 numbers in "My Circle" which I put in the #'s I call or get called on my cell thats not Alltel or dh's cell, like home, mama, work, etc. Text messages not included, 300 pack is $5.99 extra per month. Included in the plan is free 3-way calling, call forwarding, caller id, call waiting, and basic voicemail.
  9. JessR

    JessR DIS Veteran

    Nov 12, 2008
    t-mobile seems to have good rates.
  10. ajk912

    ajk912 <font color=purple>Dum..dum...dum...we are in the

    Jul 21, 2004
    We have this too, only ours has 1000 texts per phone free. After insurance and tax it's $102 a month.

    If you can find a cheaper nationwide plan than $100 a month for two phones and unlimited texts, please let me know! We dial up to Ohio a lot, and we have to watch some of the little regional guys because some of them charge long distance. I looked around, and $100 was as good as it was going to get.
  11. unicorngirl

    unicorngirl Earning My Ears

    Nov 18, 2007
    Thank you, everyone. I did not even think of t-mobile and U.S. Cellular. I will look into those. I am thinking $100 a month for what I want is the best I will get.
  12. dpratt68

    dpratt68 DIS Veteran

    Sep 3, 2003
    How long ago did you get the unlimited text for $20? I am being quoted $30 and refuse at this point but for $20 maybe.
  13. rcraw45425

    rcraw45425 <font color=darkorchid>I'm a 43 year old mom with

    Aug 26, 2004
    Sprint also has unlimited family text for $20 per month. I agree, $30 is nuts!
  14. rentayenta

    rentayenta <img src=http://photopost.wdwinfo.com/data/500/dm.

    Feb 28, 2007
    Just joined Sprint through Sam's Club. If you want avoid the rebate headache, Sam's is the way to go. Cell companies deduct the rebate from the price per Sam's policy. :thumbsup2 :woohoo:
  15. TealHearts70

    TealHearts70 Earning My Ears

    Jul 19, 2005
    We just got our Sprint plan through BestBuy and didn't have to wait on the rebates either. They also have more phones to choose from (free) as compared to going to a Sprint store.
  16. sherry7

    sherry7 DIS Veteran

    Apr 29, 2001
    I know you stated you're looking for the least expensive option, but when it comes to cellular coverage, the cheapest is not always a good option.

    Depending on where you live, cellular coverage is going to vary greatly. I highly recommend getting the advice of family/friends who live in the area where you plan on primarily using the phone. Ask them how the coverage is, how many "bars" they normally get, whether they get dropped calls, etc.

    Cell phone companies are highly competitive. If you call into customer service, you'll often find out about rate plans that aren't listed on the websites.
  17. Cindy B

    Cindy B <font color=blue>Have taken some furniture polish

    Oct 8, 2000
    We have At&T

    Four phones, no texting- $69.99 per month.

    We have tons of extra minutes that get rolled over or even expired before my kids get a chance to use them.

    We may add texting soon.
  18. DawnM

    DawnM DIS Veteran

    Oct 4, 2005
    Sprint just cut our bill in half. We have had them for 8 years and never paid late. I told them I was switching to AT&T and they offered to cut our bill in half! I also get a 23% discount for being a teacher.

    We pay $41 including tax for:

    3 phones
    500 anytime minutes
    unlimited internet (on my phone only)
    Nights and weekends free
    Sprint to Sprint free
  19. ShiPooOwner

    ShiPooOwner Fan of WDW now and forever!

    Mar 10, 2008
    We have switched from AT&T to Consumer Cellular. NO CONTRACT! That's the best part in addition to very reasonable rates, nationwide coverage, and wonderful customer service. They use AT&T towers so the coverage area is the same as AT&T's. The only part I am not sure about is the unlimited texting. You'd have to find out if they provide that service.

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