10 Ways To Get The Best Deal On Your Next Mobile Phone Contract
With so many options for mobile phone contracts, choosing the right mobile phone deal can feel like a minefield, not all providers are equal but, with some knowledge and a bit of patience, you can find the best possible deal and save a fortune over the period of a contract.
1. Ask For A Better Deal
There’s a well-known adage that says, “If you don’t ask, you don’t get,” and in the case of mobile phone contracts, that is almost always true.
If you’re already with a provider that you’re happy with, calling them to ask for a better deal is a no brainer. No provider wants to lose a customer, so the chances are if you threaten to leave, they’ll offer as much as they can to keep you on board. This tip works even better if you’ve already shopped around and found better deals you can use against them.
There aren’t any downsides to asking for a better deal, other than the inevitable hold music you’ll need to listen to waiting to talk to an actual person, so why not give it a try?
2. Keep Track Of Your Texts/Minutes
Contracts come in all shapes and sizes, and knowing what you need from your new contract is a vital step to getting the best deal.
If you send hundreds of texts per month, make sure you get a deal that can comfortably handle that volume, or you’ll be caught paying fees for exceeding your allowance. The same goes for minutes; a good rule of thumb is to aim for a contract that allows for double what you would regularly use.
3. Choose The Right Data Plan
Data usage can be a dangerous thing to underestimate, fees for going beyond your limits can be expensive, and many functions of your phone may be completely unusable without data.
As with minutes/texts, it’s best to err on the side of caution with data and consider how many apps you rely on use data regularly. For example, if you commute using Google Maps or Waze, you may find that the small amount of data that they use can add up into a sizable amount by the end of the month.
With most phones, you can find a data usage audit that will give you a glimpse into how much data you use, and how much you may need.
4. Choose A Network That Is Strong In Your Area
There is nothing worse than setting up a new phone and finding that coverage in your area isn’t up to expectations. Of course, in major cities, this is rarely an issue, but if you are in a more rural location, a quick google search will show a variety of tools that can show you the signal strength in your area. Different companies will have different coverage levels, so make sure to check this before committing to a contract to avoid disappointment.
5. Consider A SIM Only Contract
SIM only contracts can be a great option if you’re already happy with your phone and just need to get a better deal for your tariff. It’s important to remember that you’ll probably need to unlock your phone if you want to use it with a network other than the one you bought it with.
Of course, if you do need a new phone, SIM only still gives you the benefit of being able to buy a second-hand phone, for a lot less than you would have spent on a Phone and SIM contract in the long run. This tip takes some smart shopping and patience, but if you’re happy with a second-hand phone, you can save some serious cash this way.
6. Get The Right Contract Length
Contracts can range from 12 months up to a staggering 48 months. Choosing the right contract length is a delicate tightrope to balance; typically, shorter contracts are more expensive per month. Generally, you want to find a happy middle ground between monthly expenses and how long you want to be committed to one contract.
The best options are usually in the middle with the 18/24 month options. These offer a reasonable time frame and are cheaper than their 12-month variant.
7. Shop Around
As with buying any product, you should always be on the lookout for the best mobile phone deals. There are countless aggregate sites that offer the same phones with slightly different tariffs and offers, so it’s always worth spending the time to check a few different offers. Alternatively, you can also check on each provider’s website, as they also tend to have unique offers and can end up being cheaper if you’ve already chosen which network you want to use.
Although they’re less common now, you could also check brick and mortar stores in your area to see if they have any good offers on the phones/tariffs you’re looking for.
8. Look Out For Freebies
A lot of contract providers will offer free bonuses for signing up for a contract with specific phones. A recent example has seen Samsung offering a free pair of Galaxy Buds with any qualifying purchase. Typically you can find these offers on a contract provider’s website. It’s also worth subscribing to your favorite phone company’s newsletters for information on new deals and offers to come soon.
9. Consider Your Individual Needs
Our phones are the centerpieces of our lives right now, and choosing the right phone and contract for what we need is incredibly important. If you travel a lot, consider things like roaming charges. Take a lot of photos? Then you need to pay attention to the storage space and camera quality.
These are small things individually, but they can all lead to a negative experience with your new phone if proper care isn’t taken.
10. Wait For A Deal
If you’re not rushing for a new contract, it can be a great idea to wait for a deal. Some prominent examples are Black Friday deals, which can reduce your contract’s cost substantially, and also cost reductions when new phone models are released. Keeping on top of trends and upcoming events can give you a significant edge when shopping for a new contract.
While shopping for mobile phone deals can be stressful, following these tips will give you the advantage and ensure that you always get the best possible deal.