Lower My Cell Phone Bill and Increase My Net Worth!

Lower My Cell Phone Bill - Fiology

MVNO Cell Phone Plans: low cost / high reward!

If you open your monthly bill to a surprisingly high number of dollars owed, you may be asking yourself, “How can I lower my cell phone bill?”

Cell phones – love ‘em or hate ‘em, we can’t seem to live without them. Owning a cell phone, however, does not mean we need to donate a significant portion of cash to the coffers of the “popular” carriers. We’d much rather contribute our hard earned cash to more valuable things in our life like our Financial Independence.

What does MVNO stand for?

MVNO is defined as Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs). These are smaller, mostly prepaid carriers who rent the networks from the major cellular service providers and charge you much less to use their infrastructure. MVNOs enter into a business agreement with a mobile network operator and obtain services at wholesale prices. Then they set their prices independently and have some of the best low cost cell phone plans with identical or nearly identical service coverage area and network speeds.

What MVNO is the best to lower my cell phone bill?

The best MVNO service will be determined by your own needs. For example, I recently moved to San Diego and wanted to travel back and forth across the Mexican border. I’ve used MVNO services Cricket, Republic Wireless, and most recently Total Wireless. Unfortunately, these MVNOs did not have services that I’d be desiring. So, I switched from Total Wireless to T-Mobile because T-Mobile provided free roaming for uninterrupted service while in Mexico (up to a limit). If you do not intend to travel internationally, you may find a low cost MVNO better fits your needs and budget.

Note: I understand that T-Mobile is not itself an MVNO but they do have many MVNO companies using their infrastructure.

You can benefit from these cell phone plans with low cost and put more money working for you towards Financial Independence.   

Are MVNO worth it?

For many, our cell phones are our primary way to keep in contact with the people and things in the world that are extremely important to us. It is no surprise, then, that we tend to become defensive at the first thought of modifying the relationship between ourselves and our cell service providers.

After this lesson, you should be much more comfortable with examining and considering the options that most closely meet your needs.

Fiology thanks Deanna of Recovering Women Wealth, for shaping this lesson.

Read:

Take Action:

  1. Do you really need unlimited data? Track your data usage and find ways to drive that number down and perhaps you’ll discover you can buy a cheaper package. Know what network you need, buy your phone outright (don’t rent it) and research some MVNOs to find one that is right for you. Worst case, you can always shift back to the more expensive option if you are truly unhappy with the switch.

Additional Resources

  • The best MVNOs for 2021  by Jackie Dove of digitaltrends.com. I do not receive financial compensation from this page, only wanted to provide you a general list of current plans. This list is not all inclusive.

Quote:

“Enough is better than too  much.” – French Proverb

David Baughier

My passion for helping others led to the curation Fiology. Help me spread the message of Financial Independence by clicking a colorful link above and sharing this post on your favorite social platform. Thank you!

11 Comments

  1. Jim @ Route To Retire on July 31, 2018 at 12:33 pm

    This is definitely a good lesson. We cut our bill in half by switching from Verizon and because Total Wireless leases the Verizon lines, nothing changed. Did that about a year ago and haven’t looked back. I can’t think of a reason not to switch.

    Thanks for including me in this – much appreciated!

    — Jim

    • Fiology on July 31, 2018 at 1:53 pm

      Jim,

      Thanks for writing amazing content! It will definitely help people reexamine their cell phone situations.

  2. Kpeds on August 1, 2018 at 12:52 am

    Thanks for sharing my post! Dropping the every 1-2 year cell phone replacement cycle feels good. I recently cracked my screen to oblivion and replaced it instead of getting a new one like I might have a few years ago.

    Good luck trying to Frugal-FI you cell phone bills! 🙂

  3. […] Don’t Cell Yourself Short […]

  4. PawPawFI on August 8, 2018 at 3:14 am

    I used to have a cell phone for work and a personal one. I ported my personal cell number to my work phone (paid for by the company with unlimited data). Now all my calls from my personal number and all of my texts come straight to one phone. I saved the cost of my phone line. Now I pay zero dollars a month for personal cell services, texts, and data. Obviously, I’m not FI yet and still working. But I’m not spending money anymore for personal cell services.

    • Fiology on August 8, 2018 at 12:48 pm

      PawPawFI,

      Those of us who have a work phone, whether we really want one or not, can get creative in how we incorporate that into our plan for cell service. For example, if your work phone pays for unlimited data, and you want/need to keep both phones, then you are able to reduce or eliminate the requirement for data on the personal phone, increasing the amount we can redirect towards FI.

  5. […] Don’t Cell Yourself Short […]

  6. […] take the time to investigate. And now you can benefit from my research! Go to this article or this one to read all about it. I choose three providers to compare and contrast before ultimately deciding […]

  7. […] Change cell phone carriers to an MVNO and save $ […]

  8. Fehmeen on August 14, 2019 at 4:06 am

    Unlimited data is a quick way to fail a personal budget, in general. We have WiFi at home and work so with a bit of carefull planning, we can easily do away with the need for unlimited data. Also, there’s a neat little trick in some messaging apps that allows the app to download data-heavy media only when connected to a WiFi signal and that saves a lot of mobile data too.

  9. […] find ways to reduce costs without reducing quality. For example, in 2018 I switched to Cricket (an MVNO) with my cellular service and saved about $30 a month. Recently, I switched to Spectrum mobile and […]

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