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How To Save Money On Cell Phones, Plans and Providers

As we all know, the world of technology is constantly changing. Nowhere does that seem to be truer than when it comes to cell phones. By the time you read this, Apple will most likely have announced their new iPhone 5. Samsung’s new phone, the Galaxy S3, seems to be overtaking the iPhone in terms of popularity lately, and the Android operating system continues to make progress taking over more and more market share.

If that wasn’t all, cell phone plans are constantly changing. It seems like if you didn’t sign up for a cell phone plan with the right company at the exact right time, you have no chance of getting a good deal any longer. Not to mention it seems to be impossible to figure out what exactly each company is offering, at what price point, because there are so many hidden fees and charges.

Thankfully, others have noticed that the same problem that I have, and there are resources to help you figure out what your options are so that you can save money on cell phones, plans and providers.

Rate Plan

Compare Cellular is a website that breaks down exactly what each company is offering, and at which price point. Not only that, but as these plans will often vary depending on location, it will show you which providers are in your province/location, so if there’s a smaller one you are not aware of, then here’s your opportunity to figure out what your options are and help you lower your cell phone bill. If you are already in a contract, look up the terms of cancelling your contract. Often it is less expensive to pay the early termination fee and switch providers when you consider how much you’ll save over the next year or two. Also, you’ll get the chance to get new hardware at a discounted rate.


Generally speaking, if you have a main landline and just use your cell phone for emergencies, then you are going to be best off using prepaid. Prepaid is the cheapest options available, you are not locked into a contract, and the hardware is inexpensive. Definitely make sure you are not spending over $50 a month on a prepaid phone, as for that price point you could get better hardware and cheaper plans from a lot of providers. It should go without saying that if you’re using a smartphone or need a data plan, prepaid is not for you.

Reduce Data Plans

I used to use my data plan a lot more. Frankly, I used to work outside, and when I would want to use my phone’s data to check facebook, use google maps, etc, I would end up using my 3G. Now that I have an office job, I very, very rarely use my data plan. I used to get really close to going over my 1GB limit on most months, and I would at least go over 500MB, the next lowest plan. Lately, I have hardly broken the 200MB limit, and most of the time I’m barely over 100MB! If I wasn’t on a grandfathered rate that you can’t get anymore, I would definitely be a good candidate for reducing my data plan. If your phone has Wifi, take advantage of it. Most cell phone providers offer unlimited “hot spot” wifi usage. Check your provider’s website for details. Some ISPs will provide secure wifi hotspots as well, and there are often tons of free coffee shops wireless access points available to you as well. Be mindful of where you can reduce your data usage, and perhaps you’ll be able to reduce your data plan as well.


Lots of people don’t care what they use for their cell phone – and that’s a great way to save money. Consider taking advantage of this by selling your old hardware on craigslist. As long as it is functional, people would rather pay $20-150 for a cell phone rather than sign a contract with a company. A few select people always need the latest and greatest. You can also take advantage of this by picking up their old hardware for far less than you’d get it for new from a store. It may be a generation old, but you can still use it for a couple of years before it may become “outdated” enough to require an update.

How do you save money on your cell phones, plans, and providers?


  1. Glenn Cooke

    We switched to Koodo and couldn’t be happier. No contract and way cheaper than the big players.

    I don’t know if you can get ‘cheaper’ with cell phones if you’re a regular user of your cell phone. What you can get is knowing you have ‘almost the cheapest’ without having to wade through 10 different offers all of which feel vaguely like you’re being screwed.

    Example with Koodo. I have the minimum data plan because I don’t use data. I think I pay $5 a month for this. If I go over for one month, they bump me to the next data tier for one month, and then back down. So I’m guaranteed I’m always paying just my bare minimum.

    And because there’s no contract, I can add or delete features whenever I want.

    Add in no long distance and free calling to families on the same bill, and I can call my wife from anywhere in Canada, as much as I want, for free.

    My kids will be moved over to Koodo as well, as soon as they’re done with their Bell contracts.

    It’s a nice feeling have no 3 year cell phone contract.

  2. Buzz

    7-11 – Speakout Wireless is great! I pay 25$/month and that gives me 200 min anytime and unlimited texting. Plus every three or four months they give you $125 for $100 – so basically a free month for me. You pay taxes only when you buy airtime and that is it. No monthly access fee or hidden costs and the cash you put in does not expire for 365 days.

    They use Rogers towers so I get service pretty much anywhere in Canada.

    Three years and have never looked back…

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