Prepaid Cell Phones Offers Consumers an Alternative

Need a cell phone fast? Consider a prepaid cell phone plan from any number of carriers. When you have a prepaid phone, you purchase your minutes upfront. That way you can never talk for longer than you can afford, and it’s easy to keep track of how many minutes you have left.

Everyone wants to have a cell phone, but in order to sign up with many of the most popular carriers you have to sign a two year contract. Not only that, but your approval is often subject to a credit check. For some people, bending to those requirements isn’t an appealing option.

If you’re looking for an alternative contract-based cell phone plan, a prepaid cell phone plan could be the ideal solution.

How do prepaid phones work?

Just like every other mobile phone, prepaid cell phones allow you to place phone calls wherever you are within your carrier’s service area. The difference between prepaid phones and phones with contracts is the way you pay for service.

These days you can purchase a prepaid cell phone at any number or retailers, from gas stations to big box electronics distributers. After you purchase a handset you also have to purchase minutes of talk time. Once you have exhausted the number of minutes you initially purchased, you can either buy more minutes or not.

With a prepaid cell phone it’s entirely up to you.

Depending on the carrier you choose, the rate you pay per minute of cell phone use can vary, as can the methods for adding more minutes when you use up your supply. Some carriers allow you to reload your prepaid minutes with a credit card. Others offer preset cards for any number of minutes available at retail outlets, among other options. Alternatively, you can usually buy more minutes easily online.

The point behind prepaid cell phone plans is to make it easy for customers to control the cost of their cell phone use. Having a set number of minutes per month is a great way to budget. If you only plan on using your phone for standard actions such as placing or receiving calls and text messages, a prepaid plan may be one of the best options available.

Cancellation is easy with a prepaid cell phone

Unlike signing a cell phone contract, when you purchase a prepaid cell phone, most carriers will allow you to cancel service at any time. In fact, if you don’t use your prepaid phone for an extended period of time, some carriers will cancel your service for you.

That may sound troubling, but don’t worry. Many carriers won’t take any action regarding your account until several months of inactivity. Inactive accounts must be disabled from time to time in order to continue offering prepaid phones to new customers.

If you want to cancel your prepaid cell phone plan, all you have to do is stop using your phone. If you use up all your minutes before your stop, you won’t lose a thing. It’s easy to start back up again whenever you want, but you might not have the same phone number.

Prepaid smartphones

Today, some carriers even offer prepaid smartphone plans. If you want a smartphone but want to avoid signing a long term contract, there’s a carrier out there with a plan that will have your needs covered. Data use costs can vary with prepaid smartphone plans, so check out what your options are before choosing a carrier.

The very fact that smartphones themselves are so expensive is reason enough to consider your options carefully before selecting a prepaid smartphone plan. If you want to switch providers, you might not be able to activate your existing smartphone on a new plan.

Sometimes prepaid is the best way to go

There are plenty of reasons for people to avoid signing a long contract for their cell phone needs. Thankfully, there are so many prepaid cell phone plans to choose from, it’s easy for anyone to find an appropriate solution.

Think about what you need and what you want to avoid. A prepaid phone might be perfect for you.