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Anyone use a prepaid phone?
Old 04-29-2015, 08:03 PM   #1
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Anyone use a prepaid phone?

We have killed cable and the landline in favor of broadband and Netflix/Hulu. There are ties when we could make use of a phone around the house, and having it be a mobile phone would be doubly worthwhile. Anyone use a prepaid phone? For something that does only texts and very occasional voice, what is a good choice?
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:04 PM   #2
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We bought used iPhones on Craiglist 2 years ago for about $200 each. We use Pageplus, $29 a month or less with discounts each, no taxes. 3000 text a month, 1200 minutes, 500 Mb of data on Verizon network. Why people pay so much for sprint, T-Mobile, at, Verizon boggles my mind.


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Old 04-29-2015, 09:16 PM   #3
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For voice I use PagePlus (verizon network) with a jitterbug Samsung flip phone. I pay about $72 for 2000 minutes which lasts almost a year.

For data I use an Android with Ting and pay about $10/month for up to 100 MB.

I also carry a hotspot activated through RingPlus and pay about .02cents/MB in case I approach the 100MB limit on the Ting account.

I echo ChrisTexas comments about why people pay so much for cell phones, but then again, I don't understand why folks pay so much for TurboTax either. Must be the power of marketing.

FWIW, I have not had a contract cell phone for probably 10-15 years since I went to Europe and became familiar with their pre-paid plans.

Upon returning, I found T-mobile's prepaid service and used it up until 2 or 3 years ago and paid .10/minute voice which was much better than Verizon's $30+/month for voice back 10-15 years ago.

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Old 04-29-2015, 09:38 PM   #4
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We replaced the land line with VOIP (obihai for ~$30-40 on sale from newegg) and a google voice phone number. You can call and text for free using google voice. No monthly bills now.

For cell phones we have two prepaid phones:
1) Virgin Mobile pay as you go .20/min (.15/text) plan that we pay $20/quarter to keep line active. As you keep paying, the balance keeps growing. You can buy phones and accessories w/the balance. So on a suggestion from a member here, I bought some extra phones and sold on ebay to reduce my balance (it got over $350).

2) Just started up a Tmobile prepaid $3/mo plan for our teen for emergency use, it's 30 mins of talk or 30 texts/month, no rollover. So far, over 2 months, no texts and 1-2 calls/month.

I've been wanting to shut down the Virgin phone, but since I bought extra phones and sold them on ebay, I feel I've had service for practically nothing for years. We're considering getting another Tmobile prepaid now.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:41 PM   #5
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Last year I bought $10 worth of T-mobile prepaid plan which was good for 90 days. A years worth was a bit more. Cheap calling and texting. This was just to test a quad GSM phone I was taking to Europe.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:43 PM   #6
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No landline. I have been using a $9.99 TracFone from Walmart for years. $100 per year. Double Minutes. It can be used for texting but is definitely 'old school' in that it does not have a full keyboard. For about $50.00 you can get one that does. My cheap phone serves me well.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:56 PM   #7
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DH and I both have old flip phones and a legacy prepaid plan from Verizon carried over from when Verizon bought out Alltel. We can load up money on the plan and it never expires, it's only used as we use it.

We are not huge cell phone users so we stay with this since we could never get this kind of plan again. Yeah, smartphones would be fun but we are home and on wifi most of the time.

So, no monthly bill for 2 cell phones and our home phone is a magicjack, so no monthly bill there, either.

Our old prepaid flip phones make phone calls and can text but texting is a PITA.
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:07 PM   #8
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No landline. I have been using a $9.99 TracFone from Walmart for years. $100 per year. Double Minutes. It can be used for texting but is definitely 'old school' in that it does not have a full keyboard. For about $50.00 you can get one that does. My cheap phone serves me well.
Well what do you know - I'm not the only one! This is exactly what I do, except I think my Tracfone cost $19.99.
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:09 PM   #9
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Yeah, smartphones would be fun but we are home and on wifi most of the time.
They are not *that* much fun anyway. That sounds like a good deal; too bad it isn't available any more.

And besides, you're right, we are never far from a computer these days.
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:23 PM   #10
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OK.... have ZERO knowledge on this.... just saw it when looking at woot...

Free Wireless Internet | Free Internet | 4G Wireless Internet - FreedomPop

Says unlimited talk, text and data for FREE...

Since I just saw this I cannot find the catch... maybe someone else will know...
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:48 PM   #11
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I have been on republic wireless for about a year. I pay $10 per month for unlimited talk and text, no data. The phone makes calls over wifi whenever possible. I've been very pleased so far and their phones start at $100. Warning, the customer service is non-existent. That's what makes it so cheap. I haven't had a problem so far though. It's on the sprint network.
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Old 04-29-2015, 11:27 PM   #12
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For only texts and occasional voice -
Another vote for Page Plus. I pay $10 every 4months, the minimum. You need to provide (or buy) a compatible CDMA phone. Prices out @ .10min for calls and .05 per text. Verizon is the only network that works at my home, plus has the best local coverage.
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Old 04-30-2015, 12:08 AM   #13
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I've had Verizon for ~20 years. Very happy with their service. Switched to Republic Wireless 1 year ago, and could not be happier. I pay $10/mo, but you're able to switch plans 2 times per month. And of course cancel anytime, no penalty. Unlimited wifi. Plans are $5, $10, $25 and $45. The $5 plan is strictly wifi. $10 plan is unlimited text and phone and only wifi.
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:02 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by brewer12345 View Post
We have killed cable and the landline in favor of broadband and Netflix/Hulu. There are ties when we could make use of a phone around the house, and having it be a mobile phone would be doubly worthwhile. Anyone use a prepaid phone? For something that does only texts and very occasional voice, what is a good choice?
I think the T-Mobile $3/month plan is definitely worth considering for very low usage assuming you can get decent coverage.
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Old 04-30-2015, 05:05 AM   #15
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Two options come to mind, both of which we use.

We ditched our $30/month landline in favor of Ooma a few years ago. ~$150 up-front cost for the box and then $4/month for unlimited US calls. Good call quality, but not quite as good as a landline. If you want more features you can buy their Premier service that is another $120/year.

We ditched our traditional cellphone plans and now use airvoicewireless. We have the $10/month automatic renewal plan on our credit card which gives you 30 days of service. Each month, $10 is added to your account. The deduct 4c/minute for voice, 2c/text and 6c/mb for data. Any unused money rolls over. If you use up your money before the 30 days (which we do while traveling) then you just add more money. You can bring your own AT&T cellphone, buy a cellphone from them or buy an AT&T goPhone cellphone in Walmart and other stores. Phones cost $20 for a basic phone or $600+ for the latest, greatest smartphone. I have a nice Samsung Galaxy 2 that can be had for ~$150 and DW has a basic smartphone that cost $50 at Walmart.
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Old 04-30-2015, 09:53 AM   #16
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We have been with Republic Wireless for almost a year. I have the $25 per month plan while my wife has the $10 per month plan. We used to have issues with cell reception in our home when we used Trac-fone, but with Republic it uses our Wi-Fi for calls and they are crystal clear.


Overall the experience has been a positive one and would recommend them.


As mentioned above, the customer service is lacking a little, but I've always been able to get help when needed.
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Old 04-30-2015, 09:54 AM   #17
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We use Tracfones, $7/month, triple minutes (plus bonus codes), for voice & text. Have over 1000 minutes accumulated on both phones after about 2 years, we don't burn up the minutes that much. Most of our chat from home is on Basic Talk, about $12.99/month unlimited use.

Lots of no contract low-cost options out there depending on what you need.

_B
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:29 PM   #18
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For only texts and occasional voice -
Another vote for Page Plus. I pay $10 every 4months, the minimum. You need to provide (or buy) a compatible CDMA phone. Prices out @ .10min for calls and .05 per text. Verizon is the only network that works at my home, plus has the best local coverage.
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:32 PM   #19
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I have PagePlus also and recharge every 4 months for $10. Phone is a Samsung older flip phone and texting is a real pain so I don't.
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Old 04-30-2015, 01:32 PM   #20
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For only texts and occasional voice -
Another vote for Page Plus. I pay $10 every 4months, the minimum. You need to provide (or buy) a compatible CDMA phone. Prices out @ .10min for calls and .05 per text. Verizon is the only network that works at my home, plus has the best local coverage.
+3 - I rarely use it and the money rolls over. Occasionally I burn it up by using data on my $70 Droid smartphone.
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