I'm trying to see about ways to save on my cell phone and cable bills, or perhaps an alternative service to use.
My cell phone is $140 month, I have a family plan with T-Mobile. I want to switch to Metro PCS but I have to wait until my 2 year contract is up otherwise I'll mess up my credit score if I cancel it early. However, I think what makes it so much is the web/data service that I have which is $20/month for 2GB. I would get rid of it but I so can't live without having mobile internet on the go, it comes in handy for soo many situations when you're not home. As an alternative, i was thinking maybe if I get something outside of T-Mobile, like a iPad or a similar tablet and just use a public wifi, but the thing is I don't know the in's/out's of using other place's wifi and what the rules are.
Then there's my cable bill which is about $160 month and I have Cablevision. My plan includes:
$84 - iO Silver package (which has family cable, broadcast basic, and all the movie channels except showtime and TMC).
$19.95 - Phone
$44.95 - Internet
$7 - Cable box
$5 - Taxes.
If I downgrade to from Silver to family (which is $58.95), my monthly bill will then be $135.85, a $25 difference. I have been considering switching out the cable box for streaming Netflix or Hulu Plus service, but I know there's things they don't have that my family watches like the music video channels for instance. If I did go with one of them, my monthly bill (netflix or hulu included) will be between $80-90 which would be fantastic.
Any advice or suggestions?
A few questions...does everyone in your family have a cell phone? The amount of people that are going LAN-less is increasing so if everyone has a cell, you may want to get out of your home's LAN line all together. Also, with so many options available online to watch different programs, maybe not all, people are using their computers as their TV so if you have a family meeting and come to the agreement that you'll get a program like Netfilx, and even explore the option of some "TV" over the internet, then you may be able to reduce your family's cable bill a lot.
I don't know your exact situation, and without that it is impossible to know what to tell you. However, I am a satisfied Metro PCS customer. I don't know if it will help you, but have you checked out Google Voice?
Also when you switch to an unlimited data plan, there is a way you can use your phone as a WiFi hotspot. You just set your cell phone down next to your computer and you have an internet connection. You need a 3G/4G phone to do it, and a software that costs $35.
As far as using WiFi, many places like parks and public libraries have WiFi, as do many restaurants. If the network is unsecured, your computer will probably automatically connect. If the connection is secure, all you have to do is ask the restaurant for the password (your computer will store the password for that network). You used to (and still may) be able to buy a "WiFi sniffer" that would detect WiFi networks, but I think there are so many nowadays that it is unnecessary.
I save money on a Lanline phone by using Magic jack.It is a Voip service that works locally and long distance for free.
I also use a prepaid net 10 phone with all the bells and whistles..
You choose the minutes and time length...and the minutes roll over.
I dropped our home phone and switched to prepaid for our cell phones. We use Fuzion Mobile. Great prices and I'm not locked into anything because it's month to month. I used to pay $130 a month for just my phone with ATT! It was definitely time to make that change. I have the bare bones basic cable at home for TV so I can catch the news from time to time and watch football. Other than that, I paid for an Apple TV device and NetFlix. It is more than enough to keep the whole family (including a 4 year old) happy. Good luck!
In Canada we have different providers but may be it will give you ideas.
No cable TV anymore for me! Digital small internal antenna (for $10),gives 19 channels in my area. Enough for me. Very good image.
Unlimited Internet connection + home phone on Voip, $64 monthly,service is with Distributel (through Bell), average, but cheap.
Celphone is from Petro - Canada, I guess the cheapest, $25 for 4 months but for emergencies only. For emergencies it is enough, I usually have some air time left at the end of the period. If you like to chat you have to find a plan with lots of minutes. Bottom line, you cannot have it all, choose what you cannot live without and dump the rest.
I live in the U.S. and bought a $30 TV antenna from an ad off of Craigslist - normally $130.
Not only do I get 22 channels for FREE, but I do not pay 1 cent for cable - that is how I save money, by not paying for cable. One less monthly bill (or contract) to contend with. I can always search the Internet for cable news stories, and I am loving NOT having 250 channels to distract me (by sitting in front of the "boob tube" with a remote in hand for hours at a time).
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