Saturday, January 1, 2011

Pay as You Go Cell Phones

It seems that cell phone 2 year contracts THANKFULLY maybe a thing of past!

How many pay as you go cell phone services did you think were out there? I was not aware there were so many.

So I stopped using Verizon when my contract ended. I stopped using a cell phone completely. This was for two reasons, I stopped working and we moved to the boonies where there was no cell phone service.

I used a TracFone for one year and it was OK, I only used it when we traveled somewhere.

Below is a HUGE list of all of the pre-paid phone providers I found:

Alltel Prepaid The pay per day plan costs 75 cents per day, so between $22.50 and $23.25 per month. There is a minimum 20 dollar initial balance. You can choose two of four feature options: unlimited nights and weekends, unlimited mobile to mobile, unlimited favorite number calling, or unlimited text messaging. Subscribers can add a third feature for an additional 25 cents per day, and can further add a fourth feature for another 25 cents. Text messaging packages are available for the pay per minute and pay per month plans: 5 dollars for 300 messages, or 10 dollars for 750 messages. The $29.99 plan offers 200 peak minutes and 1,000 night and weekend minutes. Calls made above those minutes are charged at 35 cents per minute. The $39.99 plan offers 400 peak minutes and 2,000 night and weekend minutes. Calls made above those minutes are also charged at 15 cents per minute. The $69.99 plan offers 700 peak minutes, unlimited night and weekend minutes, unlimited mobile to mobile, and unlimited text messaging. Calls made above those minutes are charged at 15 cents per minute. Unlimited favorite number calling is available on any monthly plan for five dollars extra per month.

AT&T Prepaid Go Phone This phone has three plans; first is 25 cents per minute. The second is 10 cents per minute, but requires a 1 dollar per day access fee, which is charged only on days the phone is used. You can also add unlimited mobile to mobile minutes, and can add unlimited nights and weekends for $19.99 per month. The third option is unlimited calling, which costs $60 per month and includes unlimited minutes and text messaging. AT&T also continues to offer an unlimited talk plan for 3 dollars per day, on days the phone is used.

Boost Mobile Boost operates on a nationwide iDEN network, which allows customers to use Nextel's walkie-talkie service. Boost Mobile's pay-as-you-go plan offers service at 10 cents per minute all day, every day. The pay as you go plan also offers unlimited push to talk for one dollar per day, and wireless web available for 35 cents per day of use. The Boost unlimited plan costs 50 dollars per month and comes with unlimited voice minutes, unlimited text messages, unlimited MMS, unlimited walkie-talkie, and unlimited mobile Web. BlackBerry service costs an additional 10 dollars per month. Boost also offers daily unlimited plans, 2 dollars per day for normal unlimited, 3 dollars for BlackBerry. For every six consecutive on-time payments, Boost reduces a customer's monthly bill by 5 dollars, for up to 15 dollars in total savings per month. Customers can also add International Connect for 5 dollars per month.

Common Cents Mobile Common Cents offers minutes at 7 cents. Partial minutes rounds down, meaning you pay just 1 minute for a 1:59 call. Text and picture messages cost 7 cents each. Unlimited messaging is available for 20 dollars per month. Data costs 1 dollar per megabyte per day. Three phones available that are fairly cheap LG10,1 Samsung M340, and KyoceraS2300.

Consumer Cellular offers six different monthly plans. The first is 10 dollars per month and provides all minutes at 25 cents each. For 20 dollars customers get 250 minutes. For 30 dollars customers get 500 minutes. For 40 dollars it's 1,000 minutes. For 50 dollars customers get 1,500 minutes, and for 60 dollars customers get 2,000 minutes. Overage minutes are 25 cents each except on the 60 dollar plan. Overages are 10 cents per minute for that plan. Customers can add 10 dollars per month to add a shared line to any plan, up to two additional lines. ext and picture messaging costs 10 cents for both incoming and outgoing messages. Customers can also buy bundles of message. A bundle of 100 messages costs $2.50, 500 costs 5 dollars, 1,000 costs 10 dollars, and 2,000 costs 20 dollars. Consumer Cellular offers three levels of wireless data. 2MB is 5 dollars per month, 15MB is 10 dollars, and 30MB is 20 dollars. There a 35 dollar fee to activate your Consumer Cellular phone. All phones for this service are from both Motorola and Nokia, and are all 50 dollars or under.

Cricket Prepaid The basic service costs 35 dollars per month and provides unlimited minutes, including long distance, and unlimited text messaging. The next plan costs 45 dollars per month and adds multimedia messaging, mobile web, and a number of calling features. The 55 dollar plan covers heavier web users, as it adds mobile email and mobile video. The BlackBerry plan contains everything in the 55 dollar plan, plus the essential BlackBerry services like push email. Plan prices include all taxes and fees except sales tax, if applicable. There is an activation fee of 15 dollars. Phones start at $29.99. The phones available are: Samsung MyShot, UTStarcom CDM7126, Samsung R211, Cricket TXTM8, Motorola Evoke QA4.

Earth Tones Earth Tones offers seven monthly calling plans. The first is 10 dollars a month, though it comes with no set minutes. All calls are 25 cents per minute. Their Anywhere plans offer 100, 200, 400, 600, 800, or 1200 minutes per month, for 20, 25, 35, 45, 55, and 85 dollars, respectively. All overages minutes are billed at 25 cents each. Customers can pay 10 dollars per month to add another line to share minutes on Anywhere plans. They offer four phones from free to only 100 dollars. The 100 dollar one is the RAZR V3. Earth Tones is an MVNO of the AT&T network. They offer wireless services, and donate all profits to grassroots environmental organizations.

Jitterbug targets baby boomers and older Americans. Only the most expensive plans have basic features like voicemail and text messaging. itterbug offers monthly service plans: 200 minutes for $29.99, 300 minutes for $39.99, 500 minutes for $49.99, 700 minutes for $59.99, and 1,000 minute sfor $79.99. All of those plans come with 500 night and weekend minutes. There are also two smaller monthly plans, 50 anytime minutes for $14.99 and 100 minutes for $19.99. No data plans are available. Voicemail is available for 3 dollars per month. It is free on yearly plans and with the 800 minute plan. Jitterbug offers only one phone It is available in two colors and costs $147.

Kajeet for kids between the ages of 8 and 14. It also has a custom configuration service that allows parents to disable call and text services during certain times of day. Everything can be tracked by parents, including call logs, account balance, and which features are being used. Calls to 900 numbers are blocked. The Basic plan costs $4.99 per month and includes 10 voice minutes. Additional minutes are 10 cents each. The Great Deal plan costs $29.99 per month and includes 300 minutes, plus unlimited text messaging. Additional minutes are 10 cents each. The Special plan costs $14.99 per month and includes 60 minutes and unlimited text messaging. Additional minutes are 10 cents each. kajeet also offers four Bundled Plans that include unlimited text messaging. The costs are $14.99 for 60 minutes, $19.99 for 150 minutes, $29.99 for 300 minutes, and $50 for unlimited minutes. Subscribers can purchase add-ons for Bundled Plans. Additional minutes are avaible in packages of 10 minutes for $4.99, 150 minutes for $19.99, 300 minutes for $29.99, and 1,000 night and weekend minutes, beginning at 7 p.m., for $9.99. Customers can also choose pay-as-you-go calling, which costs 10 cents per minute and text message, and which incurs a 32 cents per day usage fee. Parents can purchase the GPS Phone Locator for $9.99 per month, with the first month free.

Net 10 a subsidiary of Tracfone and all minutes are 10 cents. There is a 60 dollar card that has 900 minutes, a 45 dollar card that has 600 minutes, and a 100 dollar card that has 1500 minutes. There are also two 30-day plans. The 25 dollar plan has 750 minutes, while the 50 dollar plan has unlimited minutes and messages, plus web access. Text messaging is available for 5 cents per message. Mobile Web can be accessed through Net10 for 1 minute per minute of time spent browsing. There is no additional charge for roaming with Net10. starts as low as $19.99. Many phones include free minutes. Flip phones, phones that play games and camera phones are available. I had trouble accessing their website, it never would load up.

Ready Mobile The first is for 25 dollars and provides 500 minutes, or 5 cents per minute. This comes with 50 free text messages. The second is for 45 dollars and provides 900 anytime minutes, again 5 cents per minute. This card includes 100 free text messages. Customers must have peak minutes remaining in their account in order to use unlimited nights and weekends. Finally, Ready Mobile carries three unlimited voice plans. The first lasts three days, comes with 40 free text messages, and costs $9.99. The second lasts seven days, comes with 100 free text messages, and costs $14.99. There is also a 30-day one which comes with 400 free text messages and costs $59.99. Ready Mobile offers broadband plans which work with a broadband modem, not a smartphone. Refills can be purchased in denominations of 25 dollars for 100MB, 45 dollars for 200MB, and 75 dollars for 500MB. The phones offered are slightly outdated models like Nokia 3588 or the Sanyo 8100.

Simple Freedom All calls within the local area are 15 cents per minute and all roaming calls are 59 cents per minute. Minutes roll over so long as you purchase more minutes within the service agreement. Simple Freedom airtime cards are sold in 20, 30, 50 and 100 dollar increments. Text messaging is available from Simple Freedom and costs 8 cents per message sent or received. No picture messaging available at this time. No data plans are available with Simple Freedom at this time.

*Simple Mobile Simple Mobile provides three tiers of unlimited service. Unlimited nationwide talk and text costs 40 dollars per month. Adding 50MB of data costs 50 dollars per month, and adding 150MB of data costs 60 dollars per month. There is no off-network roaming. Simple Mobile encourages customers to bring their own unlocked GSM handsets for use with its service. These can be of any kind, as long as they require a SIM card and are no longer locked to the original carrier. Simple Mobile will then activate it, and service will work as normal.

*Straight Talk is a registered trademark of TracFone. Straight Talk offers 1,000 minutes, 1,000 text or multimedia messages, 30 MB of data, and unlimited calls to 411 for 30 dollars. They also have a plan which includes unlimited voice, unlimited messaging, unlimited data, and unlimited 411 for 45 dollars per month. There is no fee to activate the Straight Talk service. They offer only three Straight Talk phones through, but you can purchase more online, and you can get a used refurbished phone with a one year warranty for free with the purchase of one of the plans. There are web exclusive deals that include a phone and a $30 or $45 service card for one month. Customer service carries a poor reputation. You can change an existing number over to this service, and have the money deducted from your account each month on auto payment.

T-Mobile Prepaid the ten dollar refill card works out to cost is 33 cents per minute! T-Mobile offers five prepaid services. The first offers unlimited voice minutes and unlimited messages for 50 dollars per month. The second costs 15 dollars per month. Minutes cost 10 cents each, but the plan also includes unlimited messaging. The third is a traditional pay-as-you-go service that includes four denominations of refill cards. The 10 dollar card has 30 minutes, the 25 dollar card has 130 minutes, the 50 dollar card has 400 minutes, and the 100 dollar card has 1,000 minutes. When customers buy 100 dollars worth of refills they are are eligible to receive 15 percent more minutes on refill cards. The fourth plan is a pay per day plan that costs 1 dollar per day, but only when the phone is used. This includes unlimited nights after 7 p.m. and unlimited mobile to mobile. All other minutes are 10 cents each. Finally, the Sidekick Prepaid plan costs 1 dollar per day and provides unlimited email, text messaging, instant messaging, and web browsing for Sidekick devices. Minutes cost 15 cents each. Text messaging with the pay-as-you-go plan is 10 cents to send and 5 cents receive. Picture messaging is also available at 25 cents per message. Messaging is included with all other plans. T-Mobile prepaid cell phones start at zero dollars (after sending in the mail-in rebate form) and go up to $89.99. There are a number of web exclusive deals, which offer substantial discounts from retail price. Select phones come with a free 30 dollar refill card.

TracFone Minutes carry over on plans, providing you recharge your phone every three months. Phones are simple to use and low in cost and the units are an easy to understand billing system. The phone tells you exactly how many minutes you have left so you have ample time to recharge. The 30 minute card is $9.99; the 60 minute card is $19.99; the 120 minute card is $29.99; the 200 minute card is $39.99; and the 450 minute card is $79.99. For $49.99, you can purchase a Double Minutes for Life card, which doubles the minutes on all future card purchases. This excludes the One Year plus Double Minutes card, which gives you 800 minutes (already doubled), plus double minutes for future card purchases, for $124.99. This card also comes with one year of service time. Finally, there is a 400 minute card which comes with one year of service, for $99.99. Text messaging rates vary depending on the phone. With certain phones you are charged .3 units to send text messages and you can receive text messages for free. With other phones, you are charged .5 units to both send and receive text messages. Tracfone does not offer mobile web access at this time. racfone offers a limited number of cell phones, most of which are under 50 dollars.

US Cellular Prepaid US Cellular is a big name cell phone carrier serving 26 states that also entered the prepaid cell phone market with the launch of Talk Tracker. All of the monthly plans include free incoming calls and free night minutes starting at 9 p.m. The 45 dollar plan comes with 350 anytime minutes, and overage minutes are 15 cents each. The 60 dollar plan comes with 600 minutes plus unlimited weekend minutes, and overage minutes are 10 cents each. Finally, the 80 dollar plan comes with 1,000 anytime minutes plus unlimited weekend minutes, and overage minutes are 10 cents each. There are two pay-as-you-go plans. The first has a monthly access charge of 6 dollars and costs 15 cents per minute. The second has a monthly access charge of 10 dollars and costs 10 cents per minute. ncoming text messages are free for both the monthly plans and pay-as-you-go plans. A la carte outgoing text messages are 25 cents each. There are also three text messaging packages: $4.95 for 250 messages, $9.95 for 750 messages, and $14.95 for unlimited messages. Picture messaging is not available. US Cellular does not offer mobile web access at this time. There is a 30 dollar one time fee to activate your U.S. Cellular prepaid service. U.S. Cellular has many phone models listed under their prepaid section. Most are very basic models which are best used for just talking and texting.

Venture Mobile With Venture Mobile, you have a choice as to whether to choose to have your phone utilize either the Verizon Network or PCS Network. Prepaid plans on the Verizon Network start at $24.99 a month for 70 anytime minutes and 2,900 night and weekend minutes, and go up to $129.99 per month for 1,600 anytime minutes and 2,900 night and weekend minutes. All overages on the Verizon network are charged at 29 cents per minute. Prepaid cell phone plans on the PCS Network start at $9.99 for 45 minutes and seven days of unlimited nights and weekends, and go up to $199.99 per month for 2,000 anytime minutes and 30 days of night and weekend minutes. Overages on the PCS Network are charged at 15 cents per minute. You pay for your first month and your last month when you sign up for Venture Mobile's prepaid cellular service. A text message reminder is sent three days before the end of your billing cycle to pay your next month's bill. If your bill is not paid on time, your account is deactivated and your mobile number is lost. Payment can be made online with a credit card or debit card. Retail locations also accept cash payments. Venture Mobile does offer text messaging. The cost to send or receive a text message is 10 cents per message on the Verizon network, and 8 cents per message to send and receive on the PCS Network. Web access is available as an add-on. here are not a large number of phones available through Venture Mobile, but phones start at $79.99 and all have color displays. They all have the basic features in demand of cellular phone models on the market. No camera phones are offered.

Verizon Wireless they offer a number of prepaid packages, including one with unlimited minutes and penny text messages. They also have one of the largest calling networks in the country. They were recently rated poorest in customer service. There is a daily access charge with all daily plans, and the daily fee is only charged on days you use the phone. The Basic plan offers minutes at 25 cents each with no daily access fee. With the Core plan, calls are 10 cents per minute and there is a 99 cent access charge per day. The Plus plan offers calls at 5 cents per minute, but charges a $1.99 per day access fee. This plan comes with unlimited night and weekend minutes (starting at 9 p.m.). The Unlimited Talk plan offers unlimited minutes and one-cent text messages for $3.99 per day. In addition, all INpulse plans comes with unlimited mobile to mobile (to other Verizon customers). All access fees are only charged on the days the phone is used. Verizon also has prepaid monthly plans that range from $44.99 for 450 minutes to $94.99 for unlimited minutes and messages. These are the same as their postpaid plans, plus 5 dollars per month. They can be used with any Verizon postpaid phone, including smartphones. The phone displays the balance but it is not updated and sometimes shows 0 incorrectly, this can be confusing to some. Basic text messages are 20 cents each. With the 99 cent plan, text messages are 10 cents each. With the $1.99 plan, text messages are 5 cents each. And with the $3.99 plan, text messages are just 1 cent each. Verizon offers mobile web access to prepaid users for 99 cents per day (but only on days it is used). Monthly plan users can add data for 30 dollars per month. Verizon offers phones in a wide range of pricing and features. All phones have color screens and most of the cell phones available are flip phones.

Virgin Mobile Virgin Mobile offers 2 plans. You can either choose a pay by the minute or pay by the month plan. Refill cards can be purchased at retail locations across the nation making it convenient to add minutes. Virgin Mobile USA offers three Beyond Talk plans. They all include unlimited text, email, data, and web. The first includes 300 minutes and costs 25 dollars per month. The second includes 1200 minutes and costs 40 dollars per month. The third includes unlimited minutes and costs 60 dollars per month. Unlimited BlackBerry service is available for an additional 10 dollars per month. Virgin also offers three payLo plans. The basic plan costs 20 dollars every 90 days and allows customers to talk for 20 cents per minute. The second plan costs 20 dollars per month and provides 400 minutes. The third plan costs 30 dollars per month and provides 1500 minutes, 500 messages, and 10MB of web access. Available phones start at $9.99 and include color displays. Flip phones and some camera phones are also available.

Xtreme Mobile Xtreme Mobile has two service offerings. On the base plan all calls are charged at 15 cents per minute for anytime minutes, with unlimited nights and weekends (9 p.m. to 7 a.m.). There is also an access fee of 60 cents per day. The access fee is charged per day, whether or not you actually use the phone on that day. With the Presto plan, you get everything you do with the base plan, but also get free push to talk. The difference in cost is that the access fee is 1 dollar per day vs. the 60 cents per day with the base plan. Text messaging is available for a cost of 10 cents per message sent or received. Picture messaging is not available at this time. Xtreme Mobile does offer mobile web for 5 cents per KB of data used. he activation fee is included in the cost of purchasing your phone when you begin service. If your account is deactivated for having a zero balance for more than ten days, there is a 45 dollar re-activation fee to resinstate service (note, you will also be assigned a new number). Xtreme Mobile has four phones between $49.99 and $104.99, but no camera phones available.

*These are plans that I like.

Myself, my children and my father have all used the Verizon Wireless Prepaid. My father has the hardest time with it. The balance does not update and it confuses him. It says he has a 0 balance even though he just added $50, so he worries he has no minutes and tries to give them more money. I didn't like the fact that my minutes were used up quickly. And it is too expensive for a teen. There are also roaming that use up your minutes quickly.

My hubby tried the US Cellular Prepaid and it was a hassle. The start up costs were fairly high, and we had trouble with the plan not being what it was supposed to. We had to go back to the store several times and got a different answer each time. Then the plan changed while he was using it.

Overall I am EXTREMELY happy with the Straight Talk service. I got a phone for my teenage son this Christmas, and my mother. This will save my mom 40 per month. She currently is under a Verizon contract that will soon expire. We have to pay 120 to end the contract early and it is worth it because of the amount she will save each month.

I hope this helps you to save some green on your cell phone bills!

You can CLICK HERE to compare these plans side by side.

Thank you to Prepaid Reviews where most of this information was obtained.

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