It’s another season for shopping and buying and wouldn’t you know, cell phone companies from both the US and Canada are starting to roll out some new deals. This article will look at the pros and things to watch out for when it comes to signing up for family plans. It would take into consideration things like network coverage or cell phone selection between carriers, but it will give you an idea of the money you will or won’t save.
You have the special someone, the kids, your significant other? Without a family plan all calls between each other usually count against your total minutes use. That means no free calling between the most popular numbers in your phone. This can change, however, with new family plans. What we see clear across the board (especially in Canada) are the carriers willingness to offer cell phone plans to families. You’ll get unlimited calling between people on your plan, sometimes up to 4 different phones. Sounds great doesn’t it? No more phone bills that cost crazy amounts, you can save your money!
Essentially the idea is perfect, one bill, no fees, no more lost minutes. Basically the ads are true, you are getting unlimited phone calls between the family plan members, however, beware of some of the fine print.
For example, remember, you’ll be sharing all additional minutes between all of you. Got a talkative kid? You may wind up with no minutes for yourself since everyone shares the anytime minutes. By the way, all you’re saving really is the minutes you wasted between each other. You don’t save anywhere else on the bill. Each phone is still charged individually: activation fees, system fees, 911 fees, etc etc etc.
You should be aware of the different charges for different services when you’re moving one person from one carrier to another. Some carriers don’t charge for basic voicemail (Telus) but others charge you money (Rogers $5 bucks basic voicemail.) That’s an additional 60 bucks a year. Do you want to pay that money that you would not have before? Basically you have to decide whether $60 is worthy cost for money talk time.
So how should you make a choice? Really, it’s a matter between who will offer the most anytime minutes. Whoever can provide you with the best deal for minutes aside from your family/couple members would be the way to go. Some offer free first incoming minute on all calls. Some exceed others in anytime minutes, some will give you deals on new phones, more minutes, additional features, etc. Be on the prowl and don’t jump at the first opportunity. Compare costs and you’ll save some additional cash.