Since you’ve been spending more time at home during the coronavirus pandemic, there’s a chance you may have been using your phone more for work, texting and chatting with friends and family, browsing the web, and to check in with your loved ones on social media.
All the extra time on your phone may be adding up during a time when you don’t have extra money to spare.
Thankfully, there are a few tricks to help you save money on your phone bill during quarantine.
"We've seen a really sharp decrease in the amount of mobile data that people are using," Andrew Moore-Crispin from mobile communications provider Ting told WFMY News,
His biggest piece of advice is to connect to your WiFi if you’re using your phone at home. This way, you aren’t pulling your phone data every time you scroll Instagram, Facebook, or TikTok for hours!
"If you look at your cell phone plan, invariably the most expensive thing on that plan is going to be mobile data," he added.
There are a few other ways to cut down your monthly bill that will be effective even once the pandemic ends.
Enrolling in autopay ensures that you never miss a payment, and according to personal finance expert Kimberly Palmer from NerdWallet, it can typically save you anywhere between $5 to $10 per month.
Palmer also suggests getting a family plan. The general logic with these plans is that the more phones you have, the cheaper each line is.
If you have a small family, she suggests bundling with friends.
However, she advises waiting until your contract is up before switching providers as an early termination could cost you.
Another option is to ask your provider for deals. "It always is worth asking because the worst thing that could happen is that they say no, but you might end up with better deal,” Palmer says.
Several mobile phone companies are offering assistance to customers struggling during the pandemic.
T-Mobile has offered unlimited data to all customers and 10GB of hotspot data until June 30th. They’re also offering free 2-day shipping on new activations.
Similarly, AT&T is increasing mobile hotspot data by 15GB a month for each line with an unlimited plan through the 30th. If you cannot pay your bill as a result of COVID, the company announced it won’t terminate accounts and will waive late payment fees.
Be sure to call your carrier for more information on how they could help.