How We’re Saving $1,000 a Year on Our Cell Phone Bill

cell phone bill

cell phone billIf you haven’t been convinced about how awesome Republic Wireless is yet, I’ve got one more reason for you: saving over $1,000/year with our $35/month cell phone bill. And that’s not just for one of us, that’s for the both of us.

Republic Wireless: A Love Story

Republic Wireless and I began our love affair in December 2013. I had heard about the company before, but a) the only phone they had was not impressive at all, and b) switching phone carriers is scary when you know absolutely nothing about the one you’re switching to.

But the idea of saving a ton of money was compounded by the absence of a contract, 30-day return policy, and a new phone, so I decided to take the plunge. The day my Moto X came, I was late for work because I saw the FedEx guy driving into the neighboring cul-de-sac and I ended up stalking him until he dropped my phone off on my doorstep.

It cost me about $150 to cancel my Verizon account, which I made up for by selling my iPhone 4 for that amount, and I had to pay a little over $300 for my Moto X, which has already paid for itself and more. I started out with the $25/month plan (unlimited talk, text and 3G data), but ended up switching to the $10/month plan (unlimited talk, text and Wi-Fi only data), simply because I spend a good 85%+ of my day connected to Wi-Fi.

Ever since then I’ve been in love.

A Family Affair

During the last year, I’ve only been more impressed with Republic. Sure, my phone drops a few more calls a month, and I really really miss having iTunes on my phone, but it’s been worth it. So I was almost counting down the days to when my wife’s Verizon contract expired so we could switch her over too (she put the kabosh on doing them both at the same time because of the up-front cost of the phones).

Luckily for us, Republic made it even easier to save money by offering some cheaper phone options. After much going back and forth on what to do, I ended up giving my wife my Moto X, which was still in pretty good condition, and she chose the $25/month plan. Then I took a risk by purchasing the $99 Moto E.

I say risk because, unlike my Moto X, which sported a 16 GB hard drive and a 12 megapixel camera on both the front and back of the phone, the Moto E has a 5 megapixel camera (on the back only), a tiny 4 GB (closer to 2 GB with the Android OS). And while it does include the option of plugging in a 32 GB microSD card, I learned afterward that there are certain apps you can’t store on the microSD, so you’re still limited.

Anywho, despite the drawbacks of the Moto E, I’m still happy with the choice because in all honesty, I’m just tickled at the idea of having a smart phone in the first place. It wasn’t until just over two years ago that I finally ditched my archaic flip phone for the iPhone 4, and the idea of needing the newest version of any smartphone is just lame in my opinion.

In total, we’re now paying a total of $34.28/month on our cell phone bill (we each scored 20% off on our monthly bill from a promotion Republic did for some personal finance bloggers), a whopping $90.34/month less than what we would be paying for our share of a family plan with Verizon. That’s huge, and we never have to do anything again to keep earning those savings.

Making the Switch

Again, the reasons why I love Republic Wireless and why I think you should make the switch:

1. No contract. This also means no games, no early termination fees, and no waiting another year after your screen gets destroyed so you aren’t out $600 for a new phone. If for some reason I suffer brain damage and think it’s a great idea to switch back to Verizon or any other carrier, I just cancel my account and that’s that.

2. $$$ in my pocket. There aren’t a lot of areas in your budget where you can cut close to $100/month forever, just like that. After doing this for more than a year, it seems like utter insanity to even consider going back to paying what we used to pay. That and the fact that their phones are absurdly cheap in comparison to what else is available on the market, it’s a double whammy of greenback goodness.

3. Wi-Fi. It’s not just knowing that I’m saving myself money that makes me happy, but saving other people money too. By using Wi-Fi as often as I can, I’m part of a community to bring these types of savings to more and more people. Also, I haven’t gone out of the country since I joined, but I’m looking forward to when I do, since I’ll still be able to make calls back home wherever I am in the world, as long as I’m connected to Wi-Fi.

You can check out all things Republic Wireless, including coverage, phones, and their different plans here. Oh, and for all you Apple aficionados. Trust me, there is life after the iPhone.

Have you made the switch to Republic Wireless? What’s keeping you from taking the plunge?

(photo cred here and here)


12 thoughts on “How We’re Saving $1,000 a Year on Our Cell Phone Bill

  1. I am embarassed to say that even at the $40 a month plans my wife and I would still save a bunch. I do not travel for work anymore so this looks like the best option i have seen. Great post, thanks!

  2. Great info, thanks. Maybe someday I’ll be brave enough. We stumbled onto a good deal through our local phone utility. We still pay twice as much as you for our iPhones, but we use them for everything. We really enjoying tech and so have increased that side of our budget while decreasing in other areas. Before the iPhone I was with Net10, and it was awesome, and so easy. If something ever happens and we need to ditch our plans I would go back to a no contract phone in a heartbeat.

    1. I’m sending brave vibes your way! 🙂 I think that is one of the things hurting Republic, is the absence of the iPhone. I know they’re always working on bringing in new phones, so who know. Maybe they’ll have an iPhone soon!

  3. Do you use this in place of a home phone? We still have a home phone. Our cell bills are really cheap because they’re not smart and are pay as you go. Mine is probably $17 a month and my husband’s $13 a month, but I am thinking of getting us each the $10 plan on Republic and canceling my home phone. That will probably save me $600 a year. I haven’t wanted to get rid of a home phone because I have such trouble communicating on a cell phone but it may be because mine is so cheap? Also, can 911 still find you if you don’t have a home phone. Thanks in advance for the advice.

    1. We’ve actually never had a home phone. At this point, I’m not sure if we ever will, although it may make sense once our kids are teenagers. As far as cost, I think a Republic Wireless plan would be great as a home phone. I’d recommend doing at least the $10/month plan since Wi-Fi goes out as soon as the power goes out.

      From what I’ve read, 911 responders can only get a general area if you’re using a cell phone as opposed to a landline. However, I know of one other option you could check out that that could solve that problem (link here). It’s called Ooma and they require a physical address when you sign up, so if you do call 911 that’s the address it sends emergency responders.

      Either way you go, hope it saves you money! 🙂

  4. About a year ago I went through the same process and decided against Republic. Your first point was no contract but isn’t the phone more or less worthless if you leave Republic, right? Not like you can bring it to a standard MNVO or even one of the big four (maybe sprint).

    I ended up buying the 2013 Moto X for $350 and jumping from carrier to carrier whoever is the lowest. Right now, I am doing $40 on TMobile (unlimited talk and text and then 1gb 4glte Data and then 3g after that).

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