Wirefly crunched the numbers on thousands of cell phone plan combinations so consumers can quickly and easily compare cell phone plans to find the best wireless plan for their needs. To view plan comparisons, just enter your cell phone usage habits into our tool below, and Wirefly will analyze existing wireless plans on the market from major carriers (both contract and no contract) to find the best plans for you. Then you can sort by price, minutes, data, phone, or number of lines and choose your plan. Click on the plan name to learn more, or click the Buy Now button to select that plan.
Choosing The Best Cell Phone Plan
There are so many options out there for cell phone plans lately that you don't have to look very far to find something that will work for your budget and keep you connected. However, what do you really need and how much do you want to spend? One deal may seem like the best, but it could also be a big drain on your wallet compared to a similar plan with the same talk, text and data limits. Once you find a good cell phone plan, it's best to compare it with as many cell phone plans as possible. You can view a variety of different cell phone selections at the best prices and check out different plans right here at Wirefly. We help you save time and money so you get the best plan for the best price. Check out Wirefly's best cell phone plans of the year.
Types of Cell Phone Plans
Most people want a cell phone plan that allows them to use the minutes they need, get the text messages they want and use data as they go. Choosing wireless service depends on multiple factors like data limits, minutes offered, and text message limits.
If you depend on a cell phone for most or all of your communication, then it's a big benefit to have a wireless plan that suits your needs. You can look up different carriers and plan types with our service and see how much you could save if you currently have a wireless plan. There are three categories for wireless plans.
With single line plans, you only have one line with one rate for data usage, talk and text. It won't include any other phones or devices. If you don't have a spouse or children, then a single line may be the best cell phone plan for you.
Family plans mix up the devices and plan offerings so you can have a phone line for each member of your family. While a family plan has a higher price tag, it's still the best deal if you need two or more lines. The fee is smaller when you compare with single plan prices as well. Family plans often share minutes, text messages and data. You should make sure to buy a plan that will cover everyone in your family's needs.
Prepaid, pay-as-you-go, month-to-month or no contract plans are flexible in terms of payment and pricing. Pay-as-you-go has come a long way since cell phone prepaid cards. You can typically pick up a prepaid phone at any department store and start using it right away. You only pay for what you want, but you may have to pay additional fees. In addition, phone prices may be much higher unless you pick a very simple or cheap phone. Many no contract cell phone plans also offer the latest and greatest smartphones as well. The best part is you're not bound to a contract.
With a contract plan, you are signing up for a minimum of two years in most cases, although some carriers offer one year plans. You pay each month, but you are obligated to continue paying for the full length of the contract. To cancel, you will have to pay an early termination fee. This means that whatever is left on your contact will be calculated as part of the fee as a percentage with a penalty on top of it.
What Wireless Plan Is Best For You?
When choosing the right plan, you should think about how many people will be on the plan and what types of services you want to include. Most carriers factor these three things into your plan:
Talk - Minutes
Text - Text Messaging
Data - Data Usage in MB or GB
With cheaper plans, you can limit the amount of minutes and text messages to about 400 or less on a contract plan. Unlimited plans are better for the cost if you talk and text numerous times per day and don't want to be limited. With no contract plans, you'll typically load your wireless card with money to pay for minutes, which can be bought by the minute or as a full package, such as 1,000 minutes for $40. Once your minutes are up, you'll have to add more.
Data usage is a major factor in how to pick plans now. Most carriers charge large sums for high amounts of data usage, and there are hardly any unlimited data plans available for wireless. Plans are typically priced per megabyte and gigabyte. In some cases, going over your data limit will cause you to be charged expensive overages. If you don't want this to happen to you, pick a data plan that will cover your data usage needs.
Paying For The Phone Upfront Or Over Time
Cell phone carriers like T-Mobile and AT&T offer plans for receiving phones upfront for no cost, and instead paying off the cost of the phone monthly, typically over 24 months.
For example, the AT&T Next plan allow you to pick an eligible phone to receive with no down payment. All that is required is to pay a small monthly fee and you'll be entitled to an upgrade at no extra charge every 12 or 18 months. This is a way that everyone can afford to get the latest phones without paying a lot up front.
The free phone or discounted phone deals that come with new contracts are great ideas if you like your carrier and want to renew. It's important to look at phone features and find phones that have great value for the price. For the best choices, pick a 4G compatible phone with Android, iOS or Windows operating system. These smartphones will offer you the most functionality and dependability, and there are a few different models that are always on sale or free.
Compare Cell Phone Carriers
AT&T is one of the larger wireless providers and has multiple types of plans, including Unlimited Data. You can get individual, family, contract, no contract, and pay-as-you-go wireless plans.
Verizon Wireless offers individual plans, family sharing plans and no contract plans. With Verizon, you pick a prepaid plan, Unlimited Data plan, or shared data plan to begin with. Shared data plans can be used by a single individual or as a family and come with unlimited talk and text, and a pre-specified amount of data.
Sprint sells a few different type of plans including a new plan for friends and family called the Sprint Unlimited Freedom Plan, which offers unlimited data, talk, and text.
T-Mobile, which calls itself the "uncarrier", boasts plans that are all no contract plans. With the T-Mobile ONE and Simple Choice line of plans, T-Mobile customers get unlimited talk, text, and data (throttled at different levels) for a single monthly price. T-Mobile offers both individual and family cell phone plans.
There are a variety of other quality cell carriers that can be compared along with the aforementioned major carriers simply by using our cell phone plan comparison tool above.
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Wirefly offers great deals on a large selection of smartphones, cell phones, tablets, mobile hotspots, and other wireless devices for the nation's most popular carriers. Use Wirefly’s innovative cell phone and plan comparison tools to ensure you are getting the best deal on the market. Shop with confidence knowing that Wirefly wants to help you find the best prices on cell phones, cell phone plans, TV, and Internet service.