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How Millennials Can Save Money on Mobile

Saving money

Seventy-eight percent of Millennials between the ages of 25 and 35 own a smartphone, and three out of four 18 to 34 year-olds are proud smartphone owners. Despite the supposed price wars among top carriers, a recent Wall Street Journal article reports an overall increase in the price of mobile plans since 2010. The story points to increased demand for mobile technology which requires steady investment for continuous improvement. Those costs are passed on to consumers, with most of us shelling out an average of $85 per month for the pleasure of perusing Facebook, texting friends and conquering Candy Crush on the metro. So how best to save on the cost of our third arms? Read on for tips.

Request an Employee Discount

If your employer has a business account with a mobile provider, a corporate discount is often available for all employees regardless of whether or not they have a business phone. Discounts range from five percent to over 25 percent per month, so check with your manager or HR department for more information. If you have a business phone through your employer, ask about cost-sharing so you can use your device and plan for both personal and business purposes. This strategy saves both you and your employer money, so it’s worth investigating!

Consider Warehouse Club Stores

A 2013 report by the Urban Land Institute, a nonprofit research group, confirms our love for all-things Costco, reporting “strong support” for warehouse clubs by Millennials. That’s likely why both Costco and Sam’s Club are getting in on the wireless game, marrying Millennials’ love for smartphones with their desire for discounts. When you sign up for a T-Mobile plan through Costco, for example, you’ll receive a $25 bill credit upon activation plus a free accessory pack.

Get Creative With Savings

Wireless carriers are similar to vehicle and mattress stores — there’s always a promotion, it’s the biggest they’ve ever had, and it’s ending soon! In addition to timing your purchase around actual money-saving offers, use discount gift cards to offset your mobile purchase., a popular comparative marketplace for discount gift cards, currently lists a few Verizon Wireless gift cards for 10-percent off, which you can use toward your device or plan. You can also check-in to wireless providers via Foursquare for discounts, including special pricing on the Samsung Galaxy S4 from AT&T.

Go No-Contract

No-contract plans are all the rage among Millennials who don’t appreciate being tied down to a two-year agreement. Switching exclusively to no-contract plans in 2013 is what helped T-Mobile rise from the ashes and consequently forced AT&T and Sprint to offer no-contract options to compete. If the upfront cost of a device is off-putting, look for used, unlocked devices on Craigslist or eBay. Then, compare plan costs between T-Mobile, Boost, Ting and others to be sure you’re getting the best coverage and rate for your needs.

Shop Online for Accessories

Millennials are savvy digital shoppers, with 62 percent of us using our smartphones to compare prices while in-store. Using your device to research the cost of mobile accessories will result in your leaving the wireless store without a case, screen protector and vehicle charger. You can find these items for significantly less online. For example, a vehicle charger with dual output (compatible with 130 devices!) can be purchased from Amazon for $7.95. Buy it at the Verizon store and you’ll pay a ridiculous $29.99.

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3 Responses

  1. This is so relevant to me right now! I just switched my phone over to a corporate plan through my employer and it’s cut down my costs by $30/month. Also, I recently had an “oops” moment in which I went over my monthly data usage and had to learn the hard way that you can go into your phone’s settings and turn off the data for apps that you’re not using 24/7.

    Great tips, Kendal! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  2. Great info. here! Thanks for sharing…wasn’t aware of and also stacking discounts/offers/coupons/gift cards is a great idea. $85 average is crazy! I’ve been able to help others save money on their cell phone bill through referrals to our no-contract service and we’ve discovered that the pre-paid Tmobile phones are much cheaper purchased from Wal-Mart, Target, etc. instead of directly from a Tmobile store – usually save 40-70% depending on the phone. Thanks for the timely info.!

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