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  • Switching to T-Mobile Prepaid

    Posted by Frugal on January 13th, 2007

    I don’t really use my cell phones that much. Since Cingular wireless is stopping the Free2Go service in March, and both of my phones are expiring, I have decided to switch to T-mobile prepaid. My phones still had $44 and $13 dollars credit near expiration. I have been simply rolling over the minutes, and spent just about $3 a month.

    I’m posting this on a Saturday because I just found out that today is the last day for you to get $10 off on $50 T-mobile refill card in Target stores. And if you spend $80+tax for a total of $100 refill, you can become a Gold Reward member. A gold reward member just need to add $10 every year to roll over the minutes if you are not using cell phones a lot. Even if you do, it’s just 10 cents per minute (anytime minutes).

    Also, on T-mobile home site, the before Xmas deal is back again. You can get a basic Nokia 6030 phone (which has speakerphone, tri-band, etc) for about $60, free of shipping, minus $30 rebate, and $10+$25 airtime credits or refill card. So that’s about a free phone plus $5 in your pocket before tax. Or you can get a camera phone with 4X zoom for about $50 more.

    Now if you do decide to get this now, you could get the refill cards first at Target (which can be returned if you change your mind) before the end of Saturday, and order the phones online or by phone at T-mobile home site. These phone deals are not available at stores.

    Between T-mobile & PagePlus Cellular from Verizon, I think T-mobile is much more widely used and cheaper for 3+ years for a moderate usage, assuming that they don’t change the good deal after a year or two.


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    23 Responses to “Switching to T-Mobile Prepaid”

    1. sanjay Says:

      Is your number portable between cdma and gsm?

    2. Chuck Says:

      Numbers are portable between cdma and gsm… phones are not.

      I’ve been using tmobile prepaid for quite some time, coverage is good in my area and can’t beat the price.

      Another option if you want to press your bargaining ability is to pricematch the Target price on the cards at Staples and then try to use one of the coupons floating around. I did this when purchasing my phone and it worked but YMMV.

    3. Jay Thompson Says:

      Long time reader, first time commenter.

      I’ve been very pleased with T-Mobile so far. Far less dropped calls than Cingular. I don’t do pre-paid (as a Realtor, I use an obscene amount of minutes.) Sounds like a sweet deal!

      Have always enjoyed you blog!

    4. Nick Says:

      I finally decided I needed a cell phone of my own, so I did this same deal a few days ago. I priced adding a line to my wife’s service, but since she uses a smaller package that doesn’t meet most family plan requirements, we’d have to bump up the minutes AND pay for the extra line, turning her $25/month cell phone bill into $50+/month.

      I knew there had to be a better deal, and this is it!

    5. Priya Says:

      Hi Frugal,

      Thanks for your T-Mobile Target tip.

      Great Blog !

    6. Frugal Says:

      Chuck,
      Thanks for your reply to Sanjay & your tip.

    7. Frugal Says:

      Nick,
      $50 a month or even $25 a month is a lot of money. I like to think it is $600 or $300 a year. That way you can feel how much you’re really spending. My plan with T-mobile is to put in $100 for the first year (which I have already done by putting $25,$25 from the online deal +$50 which was really $40 at Target without tax), and then I will be only adding $10 or as much as I need to per year.

      Prepaid also makes you more conscious about how much you talk, since you are more aware of the money leaving your pocket per minute.

    8. Frugal Says:

      Jay,

      Welcome to the comment area. Thanks for your compliment. That’s the most rewarding part of maintaining the blog.

    9. Frugal Says:

      Priya,

      Hope you got some. I bought 3 $50 cards today for $120 (for my two phones). They must be activated in 90 days after purchase, so you should not buy too much. And they’re returnable (if unopened).

    10. Dr. Michael Says:

      great site and good luck in new beginnings…I know you have been doing htis since April…

      But have you checked out CMAA (Conductive Market Anomaly Analyzation)

      It’s a mouthful and they publish winners consistently…

    11. Frugal Says:

      Thanks for your compliment, Dr.Michael.

      I usually have doubts about “consistent winning trades”. Check out the following site if you will:
      http://www.americanbulls.com/

      It took me quite awhile to figure out how they fake the performance. Initially, I thought I found some trading holy grail.

      Almost every stock that they publish, their trading gain is 500% or more.

      But it was too good to be true. If you cannot figure that out, maybe I will write a post on their site.

    12. Kelly Says:

      Frugal,

      Thanks for addressing the cell phone issue in such a positive way. I notice many wonder why they are not accumulating wealth but they are spending a fair bit of money on things for which they don’t obtain maximum value. Cell phones are a great example. Many have a cell phone for which they are paying $25 to $50 a month or more in addition to a home phone. Few need that level of connectivity. Your solution helps keep their cell phone but shrinks their cost drastically. Personally, I don’t travel or run around much so I am always near a wireline phone. I don’t want to pay two phone bills so I decided not have a cell phone. I keep extra quarters in my pocket in the event I need to use a wireline payphone though, which is a lot cheaper then most cell phone plans.

    13. Lisa Says:

      Do you have any advice for those of us that do use our cell phones daily? I am constantly texting people and am on the phone quite a bit. I’m not sure the $100 card would last me a month! Do you know which companies are best for using more minutes or know where I can start my research on the area?

    14. Frugal Says:

      Lisa,
      I wish I can help you there. What you need is probably the highest priced plan, so that you can get the most amount of minutes at the lowest per minute cost.

      My advice is to divert your calling to your land line more. 20 years ago when there was no cell phone, people were still able to call and communicate.

    15. Todd Says:

      I compared Tracfone, T-Mobile and Virgin prepaod plans and that 1000 minute card for $100 is hard to beat. About the T-Mobile Nokia and Samsung phones. If I leave it on all day (in answer mode or whatever) will it kill the battery if I don’t use the phone? I have an older Nokia Tracfone, charged it up full, turned it on in morning and after 12 mins into my first call of the day it was beeping on low battery already. I mean, come on, I can’t talk past 15 mins?

    16. Frugal Says:

      I got the most basic Nokia phone for the T-mobile prepaid plan. The battery performance is pretty good. But I know eventually all the batteries will die. Just don’t know whether my battery last longer than the $100 that I’ve deposited (with $10 additional every year to rollover the existing credit).

    17. Wolf Says:

      The best prepaid cellular deal is net10.com
      I ditched my Cingular ccount 6 month ago and got that prepaid phone. Cant beat the price. Check it out.

    18. gm Says:

      Don’t know that I like Tmobile. Too many hidden fees like daily usage fees. I rather go with Tracfone. No hidden fees so Straight up pricing and now they have Double Minutes for Life bundles which make them very attractive. Best of all they use TMobile lines if you have TMobile in your area.

    19. Maripily Says:

      Because the economy is real bad, I realize that I got to do something. Start cutting house expenses.

      I have a family plan with AT&T, 3 phones for about $134.00 a month including taxes & fees. I have roll over minutes, they charge me also 0.25 per tex-message, each cell phone have a different date of the two year contract. I know will be difficult for me to get rid off the full contract for all of them.
      I’m expending to much money, after I found out and read about the prepaid phones deal.
      Just last year in the month of October a boy at school stoll my 12 year old daughter cell phone, my daughter never mentioned to me, the time passed by and in the month of November I didn’t receive my cellphone bill, at the same time I was getting ready to go in the business trip, I thought …it will come later.
      I got back from my business trip and I forgot about the cell phone bill, in December 06, I got the bill
      for almost $700.00 dollars, I’m almost pass out!! the bill came with 45 pages, and I look at it, and I notice that all the charges were from my daughter cell phone number.
      I just said to my self “Merry Christmas to me”!!. The boy who stolled the cell phone dawnload games, ringtones, and internet membership adding monthly fees., everything was a desaster!!
      The same day that I found out I start calling all the phone numbers he dial, and I found out the boy name, and the next day I went to school, I got the cell phone back, I make a police report, but the bill continued going up month by month about $1,000.00, because membership issues online, finally AT&T fixed the problem but I paid the bill.
      I need someone to help me how to get out of this mess and also I want to keep the same cell number I have.
      I read that T-Mobile charge so many fees, and also read good deals about Virgin Mobile and Tracfone, What is the best deal for me, no more contracts for me!!
      Thanks,

    20. Maripily Says:

      Because the economy is real bad, I realize that I got to do something. Start cutting house expenses.

      I have a family plan with AT&T, 3 phones for about $134.00 a month including taxes & fees. I have roll over minutes, they charge me also 0.25 per tex-message, each cell phone have a different date of the two year contract. I know will be difficult for me to get rid off the full contract for all of them.
      I’m expending to much money, after I found out and read about the prepaid phones deal.
      Just last year in the month of October a boy at school stoll my 12 year old daughter cell phone, my daughter never mentioned to me, the time passed by and in the month of November I didn’t receive my cellphone bill, at the same time I was getting ready to go in the business trip, I thought …it will come later.
      I got back from my business trip and I forgot about the cell phone bill, in December 06, I got the bill
      for almost $700.00 dollars, I’m almost pass out!! the bill came with 45 pages, and I look at it, and I notice that all the charges were from my daughter cell phone number.
      I just said to my self “Merry Christmas to me”!!. The boy who stolled the cell phone dawnload games, ringtones, and internet membership adding monthly fees., everything was a desaster!!
      The same day that I found out I start calling all the phone numbers he dial, and I found out the boy name, and the next day I went to school, I got the cell phone back, I make a police report, but the bill continued going up month by month about $1,000.00, because membership issues online, finally AT&T fixed the problem but I paid the bill.
      I need someone to help me how to get out of this mess and also I want to keep the same cell number I have.
      I read that T-Mobile charge so many fees, and also read good deals about Virgin Mobile and Tracfone, What is the best deal for me, no more contracts for me!!
      Thanks,

    21. Maripily Says:

      Because the economy is real bad, I realize that I got to do something. Start cutting house expenses.

      I have a family plan with AT&T, 3 phones for about $134.00 a month including taxes & fees. I have roll over minutes, they charge me also 0.25 per tex-message, each cell phone have a different date of the two year contract. I know will be difficult for me to get rid off the full contract for all of them.
      I’m expending to much money, after I found out and read about the prepaid phones deal.
      Just last year in the month of October a boy at school stoll my 12 year old daughter cell phone, my daughter never mentioned to me, the time passed by and in the month of November I didn’t receive my cellphone bill, at the same time I was getting ready to go in the business trip, I thought …it will come later.
      I got back from my business trip and I forgot about the cell phone bill, in December 06, I got the bill
      for almost $700.00 dollars, I’m almost pass out!! the bill came with 45 pages, and I look at it, and I notice that all the charges were from my daughter cell phone number.
      I just said to my self “Merry Christmas to me”!!. The boy who stolled the cell phone dawnload games, ringtones, and internet membership adding monthly fees., everything was a desaster!!
      The same day that I found out I start calling all the phone numbers he dial, and I found out the boy name, and the next day I went to school, I got the cell phone back, I make a police report, but the bill continued going up month by month about $1,000.00, because membership issues online, finally AT&T fixed the problem but I paid the bill.
      I need someone to help me how to get out of this mess and also I want to keep the same cell number I have.
      I read that T-Mobile charge so many fees, and also read good deals about Virgin Mobile and Tracfone, What is the best deal for me, no more contracts for me!!
      Thanks,

    22. susie Q Says:

      you cannot return t mobile refill cards at Target– on the back of hte cards is the word “nonrefundable”. The cards havae to be activated at the store and they do not take them back. I bought a $100 card by mistake (I thought I needed that for th eminutes to last another year, but I was wrong) and Target would not take the card back– Nonrefundable.

    23. susie Q Says:

      you cannot return t mobile refill cards at Target– on the back of hte cards is the word “nonrefundable”. The cards havae to be activated at the store and they do not take them back. I bought a $100 card by mistake (I thought I needed that for th eminutes to last another year, but I was wrong) and Target would not take the card back– Nonrefundable.