Let’s talk about your smartphone. More specifically let’s talk about how much that smartphone is costing you. There are so many different plans, phones and providers it is hard to know which is the right plan for you, isn’t it? Wrong. The no plan smart phone plan is right for you. Sure there might be some work related exceptions to this, but for most of us mere mortals, no plan seems to be the way I go. Sure a smart phone is nice to have, really a luxury to have. Before I get into my own cell set up, lets have a look at some examples of monthly charges of coworkers all monthly figures rounded up:
1. In a contract, monthly payment of $54 and a lump sum up front for the phone of $150
2. In a contract, monthly payment of $58 and a lump sum up front for the phone of $400
3. In a contract, monthly payment of $60, no up front payment for the phone, but phone is on a tab
.4. No contract -monthly payment of $42 and $800 for the phone!!!!! ……words cannot express my thoughts right now….you read that correctly $800 for a phone….wow..
You may have noticed I didn’t mention what kind of phone these people have, that is because I don’t care. Whatever phone they have is costing an insane amount of money, making the phone irrelevant. Same goes for the plan, how much data, etc…don’t care…..it’s too much money. Too much money for something you don’t need! Of course I have a cell as well, here is what I pay per month : $15. I see you are shocked, it is pretty low. My breakdown: I went with a no contact provider, and I chose Petro Canada Mobile. Yes, as in the same company as the gas station, and yes I am one of only 5 customers in all of Canada (just kidding, but I have yet to meet another). When I was looking for a cell, I knew right off I didn’t want to be in a contact, and I knew I wanted to pay as little as possible per month for a basic plan. There weren’t many options out there. So I bought the phone outright, a Nokia C3, which has the very best of 2006 technology, and have a cheap plan. $25 for 120 days, which gives me 25 cents per minute, outgoing texts are 10 cents each, long distance calls are 50 cents a minute, no data, but does include all the fancy bells and whistles like voice mail and caller ID. Lets break this down to $9 a month so we can compare apples to apples. I dump a few extra dollars in once in a while to cover the texts, which I average about 15-20 a month. Call it $2 a month for texts. Add in what I paid for the phone $108 taxes in. I plan to have the phone for 3 years, (oh the humanity!) so add in $3 ($108/36=3) a month (that worked out nice!). I also paid $15 for a phone cover/protector and the memory card was also about $15, lets call those two combined $1 a month. This gives me an amazing low cost of $15 per month over 3 years, cost of phone, plan and accessories included. I think I’ve covered everything. And of course I can walk away anytime I want, the price I’m (not) paying for freedom. You’ll notice I did not include other costs such as phone covers, screen protectors, other accessories or the dreaded app costs for my coworkers. I’m trying to cut these people some slack. I can’t make them look totally insane, right? These costs are already harsh enough, aren’t they? No? Maybe this next tidbit will change your mind. Here is the final bit of information I would like to provide. What if these monthly fees and lump sums paid above were instead invested, what would that look like? They would look a lot like this, assuming a mere 5% tax free return after 10 years and to be fair my 10 year cost is calculated as well.
The person who had plan 1 could instead have over $8,700 after 10 years!
The person who had plan 2 could instead have almost $10,000! (9,788 to be exact)
The person who had plan 3 could instead also have in the neighbourhood of 10K at $9,338.
The person who had plan 4 could instead have $8,336 in their pocket.
Also think about this, this is just the phone of ONE spouse, many of these people’s wives/husbands/partners also have a similar plan, so they pay this much TWICE each month that is a terribly shocking amount of money my friends.
Oh almost forgot my plan after 10 years: $2,107. A lot of dough but just on the good side of reasonable.
I hope you enjoyed the read, and make a wise choice when it comes to choosing a phone.