When you are buying a phone you have lots of options to choose from – the type of phone, the network, etc. But before you start looking at any of that you have to choose between getting a prepaid phone or a contract phone. What are the pros and cons of both, and which one is best for you?
Benefits Of Prepaid Phones
Let’s first look at why you should choose a prepaid phone. The main benefit is that you are not locked into a contract so you have much greater flexibility. With a contract phone, on the other hand, it is not uncommon for users to be locked in to their deals for as long as two years.
Another benefit is that you only pay for what you use. In many contract arrangements the user is offered loads of minutes bundled up in their plan, but often they don’t use those minutes. Prepaid phones work on a pay as you go basis, so nothing is wasted.
Often it is also cheaper in the long run to get a prepaid phone, even when you buy an expensive handset. Let’s look at the figures. A typical contract deal might be $35 a month with a free $500 handset included. You have to sign up for two years though so over the course of the contract you will pay $840. Depending on how much you spend each month on a prepaid phone, it might actually be cheaper to pay for the phone upfront.
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Benefits Of Contract Phones
So, why would you choose a contract phone if there are so many benefits to using a prepaid option?
The handset is one of the first things to look at. We have already established that it may work out cheaper to buy the handset upfront on a prepaid deal, but that assumes that you have the money available to buy the phone. If you don’t have the cash to spare, and you want a particular handset, a contract phone is a good option.
Another benefit of contract phones is their convenience. With a prepaid phone you have to ensure that the phone is topped up with minutes, plus it is easy to run out, often at a time that is inconvenient. With a contract phone you don’t have any of these worries.
Which Option Should You Choose?
You have to look at all the details of the deal when making your decision. This includes whether you have a coupon code or promotional code for the website that you are using. You also have to look at the cost of the handset, and how much your actual (not potential) monthly usage will cost. When buying online you also have to factor in things like whether you are getting free shipping or not.
Cost is the most important factor though, because you can use the same phones and the same networks whether you are on prepaid or contract. Monthly costs, costs over time, usage costs, discounts codes, etc. all need to be analysed so you can decide which is best.