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Make a Plan

Make Sure Cell Phone Costs Don’t Bust Your Budget

The fact that there are more cell phones in the world than toothbrushes is testimony to how mobile devices have become an essential part of modern life.

But the versatility and convenience of mobile phones comes at a cost that if unmanaged can seriously start to affect your finances, eating into spare cash.

Choose the correct data plan

Before you rush into buying a data package try to work out how much data you’re likely to use. There’s no point in paying for large amounts of data that will expire. Equally topping up data because you’ve run out can be expensive. Once you have a reasonable idea of the amount of data you’re likely to use you’ll be in a much better position to choose compare the packages available and chose the most suitable one.

Sync settings

Applications or apps on cell phones often have an automatic sync setting regardless of whether you’re using WiFi or data. You may not even be aware that your apps are eating into your data. You can solve this problem by changing the settings to ensure that apps only sync when using WiFi. Alternatively consider disabling the automatic sync function and updating your apps manually.

Helpful apps

There are a number of apps that will notify you of the amount of data you are using or when you’ve reached your data limit. These will help you keep track of your usage and prevent you from over spending.

Data roaming

Data roaming happens when your phone is unable to connect to your usual network, for example when you’re travelling out of the country. It is expensive and uses a lot of data and airtime. You can overcome this by disabling roaming in settings and only enable it as and when you need to connect. Remember that features such as maps use data, so be careful if you’re using your phone as a GPS to find your way around a foreign city. The costs will mount up fast.

International calls

When catching up with friends or family overseas, it’s always tempting just to call. But international calls are expensive and there are plenty of alternatives. Consider using other more cost-effective ways of keeping in touch such as Facebook, WhatsApp or Skype. Save the call for a special occasion.

For more information on how to save money.

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