There’s been a lot of scams about recently it seems, particularly those offering the chance to trial an iPhone 5 and in return for reporting back to Apple what you think you get to keep it. OK, let’s be clear here, I don’t know for a fact that its a scam, but I’m applying the old adage that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
There’s no such thing as a free lunch in this life as they say, and as I pointed out on the homepage, free deals are out there, but they’re not free in the sense that you pay nothing, the cost of the incentive is rolled into the monthly fees, top ups or whatever.
Time and time again I see people looking for a freebie, and short of winning the daily This Morning prize draw (see entercompetitionsonline.co.uk for how to avoid the extortionate premium line to enter), most of us are stuck with the going rate for our mobiles.
That’s not to say we can’t get a bargain though, and if you’re heading out of contract there’s a couple of common pitfalls you really want to avoid. Firstly, don’t keep paying until you find the deal you want. I know it’s easy to just file it in the back of your mind like so many other things in life, but you’re paying through the nose when you don’t have to – once that renewal date passes, you’re under no obligation to keep paying, and the phone is yours. If you do nothing else, give the customer service line for your network a call, and tell them you want to switch to a 30 day sim only plan.
These sim only plans are designed for people who want the benefits of a mobile phone contract, in other words free minutes, texts web access, cinema tickets, whatever else is on offer, but don’t want the associated price. You keep your handset, and pay less for essentially the same contract. By opting for the 30 day option, you’re under no obligation to complete anything more than a month, so you can pick up the hunt for a new phone at any time after that. In fact, if you push them, most networks won’t even hold you to the 30 days if you stick with them for the new phone and contract!
Here’s the numbers for the main network customer service teams if you need to do this:
150 from a pay monthly Orange mobile
450 from a pay as you go Orange mobile
07973 100 150 from a landline
From your mobile call 150
From a landline call 0845 412 5000
202 from a pay monthly o2 mobile
0844 809 0202 from a landline about a pay monthly phone
4445 from a pay as you go mobile
0844 809 0222 from a landline about a pay as you go phone
333 from your Three mobile
0843 373 3333
Call 191 from your Vodafone phone
Contract customers call 08700 700191
Pay as you go customers call 08700 776655
All the above numbers are taken from the respective company’s website, so if you want to know what it’s going to cost to call them, that’s where to find out.
Having talked about taking 30 day sim only plans out, if you know that you’re going to be sticking with your current plan for a while, ask your network about longer plans. Some networks do 90 day contracts and they all offer 12 month options, so if you’re sure you’ll stick on your handset for long enough you’ll get even better value.
So, there you have it, if you’re not insane enough to test out an iPhone 5 scam, and don’t fancy your luck with the Daybreak, This Morning or any other competition to get everything you want for free, there’s a nice way of saving some cash, even if only until you upgrade to a shiny new phone.
One final tip for when you do upgrade to welcome our mobile phone site visitors, don’t be afraid to haggle. Just because that iPhone is labelled as £34 a month on the website, doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t get it for less. Tell them you want it but only have £30 to spend – £4 a month over 2 years is a saving of nearly £100, so while its a bit cheeky it’s worth a punt!