With so much choice of phones and deals, it is hard to find the one that fits your needs without breaking the bank. From our experience in helping people find the best deals, we’ve put together a quick list. Doing a bit of homework will save you hundreds if not thousands in the long run.
Without further ado, lets jump right in.
1. Understand how you use your phone:
This is the most important point. Have a look at old bills and break it down into
a. How many calls do you make
b. How many text messages
c. Other calls like voicemail, premium numbers and international calls
d. Data usage. If you don’t currently use a smartphone, remember that your data usage will increase dramatically once you move to a smartphone.
Knowing how you use your phone will help you work out the right plan to go on.
2. What phone do you want? Do you need a phone?
Have some idea of what you want. Doing your research before hand means that you will not be confused by choices at the time of signing the papers. Do you need a phone, if not consider going prepaid. If you do want a phone ask your friends, go into shops, research online – Whirlpool and gsmarea.com are a great resource. You can also use this free and friendly Phone Search tool on our site.
Start your shortlist by identifying the features you need – How cool does your phone need to be? Do you need a smartphone? Which OS? Are you locked down to a particular OS? Is battery life important? Ease of use? Email access? Touchscreen? Do you like to play games or listen to music? Will you need mobile internet for your laptop?
At the very least you must figure out if you need a smartphone or not. At the end of all this, you will very likely find a few phones that fit the bill perfectly. Good.
3. Do you prefer a particular network ?
This is a small but very important step. Mobile networks are notoriously complicated and it is very tricky for carriers to get perfect coverage everywhere. So don’t take their word for it, test it out for yourself. Borrow a SIM or get a $2 SIM from Woolies and check the network coverage in your area by sticking it into an unlocked phone.
You will save yourself much frustration if you find a network blackspot before signing the contract.
4. Shop around. Online and offline.
Now you are ready to open the wallet. Once you know exactly what you need, look around. There are deals and specials everywhere, especially online. Also be flexible if a really good offer comes along that does not fit a 100% do not reject it outright – eg. 50% off the bill in the first year, but the phone selection might not be so hot.
An average $60 phone contract will cost at least $1440 over two years. Getting on the right plan can save you 100s of dollars in that time. And a mistake means that you will be stuck with it for the next two years.
Use our free Mobile Deal Finder to see all the latest deals and offers in the market and find out which ones best match your usage.