My monthly phone expense is $7.08. Here is how I managed to get my monthly phone costs so low.
First, I already had an old T-Mobile phone that I wasn’t using. The good thing about T-Mobile phones is you can just pop a new sim card in them and you have a working phone again. Since I already had the phone my next step was to buy a new sim card for it. I bought a new sim card with 1000 minutes for $85 off eBay. The retail price for 1000 minutes is usually $100. The drawback to buying off eBay is the card already has a phone number assigned to it which will probably not be in your local area code. This wasn’t a problem for me since most of the people I call are long distance anyway. You can change the area code of the phone number but you have to wait 90 days.
When you buy 1000 minutes from T-Mobile the minutes won’t expire for one year. The biggest benefit to buying the 1000 minutes though is you qualify for the Gold Reward status. This means in the future I could buy as little as 30 minutes and they wouldn’t expire for a year. If I only bought a $10 card the second year my monthly phone cost would only be $0.83 a month. Of course I probably will use more than 30 minutes in a year. I might be able to get by with 1030 minutes in two years though, that would make my average monthly cost $3.96 over two years. If you keep repeating this for a third,fourth,fifth year you can bring the cost even lower.
Right now my cell phone is my only phone. Last year I supplemented my cell phone by using Skype or Messenger phone when I planned on having extended phone conversations. I haven’t used Skype this year since it is no longer free. At $14.95 a year though it wouldn’t add much to total phone cost. I haven’t signed up for it yet though since the people I usually have longer conversations with also have Yahoo Messenger and I can call them for free.
This plan works well for me but probably wouldn’t work for those who use their phone more often. I don’t really like to talk on the phone much so it is easy for me to talk less than 83 minutes a month on my cell phone. I usually use much less than that. Even if you couldn’t use this as your primary phone it would make a cheap secondary phone.