How Do You Know When It’s Time to Switch Carriers?

Shopping for a new phone this year? Want a device at a lower price? Or are you just fed up with a phone bill that keeps getting bigger?

Here’s a secret: if you want to reduce fees and get a deal on a new phone, it might be time to consider switching cell phone carriers. Making the switch to an affordable new phone carrier and plan is often the best way to get a discount on that brand-new device you want.

When you decide it’s time to switch, make sure you choose the right carrier. Here’s when and why you should switch cell phone companies to get the best deal possible.

Timing Is Everything

How do you know when it’s time to switch carriers? If your current device is lagging, overloaded, or just outdated, it might be time to get a new plan and a new phone. You might want to consider switching in the fall, when brand-new phones hit shelves.

If you know the device you want is coming out in a few months, you can start making plans now to switch carriers at the optimum time.

Switch and Save

Switching cell phone carriers is the best way to knock down costs and avoid fees up front. Carriers often offer deals to new customers — there’s no reason to stick with an old carrier. U.S. Cellular’s “Switcher” offer can get you up to $300 to offset the cost of switching cell phone carriers.

When switching, remember to check for any available discounts that could apply to you. For example, U.S. Cellular offers a 15% military discount.

Dodge Hidden Fees

If you’re serious about saving, think about a Total Plan, a simple option with no extra fees. Total Plans also let you connect more than one device without expanding your phone bill. Add lines for family members — even if they’re not living with you — or a shared device, like a tablet. The more lines you add, the more you save. You can switch to a Total Plan anytime and shop U.S. Cellular’s comprehensive selection of devices to go with it. There’s even an unlimited plan, so you never have to worry about running out of data or talk time.

Prepaid plans are another good option if you don’t want any surprises on your bill, since you pay up front for your coverage, data and device — no contract required. For the truly budget conscious, prepaid plans offer lots of deals on devices, too.

Trade In and Cash Out

So you’ve just gotten the new phone you wanted, plus a plan you can afford. But think twice before you throw out your old phone — it could be worth something. Many carriers have a device trade-in program. They’ll appraise your old device and make you a trade-in offer. You can return the old device you don’t need, either for cash or credit towards a new phone or plan.

For more ways to save on a new phone plan, check out all U.S. Cellular’s latest deals and special offers.