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How to lower your mobile phone bill

How to lower your mobile phone bill
Image source: Getty Images

Looking to lower your mobile phone bill? You’re not alone. Even with a good plan, extra charges can add up and result in a surprisingly large bill at the end of the month. And while many Brits are now effectively budgeting for utilities, mobile bills are often ignored. 

The good news? It’s possible to save money on your mobile phone bill with just a few small changes. Even better, some of these changes can add up to lots of money over the course of a year.

What is the average phone bill per month in the UK?

According to regulator Ofcom, the average UK mobile phone bill comes up to £46.50 a month.

In most cases, however, customers are paying for services they don’t need, resulting in a higher cost. For example, Ofcom estimates that 70% of mobile tariffs offer more than 5GB of data each month. Yet only 10% of people ever use more than 5GB of data. Switching to a better plan that meets your needs could potentially save you a lot of money.

Why is my phone bill so high?

One easy way to lower your mobile phone bill is to look for unexpected charges and then eliminate them.

Start by paying attention to the numbers you’re calling. Premium rates apply to numbers that start with the prefixes 09, 070, 0871-0873 and 118, among others.

Text messages sent abroad will also cost more and might not be included in your tariff. Following Brexit, this could soon even mean text messages to other countries in Europe. Text messages including photos will also cost more.

Other reasons your phone bill could be so high:

  • You don’t have the right plan. A pay-as-you-go tariff could save you a lot of money if you rarely use your phone, but an all-inclusive monthly fee could be better if you use a lot of minutes and data.
  • You’re paying for insurance you don’t need. Unless you have a brand new, expensive phone, you might not need to insure it. And if you do want to buy insurance, it might be cheaper to get it through a third-party insurer.

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How can I lower my phone bill?

If you’re ready to save, start by making these small changes and see how they affect your monthly bill.

  • Use comparison sites to find the best tariff. Websites such as Billmonitor and MoneySuperMarket allow you to analyse your bills, let you compare providers and help you find the best tariff based on your requirements.
  • Take advantage of your phone contract ending to call your company and request a better package.
  • Consider not updating your phone and get a SIM-only deal. Bundling a smartphone into your tariff will raise your monthly cost significantly. Plus, it’s always cheaper to buy a phone outright if you can afford it.
  • Get a plan with less data and use Wi-Fi whenever you can. There are hotspots everywhere (unless you live in the countryside in the middle of nowhere) and you probably have access to the internet at home too.

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