Once you’ve found the right device, it’s important to think about how and where you want to use it. From determining how much data or voice minutes you need to understanding contract terms, you’ll find sorting through the wireless plan options are a lot easier by answering the following questions:
Prepaid vs. Postpaid:
- Do you want to pay up front or do you want a long-term contact?
- Prepaid means you pay for your usage up front. While it makes sticking to a specific budget easier, if you go over your allotted voice, data or texts, that feature will not work on your device until you purchase more. However, if voice minutes run out, your device can still call 911.
- Postpaid means that you sign a contract with a carrier for a specific deal or plan. This may mean a discounted device or deals in the long-run, but there will be terms and conditions that must be met.
- When does the billing cycle begin and end?
- How much voice, data and texts are allowed in each plan?
- What happens if you go over the “allotted” amount? How much does it cost?
- Is there a way to restrict usage, so that users, such as kids, don’t go over?
- How long is the contract for?
- Is there a trial period?
- If you want to change plans or get a new device before your contact is up, will that cost extra or extend the contracts length?
- If you end the contract early, is there an Early Termination Fee (ETF)?
- What’s the plan’s coverage area?
- What happens if you travel outside the coverage area or abroad?
Insuring and protecting your device:
- Does the provider offer any sort of device insurance, in case your device breaks or is lost or stolen?
- Are there available anti-virus software or other security protections?