Question about cell phones/contracts

Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 10:37 AM
  #1  
Outoftouch
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Question about cell phones/contracts

I am (finally!), coming off of a 2 year contract on my cell phone. I use it solely for travel or while I'm out, since we don't even get cell service from our home. My question is this, does anyone know of a provider that;

a) Doesn't force you into a long contract, something like 6 months or less would be nice and

b)Doesn't charge roaming (?) charges anywhere in the US? I us the phone the most when I'm out of my local area, so I would love to find a company that doesn't charge you for all those calls made when you're away from home!

Thanks for the help.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:13 AM
  #2  
x
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There are a number of cell phones which offer prepaid cards, tracfone and Verizon to name a few. You buy the phone and buy the minutes you will use. There is no charge for roaming. I got a tracfone for my daughter for 30 bucks which inlcuded 100 minutes of airtime.

Here is their website.
www.tracfone.com
Verizon also has something similar try their website or go to a dealer near you.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:21 AM
  #3  
thereuare
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You can continue month-to-month with your current carrier or go with the prepaid option. With the prepaid option though, the minutes expire after a certain time period or if you don't add minutes to your account.

I think it's cingular now that allows your unused monthly minutes to "rollover" to the next month, so maybe go on a minimum plan w/ them and store up the minutes so that you have a lot when you go on vacation.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:24 AM
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Melissa
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I also travel a lot and have found that Verizon has the best roaming network in the US, covering more areas than any other country. If you sign up for their America's choice plan or their national one rate plan there is no charge for roaming or long distance. Signing a 1 year contract with them eliminates a $35 activation fee or you can opt to pay the fee and have no contract. Even with the contract though, you can switch around between all their plans without penalty. The do have the prepaid phone option with no contract as well, I have never used it.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:24 AM
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Melissa
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Sorry, I meant more areas than any other carrier.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:26 AM
  #6  
Lou
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One thing that you should be aware of: roaming is different from usage generated from outside of your home area. Most carriers have nationwide networks today. Even if you are from, say, Boston, and you use your phone in, say Miami, as long as your provider has a network presence in both of those cities, your calls will be treated like normal, local calls.

Roaming refers to traveling outside of your provider's network presence, and making/receiving calls. When that happens, a company other than your provider hands the call over to your provider, and will always charge a fee to your provider for doing so. That is why roaming charges are always extra. You will never get free roaming because roaming always costs your provider money.

 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:27 AM
  #7  
Outoftouch
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Thanks. I really like not having a contract. I'll check out all of those companies.

 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 11:28 AM
  #8  
Outoftouch
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Thanks for the explanation Lou, I don't want roaming then, I want a nationwide network.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 12:45 PM
  #9  
Melissa
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Lou is only partially right. I have the Verizon National one rate and I do not get charged for roaming (calling from somewhere other than your home area). The America's choice plan is the same, except there are fewer free roaming areas. You would get charged if you called from Alaska for example (they have a map that makes it clear). This plan is cheaper than the national one rate. Long distance on both is free.
 
Old Oct 23rd, 2002, 02:31 PM
  #10  
Lou
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Melissa dear, please re-read my post. You are confusing on net and off net roaming. This has nothing to do with what plan you have. Anytime you roam off net, meaning on to ANOTHER CARRIER's network, you will be charged for roaming. Period.

All carriers have agreements on how much they charge each other when one of their competitors subscribers uses their network. It's an industry standard.
 
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