Friday, October 26, 2007

The Price of Unlimited

One commenter asked us how we'll be getting our cell phone down to $12.50/month. The math part of it is this: Net10 is $0.10/minute (no other charges) pre-paid cell phone where you can buy a 12 month card for $150. $150/12 = $12.50/month for 125 minutes.

The psychological part of this:

When you have a contract for X number of minutes where X is a large number and if you use less than X, you lose them. What do you do? You use minutes as if they are unlimited. Sometimes you'll go over X and pay a bit more, beat yourself up for it, bring yourself back down a bit, but then go right back up to X, because "I can't waste what I'm paying for already." The price for this unlimited is a large set monthly expense that you can't adjust. If every minute you use is costing you a set amount, you'll pretty quickly (unless you don't care about the $$$) limit your usage and can adjust it based upon circumstances (e.g. job loss).

The way we plan to manage our phone usage is this:

Land-line (purchased for multiple reasons, DSL line, medical reasons): $20/month for phone portion, $10/month for DSL portion.

Long Distance on Land-line: $0.025/minute interstate & $0.019/minute intrastate with Uni-Tel Communications

On-the-road emergencies & work-related: $0.10/minute as discussed above.

Total Phone/DSL Expenses: Approximately $42.50/month.

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