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Friday, September 23, 2011

Which NET10 Card is the Cheapest?

Last spring I switched wireless phone service from Verizon to NET10.  I am saving approximately 60% on my mobile phone charges by doing this.  With Verizon I was paying $1080/year for 750 minutes/month shared by two phones.  On average we used a total of about 45 minutes a month and texting was extra!

We have been using NET 10 for over 3 months now and it's time for me to purchase more service. While NET10 offers monthly plans that don't rollover minutes, I can save even more money purchasing the "Pay As You Go" plans since we don't use many minutes (and unused minutes will rollover). I like to crunch the numbers on everything to get the most for my money so of course I wanted to see which Pay As You Go Card would be the cheapest. The answer didn't come easy because NET 10 makes this difficult to figure out.  Below are your options and my conclusions.

For $45 get 600 minutes and 60 days.  A years worth of this card will cost you $270 or $.07 a minute.  Do not buy this card at all.  It is the equivalent of buying the 900 minute 90 day card but costs $30 more over the year .

For $30 get 300 minutes and 60 days.  A years worth of this card will cost you $.10 a minute.  If 1800 minutes is way more than you would ever use in a year, this card would be the cheapest route for you to go at $180/yr.

For $20 get 200 minutes and 30 days.  A years worth of this card will cost you $.10 a minute.  This card cost the same per year as the 90 day card, $240 a year, but with 1200 less minutes.  I also would not buy this card.

For $60 get 900 minutes and 90 days.  A years worth of this card will cost you $.06 a minute or $240 per year.  If you would use between 3000 and 3600 minutes a year those 600 minutes would still be $.06 a minute.  I know it would be very difficult to pinpoint your usage to between 3000-3600 but if you had to purchase additional minutes (and you can only buy 150 additional minutes per order via web) you would have to do so at $.10 per minute.  Otherwise, if your usage is below 3000 go with the $100 web card below.

Web only. For $100 get 1500 minutes and 180 days.  A years worth of this card will cost you $.06 a minute. At $200 a year you will get the most minutes for your money with this card unless you use more than 3000 minutes per year.  Then see the 90 day card.

For $25 get 750 minutes per month.  If you use over 350 minutes a month, you can go with this plan.  It comes out to $.03 to $.07 per minute. The more you use the less it will cost because the minutes do not rollover each month.  $300 a year is still really cheap compared to contract services.

For $50 per month get the unlimited plan. If 900 minutes per month doesn't do it for you, this plan is still cheaper than Verizon's most inexpensive plan at $600 a year and now you not only have unlimited talk, but also unlimited text/picture messaging, unlimited web/email and 411.

Please note that the above prices do not include taxes and fees which I am estimating to be about 11% nor do they take into consideration the cost of buying the phone.  The phones, however, can be bought inexpensively and sometimes can be as low as free if NET10 offers a pre-paid card with your phone purchase that offsets your cost.

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