Smart saving on your mobile phone contract

By Charlotte Yau

You could save a packet by switching your phone contract as soon as it ends. Here’s the lowdown on how to do it.

Research by bill monitoring service Onedox shows that one in four mobile phone users are out of contract but still paying the same amount, which could be leaving them significantly poorer.

They reckon you could be wasting up to £240 a year by not switching mobile contracts once a deal period comes to an end.

Once you reach the end of your contract, you've essentially paid off your phone and are now on a SIM-only plan, just a mightily expensive one.

Onedox co-founder David Sheridan says: “If I had done nothing (when my contract ended), my bills would have continued to be £40 a month even though by then, I had paid for the handset. Simply by calling up my network and telling them I wanted a SIM-only deal, I immediately reduced my monthly bill by £24 a month.” 

How phone contracts work

Initially, your monthly bill pays off the handset as well as your usual tariff. That means that when your contract expires, you technically own the phone.

After that, the cash that isn’t going towards your tariff is essentially being wasted.

And that’s pretty silly when there are often top deals out there for upgrades.

Stay on top and save

Be sure you know when your contract is up by putting a reminder in your calendar. From here you can upgrade or switch to SIM-only.

Another option is unlocking your phone. It’s completely legal to unlock your phone once your contract is up and can be done by yourself or your network.

It’ll give you the freedom to move over to a cheaper SIM-only deal on any network after your contract is up as well as using local SIM cards in your phone to save some cash while roaming abroad. 

Want a new handset altogether? It’ll be easier to sell if it’s unlocked, and you can put your earnings towards a new phone. Nice!

You can then shop around for a new contract.

Top takeaway

Put simply, if you’re you are at the end of the contract, make sure you opt out of it. Either by getting a brand new phone on a new contract or if you are happy with your current phone, switch over to a sim-only deal and save yourself some money.

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