Lots of folks are reluctant to switch mobile carriers, and the big carriers like it that way. They want you to stay, so they put up caution tape all around you with early termination fees, long-term contracts and complicated family plans. What’s more, a lot of people worry about things like the ability to keep their phone number and differences in coverage among mobile providers. We’ve taken note of the top 5 reasons people feel stuck with their mobile carriers, and here are some tips for getting around the roadblocks and uncovering big savings.
1) You don’t want to lose your phone number.
In most cases, you can transfer your number to a new carrier when you make the switch. It’s usually possible with Republic, for instance, as long as we have phone number access in the same area as your existing number. With most carriers, you can easily check whether or not your number can transfer before you make the decision to switch. If you’re considering Republic, you can check your number using our Number Transfer Checker.
It’s important that when you’re ready to make the switch, you keep your old carrier account active until you’ve successfully ported the number. Once the old account is cancelled, you cannot get the number back.
These are huge bummers, and it’s part of why more and more people these days are looking for no-contract options. If you are under a contract, it’s important to weigh the potential cost savings of switching with any early termination fees (ETF) you might be forced to pay as a result of making the move. What many don’t realize is that in most cases, paying a $300 early termination fee to get into a plan that costs $75 less per month for instance, will not only bring you to break even in 4 months but then becomes a huge win over the course of a year.
To find out your ETF, contact your carrier. From there, it’s all about the math.Check out the example below that charts out two years, showing what your savings could be on two of Republic’s most popular plans.
When it comes to your mobile phone, it just needs to work. Period. So for most people, coverage is a huge factor in choosing a provider. We’re partial to WiFi of course, and this is quickly becoming the biggest and fastest network out there. But cell coverage is something folks consider too.
Some providers offer service only on one network, while others will use a primary network and roaming partners - this is something most folks aren’t aware of, and it can make a big difference in your overall coverage. Republic offers an interactive tool that incorporates the coverage of Sprint and its roaming partners to tell you whether or not you will have coverage in your area--and what level of coverage it will be. Check out our Coverage Checker now.
The notion of “time-tested means better” is a huge contradiction in today’s mobile space. Some of the most exciting new providers today rely on technology that the older incumbents can’t move fast enough to leverage. A lean team is one that is more nimble and able to flex both innovations in the technical landscape and feedback from customers.
Being new and nimble also paves the way for unconventional yet highly beneficial features and options, from WiFi calling to no contracts to 30 day guarantees. There is a lot to be gained from taking a deeper look at the old providers and asking the question “do I really need what they’re offering?”
5) You don’t feel like dealing with the hassle.
This may actually be the #1 reason people don’t switch. Moving to a new provider seems on the surface to be a big pain in the you know what. But it’s actually easier than you think, and it’s getting easier all the time. Once you get past the number transfer, ETFs, coverage, and foundational questions, you’re just about golden. And there are lots of savings to be had for breaking through the inertia.
Are you feeling stuck in a contract... or have you recently broken free? Feel free to share your thoughts, questions and feedback here.