Saturday, April 4, 2009

Getting a shiny new piece of hardware and saving money!

As part of the ongoing changes at my workplace about developing new and interesting ideas in a digitally based world, my entire department was supplied with iPhone 3Gs. Now, as much as I love Apple hardware, the expense of the iPhone itself coupled with the expense of the voice or data or both plans was out of my personal reach. However, when my work supplies me with an iPhone that has both voice and data plan, I say thank you and happily play with my new toy.

I had been considering changing my personal cell phone plan from a monthly plan to a pay-as-you-go plan. I do not use all the 200 anytime minutes in my plan and consider it a busy month to reach 200 total minutes usage. I received an 8% discount because of the company I worked for, but I was still paying almost $40 a month. However, when I called Verizon Wireless about converting to a prepaid plan, I was informed it was not possible to keep my phone number. This was important enough to me I needed some time to think about how to proceed. (I had the number for 7.5 years.)

In the end, I decided that I would rather cancel my service than juggle two cell phones even if one was a prepaid plan. So, I have until April 20 until my personal cell phone service runs out.

However, there was an issue with canceling my cell phone plan: Roadside Assistance. I had added a roadside assistance option with my cell phone plan that cost me $2.99 a month. I thought this was good insurance for any potential issues that arose and added up to less than the $54 per year for a AAA roadside assistance policy. However, I was eliminating a $40 per month bill for a $54 per year out of pocket expenses. I signed up for a AAA roadside assistance plan and canceled my cell phone plan the next day.

So, by removing my cell phone plan as a monthly expense, what do I plan to do with the extra money? After some thought, I decided to break the $40 down as follows:

  • $10/month goes to savings

  • $10/month goes to house savings

  • $10/month goes to car savings

  • $5/month goes to my AAA yearly fee

  • $3/month goes to farm savings

  • $2/month goes to charity savings

Having a work cell phone is all new to me so I plan on being conservative in my usage. However, it benefits me by giving me a way to contact people in case of emergency and saving money from my income. Even if I do not receive a raise, this is a way to cut my living expenses at least until they take my new iPhone away!


  1. That's great that you can save more money, plus the iPhone is a nice toy! I have a pre-paid cell phone plan with Virgin Mobile, it's $10 a month, plus 10 cents per minute - mind you, I rarely-to-never use it, so that's the cheapest plan I can get. I agree that having AAA is essential, if only for peace of mind. I've been a CAA member for 8 years and I only ever had to call them a few times, but knowing they are there is all the difference. I wouldn't want to get stuck in some areas around here without a cell phone.

  2. @Rain,

    I only used my cell phone-based Roadside Assistance plan once, but I am glad to have it. Being single, I feel more secure having someone to call when I break down than wondering who to call and how to get out of the situation.