Kids Using Phones

According to this CNET article from Dara Karr, 83% of middle-schoolers already have a cell phone… Perhaps some of you need to tear open the budget and see if you can find a way to make a cell phone work for your children. Unfortunately, there will never be a one-size-fits-all solution for purchasing a cell phone plan, because no two people(or children) have the same needs. Some never spend a  minute actually talking on our phones, while others spend hours chatting with friends. When it comes to children, they usually fit into a third group. They won’t call many people but they love playing games, getting on facebook, and running other data burning applications that can add up quickly on a plan that does not have unlimited data.

Luckily there is an option that can work around your needs and your child’s: No-contract cell phone plans(one known as pre-paid plans). Now that T-Mobile has taken the mantle of the “Uncarrier” and gone 100 percent no-contract, competitors are realizing they have to provide options that allow users to pay for a chunk of minutes/texts that they can carry with them, and don’t have to renew each month. This is a great option for children, it allows you to control exactly how much you spend each month and also allows you to control exactly how much they are using there phones.

Here is an example of available plans from Page Plus Monthly(owned by Verizon):

Page Plus Monthly Plans

Keep in mind that using WiFi features on your phone let you avoid using any data on your phone, so 500  MB of data can go a long way if you are consistently using WiFi.

All of the major carriers have low-cost arms. AT&T runs Aio Wireless. Sprint has Boost and Virgin. T-Mobile has MetroPCS and GoSmart, and Verizon, well, it just has prepaid plans. If you’re looking for a wide range of stores and solid customer service, these brands should be your first shopping stops. But there are more carriers you may not have heard of, known as MVNOs, or Mobile Virtual Network Operators. These carriers buy and remix minutes and megabytes from the major service providers into plans of their own. They might have more flexible plans than the majors, offer lower prices, or even give your money to charity.