Your phone bill might be one of the priciest bills you pay every month, especially if all your family members are using a mobile phone plan. Though you may have thought of switching to a different plan or carrier, you may be afraid to do so because of the hassles and expenses involved.

For instance, you may not want to change your number or spend your time searching for the best mobile phone plans, so you just continue paying for your current service even when the price is constantly getting higher.

Well, you should know that there is always leeway for negotiation! You don’t have to settle for a phone plan that is eating up your money and not being useful at all. You can downgrade your plan, switch carriers or implement ways to minimize your monthly usage.

Here are four best practices you must implement now to enjoy significant savings on your phone bill.

1. Match your phone plan to your usage

You don’t want to get unpleasantly caught off guard by high overage fees after streaming online videos and songs overnight or having a two-hour phone call with your loved ones. This fear might cause you to get a plan that includes more minutes and mobile data than you actually need.

To determine your average mobile usage, consider looking at your previous bills. Check if your activity matches your current phone plan. If, for instance, you are using an average of 4 GB of data and less than 150 minutes of calls monthly, but your current plan includes 10 GB and 200 call minutes, then it’s best to downgrade your plan immediately.

But if you are using more than what your plan includes, consider upgrading your plan because this is far more affordable than paying overage charges. Unlimited data plans, for example, are better options if you are using an average of 100 GB of data each month.

2. Always get in touch with your network provider

Your network provider will constantly change their offerings to attract new customers or retain their clients. So make sure to stay updated on such changes by regularly logging into your account. Navigate to the plans section to see any new, more affordable plans. But for you to see the actual price of the plan and determine if you are really getting great savings, you have to choose the plan and steer it to the confirmation page.

Alternatively, you can speak with a salesperson in-store or over the phone because some carriers do not post new plans online. Ask if they have current promotions that allow you to save on your phone bills. Be wary, though, because they will most probably entice you to get a new phone too. Unless you really need a phone upgrade, consider negotiating away.

3. Subscribe to a shared data plan

Reputable carriers let you share a phone plan with other people, such as a family member, a friend or a workmate. You will be surprised at how much money you can save if you opt for this offering. In fact, business owners can also benefit from shared plans because some plans include unlimited CUG minutes and other freebies.

Whenever possible, search for a shared phone plan that offers rollover data and minutes. This means that any unused data or minutes will be carried over to the next month instead of being forfeited. Also, go for a carrier that gives device upgrades every year or two.

4. Go prepaid

If you are not using your phone plan often, perhaps because you rely heavily on Wi-Fi hotspots, consider switching to a prepaid plan. Prepaid packages do not have monthly phone bills and overage fees. You will have full control over what you have to pay. If you need to use your phone for calling someone or browsing the Internet, you just have to recharge it. And with many prepaid promotions by most carriers today, you can just spend a couple of dollars to get what you need.

Today, there are plenty of phone plans offered by different carriers. This means you have more options than ever to choose from to get the best value and enjoy substantial savings. Comparing phone plans your carrier offers each year, buying only as many call minutes and as much data as you need, and choosing a shared plan or going prepaid are great places to start. Good luck!

AUTHOR BIO :- Al-moottil P Antony is a C-Suite Executive Support Professional for Zain, a leading mobile and data services operator with a commercial footprint in 8 Middle Eastern and African countries.