How to Negotiate a New Cell Phone Deal


One of the most frustrating experiences a cell phone user can experience is discovering that his contract does not fit his needs. Unfortunately, getting out of a cell phone contract requires either time (while waiting for the contract to expire) or money charged by the cell phone carrier for breaking the contract. The best way to avoid buyer's remorse is to prepare well and negotiate well when you are eligible for a new deal.

  • Make a list of the features that are most important to you, in order of priority. You will be in a better position to negotiate for a better cell phone deal if you prepare in advance and you know what you are looking for.

  • Research the competition. If you currently have a cell phone carrier, learn as much as you can about its competitors. If you know what their plans cost, what features come with each plan, and the types of phones they offer, you will be in a position to ask your current carrier to match the deal to keep you as a customer.

  • Ask for the retention department. Whenever you call a cell phone company, you are most likely speaking with a billing or sales representative who doesn't have much incentive to lower your monthly bill. Retention representatives, however, are often allowed to provide special discounts and incentives to keep you as a customer.

  • Ask for a supervisor. If the customer retention department cannot provide a significantly better deal, it may lack the authority to offer you a plan that meets your needs at a price you can afford. Sometimes, supervisors have more leeway to provide you with discounts and perks that the representative answering the phone can't provide.

Tips & Warnings

  • Negotiate for a new deal when you are nearing the end of your contract. Until then, you have very little leverage and your carrier has little motivation to improve your plan. Always be patient, kind, and friendly. You are less likely to receive a better deal if you are rude, impatient, or obscene.


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