How many minutes and texts does your mobile contract give you and how many do you use? If you know the answers, have a gold star. But many of us don’t have a clue and it’s costing us lots of money.
It’s costing us £5 billion a year, in fact.
Not each of course – even the most dopey among us would notice £5 billion leaking out of our accounts – but it does break down to an average of £195 each a year. Ouch.
This new figure comes from a study by Billmonitor, which analysed 28,417 phone bills and compared them with what the person actually used.
Money down the drain
The study found that many people are drastically overestimating how much they use their phone, or underestimating their usage and having to pay expensive out-of-allowance rates.
It’s a familiar story and fits in with our own research at the end of last year when we found that around 10 million users were paying more than they needed to. And, 11 million were either unsure about their allowance or had no idea how much it was.
It’s shocking how much people are throwing away, and it’s only going to get worse with more and more people using the internet on their phones without a clear concept of how much data this needs.
Work out your mobile budget
But who’s to blame? Is it the networks for not making it clear enough? The retailers for always trying to sell you a bigger contract? No, I’m going to be bold and say that it’s our own fault.
It’s not hard to work out how much you actually need – just call your provider and ask them for your typical monthly usage. I bet that once you know this, you’ll be able to find lots of deals to save you money every month.
You wouldn’t buy four times as much food as you need every month. You would work out what you need and plan accordingly. Why do we treat our mobile phone budgets any differently?
Have you got the right mobile contract?
I don't have a contract (48%, 108 Votes)
Yes, my allowance suits me (28%, 62 Votes)
No, I'm over/underpaying (15%, 33 Votes)
I don't know (9%, 20 Votes)
Total Voters: 223