I don’t know about anyone else, but when I look for a new mobile phone and contract I end up very confused. There is so much choice out there I never really know where to start. Recently I up-graded my handset and changed my contract; I found it hard to decipher all the different offers and deals out there, especially when I had no idea what phone I wanted!
Although I found a handset and cheap contract with my current provider it’s not always worthwhile sticking with the same provider. Like utilities and insurance, shopping around different providers could mean you get a better deal and companies now don’t really reward you for staying with them in fact many reward new customers better!
Comparison sites are a god send, and make finding the right deal a lot easier, you can input what sort of handset you want and features, as well as contract length and maximum cost and if you want the handset to be free. Using the internet does make finding a good deal easy, however sometimes you want to get a feel for a phone before you buy it and this is where visiting a highstreet retailer comes in handy.
In the past I have visited a highstreet phone retailer to check out handsets and mentioned the deals online, sometimes and I stress sometimes they can match the deal I have found which has meant I don’t have to wait around for delivery. However it’s not often highstreet retailers can price match because they do have more overheads which means they can be more expensive.
It’s not always about finding the right phone and contract, some companies still offer incentives to take a deal with them, once over you could get a free video console, TV or notebook, however now handsets cost so much more you don’t really get as many of these deals. The most common enticement tends to be cash back offers. With cash back deals you can claim back a proportion of your monthly payment at certain points during the contract period (after six months and after 12 months, for example).
There are some drawbacks to cash back offers though, it can be quite difficult to claim back and you have to be on the ball to catch the time frames plus there is hassle of sending a company your statements for them to process which can sometimes cost you money. There are also draw back to other deals as well, for example you may be paying more for your monthly contract if you receive a free gift so always check similar deals where a gift is not included an extra £10 to £15 a month on a contract works out over a 24 month contract to what it would cost you to buy a video console, TV or notebook. So ask the question; is it worth it?