What New Phone Contract Should I Get?

When you need to renew your phone contract it can actually be quite confusing knowing what to get. If you go into a phone shop they will try to sell you something that will be best for them rather than you. Therefore, it is much better to do the research for yourself so that you know that you are getting the best deal for you rather than for them. You will be able to look up online all the information that you need so there will be no need to go into a shop until you have made up your mind and even then you may be able to sort everything out online.

The phone

For many people getting a good phone is really important. They want the latest model, a good brand or one that will do all sorts of fancy things. There are often two choices with phones. You may be able to buy it outright or have it as part of your monthly contract. It is well worth doing the maths on this. You could find that you will pay for the phone many times over if you have it incorporated into the contract. Of course, you may find it is too expensive to pay for otherwise but it could actually be cheaper to take out a loan via someone like Boutell and pay for it with that rather than doing it through a contract.

The way to work it out is to see what the contract will cost which includes the phone and if you have one without a phone how much it would cost for the same amount of minutes, text and data. Take one from the other and that is the amount that you are paying for the phone. If you have a total which is higher than the cost of buying the phone outright then it is better to buy the phone yourself than have it as part of the package.

It is also really sensible when you are looking at phones to choose carefully. Some phones are unnecessarily expensive because you are paying for a popular brand or for features that you will not actually use. Make sure that you are choosing a phone for the right reasons. Think about what features you actually use and then consider what that phone has and whether you are paying for a lot of things that you will not use. It can be tempting to try to get a better phone than your friends, but is it really worth if it means that you are paying so much money?

The minutes, texts and data

This is another area that it is important to think hard about. You need to consider what you actually use and make sure that you are getting the right deal. Some people will get free texts and calls, for example but find that they use very few. Other may get lots of data that they do not use. Alternatively, some may be on packages where they do not get enough of what they need and end up paying a lot more to get extra towards the end of the month. It is therefore important to make sure that you are getting it right.

You should be able to look back over your past phone bills to work out what you are currently using and that should help you to choose the right package. However, you should not ignore the fact that you might be able to use less. For example, if you have broadband at home, then you might be able to reduce the data that you use by only using it at home or in laces which provide customers with free wi-fi. With calls and texts, you might be able to use them less. Sometimes people will send multiple texts and that can actually cost more than a quick call but other people may chat on the phone for ages. Think about which approach might be best for the different people that you speak to. Also consider whether, if you have a landline, whether you might be better off using that for your calls rather than using your mobile. Also, if you use a lot of texts perhaps you could use a free messenger service instead when you have free broadband.

Some people would rather get rid of their home broadband and landline and just use a mobile instead. This may or may not be cheaper depending on what services you use. It can be well worth working out what you use so that you can decide whether this will be the right thing for you to do. With a landline though, you may need to keep it if people call you on that. This is because they may not want to call you on a mobile because it is so much more expensive.

Should I Stop Giving to Charity if Money is Short?

Giving to charity is something that a lot of us do. It can give us a good feeling knowing that we are helping others and we may feel that however short of money we are, it should not be something that we should stop doing. It could be that we pay a subscription to a charity, that we donate to collectors or buy items form charity shops. We may also support good causes perhaps by buying a Big Issue or helping out family members financially. However, if we do not have a lot of money then we may consider whether we should give up doing some or all of these things. It can be hard and it is worth considering all of the options.

Give up other things instead

It could be possible that you will be able to give up other things instead. It is worth carefully examining your finances to see whether there are other areas that you might be able to save money. It is wise to think about your luxuries first which are the things that it is not necessary to buy and see if you can cut back anywhere. You will also need to think about whether you can pay less for the items that you do buy. If you compare prices when you are buying things, you could find that you will be able to buy similar things or even the same things from different places for less money. This could help you to save small amounts of money on a lot of things and it could add up to enough savings so that you will be able to continue with the charity donations.

This may not be enough and so you may need to give up some things that you do not need. Whether you can do that will depend on how many things you buy that you do not need and how much they cost. It will also depend on how much money you can save by comparing prices and spending less on things that you are buying.

Donate time instead of money

Some charities really appreciate volunteers and so it could be worth thinking about whether you could help like this rather than by giving money. Obviously, it will very much depend on what sort of a cause or charity you are supporting. You might find that you will have to volunteer for a different cause or charity than the one that you normally support because you cannot do it for the one that you normally support. Not everyone has the time for this but it is something that some people might be able to do.  

If you cannot volunteer in person then you might be able to help just by spreading information about the cause online, perhaps through social media. Just by bringing attention to the cause or charity you might encourage others to donate. This could help them to get more money without it being you that is donating.

Another option is to organise a fund-raising event for the charity or case. You might want to organise a sponsored event or a sale where you can raise money. This could help you to be able to still donate the money without having to pay any out for yourself. This is something that would take quite a lot of time to organise but it might be the case that you will be able to find the time to do this and it will help you to feel better about the fact that you will not be able to donate personally.

Just give up temporarily

It could be possible that you will just need to give up temporarily. It might be the case that you will only be struggling financially for a small amount of time. Once you are managing again you might be able to afford to do more to help. It could even be the case that you will be able to make up for the payments that you missed and be able to afford to give more to make up for it.

It can feel bad to stop doing it but sometimes we have to put our own finances first. It can be difficult if we need to get a loan to pay out for things and it can be expensive and so it can be wise to concentrate on paying for the things that you need first. Hopefully you will be able to sort yourself out in some way, perhaps by finding a way to earn more money or to reduce your spending in other areas so that you are able to give to charity again. It is worth being patient with yourself and remember that many of the recipients of the money would not want to think that you are struggling so that you can help them.