Written by Mr. Crumbs.
What if I told you, that you could get your cell phone bill down to $14.78 each month – with unlimited talk & text + a generous data allowance?
Not to mention, you’d have access to all the data you’d want, and you’d get reimbursed for the data that you didn’t use?
Reimbursed for data? Yup.
Sounds too good to be true?
Last month, we posted a review on Republic Wireless. After being long time Verizon customers, we finally made the switch to a different carrier because we were flat out tired of the too-good-to-be-true deals and 2 year contracts.
To make a long story short, the straw that broke the camel’s back was the $0.99 cent iPhone deal that ended up really being $185 because of all the taxes and fees Verizon wanted to tack on. 99¢ for the new phone + $45 in sales tax+ $30 to transfer phones (x2) + $40 to activate (x2)
But before we cut ties with Verizon and signed up with Republic Wireless, we crunched numbers and did the math to see if switching saved us any money.
Because what’s the point of switching if it ended up costing us more?
So here are the numbers we came up with, laid out for you too, in case you’ve been curious about Republic Wireless and wondering if switching would save you anything too.
Comparing the Plans (and getting a Moto X)
The above figures are a comparison of our new plan (left) to our old plan (right).
You can see the type of phone, limits on minutes and texting as well as data – for both myself and Tiffany – and this is the plan we’ve been using for the past 9 years (except for data, which was added just last year).
Right off the bat, you can see that by switching to Republic, we got more for our money and weren’t signed into a contract. As for the numbers, we’re now saving $70 every month.
This means we will save $840 over the course of 12 months, and $1,680 over the course of a typical 2-year contract.
Now when we originally made the switch, Verizon was all into contracts.
But we recently had a reader comment on our Facebook page that Verizon changed their plan structure and eliminated the 2 year contract and added more flexible packages (because people don’t like contracts). The new plan they offer is called the Verizon Plan.
Considering this new plan structure and buying the phones outright (since Verizon eliminated the subsidizing of phones), here’s what you’ll see if you went to each respective website and bought the same exact phone (Moto X):
Comparing the Costs
Start up costs: Verizon costs over $400 more.
Please keep in mind, that Republic Wireless offers a much cheaper phone for $129 and certified pre-owned phones for as low as $69.
Monthly costs: Verizon is $35 more per month.
Verizon shares the 1GB of data between phones. With Republic Wireless, each phone gets 1/2 GB for a total of 1 GB.
Long term costs: Over a 24 month period, Verizon is still $1,240 more expensive, with their newer, more competitive plan.
But wait, it gets better.
Republic REFUNDS you for data you don’t use, which means that your monthly savings could be that much greater.
In their research, Republic Wireless found that the average phone bill is only $14.82 when unused data is refunded. This now bumps up the savings over Verizon to $1360 over a typical 2-year contract period.
Update: I just found out that Republic Wireless offers an INCREDIBLE discount to teachers! Half off wireless plans AND half off data. This is in addition to the incredible prices I already shared.
What if you go over your data?
According to Verizon, “If you go over your data allowance at all, you’ll be charged the $15 overage rate at a minimum.”
According to Republic, you can’t go over. Once you reach your data limit, you can buy more data or simply wait till your next billing cycle.
So you’re paying for what you use, and not paying for what you don’t. Seriously, does it get any better than that?
In my opinion, Verizon and most other large carriers are like an ATM with fees attached for every single transaction. With Republic it’s straight and to the point. We like that.
Don’t like it? Send it back.
Yep. And that’s really what separates Republic Wireless from the pack. If you invest $600 into a few new phones and don’t like them, get your money back with the 30 day money back guarantee.
Good luck getting the same in return with the other companies.
Note: We did not price compare ATT for this review, but we’d assume that their prices are in line with Verizon, based on past experience.
Update, 2 Months Later…
I’m now a full two months into Republic Wireless and Tiffany is at the 30 day mark. We’ve had quite a few inquiries on how we like it so far and just like all products and services we recommend, we’re going to give you the good and the bad.
We love Republic, but there are two drawbacks we’d like to point out so that you can make an informed decision.
(1) If you don’t require a lot of data and are comfortable using wifi, this is a great service.
If you operate in an area without wifi and require a lot of data, this plan may not be for you.
(2) For those worried about security over wifi, you have several options:
- Turn off wifi so you’re on cell service
- If you’re browsing the web, make sure the site is https (note the ‘s’ which stands for ‘secure’)
- Simply don’t use wifi
We’re comfortable using open wifi for anything non-sensitive, which is 99% of what we use the wifi on our phones for, but if this is a concern of yours, we recommend to contact Republic Wireless directly so they can discuss it with you.
No Service is Perfect
If you do make the switch to Republic Wireless, please be aware that they do occasionally have kinks that need to be worked out – especially since this is new, hybrid technology. In our opinion, this should be expected from a growing, smaller company (and we love that they put this in their mission statement).
So far, the only negative experience I had was a 1-2 day window where I wasn’t receiving every phone call live; instead, they were rolling to voicemail. During that same time frame a notification appeared on my phone that said I needed to update the Republic App. As soon as I updated the software, the problem was resolved.
The Bottom Line
If you’re starting from scratch, you save right off the bat by choosing Republic Wireless from the start. Then you continue to save every month.
If you’re grandfathered into Verizon’s old plans and already have a phone, it would take anywhere from 3-6 months to break even from the switch (it all depends on what your service was and the phone you choose). Once you hit the break even point though, you’re saving a minimum of 50% every month.
For us, this made the switch worth it. We love Republic (and the lower phone bill!) and haven’t looked back since the switch!