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How to Negotiate a Better Cell Phone Bill

Switching our cell phone carrier before our contract is up will result in paying a cancellation fee, which is often hundreds of dollars. What we can do is negotiate with our existing company to get them to lower our fees. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Be nice!
  2. It is tempting to get emotional with our phone company, especially if they aren’t providing us with good customer service. Remember the voice on the other end is a real person, and they are going to be much more willing to help you out if you are nice to them.
  3. Know what other companies charge for their plans
  4. Research what your existing company is offering new customers
  5. Look at your recent bills
  6. Make sure you are actually using all of the features that your plan covers. You may be able to drop certain add-ons or get a smaller plan.
  7. Don’t be afraid to ask to speak to someone else
  8. If the person you are speaking with can’t do anything, ask to speak to their manager or the customer cancellation department. They will have more power to reduce your fees.
  9. Take notes
  10. Record the name of the representative you are speaking with and take notes on your conversation – especially if they agree to make any changes to your plan.

Here is a script you can use courtesy of Learnvest (note the website is American so the companies they have used in the example don’t provide service in Canada).
Customer Service Rep: “Hi, this is Shirley Jones. How can I help you?”
You: “Hi. I’ve been a loyal Verizon customer for five years, but my bill is getting expensive and I was wondering what can you do to help me lower it.”
Customer Service Rep: “Well, I see here that you’re locked in to a two-year contract and still have 13 months to go. There’s nothing we can do until then.”
You: “Well, I was just looking at AT&T…and see I can get a plan with unlimited talk and texts for $70 a month.”
Customer Service Rep: “Can you hold for a moment while I talk to my supervisor?”
You: “Sure.”
Three minutes later…
Customer Service Rep: “Thanks for holding. I’m afraid my supervisor said there’s nothing we can do until the end of your contract.”
You: “Well, I hate to do this, but I think I’ll save more in the long run with AT&T. Can you transfer me to your cancellation department?”
Customer Service Rep: “Of course. Hold on for just one moment.”
Customer Retention Department: “How can I help you?”
You: “Hi. I was just talking to Shirley Jones about lowering my bill and I’d like to cancel my contract…unless there’s anything else you can do for me.”
Customer Retention Department: “Well…I see you’ve been with us for five years. We’d hate to lose you! Let me see what I can do…”
Have you ever successfully negotiated a lower cell phone bill? Let us know your tricks by commenting below!

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