By Anders Bylund Posted 1:30PM 09/22/11
Why pay $649 for a new cell phone when you can get it for one-third of the cost? Slashing the price is just a matter of signing on the dotted line: All you have to do to earn that hefty up-front discount is stay true to a particular cellular plan for a while.
But what do you really get for your money in these shotgun weddings? Is a two-year contract really a fair trade for the discounts you’re getting?
Like most relationships, it’s complicated. Sometimes you come out ahead in terms of penny-pinching with monthly prepaid deals and sometimes you don’t. But one thing is almost always true: The phone companies are indeed after your money. But you shouldn’t just hand over your wallet without knowing what kind of plan you’re getting.