How long have you had your mobile and are you paying monthly for the contract?


If the answer is more than two years and yes, then you’re paying too much for it.

You could make a call to your provider and halve your monthly bill, or better. The reason is simple. When you get your nice, new, up-to-date smartphone it comes with millions of free calls, endless texts (though beware the cost of picture texts) and more gigabytes of data than you will use, and all you pay is £45 a month.

In exchange you agree to keep the contract for two years. In other words, come what may you will have to pay that monthly fee (often rising with inflation once a year) for at least two years.

That fee is in fact in two parts – though you aren’t told this.

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One part is paying the cost of the new phone. The other part is paying for the calls, texts and data.

At the end of two years you will have paid for the phone and you are free to move or cancel. But if you do nothing your provider will continue to charge you that monthly fee, including the part for repaying the cost of the phone itself – a phone you have already paid for! That can go on for ever.

The regulator Ofcom is looking at this issue, but no action is expected for many months.

So solve it yourself: call your phone network and say that you want to move to a SIM-only deal. Your bill will be halved – or even better. You won’t have to do anything else, you will just pay less than half as much each month for your calls, texts and data. Because the phone itself is now yours.

When you call, the person you speak to will try to persuade you to increase the calls, texts and data that are included. That is their job. But if you have never run out of data or been charged for basic calls or texts, then stick with the closest deal to what you already have.

A recent Twitter poll found that half of us have never run out of these things.


So make that call. Halve your bills. Feel good.