questionswhat is the cheapest paygo cell service?

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Check out www.platinumtel.com. I used them for quite a while. You can get as cheap as $10 every thing months if you don't get a smart phone. You buy a refurbished phone from them and then you're good. They also have really good customer service. Phone selection changes and they always have some deal going on.

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I use AT&T's go-phone with an ancient (at least 5 years old) Motorola Razr. We usually buy $25 in usage at a time; it's good for 90 days. It's a $1 charge any day we make or receive a call and $.10/minute, and we seldom use even that much. You can also load up as much as $100 at a time, which is good for 365 days. If you reload before the time runs out, any left-over time you have carries forward.

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I can second magic cave 's experience. Before upgrading, I used the gophone system for almost 5 years with no complaints. Just don't be late adding money, or you lose it all.

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I have a Tracfone that I've had for years - well I replace the phone every 6 months or so since there are often deals that bundle minutes with a new or recon phone for the same cost as the minutes, but I've had the account for years. If it's hardly used at all it works out to only around $7 a month, minutes are about 7-20 cents depending on the quantity you buy and the rate the phone uses them at (some phones get 2 or 3 minutes per unit). Minutes are flat rate including several international destinations.

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I second @minkeygirl7: suggestion, re: platinumtel. I spend just under $ 5 a month, love their customer service. They go off of sprint, so be sure your coverage is good 1st. I would also recommend you go directly through them, as some dealers are not helpful. They usually have a killer special in January, when the phone is practically free, if you can wait.

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I went with T-Mobile's PAYG offering for extremely infrequent calling, and here's how I did it... Bought a SIM for $10 (came with some minutes), then bought a $100 refill, instantly putting me in the gold tier (extra minutes, and minutes don't expire for a year). Then every year since, I pay $10 the day before my credit is set to expire, and it adds a few minutes and extends my existing minutes for another full year.
So far I'm on year 5, and have paid a total of $160 with lots of credit remaining on my account.
-=C=-

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I also use the go-phone plan. $25 covers 100 minutes for 90 days with rollover if you renew in time. I never get close to running out of credit. BTW AT&T is basically the only wireless provider that has service in my area.

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I second T-Mobile's PAYGO plan. As mentioned, $100 gets you 1000 minutes/texts good for a year, with $10/year rolling any minutes over indefinitely. However, as an added bonus, their Pay by the Day option lets you pay $2 for unlimited minutes on any day you really need to use the phone (or $1/day for unlimited texts)!

Do check coverage maps before changing carriers. Also, I'd recommend perusing http://www.howardforums.com/forumdisplay.php/249-General-Prepaid-discussion BTW, if you need more info, 'hofo' is free and easy (and spam-free) to join, and I've found members to be friendly and helpful.

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@magic cave: Would Tmo work for you? It's also $.10/minute, without the $1/day usage charge. (The Tmo option of a $2 "day pass" gives you unlimited calls and texts!) ATT and Tmo both use GSM devices, so your current phone would be fine.

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I use tracphone. I pay about $100 a year for a new phone annually and all the minutes I need. I rarely have problem getting bars, and customer service has always been excellent. I am probably switching to Republic when they get their dual-whatever phones. But that's just because I want an android phone so I can take credit card payments at my art booth. For purely phone use, tracphone has been perfect. If tracphone gets an android phone before Republic gets the dual-band ones, I will probably stay with tracphone.

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@ginawoot: I'll check it out; thanks for the tip!

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We use tracfones. And now Net10 (because Xmas came).
We're not phone people. My kid-inlaw can (and has gone over) use 1800 minutes a month. I do maybe 30. Every six months or so I transfer most of mine to the wife. I have 1700 left on my old phone, she has 2800.
Plug them in, pay the cards, always work. Never a problem. Ten cents minute, either one.