In our last update we made mention that we are looking at changing the way we get access to the internet.
When we first hit the road in late 2012 we were spending right at $130 per month for internet and phone service combined with Verizon. That was an unlimited voice and text and I think 4GB of data.
And due to a few reasons such as camping at places that do not provide Wi-Fi and our increasing use of internet data we have grown to a 12GB plan and our monthly bill has grown to $165 and it just kills me to think we pay that much for a phone that we really hardy ever use and internet access.
We never thought about how much data we used in the sticks & bricks because it was all unlimited. And when we first signed up for our 4GB Wi-Fi plan I never thought we would be using as much data online as we do now but, we do LOL!!
A big part of the data we use is keeping up with this blog. Uploading pictures eats it up a little faster than I thought. Plus we are not really computer literate and I’m sure there are updates and who knows what else going on behind the scenes on our computers that we are not controlling correctly (every time my computer takes control and shuts me down because of a update I yell out how much I hate Bill Gates!) And of course every time you watch a small video clip which is everywhere online anymore you start eating away at your allotted data and before you know it- BAM- your increasing your data plan. I think we have increased ours 3 times since we have been on the road.
And it’s easy to do because you start saying hey, it’s only another $10. Then the next time you say hey, it’s only $10. And on and on and on until before you know it your spending more than you want to. At that point you either just live with it and shut up or do something about it. We have decided to do something about it.
One option is to just cut back on our computer use. But we (I) don’t want to do that so the only other option is to find a cheaper provider. And it sure wouldn’t hurt if we could get MORE for LESS. Tough to do you say? Well maybe but it IS doable.
The answer to our problem is a company called Millenicom.
Even though they won’t come right out and say it they are a reseller of Verizon data. Sort of like Expedia buying up huge blocks of rooms from hotels and then reselling them to the public.
And one thing is for sure, we want to remain on the Verizon coverage areas. In my mind they have the best coverage throughout the USA and has always served us well so it should work for us. We don’t care who we make the payment to.
One thing we like about Millenicom is there are no long term contracts. They only do month-to-month deals. Once you buy the device you can stop it at any time, plus you can even suspend service and place it “on vacation” for 3 months out of any year.
The current plan they offer is a 3G/4G Verizon hotspot capability with a “mifi”-like device (Pantech MiFi 291). Most commonly known as a Jetpack. It is a combination wireless router/aircard and they offer 20 gigabytes of 4G data for $69.99 per month. And NO EXTRA FEE”S. It’s just a flat $69.99 per month.
Millenicom is only an internet data supplier and has no offerings for phone service so for now we will just keep out Verizon phone service for $60 per month that will give us unlimited talk and text and 1 GB of data that can be used on our smartphone.
This change will take our combined phone and internet bill from $165 per month to $129.99 per month and we will go from 12GB of available data to 20GB (well 21 if you count the phone). A $35 per month savings. So there you have it, MORE for LESS!! You can’t do that very often now a days.
Now the downside. Even though we have a Verizon compatible hot spot devise Mellenicom requires you to buy a device from them for $99.99. Then there is a $49.99 activation fee and a $15 shipping fee. So a $164.98 startup cost.
Even with the initial cost of $164.98 we will break even with our $35 per month savings in just 5 months and then the savings can begin. It just makes sense to do.
Our Verizon contract is up in May and we will be making the switch at that time. I’m sure we will do an update on haw that goes.
We know it’s only $35 per month or $420 per year but hey,,, its 1 full tank of fuel per year in the motorhome, or 6 months’ worth of Jacks dog food, or one month’s worth of our eating in food budget, or 6 months of our Direct TV bill, or ½ of our internet access bill per month, or,,,, well you get the idea LOL!!
Here is a link for Millenicom in case you’re interested. http://millenicom.com/