The rapid advancement in technologies with innovative marketing strategies lures the customer to switch their phone carriers without paying. This temptation may be due to various reasons such as reliable service, better network coverage, cheap international roaming, and internet packages. However, quitting cell phone carriers seems impossible because cellular companies are in the business of generating profit. Their main goal is to make this as difficult as possible by trapping the customer.
There is an Early Termination Fee (EFT) attached with the contract depending on the cellular company. This fee is generally ignored by the customer while signing the contract. The customer will likely get smacked with EFT if the contract is terminated before the expiry date.
There is good news for customers if they want to break up with a cell phone carriers without paying any penny before the contract term. In this article, several ways will be present to get out of the contract for free.
1. Market Research
The first step is to research various mobile phone carriers along with their deals and offers before signing the contract. Then, use the internet to find out comments and feedback left by their users. Finally, search for a contract that does not include any termination fees or minimum termination fees with high quality service.
2. Free Trial
Take full advantage of the trial period for assessing the quality and service when a customer signs a new contract with a cellular company. This grace period authorizes you to ensure the service before the contract begins. The majority of carriers will provide the customer at least 14 days’ time period to judge the performance based on your requirements. Some carriers have cheap packages with poor network coverages.
Therefore, it is necessary to check your phone at different locations. If you feel unsatisfied with the service then you use the trial period loophole to get out of it. Contact the cell phone carrier as soon as possible and ask them to terminate the contract since this service is not satisfactory. However, the customer service will tempt you through discounts for continuing with their service.
3. PAYG Contract
If the customer is on a pay-as-you-go deal, then there is no contract involved in the deal and the customer can walk away freely.
4. Transfer or Trade Contract
All reputable companies allow for a contract to be signed over to another person because they do not care who is paying the bill. They are only concerned with money paid on time. However, trading or transferring won’t be as easy as the trial period, but it will provide you another chance for a way out. The person need can get help from family, friend or internet to find out someone who is willing to assume the contract.
It will be quite hard to convince the buyer and the seller needs some negotiation qualities. It will be a win-win situation for everyone once the contract is transferred. The seller will walk freely with any liability and obligation while the buyer will be happy with a short-term contract. Moreover, the mobile phone carrier will not lose its valuable customer.
5. File an Official Complaint About Service Issue
The best excuse for terminating a contract without paying money is to file an official complaint of bad service. If you are experiencing network issues, missed calls, private number calls, or marketing calls then call the customer service and explain your issues politely. The more complaint on record will make your case stronger and likely help you to get out of the contract at no extra cost. If you are not getting any proper response from their side then ask for a complaint under Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau since it is a technical violation of the contract.
Another viable method is to take advantage of social media platforms. Many cell phone carrier companies have online customer service and support channels monitored by dedicated people. The majority of companies will try to resolve your complaint as soon as possible since they do not want to defame the reputation of the company.
6. Relocate to Dead Zone
Most cellular companies provide better coverage in metropolitan cities. But, the remote and rural areas are generally affected by spotty and sporadic coverage. The phone towers become further apart with a drop in signal strength. It is extreme, but you can move to a place considered as a dead zone by the service provider. This can be a ticket to cancel the contract without pay an early termination fee.
However, companies may offer mini antennas or towers for boosting the signal. This can solution can be countered by using the phone at the office, home, parks, and restaurants. Keep a record of your complaints while negotiating with customer service.
7. Technical Negotiation with Customer Service
This option works in few cases and requires negotiation power and technical expertise. Initially, the customer needs to examine the bill closely. If he finds any logical point that indicates the violation of the contract or can be used for his benefit. Then, consider calling the service provider and explain them clearly.
Sometimes, a customer can ask the cellular company to match the offer advertised by another company. This is effective when the customer is more than halfway into his contract.
8. International Roaming
The service provider generally pays a fee to other networking for the use of roaming service by their customer. It takes time to get noticed by the cell phone carriers that customer is abusing roaming service. They will lean towards cancelling the contract if it costing a lot due to international roaming.
9. Join Military
If military personnel deployed overseas for a longer period, then the cellular company is obliged to cancel the contract for free. However, some carriers propose a vacation mode contract but negotiation can be effective to terminate the contract.
10. Declare Yourself Dead
One of the weirdest methods is to declare yourself dead. The mobile phone carrier company will automatically cancel the contract. In reality, the company will ask for the death certificate, medical bill, or any other proof. The customer may need to deal with legal consequences if forged documents are provided. Therefore, do not try this option because it will create more trouble.
11. Switch to Another Network
Some company attracts customers their network by paying their early termination fees. The customer needs to call different service providers and shows a willingness for their network. The company may offer to cover your fee through discussion. However, this benefit may affect the new contract. The customer may not have an option for a better monthly rate. Moreover, the terms and conditions should be read clearly before signing a new contract.
12. Mid-Season Contract Price Changes
The customer is eligible to get out of the contract without paying any penalty. The customer can ask for contract termination if any change occurs in the current package. Few companies have inserted fine print in the contract related to change in price. Therefore, it necessary to check the contract properly for taking the benefit of the regulation.
Cellular phone contracts are a type of consumer credit, just like a loan from any bank or company. If a customer shows bankruptcy or having difficulties in paying bills, there is help available from various organizations. In first instance, contact with mobile phone company and inform about financial difficulties. The company may offer reduction in fee or alternate payment. The customer can get support from various organization or consult with citizen advice bureau.
Related Article: Free Phone When You Switch
Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)
How much does it cost to cancel a phone contract?
The customer needs to pay early termination fees based on your cell phone carrier. It is normally mentioned in the contract and usually ignored by a customer while signing the contract.
What happens if the customer stops paying the bill?
Generally, payment is made by direct debit through a bank account. The account will go into arrears. The network provider will cut service and take legal action against the customer.
What happens when a contract ends?
Customer will be informed through text message, phone call or email by the service provide. The network get in touch to initiate negotiation by offering new packages.
How long it will take to cancel contract?
The contract can be terminated within few hours if early termination fees is already paid by customer. However, this process can take longer time based on the justification and loophole provided by customer.
If customer signed up to service without agreeing.
Sometimes it can happen through a trial period or promotion. A Customer might have unknowingly entered into the contract and is charged regularly. The best way is to contact the customer service of the company and explain the whole scenario. Furthermore, contact the bank to cancel direct debit or credit.
There are many options for cancelling the contract without paying any fee. If a customer unsatisfied with the mobile phone carrier, then pick one of the options and try to find a loophole in the current contract. Everything relies on negotiation and understanding for moving towards faster and better pastures. Try to avoid early termination fees unless you do not have any other option.