Friday, October 19, 2007

Frugal Friday: Bonus Tracfone minutes

I recognize the safety aspects of owning a cell phone, but never had the money to commit to a monthly plan - and even if I had had the money before, still probably would not have bothered. But I did buy a Tracfone a couple of years ago, and still use it. It has come in handy more than once, especially during our recent move.

Tracfone minutes can be a little pricey if you're looking at it purely from a "per minute" basis, but the whole point is to just have a phone with some time on it for emergencies, not necessarily the best deal. I do know there are other pay-as-you-go phone services out there now, but when I bought my Tracfone, it was the only service available at the time. All the rest have been followers. So, I have a perfectly good phone, now I just need minutes.

When it comes time to renew my minutes, I always head over here:

Tracfone YahooGroup

and look at the last few posts to see if there are any current really good bonus codes. Tracfone will often email bonus codes to you, but they are usually only for 20 minutes. The bonus codes that the members of the YahooGroup manage to find are often for 60 minutes or more. Some of them simply double however many minutes you buy, so if you buy 60, you get 60 extra, if you buy 300, you get 300 extra! And so on.

I always make sure to read all replies to any posted code, to make sure that people aren't having trouble with it. The archives are public, so you don't even have to join the group if you don't want to.

One thing you should know - the bonus minutes never show up anywhere during the checkout process. (If it's a bad/expired code, I think it does tell you that much. It just doesn't tell you that you have a GOOD code. Bah.) You will only know for sure that they have been applied when you do the phone verification thing and you see your minutes change on the screen. I have not had a bad one yet, but I don't know what kind of recourse is available if you use a code but do not get the bonus minutes. I presume you should be able to call them.

Be sure to check Crystal's Blog for more frugally goodness!

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Gayle said...

I used one of the "other" pre-paid phones for quite awhile, but finally had to go with a monthly plan with T-mobile. However, I gave my pre-paid one to my boys for when they are separated from me and I LOVE it!
Thanks for your help on my blog...I am having a terrible time getting in touch with the powers that be at Blogger.

StaceyStace said...

I just did a speech in one of my classes on finances/investing/ with an emphasis on saving. I love to get good deals! I will check out Crystal's Blog! Thanks for the tips - love your blog - I've visited before but did not comment!

Lh said...

What's a TracPhone
I forgot (!) sounds familiar though

We've had cell phones for years, decade plus now I suppose!

Demeter said...

TracFone is a cell phone service where you buy a cell phone (only the ones they offer, that are set to work with their system, but there are several options of phones available) then instead of buying a monthly plan with a contract, you just buy minutes as needed. It's almost like buying a long distance card for your regular phone, but it's cell minutes instead.

It's great for people who only need a cell phone from time to time and don't want to get hooked into even a cheap plan. I spend $20 every three months to get the minimum amount available (60 minutes, not counting any bonus codes I might find) and they roll over as long as you renew within the 90 days.

Petula Wright said...

I'll have to check this out. My daughter has a Tracfone. Thanks for the info.

Anonymous said...

Recently I bought one year card from TracFone store through CouponAlbum shopping site and got a cell phone & 50 bonus minutes free by using coupon code "50809".....!

Prepaid Cell Phone Guy said...

I have used a Tracfone for years and the key is the bonus codes. I have been buying my minutes and getting the bonus codes on the same web page.

Anonymous said...

Bravo, what necessary phrase..., a brilliant idea