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Purchasing Cell Phone Plans Online?

Old 04-16-08, 09:27 PM
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Purchasing Cell Phone Plans Online?

Hey guys-

Wanted to see if any of you have experience buying cell phone plans online? Do you recommend it? It appears to work really well if you're set on a certain phone (I'm looking at the Moto Z6c and LG Venus w/ Verizon), since the prices are significantly less (after rebate) than in-store, and then you factor in no sales tax and free shipping. Are there any negatives that I'm not seeing?

Thanks for any feedback!
Old 04-17-08, 03:03 PM
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Are you talking about from the cell phone company themselves (like straight from Verizon or Cingular) or from a 3rd party company (like the kiosks in the mall). I've never done the latter, but I've always ordered the phones from Verizon.com: free, very fast shipping, they often have online-only deals, and if you REALLY want to wait in line at a store you can also service your account there as well. It's just that every time I've gone to a verizon store, it takes forever, so I just deal with everything online now, and go to the store to check out new phones and accessories.

Wait, just saw the no sales tax thing, i guess you mean from a third party, since they would charge you sales tax (on the pre instant rebate price of the phone) on everything if they have a physical store in your area.
Old 04-17-08, 03:41 PM
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I did purchase 2 phones and a family plan from an online retailer. I made sure it was a reputable site first (a coworker had used them with no problems). There were a couple of hiccups, but the customer service I received was outstanding. A single rep took it upon herself to handle the problem and called me back multiple times to update me on the progress.
Old 04-17-08, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by fujishig
Are you talking about from the cell phone company themselves (like straight from Verizon or Cingular) or from a 3rd party company (like the kiosks in the mall). I've never done the latter, but I've always ordered the phones from Verizon.com: free, very fast shipping, they often have online-only deals, and if you REALLY want to wait in line at a store you can also service your account there as well. It's just that every time I've gone to a verizon store, it takes forever, so I just deal with everything online now, and go to the store to check out new phones and accessories.

Wait, just saw the no sales tax thing, i guess you mean from a third party, since they would charge you sales tax (on the pre instant rebate price of the phone) on everything if they have a physical store in your area.
I was thinking from Amazon.com. One of the phones I was looking at is $50... orig. is $400, but then they knock off $350 after signing up for two year service and after rebate -- that's easily $100 less than I can get on Verizon's website or in store. Just wanted to find out if you guys ran into any problems going the online route. But I guess it's perfectly fine if I bring the phone in to any Verizon store if anything comes up after the fact, right?
Old 04-17-08, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by missingtoof
I was thinking from Amazon.com. One of the phones I was looking at is $50... orig. is $400, but then they knock off $350 after signing up for two year service and after rebate -- that's easily $100 less than I can get on Verizon's website or in store. Just wanted to find out if you guys ran into any problems going the online route. But I guess it's perfectly fine if I bring the phone in to any Verizon store if anything comes up after the fact, right?
Hmm... amazon is probably one of the most reputable online vendors there is, and from a cursory glance of the site it seems like they handle the cell phone service plans (and it's not some amazon affiliate). The only thing I'd be wary of is whether you're going to buy cell phone insurance... if it's broken when you first get it, you'll probably have to go the amazon route for a return, and if you don't get your insurance from Verizon itself, it's unlikely that they'll service the phone for you. Also, I would check whether you can switch service plans, or if you have to wait 6 months or whatever. Otherwise, seems like a good enough deal.
Old 04-19-08, 03:37 AM
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ive purchased mobile through amazon a while ago and everything was solid. rebates and all. and i always get a insurance (through the service provider that is). good luck
Old 05-08-08, 12:58 AM
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I've also purchased through amazon, and it is a great deal almost everytime! To qualify for the rebates, it probably will have to be a new line, and once you get the phone in, you can call Verizon directly and add insurance, additional features, etc. They send you the phones already activated (if I remember correctly), and you have to follow the rebate instructions carefully to get your cash. They usually have better deals than buying from the main cell phone company websites. I would say go for it because you will be dealing with Verizon directly once you get the phone in and submit all the rebate information. If I remember correctly also, you have to send a copy of your 2nd or 3rd months bill, and it has to show that it is current. I bought phones from amazon a few years ago, so the rules might have changed. I think they just want to make sure the account is still active and in good standing before they fork over your rebate. Read everything on the rebate form and you should be fine.

Also, I think Verizon will handle any problem that comes up with the phone within the first year since the phone will be covered under the manufacture's warranty. You might want to ask or call Verizon to find out for sure if you don't want to buy the insurance. Even though you didn't buy it from Verizon, they might take care of it for you. Then again, you might have to go through Amazon or the cell phone manufacture directly. I don't think I ran into any problems with the phones I got from amazon, but the ones I bought after that were from the cellular company (T-Mobile), and they took care of one phone that messed up on me because it was still under warranty.

Last edited by mr. b_dvd; 05-08-08 at 01:04 AM.
Old 05-08-08, 02:43 AM
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I bought a T-mob phone from Amazon a while ago and everything went fine. The terms have become stricter (2 yrs. required) and you are not allowed to change much of your plan once you sign up or they'll impose a huge penalty. You can always add features, insurance, etc. I never add the insurance since the phones have a 1 yr. warranty and I'm very careful with them, plus I try to get 1 yr. contracts only.

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