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Think Before You Plan

Are you really getting the most for your buck?

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This story appears in the September 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

The average cell phone bill hasn't changed much this year, but cell phone plans sure have, reports Charles Mahla, senior economist at Econ One Research.

For starters, more national carriers are following in making every call a local one. AT&T Digital One Rate, Cingular Nationand Verizon America's Choicelet you avoid some or all and domestic long-distance surcharges, which can reach 69 cents per minute. Monthly minimums are higher, of course, and plan terms vary by city. The largess is the result of carriers renegotiating downward the fees they pay each other when a customer uses a competing network. Also, their coverage areas include a larger range these days.

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