Switching Verizon Postpaid to Verizon Prepaid
September 17, 2021 5:52 AM   Subscribe

Looks like we can make a huge cut on my phone bill by switching my Verizon post-paid account to a verizon prepaid ($135 to $85 in month 10). Complication: We have three lines, one who lives in another state and want to keep our numbers. How do we switch without double paying, with as little tears as possible? Or anything else to keep in mind? What is the catch anyway?
posted by sandmanwv to Technology (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Call Verizon and ask them. I know it seems like they won’t help you spend less, but the person who answers the call usually wants to help you. Ask for the terms in writing if you are skeptical.
posted by soelo at 8:51 AM on September 17, 2021

I did this a couple of years ago, just walked into a Verizon branch store and told them what I wanted to do. They changed all the account information and handed me a new SIM, with the same number.

Generally, when you leave a post-paid account, you only get charged for the part of the month that you were on that plan, so there's no double-charging.

The third person might have to be separated from the family plan if they need to do this individually. In which case they will need to be given financial responsibility over their own line. This is something that the account owner has to do.

There are some catches for prepaid acccounts. The one that people like to harp about online is that your data is de-prioritized - in case that a cellular tower is at capacity, prepaid data will be slowed or even dropped entirely to allow postpaid data to go through. This may be a concern depending on how congested your current towers are now, or when you go to events where the towers are expected to be at capacity, like sports, concerts, or anywhere there is a much larger amount of people than normal. I've personally never experienced this (or have, but not noticed) but it is very location dependent.

Other minor things - you may have less roaming coverage, the website is worse, and there are never any good trade-in discounts or deals. Also if/when you switch out from a prepaid account, that's when you have to worry about double paying for coverage.
posted by meowzilla at 9:17 AM on September 17, 2021

Have you thought about porting to Visible, which is a Verizon MVNO? It's still post-paid, but it's about 40 a month.
posted by kschang at 10:15 AM on September 17, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Seconding the warnings about pre-paid Verizon. The big reason their coverage was so good was that they had a lot of low-frequency spectrum (low being better for range and reliability, worse for speed), and you automatically roamed on Sprint towers. The latter is not true of prepaid, it's Verizon towers or nothing. And T-Mobile and AT&T have both bought up the old analog TV spectrum so they are rolling out low-frequency spectrum. You have to make sure you call the prepaid customer service number, otherwise you'll wait on hold twice. They only support eSIMs (which are much more convenient) for postpaid customers. Etc. There's a surprising amount of difference.
posted by wnissen at 10:21 AM on September 17, 2021

Unless you are still paying for the phones on your plan you should be able to still get Verizon coverage through Spectrum mobile or visible mobile phone plans with prepaid plans much less than $85 per month. For instance Spectrum has prepaid unlimited everything for $40 per phone
posted by The_imp_inimpossible at 8:44 AM on September 18, 2021

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