Every day, it seems people tell me they realize that they are paying more for their mobile phone service than they need to pay. When this happens, those people go shopping for lower-cost alternatives.
Many low-cost options for mobile phone service have come about in recent years. Three that come to mind are Consumer Cellular, Tracfone, and Straight Talk. At the same time as these low-cost providers were rolling out, many people however still stuck with their original provider on the same plan. They may have not even upgraded their phone over the years.
A common occurrence in Elizabethtown, Kentucky is Bluegrass Cellular customers who tell me they feel Bluegrass is overcharging them. They are looking to make a change. Making a move is possible but people looking to switch need to know a few things to make a smooth transition. To make a switch, you need to know about your phone and the account details of your current mobile service provider.
Bluegrass Cellular customers, especially those who are retired, and want to save money by switching to Consumer Cellular, first need to buy a new phone, according to Noah Reynolds, who works at the Elizabethtown Target.
“Bluegrass Cellular mobile phones operate on the Verizon network. Unfortunately, Verizon type phones and Sprint phones as well, operate using a technology which is incompatible with the Consumer Cellular network,” Noah said. “Only unlocked phones that are compatible with AT&T and T-Mobile will work with Consumer Cellular.”
“There are several excellent choices of mobile phones from which Consumer Cellular customers can pick,” Noah said. “Two are inexpensive flip phones.”
Noah said once a customer decides on a new mobile phone, the next choice is to keep or get a new phone number.
Luis Arquillo, another associate at the Elizabethtown Target, said that there are a few things to keep in mind if customers opt to keep their existing number. He said customers need to have their phone number, the Bluegrass account number, and the PIN or password used to access the account.
“It’s those last two pieces of information, the account number and the PIN or password that most people usually don’t know,” Luis said. “The Target guest will typically have to call Bluegrass or go to a Bluegrass store to get that information.”
Luis said Consumer Cellular needs those three pieces of information to prove ownership otherwise anyone could take that phone number without permission.
“Two more things,” Luis said. “First, when you talk to Bluegrass either on the phone or in person, be prepared for a very persuasive sales pitch to try to get you to stay with Bluegrass because they will suspect you are planning on switching carriers. Second, whatever you do, if you want to keep your old number, do not cancel your old service until your old number is working correctly on a Consumer Cellular phone.”
Noah said if customers cancel their old service even just five minutes before a successful port to Consumer Cellular, the customer will lose their old phone number.
“Be prepared in advance,” Noah advised. “Knowing what phone you want and having your Bluegrass account information with you makes for a smooth transition.”
Noah said the process is similar when switching from other carriers. If a customer’s old phone is compatible with the Consumer Cellular network, they can keep it. He said just to make sure it’s unlocked. If the old phone was built for the Verizon or Sprint networks, they need to get a new one.
Regardless of if your old service was Bluegrass, AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, or Sprint, you’ll still need those three pieces of information, phone number, account number, and PIN or password, to port your old number to the Consumer Cellular service.
For more information, contact Consumer Cellular at 1-888-502-0966 or stop by your local Target store. If you live near Elizabethtown, Kentucky you can even stop in and talk to Noah or Luis. The Elizabethtown Target is located on the corner of the Dixie Highway and Ring Road next to Herb Jones Chevrolet.