The no-contract, prepaid world of cell phone service works a little differently than traditional postpaid. Traditional postpaid customers are used to receiving a bill every month for the services they’ve used in the previous month, and having to write a check and mail it, or pay their bill online. In prepaid, however, you pay upfront for a set amount of usage. People have their preferences for different reasons, but Page Plus combines the two into a “hybrid” payment system that combines the best of both worlds.
Let’s start with postpaid. For people who are not familiar with prepaid, this is the only way they know. You use however much talk, text and data services this month, and get billed for it next month. And of course there are all the additional fees, taxes and “overages” that can inflate your bill. So many additional fees, in fact, that a survey by the FCC determined that 30 million Americans – or one in six mobile users – has experienced “bill shock.” In traditional postpaid you typically get locked into a 2-year contract, and it is the most expensive option for service.
No-contract (prepaid) service works differently. You pay in advance for a monthly plan that includes a set amount of voice minutes, text/picture messages and data. When you run out of something, that service simply stops working until your plan renews the following month. (Except if you are a Page Plus customer, you can add an additional cash balance to your plan to continue using a service if you run out early). Therefore, prepaid customers do not experience the dreaded “bill shock,” and prepaid service is cheaper than postpaid.
Then there is the convenience factor. Some people want to get a cell phone bill every month so they remember to pay it. In prepaid, it is the customer’s responsibility to take the action of purchasing airtime and applying it to their account before their plan expires each month, or they will find themselves without service.
Page Plus takes the convenience factor of postpaid, and combines it with the less-expensive, no-contract advantages of prepaid, into a hybrid payment system that combines the best of both worlds. The system is called Auto Refill. With Auto Refill, you don’t get a bill that you have to pay, and you also don’t have to take any action to renew your prepaid plan each month. You simply set up an online account, register for Auto Refill, and your plan will be automatically renewed each month and charged to a credit card.
Many Page Plus customers find that setting up Auto Refill on their accounts allows them to enjoy the “set-it-and-forget-it” convenience factor of not having to worry about having to do anything to renew their plan every month. Combine that with the benefits of nationwide coverage, cheaper plans, and not having a contract, and why would anyone want to stay on traditional postpaid?