Republic Wireless, Is It Right for You?

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Have you heard of Republic Wireless?

They are a fairly new (2011) cell phone provider that wants to save you money. You can easily save $50 or more every month like I’ve been doing. I love them. They are not your typical cell provider though, so lets take a look at what I’ve learned since I’ve been using them and see if Republic Wireless is right for you.

republic wireless woman on cell phone

This post does contain affiliate links, which means I may earn a small amount of money if you choose to switch to Republic Wireless, at no additional cost to you. However, all opinions are my own and I would not recommend them if I had not used and enjoyed the product myself.

I joined Republic Wireless about a year ago and have been very satisfied with the service. However, I’m THRILLED with the cost savings. My total cell phone bill for myself and one teenager is less than $30 a month! When I am ready to add the second teen it will be $40 a month. That’s three smart phone plans for $40!

If saving money is your priority, you want to drastically reduce your cell phone bill and don’t care what type of phone you have, then it’s simple. Republic Wireless is the way to go. You can make the switch now.

For those of you that need a little more information before making a switch, even if it could save you a ton of money, keep reading.

So how are such cheap plans possible? Well, Republic Wireless operates a little differently than most cell providers. For starters, their phones are different. No, they’re not dumb phones, old or refurbished. They are smart phones and the nicest I’ve ever had.

It’s cheaper for phones to run off WiFi than cell.

Republic Wireless phones automatically use WiFi first and cellular networks second. You can surf, text, share and even talk using WiFi. While you may be operating off WiFi sometimes with your current provider, you’re paying the same amount as you would if you were operating off cell the entire time.

What makes Republic different is that they pass their savings on to you when you use WiFi. They do this in two ways, with their inexpensive plans and then they also REFUND money to you every month if you don’t use all your data on a limited cell data plan. Seriously. Every month I get money refunded to me that is taken off my bill depending on how much cell data I have remaining I didn’t use. How often do you get refunded for not using all of something you already paid for?

republic wireless android phone

Republic Plan Options

Included in all phone plans

No contracts
No overages
No hidden fees
4G/LTE data
WiFi calling
Tethering
Roaming
Change your plan any time
Nationwide coverage

 

Republic now offers several plans to choose from based on how much cell data you use. They refund your account dollar for dollar every month for the cell data you don’t use. All of the plans include unlimited talk and text so you just choose how much data on cellular networks you want available knowing that you will not be wasting money if you buy too much, because of the refund or get overage charges. If you get near your limit Republic will let you know and you can add more data then.

Since I am usually on WiFi I use the plan with only .5GB of data for $17.50 a month. I’ve never went over and haven’t had to watch it closely to stay under. I’ve always gotten a couple dollars refunded to me for what I didn’t use. For my teenage son, we go with the $10 a month plan. This gets him unlimited talk, text and internet as long as he is on WiFi and unlimited talk and text when he’s not. He doesn’t really need to use the internet when there’s no WiFI available is my stance.

This brings our monthly bill to $27.50 plus taxes and then with the refund for my unused cell data, we come in around $27-28 usually. Two smart phones for under $30 a month! I think there are less fees tacked on than my previous provider too so the final bill is pretty close to the amount of the plan instead of an additional $10-15 like it seemed with my old provider.

Of course there are plans with more GB of cell data if you want more. They go up to 3GB at $55 a month but you can still add more if you need but because of the automatic switching to WiFi, unless you’re never around WiFi but yet use the internet constantly on your phone, I’d be surprised if you’d need more.

It’s super easy to connect the phone to WiFi. When your phone detects a WiFi network it will ask you if you want to connect. Once you’re connected to a spot anytime you return there it will connect automatically without you having to tell it to or do anything. No remembering to switch it over or figuring out where to go on your phone to connect. Republic phones are designed to do this automatically which is what sets them apart from other phones and this brings me to my next point.

Republic Wireless can save you hundreds, even thousands per year on your cell phone bill, but Is It Right for You? I'll help you decide

Phone Options

Here is where some of you may decide you just can’t make the switch to Republic. It depends on how married you are to certain types of phones. The first issue is Republic only uses Androids at this time. The second is they currently only have two options of phones you can use. Because phones have to be designed specifically with Republic’s auto switching technology you can not use a phone you bought somewhere else even if it is unlocked. They’re not the same.

Personally, I like the minimalist feeling of only having to make a decision between two phones. I get overwhelmed when I have to decide between so many different options. The good news is both options are very good, in my opinion. My son and I both have the Moto E and they work great, take good pictures and are fast. They can get all the same apps as any other Android, which can get most anything an iPhone can.

Moto G (3rd Gen.)

Moto G Republic Wireless

3G + 4G LTE Data
8GB or 16GB internal memory (up to 32GB memory w/ micro SD card, sold separately). Both with 1GB RAM.
Android™ Lollipop® 5.1
13MP Auto-Focus Camera
5″ 720p HD Display
Black or White

$199 or $11.95/month financed for 12 months

Moto E (2nd Gen.)

Moto E Republic Wireless

3G + 4G LTE Data
8GB Internal Memory with removable storage options
Android™ Lollipop® 5.1
5MP Tap-to-Focus Camera
4.5″ qHD Display
Black or White with removable Motorola Bands

$129 or $11.34/month financed for 12 months

Since I am a notorious for dropping my phone sometimes multiple times a week, I got the Otterbox Commuter to protect my phone. So far it’s worked great despite me dropping my phone countless times.

Republic Wireless phone protected by Otter Box

No Contracts to Sign

You’re free to leave Republic whenever you want without huge fees for breaking a contract.

In the past one of the downsides to Republic was that since there weren’t any contracts to lock you in for 2-3 years they didn’t offer free phones. You had to pay the entire cost of the phone upfront. This was a barrier for some. Recently, however, they have added financing for their phones so now you can spread the cost of your phone out over 12 months at 10% APR.

But how about the call quality?

As for the call quality, they are constantly working to improve it and the ability to seamlessly switch back and forth between WiFi and cell. For example if you’re talking on WiFi and then leave the area the cell is there to catch the call without dropping it. I will admit I have occasionally had some trouble when I’m on my work’s WiFi with calls cutting out, but I’ve figured out it usually just means I need to download an update.

This problem hasn’t happened often enough that I would give up the cost savings to switch back to a regular higher priced provider.  You can check the cell coverage for your address with their coverage check feature. But remember, you will also be making calls on WiFi as well. So if your WiFi is strong, your calls will be strong. You can also check to see if you can transfer your current number.

So should you switch to Republic Wireless?

I would say if you can’t imagine life without your iPhone or any other particular brand phone and you don’t mind shelling out big bucks every month to keep those things, then obviously, Republic is not for you. If you can not fathom the mere possibility of not having the absolute highest quality calls at all times (not that I’ve known any provider to always be able to provide this) you might not want to risk a switch.

However, if you aren’t particularly loyal to any one brand or type of phone and you like the thought of saving $50-100 or more every month on your phone bill then you should definitely give Republic a try.

Once you’ve switched you can sit back and plan what you’re going to do with all the money you’re saving.

Interested in other ways to spend less money? Check out some these money saving ideas.

 

2 Comments

    • Hi Deb,
      I checked and unfortunately it doesn’t look like Chewelah has coverage other than of course, if you were on wifi, it would work. Spokane and Colville north of you do, but not Chewelah. The grey areas mean roaming, the blue is for coverage. There is definitely better coverage in more populated areas and the East is covered better than the Western states.

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