Choose the right tariff
As usual, if you want to get the best deal, you need to shop around! Mobile phone sites such as Recombu have nifty little tools which will scour the thousands of deals available for you.
You simply use the slider tools to choose how many minutes and texts you need, together with how much you're willing to pay each month, and they’ll find a tariff to suit you.
One of the best things about buying your mobile phone online is you'll get more for your money.
It's also worth keeping your eyes peeled for cashback deals on websites such as Quidco and TopCashback.
Consider SIM only
Most providers have introduced SIM only deals over the past year or so, and these offer great value for money. You won't get a new phone - instead you'll get a shiny new SIM to pop into your existing handset - and you'll get many more minutes/texts for your money.
What's more, you don't have to get tied into an 18 or 24 month contract. Instead, you can choose to be on a 30-day rolling contract - so if something better comes along you can switch at a month's notice.
To compare current deals use simonlycontracts.co.uk.
If you are more than happy with your existing phone, but fancy spending a bit less on your contract, then take a look at giffgaff.
Giffgaff employs a real community ethos. For example, rather than having to deal with technical support lines, if you have an issue with your phone, the users on giffgaff’s community pages can help out. They are then rewarded with points which go towards cheaper bills for them!
What’s more, the users themselves play a part in the design of the tariffs and bundles giffgaff offers. And those bundles are seriously competitive – for £15 a month you can get 300 free minutes, and unlimited text messages and data use.
Count the cost of that swanky new phone
You'll get fewer minutes and texts with the new smartphones - so it's good to consider whether it's worth it. We tell you why the iPhone isn’t necessarily worth it and show you how two leading smart phones compare.
Finally, if you’re on an uncompetitive deal but don’t want the hassle of switching, why not call your existing provider to barter for a better deal? With so many networks vying for your business, you could soon have your provider on its knees, and provided you do your research, your existing network will often match, or better any deals you find.