Here’s a cheap way to replace your cellphone if you lose it while under contract. Just go to Walmart and buy one of their pre-paid cellphones, then call up your provider and ask for them to activate the phone under your account. You’ll need the provide the serial number and the ESN of your old phone. Those are found underneath the battery (so it’s a good idea to write them down BEFORE you lose your phone).
For instance, without signing a new contract, the most basic Verizon phone could cost you $200. Walmart has got it for $36.98. The big blue box also has RAZR’s for $149.68 and Nokias for $29.87.
Choices by provider are, admittedly, limited, but if you don’t need a specific phone, this is a cheaper replacement option than buying cellphone insurance, and more reliable than a used device on eBay.
Reader Nerdicus Damonus was able to do this with Verizon after his wife lost her cellphone, again. Your mileage may vary with other carriers. If you check out the phones online, you can see which phones go with which carriers.
The only drawback we see, besides supporting oh so very evil Walmart, is that they have a history of forcing manufacturers to make and send them lower quality versions of their products, so we can only hope that’s not the case with the cellphones.
Now we’re off to to scrub our fingers with lye for suggesting people shop at Walmart.