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You Are Eligible

Imagine that you walk into a smartphone store to ask a question about your phone. The clerk determines that you are eligible for a new phone and tells you what you need and what it will cost. It seems exciting. New phone, new case, new screen protector, new extended care plan, new back-up charging cable. All you have to do is pick the color. Done. That was so easy.

Stop! Rewind.

There are better ways and worse ways to buy a new phone. This is a worse way. A better way is to already know what you want when you get to the store so you don’t buy more — or less — than you need.

If a clerk tells you that you are eligible for a new phone, review the choices and fees, thank him/her for the help, tell him/her you will think about it, and leave the store.

Then do your own research:

  • Ask your tech-savvy friends and family for advice.
  • Read about the options on the internet.
  • Decide if you need a new phone at all, let alone all the suggested  “extras.”
  • Back up your current phone and decide what you will do with it.

You can always go back to the store prepared to buy only what you need. You will feel much better about your purchase. And so will I.