BT Family L

Everything is so expensive nowadays. The sheer amount of money you have to spend every month seems to increase – mortgages, food and clothing, fuel bills – the list is endless. One aspect of modern life that has quickly become a necessity is, of course, the mobile phone. Modern handsets can do just about everything, from giving directions to playing the latest music. Mobile phones are a must-have for the whole family, including the younger generations.

If you have a large family, the cost of running so many mobile phones can be astronomical. Mobile phone plans are not cheap, and contracts can lock you in for a long time. Mobile phone providers such as BT have recognised this problem, and have created a way of keeping track of the family’s mobile phone spending. A family SIM option gives you the opportunity to put the whole family together on one plan and make savings, but is it the right plan for you?

One plan to rule them all

The biggest benefit of having your family on one mobile phone plan is, of course, saving money. The BT Family SIM plan saves you money with the more SIMs you add, so it clearly works well for families who have a few mobile phones. This might not be as beneficial for small families, as the savings are smaller if fewer SIMs are used. The current limit to the number of SIMs you can purchase with the BT plan is five, so much larger families may not get any value from it either. Additionally, the BT Family SIM plan is SIM only, meaning that each family member must already have their own handset. Those looking for a plan that enables them to get regular handset upgrades would not get much benefit from a SIM only plan.

Based on BT’s Essential Plan with 5GB of data, you can save up to 42% on the cost of your monthly plan if you add 5 SIMs, which works out at £43 per month. You will get one bill, which is helpful, so you don’t need to keep track of your bank account to see whose bill is going out when. When you take out the plan, the first SIM is locked into a 12-month contract.

If your family members have contracts ending with other mobile phone providers at different times, you can add them to the BT Family SIM Only plan when they are ready, and still make a monthly saving, however, the 12-month contract will restart every time a SIM is added. This may seem like quite a short contract compared to other mobile phone providers, who can lock you into 18-month and 24-month contracts, but it is still a long-term commitment which you will need to think about.

Data for everyone

The BT Family SIM plan caters primarily for groups who use data on their mobile devices. You won’t make that much of a saving if you only use your phone to take incoming calls! The SIMs that the plan provides can be used in all types of devices, not just mobile phones. They can be used for tablets, which is helpful if you need to work away from home, or need to entertain younger family members on long journeys. The BT Family SIM Only offers 3 levels of data, and obviously, the price increases the more data you require.

Data is used when your device is not connected to a wi-fi source, so you can browse the internet, stream music and films and check your email when you are out and about. If your family members use a lot of data, the 15GB BT Family SIM package may be the one you chose to go for. It is the most expensive of the 3 levels available, but you are unlikely to run out of data during the month.

The other two levels of data are 10GB and 5GB. It may be best to find out how much data you tend to use over the course of a month, and see which data level would be the most cost effective for you. Unfortunately, every SIM on the plan must have the same amount of data, so if you choose to sign up for the basic 5GB plan, every SIM would have this much data to use. The plans do come with unlimited call minutes, texts and wi-fi, which means you make savings if you have family members that talk and text a lot!

You can also get the BT Sport channel free to watch on your mobile device if you sign up for the 10GB or 15GB plans. This is a good offer if you don’t already subscribe to BT TV, but it is limited to your mobile device so you can’t stream it to a larger screen unless using something like Chromecast or Apple TV.

Extra incentives and limited offers

As a weekly incentive, BT is offering a free Amazon or iTunes voucher, which will be sent out within 45 days of your claim. You do, however, have to wait until after the 2-week cooling off period before making your claim. These vouchers could be up to £100, allowing you to purchase a number of apps, songs or ringtones for your phone with the iTunes voucher, or perhaps accessories from Amazon such as new phone cases, headphones, or speakers. For a very limited time, BT is also offering additional data on their Family SIM packages.

Who else does family sharing plans?

It is important to know that it is not just BT that offers this kind of deal. Many of the other providers such as EE, O2, Three and Tesco mobile offer shared SIM plans, so if you are already a customer of one of these companies, it might be worth considering what kind of deal they can offer you to stick with them.

Changing your mobile phone provider may sound like a lot of hassle, but there are deals to be had and savings to be made if you do your research. A family SIM plan may certainly be the one you feel would work for your family, but do your homework and get the best deal to suit you.

www.productsandservices.bt.com/mobile/family-sim/

Non BT Customers

5GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1  £17
2 £25 £9 26%
3 £32 £19 37%
4 £38 £30 44%
5 £43 £42 49%

10GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1 £22
2 £34 £10 23%
3 £44 £22 33%
4 £52 £36 41%
5 £59 £51 46%

15GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1 £27
2 £42 £12 22%
3 £55 £26 32%
4 £66 £42 39%
5 £76 £59 44%

BT Customers

5GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1 £12
2 £20 £4 17%
3 £27 £9 25%
4 £33 £15 31%
5 £38 £22 37%

10GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1 £17
2 £29 £5 15%
3 £39 £12 24%
4 £47 £21 31%
5 £54 £31 36%

15GB Plan

No. of SIMs Cost Saving (£) Saving (%)
1 £17
2 £29 £5 15%
3 £39 £12 24%
4 £47 £21 31%
5 £54 £31 36%