Money Monday: Doing the AT&T Happy Dance for Change in Data Overage Pricing


Around here, Mondays are loved, they are something to look forward to because we are entrepreneurs and make our own rules, and want to see if the game we set up is working. Are we winning? Winning in this case can be measured by making payroll, paying mortgage or rent and other personal bills with your profits, creating new revenue streams by designing products that work, and of course, improving the world because usually entrepreneurs set out to solve problems. It is with this blog post that we are trying out a new series called "Money Mondays" that shares how to make more of it on Mondays, and put an extra kick in your work week.

Mondays are filled with hope, and can usually be good or bad, depending on circumstance and advance planning. I call them Money Mondays, and do one of several money related tasks on them:

  • Pitch a new or warm lead for new business.
  • Send out invoices.
  • Send out invoices or links to payment buttons again if someone was unresponsive, and think of a new enticing way to get them to pay for work we completed, or if they had wanted to hire us but hadn't committed yet.
  • Receive and pay invoices.
  • Pay bills (any bills...personal or business).
  • Creatively cut expenses to keep more money.
  • Do Quickbooks (aka, catch up on my books which is so easy with QuickBooks online)

Today's Money Monday has been a combination of Creatively Cut Expenses (BAM AT&T), and Receive and Pay Invoices (thanks Super Team!).

AT&T Data Plan Pricing Change Discovered on Money Monday

AT&T has started a new plan that stops the $15/Gig of data overage charge when you bust through your data plan while watching videos (think CNN stories you find on Google News, or in the case of my husband, Big Foot sightings, and countless toy reviews, storytelling and mermaid sightings on You Tube that my children watch). If you have 20Gigs of data per month, and you were traveling a lot and not hooked into someone's wireless cable account, you may have exceeded your data. Or maybe you are in your own home, but your own wireless was turned off on your phone because you got tired of your phone auto-hopping onto slow public wireless accounts and pinging at you to join an account when all you want to do is read an article. If you do this too many times, you may blow through your monthly data plan. At that point, AT&T automatically gave you 1 more Gig of data, but charged you $15. In the case of my family, we have blown through our data for the month, and blown through 4 more Gigs of data, making for $60 extra dollars paid out this month. And this isn't the first time.

Over the weekend, I got a tip from my husband who was shopping for a new Samsung (plus you can read all of these articles): AT&T is doing away with the $15/1Gig of data plan, has introduced new data plans, and it all starts this week.

My Money Matters Affirmation Card, from Galia Gachon Down to Earth Finance

As I was reviewing my affirmation cards from personal finance planner Galia Gachon's My Money Matters Kit, I pulled out the one that said: "I take the time to manage my money." So this Money Monday, before I started my work day, and while I made my breakfast, I called AT&T to inquire about this new change. This time of the morning is usually when I make all appointment or billing dispute calls.

Here's The Deal You Need to Act On

AT&T is offering new data plans at possibly lower prices than what you are paying. On any new plan started, AT&T will no longer automatically charge you $15 for every 1 Gig of data. However, you cannot request 1 Gig of data on an as needed basis. You'd need to suck it up until your next billing cycle. Additionally, this is not available on existing plans. So if you don't change your plan, you will still be charged $15/1Gig whenever you go through your data.

Here's an Example of How My Savings Worked Out

Our Family Plan with 2 lines and 20Gigs of data (plus unlimited phone and texting) was $190.

I was offered the Family Plan with 2 lines with 25Gigs of data (plus unlimited phone and texting) for $160. I took it.

I was on the hook for 4 extra Gigs of data, and was about to hit a 5th. I asked if any of my upcoming data charges could be wiped clean.

The customer service person on the phone offered to backdate it. However, earlier in the call, I had dropped an iPad from the plan, and we had just paid the bill in full when my husband bought the new Samsung. This somehow canceled her ability to backdate. However, it was Money Monday and she was awesome, she added a $75 credit to our next bill to account for the upcoming overages.

That's $30/month saved, and a $75 credit! Plus, no future auto-fees of $15! Should we exceed data, the Internet will just slow to a crawl and basically not work. Time for new, healthier wireless-awareness practices to be implemented!

You Need to Call AT&T To Get Out Of $15/1Gig Overages

This billing practice won't automatically happen to you if you're on AT&T. You need to call in to begin your inquiry or negotiations. If you use Verizon, T-Mobile or Sprint and are on old plans, let this be your day to call them to see if a new and cheaper plan with more stuff is available to you. We have not researched other carrier's policies on how they roll out new plans, and if you're required to call in to change your plan, or if new pricing just goes into effect for you.

Wishing you a prosperous and wise Money Monday! Follow along at #MoneyMonday and #TinShingling

PS: Money Monday is a new blog series from Tin Shingle. If you have money saving or earning tips for small businesses and marketers, you can email your pitch to Please include the general direction of your pitch with bullet points of areas you would cover.