Son Lost His New Phone, Need Replacement

<p>He has had a phone for 5 years, 2 months after he gets a new Droid he lost it at school. Replacement phone from Verizon is almost $500. According to ourlocal Verizon store, they sell refurbished for $149, but only if you sign up for new service. We are only 2 months into a 2 year plan right now so that is out. Are we correct that our only options are to either pay the full cost for a new phone, find one used on someplace like craigslist or ebay, or pay the penalty to Verizon and cancel existing contract? If it were stolen insurance would replace it, but it wasn't. </p>

<p>H would like this to be a lesson to S and originally wanted him to get a replacement phone on his own and get the replacement activated. We would reimburse S the cost of the replacement. I am not so sure I want S taking a bus to meet a stranger with several hundred dollars in his pocket. Regardless of how public and safe the meeting place is. S has found some phones on craigslist but because he can only contact these folks via email he is having a hard time reaching foks in a timely manner and then he needs to check with H to see if the deal is worth it, etc. By the time he decides to go for it phone is already sold. It is coming up on two weeks now and S still doesn't have a phone. Forget not being able to communicate with his friends I don't like him walking around his urban campus at night without a phone. And it is driving H nuts not being able to talk to S.</p>

<p>So we are going to take care of getting a replacement on our end. Ideas on options for replacement phone?</p>

<p>When my son lost his new phone (on a flight to CA for a job interview), my husband was eligible for a new phone so we just got a new phone on his number and then they switched. While he was in CA he bought a cheap pay as you go phone to use. </p>

<p>Other options would be to get a basic phone to replace the lost one. Then it would be up to your son if he wants to save up the money to get a more expensive one.</p>

<p>Don't smartphones have a GPS in them so that you can track them? I know that you can turn this feature on in 3G iPads.</p>

<p>I found a phone in a parking lot at McDonalds last night. It was a Droid phone and it appears that the owner had someone call it as it buzzed but I couldn't figure out how to answer it. I dropped it off at the counter and the person showed up to ask for it. They gave it to him and I'd guess that he's very relieved - the thing looks like it costs a small fortune.</p>

<p>We have feature phones which are really cheap - if we lost one, I'd just order another one from WalMart.</p>

<p>Does he have to be on your plan? If he is willing to change carriers, some may cut deals to get him out of the contract. Contact competitors. You might not even have to switch if you find a good offer and take it back to your carrier to see what they can do.</p>

<p>It's pretty easy and much less expensive to buy a previously activiated phone from another student or on ebay than to deal with Verizon. We have done that in similar situations and it worked out very well.</p>

<p>@BCEagle - yes the Droid does have the GPS feature, but S had not activated it! Because of this incident, I have recently activated it on my phone.</p>

<p>For me it would sort of depend on the kid...How did he just lose a phone??? If there was a lack of discipline or responsibility on his part..I would replace it with the cheapest phone verizon offers so you can reach him and he can make calls.. the very basic ten dollar or so phone that verizon offers (no texting/data/etc.) but a phone! If he wanted a fancier phone he can earn the money himself and maybe he will take better care of it next time!
There is another option also...if you have the friends and family plan you can just take out another line for (9.99 per month and pay the discounted price for a new droid or iphone etc. as if you are getting a new plan) will then pay the extra line fee each month (for however long you have left on your old contract)but it will usually be cheaper than paying for a new phone outright....salesman at verizon actually walked me thru this when we wanted to get an IPhone and our contract was not up for about a year...saved a couple hundred dollars this way...</p>

<p>ebay is your friend. Just make sure that the EIN is clean. Get the number before you purchase the phone and call Verizon. Many sellers post it right in the listing. They will tell you if you can activate it. We ended up with 2 brand new phones less than 2 month old one in the lake and one in the washing machine this summer. Hadn't happened in a over a decade of cell phone ownership in our family. Painful, but solved for less than it would have cost to buy a reconditioned phone from Verizon directly.</p>

<p>These phones are a necessary evil. DDs 5 month old android phone locked up on her a couple of days ago. She is at school 900 miles from home with no car. Fortunately, DH packed her old phone when she left, so he reactivated it for now. She's not too happy about using an old phone with worn keys and no data plan, but what can you do? Gotta have a phone while you're trying to fix the broken one.</p>

<p>Ask friends. They may have phones that don't use anymore. These can be good spares/temporary phones.</p>

<p>^ ^ ^</p>

<p>that is what we have always done. If someone lost a new phone, they posted on their FB offering to buy an outdated phone from a friend.
We never replaced their new phone, because after all they lost it.
But they were always able to get "last season's" very good phone at a bargain price from someone else that had to have the latest one,</p>

<p>I know I may sound like an AmEx commercial...D1 upgraded her iPhone to the next version of OS and it totally blew her phone. She had the phone for 1 year and 9 months, she was 2 weeks from getting another from AT&T at a discounted rate. I called up AmEX, they had a 1 year extended warranty (beyond factory warranty) on any electronic bought on the card. They were going to refund 210, didn't even ask to see the phone, but we got Apple to replace the phone.This same phone, D1 also thought she lost it 2 months after we bought it for her. AmEx had 3 months of refund policy if a merchandise is lost, broken. D1 found the phone next day in front of a fraternity house, but AmEx was prepared to to pay for it. </p>

<p>I would check on the credit card you bought the phone to see if they have something similar to AmEx's coverage because the phone is so new. Read the fine print.</p>

<p>We didn't have Verizon, but I can tell you what happened with us. Maybe it might be similar policy.</p>

<p>When my younger sister lost her phone on the bus, we had just started a new contract too and didn't want to pay a cancellation fee or pay to add a new line either. We checked the company website for their policy on lost phones and checked the details of our contract. </p>

<p>It was pointless to wait anymore after it became clear that whoever had picked up the phone was not intending to give it back (turned it off after my sister called her number). My mom needed to make sure that the stranger who had it couldn't use it and rack up fees on her phone bill. So she called the company, reported a lost phone, and asked them to stop service to that phone line for the time being.</p>

<p>My sister's friend, who used the same phone company as her, gave her one of her old phones. And all my mom did was go to the store and bought a new SIM card. </p>

<p>Our company assigned my sister's number to the new SIM card and that was that. Nothing changed except that she was using a different phone model and had to ask around to recover the phone numbers for her contact list.</p>

<p>*D1 upgraded her iPhone to the next version of OS and it totally blew her phone. *
I never upgrade right away^^, even though the software is supposed to be ready & has been tested, there always are issues that come up once they release it to the public.
Especially with something 2 or 3 years old that wasn't made to run the newest software it is always good to wait and see.
( even though your daughter had, had it for less than two years, the model had been out longer than that)
For Apple products- the [url=<a href=""&gt;]TUAW[/url&lt;/a&gt;] website is a good source for up to date info.</p>

<p>All these ideas have already been mentioned, but not all in the same post. ;)</p>

<p>For a phone that has been lost, I would either go to ebay or find a friend who has an old phone that they aren't using. ( I actually have a blackberry tour with a staticy speaker but it still works for someone who would mostly text or use the web)</p>

<p>If anyone else on the plan is due for a phone- perhaps they can get a new one & give their old one to your son. </p>

<p>Switching companies wouldn't necessarily work, cause you still would be liable for the old contract- not sure what the fee is to buy out the end of it, but it might be as much as a new phone.</p>

<p>I agree with Oldfort, that you should check your credit card, if it was a credit card purchase as some card will pay for lost, stolen, damage equipment.Does your son have insurance on his phone? If yes, you should contact the insurance carrier (in our case assurance will replace the phone in about a day).</p>

<p>The same happened to me with my Droid the other day. I went to ebay and searched "droids." They have every type of droids from new to refurbished to used. I looked at a used version for the droid x and bought it for $100. It came with a case, a screen protector, and a charger and the phone looked as if it was brand new. So from experience, I would suggest not ruling out ebay. My phone was from gazelle something and they sell a lot of phones.</p>

<p>In high school, my S was rough on phones -- either losing them or accidentally breaking them. I found a deal on ebay for 10 decent but basic phones for $50 total; in other words, $5 a phone. I bought the lot, and whenever S lost or broke a phone, I just activated the new one on his account. It's easy to do -- IIRC, I think you can even do it online -- and doesn't cost anything. Same phone number, same account, just a new (used) phone. </p>

<p>This was quite a while ago. I just checked the stash, and there are six phones left. So we have done this four times over the last few years, with no problem.</p>

<p>ETA: S might decide to upgrade to a fancier phone, but he realizes he would have to pay for it. So far, he's happy with his basic phone. (He does also have an iPod touch that works with WiFi, which he bought with his own money. The combination of iPod touch and separate, basic cell phone is not quite as good as a smartphone, but he's fine with it. And the monthly charge is much less.)</p>

<p>If you want cheap alternative smart phone, I would recommend the Palm Pixi Plus. You can get one from Amazon for about $36. It can do most everything a smart phone can, has GPS, does wifi and web surfing, etc...</p>

<p></a> Palm Pixi Plus Verizon Cell Phone - No Contract: Cell Phones & Accessories</p>

<p>I'd suggest you have your S research a phone on ebay and buy it himself, using paypal. Maybe he'll do a better job of holding onto the next one. Maybe he'll make a more careful decision about how fancy a phone he really needs. That worked for us.</p>

<p>I agree about using ebay. Craigslist can be great -- I used it recently to buy a used white MacBook, meeting the guy at a fast-food restaurant -- but ebay is quite easy also. You have seller ratings to guide you, and you don't have to travel to pick up your purchase. DH got his used android phone on ebay, and is quite happy with it.</p>