It’s time to decode your cell phone bill.

You shouldn’t need an accounting degree to be able to read your cell phone bill, yet most consumers don’t know what fees, taxes, and surcharges they’re paying on their cellular plans. When the average cell phone bill is filled with confusing financial jargon, it can be difficult to decipher where fees are coming from and why you’re paying more than you thought you would.

While some of the fees on your bill are mandatory (taxes, usage charges, etc.), some non-mandatory charges could also be hiding in your bill. These fees are the major difference between the advertised price of the plan and the actual amount you pay each month.

Check out these 4 hidden fees you didn’t know you were paying in your cell phone bill…

1. Smartphone line access

Some carriers will charge you a flat, monthly fee for having and using a smartphone. It is not a charge for any form of usage, nor is it associated with your monthly service charge — it’s simply a fee for using your smartphone.

2. Administration/Regulatory fees

These charges are essentially the result of your provider recouping the cost of managing their business and complying with government regulations. The FCC allows (but does not require) phone carriers to pass these costs onto their members. Many times, your carrier will charge YOU for these fees rather than absorbing the costs.

3. Activation/Cancellation fees

Carriers typically charge a number of fees for starting a service or ending it prematurely. It can cost anywhere from $15-45 to start or upgrade a service and a hefty $150-400 per line to cancel a cell phone service before the contract has ended. Carriers use this as a way to lock members into their service.

4. Overage fees

If you’re on a plan with limited talk, text, or cellular data usage, you are likely susceptible to overage charges. Rather than capping activity when you’ve reached your maximum monthly allowance, carriers will charge users overage fees for their excess usage. This can result in hundreds of dollars in added fees for even the smallest amount of activity.

Say NO to complicated bills and hidden fees!

Don’t get ripped off by a provider looking to swindle members with confusing bills and hidden fees — invest in a company who believes savings belong to their members. Republic Wireless believes in providing straightforward plans with no contracts, no hidden fees, and no confusing monthly bills.

Let the bill speak for itself:

*Actual 2017 Republic Wireless invoice from $20/mo 1GB unlimited talk, text, and WiFi plan

Our goal is lofty: To be less of a phone company and more of a phone community. If you’re into transparency, honesty, collaboration and trust, check out Republic Wireless.