Although many consumers are using their cellular phones for free long distance calls many consumers still place long distance calls from their own home. Due to the wireless phone boom the times are better than ever for giving yourself a raise by reducing your residential phone charges. With some homework and some discipline you can save big on phone bills. Among my best tips:
- Annually you should review the last three months of your phone bills to see what local, long distance and international calls you make. Call several phone companies to find a plan that suits your needs. Don’t forget to include wireless companies in this search for a better deal.
- If you do not make many long distance calls, avoid calling plans with monthly fees or minimums. This could turn out to be a waste of money in monthly fees for calls you never made.
- When away from home use the lowest cost per minute calling card. Our personal favorite is the Sam’s Club/Wal-Mart calling card. As with all things Wal-Mart no one can touch this card on price. It runs in the neighborhood of $.03 per minute. And that, my friend, is one nice neighborhood.
- If you do end up choosing to use your wireless phone for long distance, make sure you are crystal clear on the plan details, promotions, allowable calling regions, etc. The cell phone can be a godsend, but the devil is in the details.
- Also, pay close attention to your local phone bill. Make sure you are not paying for services that you do not use like three-way calling, call forwarding or call waiting.
Using a basic example let’s calculate what your potential raise could be from fine-tuning your local and long distance phone bills. We’ll assume that you have family or friends out of town or kids in college and that you make, on average, 240 minutes per month (4 hours) of long distance calls. That plan has minutes that cost $.10 per minute.
Current long distance bill = 240 minutes @ $.10 per minute = $24.00 per month
Now, you switch to a Sam’s Club/Wal-mart calling card.
240 minutes @ $.03 per minutes = $7.20 per month
That is a savings of $16.80 per month. Or to use my favorite phrase – you just gave yourself a raise of $16.80 per month.