Use Free Services as Much as Possible
In this money-driven world there are actually a surprisingly large number of ways to communicate for free or for very little. One way to keep the costs down on your phone calls is to make use of these whenever possible
Phone/Video Call Alternatives
The big one you must have heard of is Skype. Although it costs to make calls to phone landlines or other mobiles, Skype is completely free to download and use on calls to anyone else who also has Skype. It’s available both on your computer and smartphones, and can be a great way of saving money. So make sure all your friends and family download it!
A lot of phone companies such as Blackberry or Apple offer free messaging services for use with anyone wanting to message someone with the same brand of phone. Alternatively, because not all you friends are going to have the same phone, there are cross-platform apps available (such as Whatsapp) to download onto your smartphone.
Use Wifi When Possible
If you’re someone who’s constantly going over your data limit on Internet, keep an eye out for wifi areas. If you live in a city there’s normally a lot of free wifi connections around, particularly around eateries and coffee shops, so connect to wifi whenever you can.
Make sure you’re getting the best deal for your money. People tend to be more scrupulous with mobile phones and look out for the best deal. With landlines it can be easy to just get a landline connection and stick with it (largely because unlike mobile phone contracts there’s no shiny new gadget to get excited about). But this can be a costly mistake and people often end up spending more than they necessarily have to. Use comparison sites and shop around to get the best deal.
Know Your Peak and USE it
The peak can vary depending on thecompany, but for most phone companies it’s evenings and weekends. By using your phone mainly in peak hours you can cut down your costs considerably.
Find the Right Plan for you
Take a close look at how you’re using your phone and what you’re spending most of your money on. It can be tempting to go for a cheaper tariff with less minutes so you can afford that ‘must have phone,’ but that could be a costly mistake if you’re constantly going over your limit.
Pay as you go is a great option for anyone who finds it hard to keep an eye on what they are using as it’s impossible to go over. These days most companies offer great deals on things like free texts, calls, or Internet access when you top up. So providing you go with the right plan, you can use your phone in the same way but without the monthly commitment or the risk of going over your limit.
Keep an Eye Out for High Cost Numbers
Before you ring a number make sure you check out the dialing codes. The high cost ones start with 0844, 0845, 0870 or 0871 numbers, although there are others.
It can be tricky, especially if it’s a helpline, as you’re normally in a desperate hurry trying to get something fixed or sorted, but make sure check before you dial. A lot of companies with premium numbers often have alternative numbers that you can dial from abroad, beginning with +44. All you have to do is take of the +44 and add a zero instead to phone as an ordinary landline number.
If this isn’t an option then try to avoid their busiest times (normally lunch times or early evenings), so you can at least avoid having to pay for an infuriating song buzzing in your ear for ten minutes before you actually get to talk to anyone.
An important thing to note is that in the UK most mobile network providers still charge you for 0800 numbers that would normally be free from a landline. To avoid this you can check out this website: http://www.0800buster.co.uk/. By dialing in a prefix code, before the number it diverts you to a landline so the calls are still free.
So there you are, five great ways to cut down that phone bill. Have any more ideas on how to save? Leave a comment below.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Liisa Silander-Hatch is a keen blogger, interested in many things, from interior design to technology and art. She writes for White Pages.