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How to Save on Phone Bills

Keeping in touch by phone is an expensive proposition, so cutting back on the monthly phone bill is a welcome relief to many pocketbooks, saving money when you need to.

  • Make sure you’re not paying for extra services you never use or don’t need. If you have an answering machine, you probably don’t need voicemail from the phone company.

    If you have voicemail but no answering machine, consider buying one. Owning your own machine is less expensive over time than paying monthly fees for voicemail.

  • Consider a per-call plan. Check to see whether your phone company offers a flat rate or a measured service plan that can save you money based on how often you call or on the times and days you usually use the phone.

  • Use a cell phone for long-distance calls. Most plans charge a flat fee a set number of minutes that you can use for both local and long-distance calls.

  • If you use your landline for long-distance calls, make them in the evenings and on weekends. The rates are usually lower. If you make a lot of long-distance calls, find a calling plan that suits the amount of calls you make.

  • Look into Internet phone services that offer free or reduced plans. For example, if you (and the person you want to call) have webcams, you can use Skype to make free video calls anywhere in the world.

  • Investigate package deals. Getting phone, Internet, and TV service from one provider can often save you money.

  • Send an e-mail (it’s free) or rediscover the joys of letter writing. Sending cards and letters via the U.S. Postal Service doesn’t have to cost much more than the price of a first-class stamp if you watch for specials on stationery while you’re shopping.

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