How to Save Money on Telephone Charges

You can make huge savings on your telephone bills. Let’s take your land line first. There is a whole host of telephone companies out there just clamouring to offer you cheaper calls. Competition is fierce, and there is every chance that you will be able to save a lot of money by switching telephone companies. Contact the companies in your area and compare their charges. Remember to look at the charges for the calls you are most likely to make. If the only regular calls you make are to your parents in the next town, for instance, there is no point choosing a supplier that offers the cheapest prices for international calls but expensive rates for local calls. What time of day do you make most of your calls? Go through your past bills to get an idea of your telephone usage (if you’ve thrown them away, ask your existing telephone supplier to send you an itemised duplicate of the last one).

Charges vary enormously be­tween suppliers, and some will be more competitive on the type of call you make or if you telephone at certain times of day. The internet has a host of free websites that can compare telephone charges between different suppliers. Again the website will help you com­pare charges, or try logging on to the Magenta Systems Limited website at, which compares a wide variety of residential and business tariffs. Whichever comparison site you use, I suggest that you choose three or four companies that offer a suitable service at the best price in your area, and then contact them direct to make sure their prices haven’t changed since the site was last updated.

If there are several phone users in your household, and your phone bills are always large, you might want to consider a tariff that allows you to make unlimited calls for a fixed fee. For example, NTL currently operates a scheme that allows you to make unlimited calls to any numbers beginning 01- or 02- anywhere in the UK, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for £25 a month. The only proviso is that each call must be less than one hour’s duration, or you will start to incur further charges. The scheme also offers lower rates for calls to mobile phones and international numbers. The market is changing all the time, however, and new deals are launched regularly, so shop around to find the cheapest and most suitable deal for you.

Currently you can also make free calls from your computer, as long as both you and the person you are calling have access to the internet.

You’ll need headphones and a microphone – but you can do this for free using companies such as Skype. It also helps to have broadband, but this is not essential.

Competition between mobile phone companies is just as fierce. You’ll be amazed at how much you can save each month by switching tariffs or suppliers. For example, I used to have a contract where I was paying £15 a month for line rental with charges for calls on top. Then I switched to a pay-as-you-go deal offered by a different company, and now pay no line rental at all. I simply pay in advance for £ 10 or £20 worth of calls, and then top it up whenever it gets low. This arrangement suits me because I don’t make many calls from my mobile phone, but I do need to be able to receive calls when I’m out and about. I’ve already saved hundreds of pounds by switching to this deal. It is good value for money but it doesn’t suit everyone; you may be better off with a different deal to suit your own circumstances. So make sure you have a good idea of the types of calls you make, how often you make them and at what time of day. Then shop around to find the best deal for you. It may take some time to work your way through the large number of deals on offer, but the savings will be worth it.

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About the Author: Marie Mayle is a contributor to the MegaHowTo team, writer, and entrepreneur based in California USA. She holds a degree in Business Administration. She loves to write about business and finance issues and how to tackle them.

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