Pennsylvania Office of Consumer Advocate
555 Walnut Street
5th Floor Forum Place
Harrisburg, PA 17101-1923

Phone: 717-783-5048 or toll free 800-684-6560
Fax: 717-783-7152


Consumer Tip for April 2004

Toll Free Number


 (PA only)


Paying too much for your local telephone service? Check out your local calling plan.

Did you know most telephone companies offer different local calling plans? Depending on the number of local calls you make in a month, there could be a local plan available to save you money. Check the front pages of your local phone company’s phone book where they list different local calling plans. The title of the page may be something like, “Setting up Your Phone Service”.

Most people only think about their local calling plan for a few seconds when they are doing just that, initiating their phone service. However, peoples’ calling patterns change over the years. For instance, maybe you set up phone service when you had just bought a new home, with a new baby or small child. You or both parents worked all day, so not many phone calls originated from your phone. At that time, you chose the lowest cost local calling plan, one for those making less than 35 calls per month. Fourteen years later, that child is a teenager; you have a computer with dial up internet service. You are making three or more times as many local calls as you used to, and you are paying 7 cents per local call for each one over 35 per month. You could be paying much too much for your local service. All you need to do is call your local company and change your local calling plan to an unlimited plan, and reap the savings!

Just the opposite could be your situation. Maybe you started local service in your home when your children lived there and made many calls. If they are now out on their own, you may only need the lowest cost local plan. Changing from an unlimited plan to one where you only make 35 or less calls per month, may save up to $7 each month! Keep in mind that if you go over the 35 calls per month by only a few calls, this could still be a better deal for you. The added calls are only 7 cents per call (not per minute, but per call.)

Take a few minutes and read your local phone book’s customer information section on local calling plans, and make sure you are on the right one. You can also call your local phone company to help you figure out which plan is the best one for you. It may be well worth your time.

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