What I Need To Know About Phone Cards – Q & A

UnknownWhat Is A Phone Card?

A phone card is a way of buying minutes in advance. Phone cards are also referred to as prepaid phone cards or international calling cards. You buy phone cards to make long-distance calls. Phone cards usually cost between $5.00 and $20.00. Hotspots can also be purchased through phone cards and in most areas cost between $40 and $50.00 or more.

How much do phone cards cost?

You pay for a certain number of minutes. The number of minutes you get can depend on the cost of the card and the destination area that you call. Most cards cost between $5 and $20. But some companies charge more based on the number of minutes you buy.

Where do I buy phone cards?

You can buy prepaid phone cards in many places such as convenience stores, grocery stores, superstores, and online from different phone companies.

How do phone cards work?

When you buy a phone card, you get an access telephone number and a PIN. A “PIN” your personal identification number. To make a call, you dial the access number, enter your PIN and dial the number you want to reach. It’s that simple.

How do I know how many minutes I have left?

Many companies play a recorded message after you enter your PIN that tells you how many minutes you have left. Phone card companies use the PIN to track how many minutes you have used and have left.

Are there any hidden fees or charges?

Sometimes. Some phone cards charge fees. On some cards, you might lose minutes every time you dial the access number or if the destination number you are calling is a mobile phone number. These charges and fees should be clearly stated on the cards package.

How do I know if the phone card I bought was a good buy?

You want a phone card with the most minutes for your money. Before you buy a phone card choose at least two phone cards to compare their fees and costs. Under federal law, that information must be displayed on the phone card package.

You will also want to know the following basic information as well:

Is there a maintenance fee?

Is it free to dial the access number?

Is it free to call a mobile number?

Is it free to end the call before the call is gets answered?

What are some money saving tips when buying phone cards?

Phone Card Savings Tips 

Buy cards for a small amount of money – for example, $2.00 or $5.00.  You are not only buying fewer minutes, you will not be losing much money if the card does not work.

Make sure to check the expiration date. Some cards require that you use your call minutes before a certain expiration date.

Make sure you see a customer service number on the card itself. Being able to get help when you use a phone card is important. For example, you might have a phone card that does not work or a card with fewer minutes than was advertised.

How do I report phone scams?

If you have problems with a phone card and can’t resolve it with the issuer, report problems to the Federal Communications Commission (888-CALL-FCC), Federal Trade Commission (877-FTC-HELP).

If you do get scammed, report the incident to the Federal Trade Commission immediately.  You can make a complaint by following the following link: Federal Trade Commission.  

If you can’t obtain satisfaction with the Federal Trade Commission,  you can try going through your own state attorney general’s office.

Contributing Source: usa.gov


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