Tips for Lowering Your Long Distance Telephone Bill

If you think your long distance company is charging you too much - in flat fees, monthly minimums or per-minute charges -- the Better Business Bureau, along with the Federal Communication Commission, offer the following options which may help lower your monthly bill. Call your long distance telephone company and ask about calling plans. Ask if changing your calling plan will lower your bill, based on your calling history. Are there any monthly flat fees or plans that your company recommends? What about other charges for federal and state programs and taxes? Switch long distance companies. Know your calling pattern. Do you make most of your calls on the weekend? Or are most of your calls during the weekdays? Contact other long-distance carriers to ask about their monthly flat fees and per-minute rates. Ask about other charges for federal and state programs and taxes. You may be surprised to find out that not all companies have the same charges for federal programs. It pays to shop around! Consider dropping your long distance company. You can drop your current long distance company without switching to another company. If you make very few long-distance calls each month (or no calls at all), you may be able to save money by dropping your long distance company. If you do this, you will have no "presubscribed" long-distance company. That means you will not be able to make long distance calls by dialing "1" plus the area code and phone number. However, you can still make long distance calls by using dial-around companies. Before choosing a dial-around company, do your homework. Ask the company whether any flat monthly charges apply. Also, what are the per-minute rates? Are any charges for federal or state programs added? To drop your long-distance carrier, contact your local phone company and tell them you no longer wish to have a presubscribed long-distance carrier for your phone line. You local phone company may charge you a small fee to drop your long-distance company, the same fee it charges customers who switch long-distance companies, and it may charge you a "Presubscribed Interexchange Carrier Charge" directly.