Organizing my cell phone to optimize frugality

I now have my very first cell phone ever.

(I could tell a long story about why I haven’t had a cell phone, why we finally decided to get cell phones, etc., etc., but that would make this post way too long and uninteresting for most people. Maybe I’ll do that the next time I’m in a storytelling mood.)

Steve and I signed up for the AT&T (formerly Cingular) FamilyTalk Unity 700-minute plan. The “unity” part of the plan means that we can call any AT&T phone line — home land line, business land line, or cell phone — without using our minutes. That is one of the main reasons why we signed up for this plan; AT&T is the primary provider in our area and most of our friends and family have at least one AT&T phone line.

AT&T allows you to check mobile phone numbers and check land line phone numbers to see if they are in the AT&T network.

So, here’s how I organized my cell phone to optimize frugality:

  • As I entered in my contact numbers, I looked them up to see if they were part of the AT&T network.
  • If my friend’s home phone and cell phone were part of the network, I added an exclamation point after their name (e.g. Steve !)
  • If only the home phone was part of the network, I added “!H” after their name (e.g. Mom !H)

Now I can quickly scan my contact numbers and incoming calls (from people already in my contact list) to see if this is someone that I can talk to for a long time without worry, or if I should be careful with my minutes.


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