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The right phone NOT to use

by sopps / February 23, 2005 5:59 AM PST

Hi there,

I am looking for the right cell phone plan for someone who, nominally, would never use it i.e., emergencies only. I want to keep it in my trunk and forget about it for say, a year and a half, until I break down and need a tow truck (not just 911) in the boonies.

I have looked at pre-paid and pay as you go plans, but they all appear to have minimum usage requirements, such as buying at least x minutes every 60 days.

I am willing to pay almost any per-minute rate, in exchange for going long periods without monthly charges or minimum frequency top-ups.

Since I need it to work in an emergency, when I have no access to another phone, I surmise the phone will have to remain activated for these long periods. If that's untrue, and there are plans that can be self-activated when needed (using only the cellphone itself), I'd be grateful to anyone who might point one out.

In short, I don't want to pay monthly charges for this phone. I want TRUE pay-as-you-go, where I may use ten minutes some stormy night a year from now, or three years from now.

Thanks chaps.

Sincerely Sopps

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All phones
by Jerry562 / February 23, 2005 8:54 AM PST

allow 911 calls. Get a junker at the flea market for $5.

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by Mary / February 23, 2005 11:59 AM PST

As long as a cell phone is charged up you can use it to dial 911 without having service to the phone but to me it doesn't seem right to call 911 for a tow truck if you just have a flat or something but, if it is an accident or medical emergency that would be OK. I don't think you are going to find a phone you can leave in the trunk for a year and then expect the battery to be charged for usage. My hubby hardly uses his phone and leaves it plugged into the car charger at all times for emergencies so you might consider that when you get a phone.

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The right phone NOT to use
by diogenesnet / September 6, 2005 11:37 PM PDT

There are two issues here. One, is which plan to purchase. Tracfone has a YEAR card that can be purchased. The minutes are good for one year without adding. The second is whether is is a good idea to leave a cell in the car all the time at all. One of the most common reasons for cellphone failure (besides physical damage) is corrosion. Corrosion can occure anytime moisture finds its way to the inside of the phone. When an object is left in extreme temperatures, condensation can form. This will ruin the phone. I would not recomend that one leave their cell in the car 24/7 plugged in or not. Get a good case and carry the phone with you. BTW the case will also protect the phone somewhat from phyiscal damage.

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