DH and I have briefly thought of dumping the landline. First of all, we wish to port our existing home phone number should we do so. The options we seem to be coming up with are:
1. Purchase a dedicated prepaid cellphone (most likely Straight Talk) and port our home phone # to it.
2. Purchase a MagicJack Plus and port our home phone # to it if allowed.
3. Possibly enroll with Skype.
If anyone has ideas as to which of those options is the best (and hopefully most cost-saving), we are open to your input. Any other options suggested would also be appreciated.
DH has been squeamish about getting rid of the landline, but we are one of the areas that Verizon sold out to Frontier. Within just a couple of months after the Frontier takeover, our phone bill increased at least 10-15 dollars a month. It is now in the same price category as the unlimited Straight Talk plan and we think just the $30 plan would be sufficient for it, as he, our son and I all have personal cellphones in addition to the home phone. Our reason for wanting to keep our home phone # is for our family and friends who have known it for years.
Again, all suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!
Vontage works great, about 25 a month, unlimited US, plus two foreign countries. Lets you keep a landline. I believe after all taxes, etc, the cost is about $39. You can dial into it and retrieve messages from wherever you are. Needs an active internet connection.
If it is only for friends and family what does it matter. Give them the new number. I am sure unless they are all 96, they will port themselves to the new number very easy.
Not sure you can port to magic jack or Skype, not even sure about a prepaid.
I got rid of landline completely, and just give out cell number to those I wish. A lot simpilier and cheaper.
whatever you decide to do i'd advise you to take into consideration how your new service will handle 9-1-1 calls. virtually all 9-1-1 call centers support phase 2 and phase 3 wireless now (phase 2 provides the 9-1-1 operator your callback telephone number; phase 3 provides your calling location in the form of an address or lat/long coordinates). not sure about services like skype, vonage, etc.
you want to make sure that calls to 9-1-1 made from your telephone are routed to the specific 9-1-1 call center that has jurisdiction for your address or at least can transfer your call to the appropriate call center.
good luck to you.
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I switched our landline to Verizon Home Phone Connect. It lets you connect all the phones in your house to a box that uses the cell phone system. Costs us $25/month with all the taxes, free long distance, caller ID, voice mail, etc. It has a battery backup so it even works during power failures. With a 2 year contract the equipment was free. I think there was a $35 startup fee. We used it for 10 days on a temporary number to be sure we were happy (they give you 2 weeks to cancel) and then had our old number transfered. We have used it for over a year now and are still happy. We even take it on trips and plug it in at night with a small phone so we can get our messages and have our home numer to return calls. Even made up a 12 volt cord for the camper.
We ported our landline number to a Google Voice account, and have the account set to forward all calls to both of our cell phones. Caller ID helps us decide who will answer, just as it did when we had multiple phones on the landline.
Before anyone jumps in to say you can't port a landline number to Google Voice, only cell phone numbers, you're right. That is you can't do it directly. What we did, was port our landline number to a temporarily reactivated Tracfone handset we had on hand first, and then a couple of weeks later ported it from Tracfone to Google since now it was a cell phone number. If we didn't have an old Tracfone handset laying around, we would have bought the cheapest one we could find to get the job done.
I still have a land line. It's only $22/month and that includes all the taxes and fees and such. Shut off out going long distance a long time ago. Use a calling card that we've had for 10 years now.. Still have about 250 minutes left on it! 1-800 numbers work fine outgoing too...
We like the land line because that's all we give out for our 'home phone' number when asked on applications and such. It's hooked to an answering machine and it's great for screening calls... If it's something legit, they leave a message or talk to the machine and if we are screening, we'll pick up.. If not, they leave a message or we ignore it..
We have cell phones too, but it's a pretty basic package with so many shared minutes a month (my wife and I have our own cell numbers).
Works for us.. Sure, with the cell phones, we pay a C note a month for phone service, but it works for us and we maintain our privacy the way we like it.
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Lots of people have dumped a landline, and put a lot of people out of work, those who used to install landlines, and did maintenance on phone line systems!
It was part of the things on how technology has changed the number of people working.
I have not had a landline since 2005, and don't miss it at all. Yet I would recommend signing up for a monthly contract, and normally they come in a 2 year agreement, that normally includes the phone cost prorated during the contract length. So consider about $5 or $10 of that monthly cost what the phone is actually costing you.
If ya'all are that squeamish about completely giving up the home phone - we decided to contact our provider and "suspend" our home phone service while we're on the road for the next 4/5 months... That cut our home phone bill in half (to under $18) and allowed us to keep our number while we decide whether to give it up all together or port it somewhere else. May not be a direct answer, but we went this route simply to give us time. Maybe your phone company offers that too.
You must check into the Google number -it's very cool (AND FREE). We have one for general purpose (we put it on forms and such) and it auto-forwards to our regular cell number. We have a Straight Talk cell phone and love it. We also use Skype with our laptop, and best of all, video calls are free to anyone who also has a Skype account. We've learned most kids / young adults have it or can get it on their cell phones. That way we get to 'see' the grandson as much as we want! Downside of course is that we have to have good signal to our Verizon Mifi (which we also LOVE). We're looking at Skype for regular phone service, but aren't ready to commit to "computer calls" just yet...
Lots of techno choices, but don't be intimidated, they're not too hard to learn and/or use - even for total backwoods TN hillbillies like us.
I haven't given up ours yet for various reasons, but I did have long distance and vm taken off. It was like pulling a tooth getting them to remove the long distance. I used to work in the industry and know it is nothing or them to remove that feature. Anyway, we use the cell for long distance.