Most adults would have a hard time getting through the day without their cell phone. They’re not just for business or busy people, they’re becoming part of everyday life. So, many children and teens are asking for their own cell phone, especially during the holidays. Here are some things to ask yourself before you get your child or teen a phone:
1. What will they be using the phone for? If you have an elementary aged child and just want to use the phone for safety then a prepaid phone such as the Firefly might be an option. If you’re child wants to mainly use the phone to text, then you can look into the many text only plan. If you have a teen that wants it all, text, phone,IM, web services, then a family unlimited plan may be the best choice.
2. How does your child care for what they have now? The last thing you want to do is buy a $300 phone for a teen that constantly loses their electronics. You also don’t spend money on a lot of extra features for a young child. There are prepaid phones starting at $25 and you can get a wide variety of phones free if you’re adding your child to your service plan.
3. How responsible is your child? Unless you have an unlimited plan that you’re adding your child to or buying prepaid, you need to realize your child will be accountable for their minute use. As you know, most adults have problems with this. Some companies such as T-Mobile allow you to place limits on minutes, texts and downloads to help you better manage your account. If you don’t have a way to manage this you need to be aware of this yourself in case you need to restrict their phone use.
These are just a few things to consider before buying a cell phone for your child. Being able to keep in touch with your child when they’re not with you is a definite perk. If you decide to get them a phone be sure to educate them on how to use it responsibly and be sure to monitor their activity. This will ensure everyone will be happy with your child’s new cell phone.