Mobile Phones

There are a number of issues that parents face regarding the mobile phone. Perhaps the first one:

At what age is it appropriate to purchase your child a phone?

Is your child ever in a situation where they are not under the supervision of a known adult? This may be the case if they travel on public transport to and from school, or if they go shopping or to the movies with friends. Until this point they do not need a mobile phone.  At School, they should always make contact with you through a teacher and you should make contact with them through a teacher. Some parents hold the perfectly reasonable view that until their child can pay for a mobile phone and plan they should not have one. The earliest age I would consider purchasing a mobile phone would be 13 as a rule of thumb but the later you leave it the better.

How to manage a Mobile Phone plan

When you have decided that a mobile phone is necessary for your child there are a number of factors to consider:

The Plan

One of the most efficient, safe and cheap plans is a Pre Paid Plan. A Pre Paid Plan teaches your children time management, organisation, and future planning skills. If they have $100 credit per term, they need to make it last. Children know that they have a limit. The limit cannot be exceeded. You will not get a surprise bill at the end of the month. As the only person they may need to call is you $100 a term is plenty of credit.

Before a phone and a plan is purchased talk to your child and set parameters, limits and expectations. Be sure to select a phone that does not allow internet connections or international calls.