It’s scary how quickly children pick up technology these days – but even so when you let them take this particular leap it’s important to exercise caution.
Like anything else, responsible mobile ownership is something that young people need to learn. So here are some useful tips to help you make sure that your kids mobile is fun for them and a reassuring communication channel for you – without taking any risks or draining your bank account.
We all get stuck without credit sometimes, and for most kids mobile credit monitoring is probably the last thing on their minds. But you need to know they’ll never get stuck, especially if they’re in an emergency. So make sure you’ve got the standard reverse charge call number programmed into their phone. Ideally, give them the details on a little card as well, They can carry the card with them and find a phone to call you even if their mobile battery decides to die.
Without wanting to alarm you, reports show that kids as young as six are at risk of being mugged for their mobiles. A top of the range mobile is a more attractive target than a basic model – so don’t give in to the pressure to buy the latest all-singing, all-dancing phone. Choose a model that’s modest in appearance and cheap to insure and replace (because, let’s face it, your kids mobile is pretty likely to get lost at some point). And make sure you take the time to talk to them about keeping their mobile safe and hidden. They won’t thank you for the lecture, but it might just sink in.
Speaking of which…
We’re not here to tell you how to parent your kids – you know how to do that better than anyone else. But it’s worth pointing out that if your kids mobile is more than just a free toy to them they’re more likely to look after it.
Strategies like getting them to do jobs around the house to earn extra credit are a really good way to go. It instils a sense of ownership of their own mobile, encourages them to keep a track of the credit they’re using, and most kids will be proud to take on such an adult responsibility as well.
Exercise parental controls
You wouldn’t dream of letting your kids loose on the internet without putting safeguards in place – so why should your kids mobile be any different? Many models that allow social networking also have parental controls, so look for this feature especially for younger children.
Pay as you go - always, always, always…
This probably seems obvious, but if you don’t want a nasty shock when your kids mobile bill comes in then pay as you go is by far the safest option. For older children wanting more independence you could consider putting them onto an all-inclusive tariff and perhaps even encourage them to finance this from a Saturday job or their monthly allowance.
That’s sure to make them think a bit more carefully about the credit they’re using, and monitoring finances is always a great life skill to have.
liGo Bluewave – a nice added extra
If you suspect your youngster might be a little indiscriminate about which phone they use when they’re desperate to make that call then you could have a problem.
If their mobile isn’t to hand they’ll think nothing of casually picking up the house phone for a 4 hour chat with their BFF. Result? A costly phone bill and family arguments when the line’s tied up.
A good solution is liGo Bluewave. By diverting all mobile calls through the Bluewave hub you can be sure that even if your child absentmindedly chooses the landline handset – or maybe uses it because their battery’s dead – you’ll still be benefitting from their mobile tariff.
Plus you can pair up to 3 Bluetooth mobiles at a time for multiple phone use by different family members. We can’t guarantee it will eliminate family arguments – but it could certainly help!
Looking to buy a kids mobile? Be sure to visit our online store and get impressive online discounts!