- Trying a phone card for the first time - Many people, even active callers, tend to purchase a low value phone card when making an initial purchase. In this way they can reduce the risk of trying a phone card from a new or unfamiliar company. In the worst case, if the card is not what without they wanted and it is difficult to obtain a refund, they are only out a small amount of money.
- A Method of Controlling Expenses - Some people purchase low cost phone cards as a way of controlling expenses. If they purchase a $5 phone card than the most they can spend for a given time period is $5. If they talk longer than expected the prepaid card will simply run out of money. The call will end and they will have spent the money they budgeted for that period of time.
- Short Term Use - Some people only want to use a phone card to make a few calls over a short period of time so a phone card with a small denomination perfectly fits their needs.
- A Method of Avoiding Extra Fees - Some phone cards charge extra fees on cards that are held for a certain period of time. These fees are typically referred to as maintenance fees. One way to eliminate maintenance fees is to use the card quickly so the phone card has no value when the time period triggering a maintenance fee is reached.
- Fear of Loss - This is a concern for cards purchased at supermarkets or other retail locations. These cards have a PIN number written on them and cannot be used if this number is lost or stolen. On-line phone cards are a safer alternative because they typically supply users with an on-line account where the details for their phone cards are safely stored.
People purchase phone cards for a variety of reasons but most people want to save money on domestic or international long distance phone calls. This is a good reason and there are high quality phone cards on the market. However, all phone cards do not have the same call quality and it can vary by location with the same phone card. So buyers should take care when shopping for phone cards. Always check the fine print for fees and other restrictions and make a small purchase to try the product before making a large purchase. Be wary of phone cards that only come in high denominations. Also, some companies charge an extra surcharge on small purchases so shop around.