State of California Department of Justice
Pre-paid Calling Cards
Calling card users should take the following steps to protect themselves:
- Make sure you're getting what you pay for--buy a card for a small denomination first to test out the service.
- Check with family and friends to find out their experience with calling cards.
- Ask the retailer if they stand behind the card if the telephone service is unsatisfactory. It's important to remember that the store where you purchased the card doesn't control the quality of the service.
- Remember that very low rates, particularly for international calls, may indicate poor customer service or a sign that hidden fees and surcharges apply.
- Always look for disclosures about surcharges, monthly fees, per-call access, in addition to advertised rate per minute.
- Check the expiration date. Some cards expire after a certain amount of time.
- Make sure the card comes in a sealed envelope or has a sticker covering the PIN. Otherwise, anyone who copies the PIN can use the phone time you've already paid for.