It is not unusual to see people of every age carrying around a cell phone, whether it be for emergencies or every day use. Many children ask to get a cell phone, but it is up to the parents to decide if they believe their child deserves one. If your child has asked for their first cell phone of their very own, there are some points to reflect on that can help you decide if and when you should make that purchase.
The first point to think about when deciding when your child should get his or her first cell phone is to reflect on the amount of responsibility exhibited on a day-to-day basis. If he or she is constantly losing items, whether they are cheap or expensive, it may be in your best interest to wait until the level of responsibility increases. Should you spend your hard earned money on a cell phone only to have it lost within days, it could be a completely wasted purchase.
Many children have very hectic schedules. Between sports, friends and classes, it can be difficult to get in contact during the day without a cell phone. Should your child be involved in many activities, it may be best to consider providing him or her with a cell phone. For instance, if practice ends early, your child can give you a call to fill you in without having to find a landline or a pay phone.
Children seem even more interested nowadays in how they can earn their own money. Instead of paying for your child’s first cell phone out of your pocket, you may want to consider having him or her pay for it with money from doing odd jobs or from allowance. A prepaid cell phone is a way where you can track minutes and it is less expensive than the cost of a monthly plan. If your child earns his or her own money and wants a cell phone, you may want to consider agreeing to the purchase.
There is no straightforward, set in stone answer for when children should get a cell phone. Children vary in their levels of responsibility and you should evaluate each as individuals to decide how ready they are for a phone. When you make the decision to buy your child his or her first cell phone, you should have more than a few conversations before the actual purchase to ensure that your child knows how much of a privilege it is to have that cell phone.