A mum’s guide on mobile phones for kids 

 

This post is a collaboration with amaysim

As a mum of two teens, I know all too well the pressure of kids wanting mobile phones and the struggles we face as mums – from picking the right mobile plan to navigating the extra responsibility that kids have when owning a mobile phone.

When we upgraded our iPhones last year, we decided to give our older iPhones to both of my teens (ages 11 & 13) and set them up on an amaysim prepaid mobile plan. I don’t regret the decision to allow both my girls to have a mobile and I feel like we made the best decision for them. Now the pressure is on from the seven year old who is asking for her own mobile phone, but little does she know she is a few years off from owning one.

I thought I would put together this handy little guide to help other mums tackle mobile phones for kids!

Go prepaid and pick the right plan

Choosing the right mobile phone plan can be tricky because there are so many options out there. I recommend that you go with a SIM-only mobile plan so you are not locked into a contract and won’t have any unexpected surprises with the bill! I still remember back in the day, prior to no lock-in contracts, running my parents’ mobile bill up to $700 – and I still hear about it to this day, haha!

amaysim has a  $10 Unlimited plan that is a PERFECT choice for kids.

Why do I recommend this plan? There are so many reasons!

  • amaysim offers no lock-in contracts, which gives me much more flexibility should something change and I need to switch between mobile plans
  • amaysim runs on the Optus 4G Plus network, so there are no hassles when it comes to quality of coverage
  • The $10 Unlimited plan includes 1GB of data, which is enough for the kids to surf the web
  • amaysim’s apps let you check your usage in real time so you always know where your data are at
  • The plan has unlimited talk & text, which means the kids can always reach me
  • It has been awarded Best Value Prepaid Mobile Plan by Money Magazine
  • amaysim has a good track record. In fact, since amaysim launched the unique $10 Unlimited plan late last year, over 120,000 people have made the switch to amaysim
  • At $10 per 28 days, I’m saving a lot more compared to mobile plans with the big three telcos and am getting just what I need

Put boundaries in place

Set boundaries straight away! Let your child know what’s expected of them from owning a mobile phone and what’s allowed in terms of using the phone. Make sure your child is aware of data and call allowances so that they learn how to make it last and manage it for the entire month.

 

Speak to your child about the responsibilities of owning a mobile phone, including social media

Owning a mobile phone comes with a lot of responsibility, including social media and the issues that come along with it. Being a blogger and sharing a lot of personal information online, I know first-hand the impact of social media, so please explain to your children that what you post online is out there forever.

 

Install extra security apps if you need to  

There are apps available that put parenting controls on mobile phones. I personally believe if you need to use these to stop your children looking at stuff they shouldn’t, your child isn’t ready for the responsibility of owning a smartphone. I know a few friends have security apps on their kids’ phones as a little bit of extra security to deter others from contacting or messaging their children.

 

Have access to PIN codes and passwords

It is so important for me to be able to have full access to my girls’ phones if needed. They both have passwords and usernames that we have set up together to make sure I can access all apps and platforms they are a part of.

 

Regularly monitor your child’s mobile activity

Ask your child to show you what apps they use and what they are up to on their phones. Look at who they are talking to and monitor the sites they visit. My girls have added me as a friend on their social media accounts so I can also monitor what others can view.

 

Get your kids to sign a mobile phone contract with you

Have a search on Pinterest for a template to a kid’s mobile phone contract and print it out. This helps give them some accountability and lets them know right away what the rules and boundaries are when owning their own mobile phone. 

There you go – some food for thought. Ultimately, getting the right plan gives you peace of mind and luckily, I’ve been able to tick that box with an amazingly simple solution.
For more, visit amaysim.com.au

 

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