“It’s time to renew your mobile phone contract.”
Music to my ears. The mobile contract for Mags and I was expiring a couple of months before we are due to leave. Once or twice in the past I have retained contracts made useless by a change of country.
Once, it was important. Changing your phone number was a hassle. I went to great lengths to ensure that that everybody knew how to contact me. Partly this was driven by an inflated sense of self-importance, and partly because it was true. A lot of business was done and organised on the phone.
I have just checked my phone log. Statistics for the last week.
- 11 calls over 7 days. 1 of which was a missed call
- 5 were between Mags and I
- 3 were between my Mum and I
- 1 was a friend
- 1 was a company looking to sell me stationery
The majority of my communication these days is not over the phone. It is on e-mail or other electronic channels. Even when communication is by voice, it is often over the internet (VOIP). Were I in Cyprus, I suspect that the three calls with my Mum would have been over the internet. The stationer wouldn’t call me internationally either. As I’ll be working from home, Mags is likely to put her head around the door rather than call me.
By any reasonable measure then, I don’t actually need a mobile phone for phone calls.
Great. I won’t get one.
Oh, but it is handy to have internet access on the road. Social media is after all the shop window for my businesses. Actually, having an incredible camera in the pocket is pretty cool too. What about emergencies? Good point. Looks like I’m stuck with a mobile phone.
I converted the UK phones to Pay as You Go, mobile phone companies won’t simply extend a contract to a determined date, largely because phone companies are rivalled only by airlines in paucity of service. My intention was to simply let the UK number run until we go, and then simply let people know the new number. There are so many ways to get in touch now, I doubt it would be a problem.
Then, by chance, I discovered a hidden hassle. Over the last year, I have almost drowned in recommendations to implement additional security online. One element of this is two-factor authentication (2FA). There are lots of websites, that when I log on, send a code to my mobile phone, which I need to enter on the website to gain access.
I’m doing my best to remember which sites I have set this up on, and turning off or changing the method. I wonder how many I will not discover until after the UK number no longer works? What joy that will be.