What is a good age for a child to get a cell phoneI just read an article about a father considering getting his son a smart phone at 5.

My kids each got their phones pretty young (not 5 though).  Our house is very wired but the deciding factor for me was – when would my children be away from me and need to let me know when to pick them up.  For my kids that time was about the time of middle school.  They seem to stick to texting (so we have the unlimited plan).

My youngest has an iPad which currently is enough for him (he’s only 3).  Until my kids are old enough to stay home alone for short periods of time I had suspected we will wait.  With each of my older kids we started with phones that are pay as you go.  It limited the possibility of a huge bill if the phone got lost (or one of the kids used too many minutes). It gives me a way to reach them anytime I need them and check up.

We’ve gotten rid of our home phone so I’ve now been rethinking the waiting plan.  We recently had a babysitter with no cellphone and I had one of those panic moments…. What do you do if you have an emergency without a phone?  Needless to say I ended up taking the little one with me and taking the babysitter home. I just couldn’t leave my youngest without a way to get help if there was a problem (not to mention for me to check up on how they are doing).

I remember growing up not having a cell phone with me at all times, but I also remember having to walk to the nearest house to get help when we ran out of gas. My parents had CBs in the vehicles so we were able to get help that way a couple times also.  – My mother caught our car on fire a couple times :).  At least once a semi trailer driver stopped to help us with flat tires and other car won’t run issues.  Now I can’t imagine not having a phone with me.  I have that short panic search whenever I can’t find my phone.


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