Collecting Callcards Nostalgia
Telecom Eireann Collectors club merchandise. Including Callcard folder, unit checker, pen and keyring.
Remember when you used to go around ransacking all the local card phones in the hope that someone left their used Callcard? The excitement felt when you found a "rare" 50 or 100 unit Callcard on the lucky days. For many people, Callcard collecting was an exciting hobby due to not knowing what you would find next. Would it be a private card, a limited release or just another Niamh from Tir Na Nog? Many collectors struck gold on some occasion, finding that all rare Rock of Cashel or that hard to find Oisin Returning from Tir Na Nog were all part and parcel with collecting Callcards.
As Callcard collecting was mainly done by youths, very few young collectors could afford the "big" 50 or 100 unit Callcards, likewise the private issues sold through the Callcard Club. This resulted in further excitement upon coming across a used Callcard left in the phonebox, particularly the higher unit values.
15 or so years on and how times have changed. Young people today likely have no idea about Callcards or their function, or may never have even used a call box! With smartphones, the internet, computers being so accessible these days, it is unlikely for youths to be collecting anything. A sign of the times.
So is there still a use for phoneboxes or even Callcards?
Phoneboxes are still in use today, although I would imagine mainly by tourists or people without mobile phones. With mobile phones being more accessible and cheap, as well as boasting great coverage around the country, it is obviously going to have a knock on effect on phonebox use. How about the times when your phone looses signal, or the battery dies, however? Having a phonebox closeby in this event would be ideal.
Do people still use Callcards, do Callcards still work in card phones?
This Callcard was found left in a phonebox in May 2013!
Only just today, when out for my usual walk in Ranelagh, Dublin did I notice something placed on the small orange shelf of the local callbox. Having walked past the phonebox I then decided to go back to check if it was a Callcard. Unbelievably it was! A €7 Simply Talk card as pictured to the right. Seemingly in great condition I am curious to know where the card was purchased recently, or if someone just happened to have kept it until now. A quick check in some the local shops turned up nothing, but who knows!
Finding this card earlier today really felt nostalgic. Who would have thought that in 2013 it is still possible to use Callcards and to even find them in call boxes! So when you're out and about and passing by phoneboxes, take a peek inside, who knows there may be a Callcard left there!
Do you remember the last Callcard you found and where it was? Have you found a Callcard left in a phonebox in recent years? Do you know of any shops still selling Callcards? Why not let us know in the comments below!