Bell Atlantic Offers Free Weekends On Regional Toll Calls

Bell Atlantic Offers Free Weekends On Regional Toll Calls

SoundMinutes Calling Plan Offers Simple Per-Minute Pricing, New 6-Second Billing

August 4, 1997

Media contacts: Paul Miller

Joan Rasmussen

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - West Virginians who enroll in Bell Atlantic's new regional toll calling plan, Bell Atlantic® SoundMinutesSM, can make free calls on weekends starting now.

SoundMinutes is a flat rate per-minute calling plan that allows consumers to make regional in-state toll calls for 15 cents per minute weekdays and weekends.

The free, unlimited weekend calling is a promotional offer that will be available now through Jan. 31, 1998.

"With SoundMinutes, you can talk as long as you like on weekends and it won't cost a cent," said Dennis Bone, president and CEO of Bell Atlantic-West Virginia. "There are no restrictions, no hassles and no fees to enroll."

Regional toll calls are calls beyond a customer's local calling area, but generally within a few dozen miles from the customer's home. West Virginia has two regional calling areas. Examples of regional calls are those from Charleston to Huntington, Clarksburg to Wheeling and Elkins to Morgantown. Customers can find out which communities are in their regional calling area by checking the Customer Guide section in the front of their Bell Atlantic White Pages directory.

Also starting this month, SoundMinutes customers will save with a new billing plan for their regional toll calls. Those calls will be billed in increments of six seconds after the first minute of the call.

With the new billing plan, customers will save after the initial minute of a call made during the week. For example, a call of 1 minute 12 seconds will cost 18 cents.

Residential customers can find out more information about SoundMinutes by calling Bell Atlantic at 1-888-751-BELL. Hours are 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Saturday. There is no enrollment fee for the plan.

Bell Atlantic Corp. (NYSE: BEL) is at the forefront of the new communications, entertainment and information industry. In the mid-Atlantic region, Bell Atlantic's telephone company subsidiaries are the premier providers of local telecommunications and advanced services. Globally, it is one of the largest investors in the high-growth wireless communication marketplace. Bell Atlantic also owns a substantial interest in Telecom Corporation of New Zealand and is actively developing high-growth national and international business opportunities in all phases of the industry.

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