Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Telephone Coinboxes.

112.

asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs if he is aware that many telephone subscribers have coin boxes installed on their premises and suffer great hardship particularly in rural Ireland by their inability to make transatlantic calls from such telephones; and, if so, if he will have the matter remedied.

Transatlantic calls are not ordinarily accepted from coinbox telephones because of the difficulty of collecting in the coinbox the large number of coins required to pay for such calls. I am not aware that many coinbox renters suffer hardship as a result of this. Special arrangements are made, on request, to enable coinbox subscribers to make transatlantic calls as a regular arrangement without the insertion of fees in the coinbox. In addition, individual international calls of a particularly urgent or important nature are accepted without prepayment from any rented coinbox telephone.

Would the Minister answer a supplementary which has a slight bearing on this question? Is he aware that considerable difficulty is experienced particularly late at night at airports due to the fact that 6d coins cannot be obtained anywhere and this affects people coming off planes who wish to make a phone call? Would he arrange to have change-giving machines installed at airports for this purpose?

I genuinely was not aware of this but I shall have inquiries made into the matter.