By Nawara Fattahova
Many people are willing to pay thousands of dinars for a unique phone number. Although mobile phones can save hundreds of numbers so the caller no longer has to dial the digits individually and just has to click on a name to call, people are still buying expensive special numbers.
Abdullah, owner of a phone shop in Riggae, sold a phone number for the incredible price of KD 14,500 four years ago. “This was the highest price paid to me for a phone number. The number was special and consisted of six similar digits,” he told Kuwait Times.
“Last year I sold a few phone numbers for thousands of dinars. I remember I sold one for KD 7,500, one for KD 7,000 and another for KD 5,500. I consider this year very good for selling special numbers, especially since people haven’t traveled and didn’t have to repay their loans for many months, so they have money to buy expensive numbers,” explained Abdullah.
According to him, a majority of customers buy these special numbers for commercial purposes. “I think they need to have special numbers for their work, so customers can memorize their phone numbers easily. Most of these clients work either in the real estate field or in the automotive sector. Other customers buy these expensive numbers as gifts,” he added. “The best season for selling these numbers is between June and September, while from November till the end of June, work is slow.”
Abdullah refused to give more details on how he manages to get the special numbers that he is selling. “I have my way of getting these numbers from telecommunication companies,” he concluded. For some professions, a special number is important. “In my work as a journalist, I always need to contact people in key positions and high-ranking officials to get statements and comments for my articles. Many of these officials would not answer a call from a strange number, as they are already annoyed by many people calling them.
This was my situation in the past. But then I bought a special number for KD 1,500, and all officials and VIPs are now answering my calls. This is the effect of the special number,” stressed Faisal, a journalist at a local daily. In 2019, there were over 7.5 million mobile phone users in Kuwait – Zain with 2.8 million subscribers, Ooredoo with 2.6 million and STC with 2.1 million.