The phone number 411 is probably one of the most commonly used number right after the 911 number for emergencies. But only people seem to care about the hefty fees 411 directory assistance charges for their service. It could be that customers are not aware of the other alternatives of 411 help. Wireless and long distance phone carrier can charge between $1.25 to $4 for a simple assistance they provide you to locate somebody’s home phone number.
There was a time when the only alternative of 411 was phone book and the internet. But things have changed and there are toll free 800 numbers that you can call for free to get free 411 type help. The best option is calling 1-800-Free411. They provide directory assistance service completely free; the catch is that they make you listen to two different 10 seconds of audio advertisement commercials. I know 20 seconds is not that bad, but be careful not to press wrong buttons on your keypads, else you will end up the detail version of the commercial you were just hearing. They have listings of businesses, individual household residentials and government agencies.
Another 411 alternative is 1-800-goog-411. They don’t run ads on their free 411 help service but they have very few listings right now.