Adult Woman Talking on Cell Phone
Credit: Sam Edwards/Getty Images

One of my pet peeves when watching a movie or a TV show is when a character hangs up their cell phone without saying goodbye to the person on the other end of the call. Once you start looking for it, you'll see that it happens all the time, as if the writers on the shows are unaware that phone calls are typically ended with a friendly, "Talk to you later!", a fond, "See you soon!", or even a curt, "Bye." It's as if the writes have no idea that manners are important, even when you're speaking on a cell phone.

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Despite what those Hollywood writers might think, though, there are some etiquette rules to follow when speaking on a cell phone:

  1. Be courteous to those around you
  2. Put your phone on vibrate or silent in meetings, at movies, at church, when chatting with someone face to face, or any time it could interrupt a conversation or activity
  3. Speak softly when having a conversation for the good of those around you and the person you're speaking with on the phone. Related: Do not have speakerphone conversations in public.
  4. Avoid talking about private matters in public places
  5. Do not use your phone while driving
  6. Watch where you are going if using your phone while walking
  7. Do not make phone calls in the bathroom
  8. Do not make calls where they could disturb others like in the library, a quiet office, coffee shop, or waiting room. Excuse yourself to a hallway or lobby or private location.
  9. Do not pull out your phone while speaking to someone face to face. Similarly, don't text while talking to someone in real life. It's called "phubbing" — snubbing someone you're talking to by looking at your cell phone.
  10. Watch your language, especially when sensitive ears might overhear
  11. Playing games or watching videos with the sound on in public can be very distracting, try to avoid!
  12. Do not use your phone while ordering at a counter or standing in a line at the Piggly Wiggly
  13. Be respectful at home, too: If you're watching TV with the family, leave the room to make or take a phone call
  14. Don't go through someone's photos on their phone without asking
  15. Don't text during a meeting whether for school, business, or pleasure
  16. Say goodbye when you hang up