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The Yellow Pages

The “Yellow Pages” are telephone books, available in every locality in the United States, that list businesses alphabetically by type. In smaller communities you will find the yellow pages at the back of the local telephone directory, while big cities may have an entirely separate yellow pages book. In either case, look for the distinctive …

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Yard and Garage Sales

This material courtesy of Lisa Maloney Yard, garage, tag, moving and apartment sales all refer to essentially the same thing: a private individual selling personal belongings from their own home. The goods for sale are typically displayed outside, either in the yard, garage, or driveway. Items may also be displayed inside the house or apartment …

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Warehouse Clubs

Warehouse clubs make goods available in bulk at discount prices to their members, each of whom pays an annual fee, perhaps $50 a year, for the privilege. A typical American warehouse club, such as Costco, the largest, operates out of a large “no-frills” facility, allowing members to buy household goods, electronics, foods (both fresh and …

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The Post Office

The U.S. Postal Service is run by the federal government. Post offices are located in every town and neighborhood and are usually open from 8:00 or 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 or 6:00 p.m. weekdays, and until noon or 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays. Some large city post offices have a section that never closes where you …

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United Parcel Service

United Parcel Service (U.P.S.) competes with the U.S Postal Service (called U.S.P.S.–don’t get them confused) in delivering packages, though the post office still has a legal monopoly on delivering letters. Most businesses ship packages U.P.S. U.P.S. can be less expensive than the post office, and for an extra charge they will come get the package …

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Trade and Civic Organizations

Trade and civic organizations are organizations of certain kinds of merchants, or of merchants and professionals who all belong to a nationally recognized organization that sets standards for the types of work they do or products they sell. Most health-care providers, for example, have state and county professional boards that might be able to match …

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Toll Free Service

Toll free service is a convenient way of ordering products or getting information. Thousands of companies offer this service because it makes it easier for their customers to reach them. When you dial a telephone number with an area code like 800, 888, 877, or 866, the person or company you call pays the bill, …

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Thrift Shops

This material courtesy of Lisa Maloney Thrift shops or second-hand shops are usually small, permanent stores run by hospitals, churches, or other charitable organizations. Sometimes you will find a thrift shop run by an individual for profit. Even more rarely you may encounter a large chain of stores such as Plato’s Closet or Value Village …

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Directory Assistance

For local telephone directory information in the same area code, “411” is often, but not always, the number. Out of your area code, dial the area code (usually with a “1” before it), then “555-1212.” Directory assistance used to be free, but now most telephone companies charge a fee for it, sometimes substantial, based on …

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The Telephone

America Lives on the Telephone. Telephone numbers in the United States are ten digits long. The first three digits are the area code. In written or printed telephone numbers, area codes are often placed within parentheses like this: (212) 555-1234. Each area code will serve a few million people. This might be an entire state or …

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