The Christmas season is always a busy time for SaskTel, but the phone company is preparing for an even busier Christmas this year.

Andy Tate with SaskTel Media Relations says they expect an increase in long distance calls to be made on Christmas Day.  Tate added they expect a 3% increase  from last year to around 820,000 calls.  Just about half of those calls will be placed to locations within Saskatchewan, while the other half will be to locations in Canada and around the world.

Tate adds customers can avoid network congestion by placing calls outside of the peak calling times of 10am to 2pm, and from 7pm to 10pm.  He also reminds customers to place direct-dialed calls instead of operator-assisted ones, make sure you're dialling the correct number, and take time zones into consideration.