Hi guys, it's been a while since I last added a blog entry. Life has been a tad hectic recently :D
So, let me set the scene. You've locked yourself out, but you do have your phone with you. You've also got enough data and call credit to do a Google search, and call a locksmith once you have found one.
What's the first thing you would search Google for? "Local locksmith" is a very popular search term. At the top and bottom of the page, you'll see several paid for advertisements, which in itself isn't always a bad thing. It's always prudent to be aware of this though. Once you've clicked through to a locksmith's website, do you know what to look for to make sure you're not actually calling a 'national'? In fact, do you even know what a 'national' is? Let me explain, they are for all intents and purposes an unnecessary middleman. A national will be just a call centre, there aren't actually any locksmiths there. They'll take your call, reassuring you that your local (unlikely to be local to you, more likely to travel from quite a distance) locksmith is on their way to you when in reality they haven't even found you a locksmith yet. This 'national' will basically hire a locksmith on your behalf, and cream off a hefty profit for doing this. They are rarely in any kind of hurry to get this done, and will lie to you if you chase them up & profess the locky is on their way :/
This basically means that the locksmith that attends to open your door could've actually been hired by you directly, and cost circa £50-£60 less than if you'd not been tricked into calling a national!
This business model is leaving a very bitter taste in the mouths of customers and engineers alike. So, in conclusion - be smart when Googling/searching for your locksmith. Check feedback on the Google profile for the company you're thinking of hiring, ask them outright if they're the actual locksmith or if they are a national. It's not a foolproof way of protecting yourself, but the knowledge of this very cynical practice will hopefully help.