Many people are still waiting for the economy to turn around like we have been told it will for all too long. Since it feels like we might be waiting for awhile yet, I thought it might be a good time to take a look at another area where some of us might be able to save a bit of money and that’s phone calls.
In the past, I have looked at how people can save money using online services like Skype to make free online phone calls, but let’s face it, not everyone we want to call uses Skype or would even be comfortable setting it up. Say you have non techie friends on another continent where it might not be feasible for you to visit to get them setup, such as Australia. While it might be fun to visit, you might not have the money. In that case, you might be tempted to call them using your long distance provider. Unfortunately, they often have fairly high rates to many parts of the world. Instead, you should first look into a long distance calling program or calling card because they often offer the best prices for where you’ll be calling, such as in this case, cheap calls to Australia.
Now some people might wonder why you would look at one specific location when you’re choosing a calling service or card, but it’s actually fairly important. While some services offer the best rates to one country, another might offer the best rates to another. So, if you had those friends in Australia and business contacts or family in another country (for the sake of argument I’ll say India), then you might even want to use two services. It all comes down to how you’ll save the most money.
Another thing to consider is what type of phone you will be calling to. In the United States, I never would have thought of this, but when looking into calling abroad I noticed that in many countries calling mobile phones actually costs quite a bit more than calling land lines. So, which service you use also depends on that. While one service might give you great land line rates to India, you might need a whole different service in order for you to make cheap calls to India when the person on the receiving end is on a mobile phone.
So, like with almost every purchase, you really need to know what to look for when you’re shopping around and you need to do your homework. I shopped around a few different rates from different services and sometimes the rates at one could be 2-3 times as much as another. Sometimes, it was much more than that. As for the rates to call mobile numbers abroad, I saw numbers that would pop your eyes wide. Skype had calls to mobile lines in the Netherlands for 31.6 cents/minute as opposed to 2.3 cents/minute for a landline call. Over 12.5 times as much should be sufficient to make sure you call a landline phone and not a mobile, don’t you think? Of course, if you have no choice, there are providers where the prices are more reasonable, so as always, shop around and save yourself some money.