Making calls between countries can really grab you by the purse strings. That’s why most international students, business travelers and tourists are quickly learning to utilize mobile VoIP as the cheapest way to make international calls.
“Get a mobile VoIP phone number, forward everything to that and then access that number over Wi-Fi,” advised IndependentTraveler.com.
Before leaving, for instance, callers should forward their regular cellular number to their mobile VoIP number while still on their home network so that the system tracks them at home rather than from their actual international locations.
Mobile VoIP users can also look into apps that will allow them to send text messages over Wi-Fi if their mobile VoIP service doesn’t already include texting. You’ll also have to do your homework to make sure you’re going to have Wi-Fi access at convenient distances from your travel route.
The key when you’re overseas: turn your network connection off.
Android phone users, for example, can sign up with VoX Communications, a mobile VoIP provider, by downloading the company’s Android app and setting up their plan entirely on their phones.
For instance, VoX has just added a plan that will allow mobile VoIP users to call Vietnam or Pakistan from anywhere in the world at rates averaging about seven cents per minute.
Before you leave on an international trip, turn off 3G or 4G, cellular data and data roaming. Also, reset your usage statistics. Many travelers turn their phones off stateside only to be blasted with missed texts, e-mails and photos the minute they reach their destination. These unexpected charges can add up rapidly.
Some people worry about cutting the network connection in an unfamiliar space, especially when relying on mapping applications from their smartphone. But those applications are data hogs, and alternatives exist. Solutions like Offmaps.com can use your phone’s GPS without needing a data connection. Offmaps.com is available in many major cities.
Or, you could just purchase paper maps; they do still exist.
With a little advance planning that includes getting a mobile VoIP number and researching your Wi-Fi options, you can save a significant amount of money on international calls. Just be prepared before you leave so that you aren’t at the mercy of the telecoms when you arrive at your destination.
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