Saturday, July 5, 2008

International mobile roaming tips

Everytime we travel there's a constant need to communicate, whether personal or business related and usually people are not prepared. A trip abroad and it will hugely hike call costs that can charge up to $4 a minute not to mention receiving calls aren't free either.

There are simple steps that will take some cost of from your mobile bill.

1. Use SMS more frequently and make fewer calls.

Sending text messages will cut your cost by huge chunk. Texting is a simple way to communicate too plus you can say what you want briefly and cut down unnecessary chit chat. Receiving text messages is also free compare while receiving a call is not.

2. Call back home for less

There are other ways of calling back home aside from your mobile which charges very high just in case you don't know.

a. Buy a local phone card and check their rates. You can compare it to your mobile rate before hand so you can pick a good phone card. You can also buy online or better yet sign up with prepaid phone card service like which has access numbers around the globe like in Europe, Asia, Australia, North and South America, etc. You can check out the Onesuite rate comparison here to see how much the difference from mobile providers like AT&T or T-mobile is.

b. If you have internet access, arrange the date and time where you can call using Yahoo Voice or any other free PC to PC call provider like MSN. You can also use the same Onesuite account for VoIP calls or check out other VoIP providers that suits you best.

c. A service, Vyke SMS Callback, allows you to call most countries for the cost of a text. Once you've signed up, you just text the word "call" followed by the number (inc. international code & no spaces) you'd like to call to the Vyke SMS number, which varies depending on your provider.

3. Beware of your voice mail

a. Switch off your voicemail. Ask your network to switch off the voicemail before you go, and you won't be charged when people call you (unless you answer it).

b. Answer your phone. If your voicemail isn't disabled, keep the phone on as it's cheaper to answer than pay double to receive and then listen to a voicemail; provided you don't natter on once you're called.

c. Change voicemail message. Re-record your voicemail message, keeping it short and asking others only to leave short messages that are strictly necessary.

4. Limit the use of your mobile

a. Only use it when really necessary.

b. It is usually cheaper to receive than to make calls so try to tell your friends and relatives to call you insterad of you calling them.

c. Remember you also pay when receiving calls so make sure you don't stray too much and get into long conversation.

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