Saturday, November 15, 2008

Should your business rely on phone cards?

Buying prepaid phone cards could be compared to playing a card game, as the right card can make all the difference.

However, if you want to make the odds work for you, you'll need to shop around for the right call card. If you've picked up a phone card recently, you're in good company.
According to an estimate by the International Prepaid Communications Association, an industry trade group, Americans use them to make more than 8 billion calls yearly.

These call cards are very popular with students, immigrants, military personnel, teens and travelers. Retirees and small to medium-sized businesses also use them to control their expenses, while roommates buy them to avoid fighting over phone bills every month. An online prepaid phone card company, Onesuite.com has a specific type of prepaid account for business use, which helps control over company expenses on long distance.

What Makes Phone Cards Work? To know why phone cards offer reasonable, and competitive call rates, here's quick overview of how the prepaid card market works. We all know that the major telecommunications carriers are responsible for the telephone lines that carry calls, while it's the card resellers who buy telephone minutes in bulk from the carriers.

The issuers then set the card rates and provide toll-free customer service and access numbers. From hereon, the distributors sell the cards to the retailers., and the retailers sell the cards to consumers, although it is important to take note that a store may not have control over the quality of the card or the service it provides.

Phone Cards Offer Businesses Better International Call Rates - The rates for international calls may dramatically vary based on the country that you call, or the method used to make the call. These often offer rates that are generally much lower than a telephone company's basic international prices. Businesses can also make calls from a phone that is not international-calling enabled. Consumers also choose phone cards when they want to call up their friends, relatives or business partners who live half way down the globe. The good thing is that businesses need not sign any formal agreements, and wouldn't have to wait for monthly bills.

Savings: The Best Reason To Use Phone CardsBusinesses and individual customers generally save from 50% to 75% on international and domestic calls with prepaid phone cards. With advancements in technology, consumers can today cut costs of international calling by as much as 50%, simply by using these.

For instance, the cost of calling to India from USA starts from 5 US cents a minute plus local call charges if theres any. For toll-free access of international calls, per-minute charges may be a little bit higher.

The customer also doesn't have to pay hefty taxes as much as they would if they use their regular telephones or mobile phones to make long distance international calls. Phone card users also can keep track of how much of a card's calling time is used through the providers website.

Consumers may add time to some prepaid phone cards, and the added cost can usually be billed to a credit card or debit card. However, if you cannot add time on a particular card, you will need to buy a new one once all the time has been used. In addition, they often have expiration dates, so ensure that you keep track of the date your card expires so you don't lose any unused minutes. Some cards let the unused balance roll over the next expiration date.

1 comment:

Eric Itzkowitz said...

Zahir,

I not only liked your article, but enjoyed the honesty in it, as well. Your comparison of finding the right phone card to being dealt the right card in card game is a great analogy.

All too many times people are duped into selecting the lowest rate per minute, which after including all carrier assessed fees can end up being higher than a the rate per minute offered on a phone card with no additional fees.

Eric
SpeedyPin.com