Thursday, November 29, 2007

Calling to Israel - Hanukkah Calling

There are several low cost options for making calls to Israel or other countries during this Hanukkah (Chanukah) season. People who make frequent calls to Israel and other countries from North America (the USA or Canada) should consider Tel3Advantage because it offers high quality and other features at a low price. Tel3Advantage will feature a 10% discount on all calls to Israel from December 4 through December 12, 2007 in recognition of the Hanukkah season. Tel3 normally charges 2.4 cents per minute (including all fees and taxes) for calls to Israel so even the normal price is dirt cheap compared to the cost of calling many other international locations. If you want to save even more money than try a premium phone card with rates that range between 1 and 2 cents per minute. There are even cheap phone cards that advertise rates as low as 0.5 cents per minute. We think it may be wise to stick with Tel3Advantage or a premium phone card since many of the cheap phone cards have extremely poor quality. Have a happy Hanukkah.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Cell Phone Call Plan International

Most cell phone users know that it is very expensive to make direct dial international long distance calls with their cell phones. Many use phone cards in order to minimize the cost of international calls but these can be a hassle, especially if one needs to dial an account number or PIN code in order to place a call. Fortunately, there are several other convenient options for making low cost international calls from cells phones. Three of these options are discussed below.

Tel3Advantage offers the most convenient option for making low cost international calls from a mobile phone in the USA or Canada. Using a smart phone and their new SmartPlug Software, international calls can be direct-dialed over their low cost network. All a user needs to do is open a Tel3Advantage account and install a small piece of free software on their smart phone. The software will automatically direct international calls over the low cost Tel3 network. The user does not even need to dial an access number. The best part is that Tel3Adavatage can be used without changing service providers and Tel3 does not require a contract or other long term obligation. Simply open a prepaid account for as little as $10 and start using the service. A new account can be opened on-line in a couple of minutes. Read all about Tel3advantage for more details.

Another similar service for making low cost international calls from the USA is offered by SendGlobal. It is not as convenient as Tel3Advantage because the caller needs to dial an access number but it has similar call quality and lower rates to some locations. SendGlobal also offers a free, no obligation trial of their service. Anyone is the USA can make $3 worth of international calls free of any charges so they can try the service before paying anything. If a user likes the service they can add funds and continue to use the service for as long as they like. SendGlobal also does not require a contract or any other long term obligation. For further information visit free international calls.

A relatively new option for making cheap international calls from cell phones in any country is SMS call. Using SMS Call an international call is placed by sending a text message to a computer located in another, low cost country. The computer recognizes the caller and places a call to their cell phone and connects them to the international number they wish to call. In this way the user does not place an international call but receives one and the savings in some locations can be significant. SMS call can save an international caller a lot of money in countries where telecommunication services are controlled by monopoly phone companies and the cost of making international calls is very high. It does this by by-passing the monopoly phone company and placing call over a low cost network. For further information vist SMS Call.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Calling Russia - Cheap Calls to Russia

Russia is a very popular calling destination so we decided to investigate low cost options for making international long distance calls to Russia. As with all locations, there is a wide range of options so we have listed them below.

Tel3Advantage is a good option for callers from the USA or Canada. It offers high quality connections and nice features but the rates are higher than other options with similar quality. Tel3 charges 7 cents/min to Russia and 2.5 cents/min to St Petersburg and Moscow. These rates include all fees and taxes and Tel3 uses a one minute rounding interval.

There are several good phone cards for making low cost international calls to Russia. The best phone card option depends on where you call in Russia and how much you value call quality. However, We think the following should be considered.

Consider the following Phone Cards if calling Russia from the USA or Canada:
  • Lucky Minutes - Calls to Moscow 0.6 cents/min, Russia 2.3 cents/min. Lucky Minutes has fairly high fees so it is best to buy a small denomination and use quickly.
  • Partner - A nice premium phone card with low fees. A great rate of 0.9 cents per minute to Moscow.
  • Bizon - A premium phone card with low fees and a one minute rounding interval. A very good rate of 3.9 cents per minute to Russia.
  • Jupiter - A high quality phone card with very low fees. We use this card to make calls to Russia. It has a very good rate to St Petersburg.

Consider one of these phone cards if calling Russia from outside North America:

  • Golden Lotus - A good quality phone card with low rates from Japan and most of Western Europe. It can be used from more than 40 countries. Rates to Russia start at 2 cents/min.
  • Fast World - Fast world is a high quality phone card that can be used from over 100 countries. It has very low fees, uses a one minute rounding interval and is one of the best options for making calls to cell phones in Russia.

An international VoIP call plan should be consider for people who have a high speed INTERNET connection and make frequent calls to Russia and/or other international destinations. Joi Phone is currently offering very good rates for International VoIP Plans. Their plans includes local phone service and unlimited calling in the USA, Canada and several international destimations. Their Joi to the World plan includes unlimited calling to Moscow ($14.95 per month) and Joi Worldwide Premium Plan includes unlimted calling to Russia (including cell phones) for $39.95 per month.

There are many good options for making low cost calls to Russia. The best option depends on the needs of the caller. Like with most products and services, one size does not fit all.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Tel3 Adavantage Announces a New $10 Denomination

Tel3 Advantage announced today that it would start a new $10 sign-up denomination for its popular Flex Plan on November 15, 2007 . Tel3Advantage currently offers account denominations of $25, $50 or $100 and provides new account sign-up bonuses of $5, $7 and $9 respectively. Customers who sign-up using the new $10 denomination will not receive a sign-up bonus but will be able to try Tel3 Advantage without plunking down $25. This may also be a good option for those who want to use Tel3Advantage but may not need to make $25 worth of domestic or international long distance calls.

Tel3 is doing everything possible to make this a cheery holiday season. They recently announced that they were accepting Canadian credit cards again. Tel3 first started accepting Canadian credit cards around 18 months ago but backed out of the market after experiencing a high level of fraud. They must have fixed their fraud detection algorithm beacuse they are back in the Canadian market now. Look out Pingo....

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Calling the USA - Cheap Calls to the USA

At any given time there are over 2 million Americans working, traveling or living overseas and most of them will want to call friends and family back in the USA during the holiday season. This can be difficult from many locations and costs and quality vary significantly between products. We looked into this and found several options for making high quality, low cost calls to the USA from almost any location.

One option for calling the USA or almost any location from nearly any country is the AT&T Phone Card. The AT&T card offers high quality connections from nearly anywhere but it comes at a steep price (see below). It has a wide network of access numbers and has now hidden fees or taxes but the per-minute rates are extremely high. We think there are much cheaper options than AT&T which offer similar quality so the AT&T card should only be used when absolutely necessary. One such option is the Fast World phone card. The fast World card features nearly the same coverage as AT&T at a fraction of the cost. It can be used to make international phone calls from over 100 countries and has toll free access numbers in 86 countries. It also uses a 1 minute rounding billing increment like AT&T but charges a 15% tax or usage fee for each call. However, even with the usage fee their rates are 70 to 90% cheaper than AT&T from most locations. The following are some examples on calls to the USA from some popular locations.

  • Call the USA from Germany - Fast World $0.034/min, AT&T $0.40/min.
  • Call the USA from India - Fast World $0.17/min, AT&T $1.55/min.
  • Call the USA from Russia - Fast World $0.076/min, AT&T $0.75/min.
  • Call the USA from Japan - Fast World $0.035/min, AT&T $0.35/min.
  • Call the USA from Mexico - Fast World $0.043/min, AT&T $0.45/min.

You have the idea. You can save up to 90% on calls by using a phone card like Fast World to make international calls rather than AT&T. There are other options for making calls to the USA from specific regions of the world but Fast World has wide coverage and is ideal for international travelers.

Another option that should be considered is Web Call. This is a feature offered by the Continental Phone Card. Web Call can be used to make cheap calls from any country but is not as convenient as a Phone Card. With Web Call, you need to send a specially formatted e-mail to a computer that connects your call from a standard telephone. So you need e-mail access and a phone that can accept in-coming calls. If you have these than Web Call is likely the cheapest option and you should give it a try.

All of the options discussed above are prepaid and require no long term obligation. They are convenient because you can open an account and purchase them on the net in a couple of minutes. Than you can continue to use and re-charge the same account for as long as you like. Also, you can prepay in very small amounts ($3 to $5) so they are handy options even if you want to make one or two short calls. There is no reason not to call home this Holiday Season.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Prepaid Conferencing - Prepaid Conference Calls

Setting up low cost global conference calls is another handy feature of several high quality phone card type products offered these days. Some of these phone cards are actually all-in-one communication accounts that can be used for conferencing, pc-to-phone, voip service or even international callback phone service. A customer can purchase a low cost phone card and use it to save money on all of their communication needs, especially if it involves international phone service. One of our favorite phone cards of this type is the Continental Card since it can be used for all of these purposes. On top of everything else, it can be used to make low cost calls from nearly 70 countries so it is truely a global phone card.

Prepaid conference calling is a low cost option that is popular with small business or even families that are spread out around the world or the country. It is a low cost means for everyone to have a virtual meeting and group discussion. It is very easy to use and is low cost. Participants simply dial an access number and enter a meeting code in order to join a meeting or conference call. It is also low cost, using the Continental card the cost is only 2.3 cents per minute for conference call participants.

This is an especially good option for bringing far flung families together over the holidays.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Save 10% on Calls to India - Diwali Festival Savings

Tel3Advantage announced today that customers will save 10% on all calls to India from November 8th through November 10th in celebration of the Diwali Festival. All customers, new and old, will save 10% on all calls to India. For more details visit the Tel3Advantage website.

There are other low cost methods for calling India from nearly any location in the world. We suggested using the Golden Lotus phone card which is specially designed for making low cost, high quality calls to India and other South Asia countries. Another option from the USA is send global. They offer a free trial of their calling plan which features great rates on calls to India. Send Global also uses the AT&T network so their call quality is very high. If you want to make low cost calls to India there are several good options.