How to Make Free International Phone Calls Using Your Computerby Louise Balle
If you have family and friends overseas, you are eventually going to become concerned about your rising phone bills. There are ways around the high costs of communicating with your loved ones in international locations---in fact, you can look into a couple of free options before you make your next international phone call.
Get a copy of Skype, an online phone-calling service, for your computer. You can find a direct link in the Resources section below.
When the program is downloaded, start looking for your international friends, colleagues, family, or whomever it is you need to call (they must have Skype on their computer as well, for this to be free). Add the names of the people you want to communicate with to your contact list.
Connect your microphone headset to your computer and load Skype. Find the username of the party you want to call under the "Contacts" list and see if he is online. You should see a green icon and a red icon; press the green one to initiate your call and the red one to end it.
Replace your current phone service with Lingo VoIP phone service (see link below), where you can make unlimited local and long-distance calls in the United States for a low flat rate using your computer and a high-speed connection.
Go to the RingPlus website (link below) and sign up for an account.
Find the access number that is closest to your current location and call in using your Lingo computer phone service. You will be asked to enter your RingPlus account number and PIN, which you should have gotten when you signed up.
Enter the international phone number (don't forget to press 9, plus the country code first). While you are waiting for the call to be connected, you will have to listen to advertisements, but the call itself is free.
- check If you want to call an international land line or mobile phone from Skype, you need to sign up for a paid account.
- close In order for the Skype service to be convenient, you and the people you want to contact will have to keep the application open on your computer at all times (sort of like an instant messenger). As with any new service, be mindful of guarding your personal information. If you call the RingPlus service from a cell phone, be aware that you will be using up your cell phone plan minutes during the call. You can only make free RingPlus calls from the United States, Milan, and a few locations in Switzerland at this time. So if you live in the United States, and your other party lives in another location not covered by RingPlus, you will have to initiate all of the calls in order for it to be free.