Call Internationally – Top 5 ways to Make a Quick and Easy International Call

The Pocketdial guide to making that Cheap and Easy Call Abroad

Do you have friends or relatives abroad and find it a challenge to call them? Calling people abroad or calling when you yourself are in a foreign country is costly and often difficult – trying to top up a card for a payphone or battling a bad connection. These are problems of the past, as there are now whole hosts of ways to make calls quick, easy and cheap.  The development of social networking and video conferencing, as well as calling companies such as pocketdial have drastically improved international calling options. Here is our Pocketdial guide to making cheap and easy international calls.

1. Call Internationally through Skype for Free

Skype is a video calling service, which anyone can use on a computer or phone. Video calls on Skype are simple and easy to do. To get an account is simple, install the free Skype call software onto your computer. Next, enter your name and profile information to create a Skype account. You can add friends and relatives who also have a Skype account to your contact list. Then, provided that the person you want to contact is also logged on at the same time as you, you can contact anyone anywhere in the world for free. Skype also has the ability to share the screen, chat and send files. Skype makes money by charging for calls to landlines and mobiles.

2. Video Call through Facebook

Facebook launched video chat in August 2011, it is an additional feature to a standard Facebook account, if you do not have an account, click here. To use make a Facebook video conference, you must set up the facility.  You will be prompted to do so if you try to call a friend or if they try to call you. To call a friend, go to their page/timeline and click call.

3. Call through Facetime with Apple

If you are an Apple user wanting to communicate with other Apple users then Facetime is for you. Facetime is a feature of apple products; iPad, Macbook, iPhone, which allows users to video call one another – free of charge. You can use Facetime from your iPhone in the same way you would if you were making a phone call. You will also get to see the person you are calling. Facetime makes calling from aboard free as you are using the Internet connection not the phone line.

4. Call through Google Plus Hangouts

Google Plus Hangouts are a great feature of Google plus accounts.  If you are not already on Google Plus, click here to get a Google Plus Account. When you log in to Google Hangouts, click on the ‘more’ icon at the bottom left of the screen (last in the menu) and several other options will appear, including Google Hangouts.  In this YouTube video, Wallace and Gromit hangout with their pals on Christmas Day!

Google Plus is similar to Skype as it provides customers with free video messaging technology, yet appears to have fewer connections problems than Skype. As you can see from the video, up tp to ten people can be involved in a conversation at a time making it brilliant for business use. Google Plus Hangouts has many features such as screen and document share and can be used on Android, iPhone and iPad.

5. Call through Pocket Dial UK

You can call your friends and family abroad using packages from Pocketdial. With Pocketdial UK you do not require a data connection or internet access to call internationally and reliably from landlines and mobiles. You can even set up a speed dial to your phone so that you do not have to dial the Pocket Dial access numbers each time (click here for details).

How to Avoid a Large Phone Bill when you Travel


Avoiding a large phone bill when you travel

roaming charges when abroad

Have you ever had that gut-wrenching feeling when you open your first phone bill after travelling abroad?  Making the mistake of not checking your roaming charges with your service provider can end up leading to unnecessary expenses.

In this Pocketdial UK guide to avoiding a large phone bill when you travel, you will find advice on what you can do before and during your trip to keep the cost of your phone bill down.


Before you Travel

It is important that you contact your mobile service provider to set up international roaming and familiarise yourself with the call and text charges for your travel destination. There may also be charges to receive a call, so check that too, otherwise you could end up with a very large phone bill. In some countries, depending on your network, it can even cost up to £2.00 just to receive a call. Receiving a text is often free, so it makes much more sense to ask your friends to text you rather than to call you.

Also, check that your phone is compatible with the foreign networks in the country that you will be travelling to. Find out if your phone is dual band, tri-band or quad band from your manufacturers website. If it is a quad band phone, it will work everywhere. If it is dual or tri-band, it may not work on some networks, so it is important that you find this out.


Data Roaming can lead to a large Phone Bill

Data roaming whilst abroad can also lead to a very large phone bill.  If possible, avoid using the internet on your phone. If you need to use the internet on your phone, you could connect to local Wi-fi, instead of using 3G.  This will be much cheaper.  In fact, many Wi-fi hotspots abroad are free.  For more information on data roaming, visit


Phone Bill saving methods from your Operator

Many UK operators have international tariffs that you should research and set up. At the time of writing this article, here are the deals with UK phone operators that we found for roaming (mobile use while travelling abroad) to keep the cost of your phone bill down.

We found that O2 offers a data abroad bolt on to help you to reduce your phone bill when travelling. If you have an O2 phone and would like to find out more about international tarrifs for calling abroad, click here.

Orange offer an application to help you to control your phone bill when you are travelling abroad.  If you have a Blackberry, Android or iPhone you can download the roaming Angel  App to help keep track of your roaming costs while you are abroad.   It tells you how much you have spent so that you avoid running up a large phone bill.

Roaming Angel

Click here to reduce your phone bill with the Orange Roaming Angel

If you are on Orange and travelling in the EU, the Orange weekly EU bundle. For £19 a week, you can get 30MB of data, 50 minutes of calls and 100 texts, giving you a saving of almost £25.00 on your phone bill.

If you are a Vodaphone user, Vodaphone offer the Euro Traveller. This allows you  to take your price plan with you anywhere in the Europe zone for just £3.00 per day.

T Mobile offer Flexible Boosters which can be used to reduce your phone bill when roaming. They also offer a World Class Tariff which allows you to make calls for 55p a minute in 25 different countries.


Call Cards and International SIM Cards

Buying international call cards and SIM cards can make phoning from abroad on your mobile much cheaper.  It also means that you are fully in control of your spending. You can use a travel SIM card and encourage friends and family to call you on your foreign SIM using Pocketdial UK. If you are looking for an international SIM card to reduce your phone bill, click here.


VOIP Service providers

However, why use your mobile when you can use a VOIP (Voice over internet protocol) for free instead? Using a VOIP service provider is the best way to reduce your phone bill whilst travelling abroad.

Skype to Skype calls are free when you are both logged into Skype via your internet connection. If you already have a Yahoo, Google + or Facebook account, you can log in and begin a free video conference through these facilities.

Another option is Jajah, which doesn’t require you to download any software.  You can make calls direct from your web-browser on your smartphone, which is easy and handy if you are travelling without a laptop.


And Finally…

Wherever you are travelling in the world, have a fabulous trip. If you find out any new tips on reducing your phone bill when travelling, please leave your comments on our blog.