Traveling abroad can make you concerned about allowing your family to use their cell phones. This is because of the excessive phone bills after the trip. However, that shouldn’t be the case when traveling abroad.
You must learn effective ways to avoid those astronomical phone bills when traveling. Most people find it challenging to figure out practical ways to use their phones for free while abroad. Sometimes you may resolve not to use your phone the whole trip.
Most people will resolve to use their cameras to take stunning images and share them with their loved ones after the trip. Others may decide to send emails using their laptop when they have access to free WiFi.
As much as all these options are brilliant, phone charges shouldn’t limit you that much. Everyone wants to use their phone when traveling. This is because it makes it easy to contact your loved ones. So ensure when planning for your trip, you factor in all your travel itineraries, including your phone bill.
You can communicate to your loved ones that you arrived safely or reach out to them in case of an emergency. And heck yes, share your breathtaking pictures of your travels in real-time.
Not using your phone entirely saves you from paying hefty phone bills but limits your communication. Let’s explore effective ways to make international calls while traveling abroad and simultaneously avoid high phone bills.
WhatsApp is one of the most popular and excellent global international calling apps. However, most people frequently use it as a cost-free internet SMS application.
When traveling abroad, this is an excellent tool that you can leverage to stay in touch with your loved ones. The app is compatible with Windows, iPhone or Android phones.
The app is available globally, and Nigerian users can leverage it for communication. So if you’re traveling abroad, this might be an ideal app for international calling. However, for the app to be effective, you need a reliable data plan or a WiFi connection.
As much as the app is widely known for making cheap calls, it has a few limitations. For instance, you both need a stable internet connection and the application for it to be valuable. Therefore, you may experience challenges in reaching people in rural Nigeria.
Nigeria has 51% internet penetration. So you might want to consider other reliable options to ensure you keep in touch with your loved ones who don’t have access to the internet. Talk360 is an excellent option to help you avoid these challenges.
Talk360 is another popular app that you can use to make premium quality international calls. Unlike WhatsApp, with Talk360, only one party needs a stable internet connection.
What makes it more suitable is that it can call regular phones, landlines and smartphones. Moreover, only the caller needs to install the app.
Therefore, it’s easy for you to make free international calls, including African countries. It is easy to stay in touch with your loved ones by calling Nigeria for free using the Talk360 application.
Like other international calling apps, Talk360 also uses Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Talk360 is an excellent choice as it connects to traditional telephone and internet receivers. And as mentioned earlier, the caller must install the software to make calls.
Besides, both smartphone and landline users will enjoy premium-quality international calls. So take advantage of Talk360 and connect with your loved ones at an affordable calling rate.
Another app that you can leverage to make calls when traveling abroad is Telegram. You can make cheap calls to Nigeria from the USA using this app. Telegram is a fantastic app with secure voice and video call features.
What makes the app secure is the end-to-end encryption. So when you want to pass sensitive information to your loved ones or colleagues, Telegram is the ideal app to use.
Like WhatsApp and Skype, both parties must install the app and access a reliable internet connection. You can search for your loved ones’ contact to place the call.
Moreover, the app can make cheap premium calls to Ethiopia, Kenya, and most African countries.
Skype is another popular application that uses VoIP services. Skypes allows you to make free audio and video conversations with your loved ones. Besides, the app also allows you to make group calls with up to ten people.
You don’t need to be tech-savvy to use the app effectively. Another advantage of using the app is its unique features besides making audio and video calls. For instance, you can give a receiver remote control, share the screen, in-meeting chat, etc.
Moreover, Skype gives an excellent experience for holding remote meetings compared to other calling apps. So you can leverage Skype if you want to make cheap and premium international calls.
However, Skype charges an extra fee if you make a call to a non-skype member. Besides, the app offers unlimited monthly subscriptions with unlimited minutes. Also, Skype offers transparent calling rates to various nations. So instead of resolving not to use your phone, you can leverage this app and also save on money.
If you have an Apple device, then Facetime is another popular calling app that you can use. The FaceTime built-in feature allows you to make free calls to other Apple users.
Provided you have an iOS device, you can make free voice and video calls using the software.
Moreover, you only need a stable WiFi connection or strong mobile data to communicate with anyone worldwide. Keep in mind that some Middle East Nations like the United Arab Emirates don’t support the app.
You only need the receiver’s Facetime ID or phone number to make the free call. Some of the features that make Facetime an excellent free international calling app include:
- Users can enjoy free voice and video calls.
- You can use Facetime to make a group call of up to 32 people.
- The app supports various foreign languages, including Arabic, Turkish, Spanish, and Hebrew.
Provided you have an Apple ID, you can create a Facetime account.
- Line Me
Another option that you can leverage to make cheap calls while abroad is the Line Me app. This app is free and compatible with Windows, iOS, Mac, and Android devices.
The app offers free rates as you only need to watch an advertisement to make free online calls. This is what makes it different from other international calling applications.
However, the app limits the calls to about three to five minutes, depending on your location. If you’re on a tight budget, this is a suitable option to relay a quick message to your people. You can also use the app to schedule a lengthy call with them.
Besides, Line Me has competitive price ranges that you can leverage to make lengthy calls. Moreover, the app allows you to only buy credit for the time you need to make a call.
- International Sim Cards
Sometimes you may not have constant access to free WiFi to facilitate international calls. Therefore, using your smartphone while abroad may be expensive for you.
Moreover, you can’t guarantee not to overspend even after buying an international package.
Therefore, local or international sim cards are an excellent option if you want to reduce the cost of calls to Nigeria while abroad.
However, you’ll need to unlock your phone first if your phone is locked. You can use wireless providers to help you with unlocking it.
But this shouldn’t give you sleepless nights if you’re traveling to the US. Some US carriers can help you unlock your phone before they sell you the local SIM cards.
This is a genius way to stay in touch with your loved ones in Nigeria! You’ll enjoy premium-quality international calls and save a lot in the long run.
- International Calling Cards
International calling cards offer an inexpensive option for making low-cost international calls. The cards are relatively affordable. You can buy the cards from $1 to $20, and the calling rates are charged per minute.
The price of the international calling card and the country you’re calling from play a vital role in determining the number of minutes.
For the card to work effectively, it usually comes with a unique access number. You can request the number online from service providers or scratch the back of the card to disclose it.
You’ll then need to key in the access number and then dial the number you want to call.
The calling rates are not always fixed; they vary from country to country. But you only need to pay the rate per minute without the access fees.
If you’re shopping online, it’s best to hunt for providers with the best deals on their cards. So if you’re traveling in the US, you can buy the international calling cards here:
- Phone providers
- Online stores
- Convenience shops
Free WiFi connection is still one of the most cost-effective ways to leverage when making international calls. This is because most of the above apps require a stable internet connection for them to be effective.
Also, a VoIP app needs a stable connection to call landlines or mobile phones. All the methods above make it easier for you to travel abroad, stay in touch with your loved ones, and save on phone bill expenses.
Iskra Banović is our seasoned Editor-in-Chief at BlueFashion. She has been steering the website’s content and editorial direction since 2013. With a rich background in fashion design, Iskra’s expertise spans across fashion, interior design, beauty, lifestyle, travel, and culture.