calling card: USA to European cell phone

Nov 30th, 2008, 08:25 AM
  #1  
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calling card: USA to European cell phone

I'll be in Paris for a month and have a Call in Europe Phone. Incoming calls are free, so I'd like my wife to be able to call me from the USA as cheaply as possible. She's not interested in Vonage, so we're looking at prepaid phone cards, but many seem to have much higher per minute costs if used to call a cell phone. There seem to be many, many cards out there, so I'd like a personal recommendation so I don't get one with hidden fees. Thanks!
zeppo2 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 08:43 AM
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It will be very difficult for you to find what you want...

This is all a byproduct of the European (and most other places too) system of caller pays the freight.....the telcoms put a termination fee on all calls into mobile phones and the originating carrier passes it along and yes it can be very substantial...for France it runs around 20/minute...

For many years, I had some success in getting a bit of a break of these fees using the 1016868 prefix for calls to some European foreign mobiles but I must report recently it seems to be blocked to some degree but you can check on that.

But be thankful. United Mobile used to be a great deal when they used a Liechtenstein prefix +423 with incoming calls free throughout almost all of Europe....at that time I was paying with my AT&T international plan with a monthly charge a 1 termination fee to Liechtenstein mobiles....somehow when United Mobile became very popular, that termination fee increased to over 50/minute. Some day somebody will explain why this happened.
xyz123 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 08:56 AM
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As xyz123 stated, it is difficult to avoid the termination fee. The receiver enjoys free incoming calls because the caller pays.

Since the differences between calling cards or other international discount services are few cents placed on top of the termination fee, the total differences are little when calling mobile phones.

Will you have an access to a landline? Your wife can call it cheaply and you can call back to USA cheaply if you use an international card issued locally.

Alternatively, if you have an access to a broadband internet, you can use the Skype.

I had my child spend a term in Spain. I could not find a way to get around this termination fee.
greg is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 11:33 AM
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Thanks for the quick responses.
zeppo2 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 11:35 AM
  #5  
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Sorry--pushed the button too quickly. I think Greg's suggestion will work best, since I'll have a landline in the flat.
zeppo2 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 03:16 PM
  #6  
 
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I have my long distance calling plan here in the US thru Pioneer Telephone. We call France for 3 cents per minute. I've had it for over four years now, and it works fine for us.
crepes_a_go_go is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 03:59 PM
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...yeah it's 3 to a landline but I would wager at least 27 to a mobile.
xyz123 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 05:15 PM
  #8  
 
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I can't compare cards, but can say that the Flying Colors card from Zaptel dot com works flawlessly, and costs 20.2 cents per minute to a cell phone in France. We've used it to call Italy, Uganda, Egypt, and others I've recommended it to have used it to call Australia and Brazil, among other places.
sf7307 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 05:24 PM
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--...yeah it's 3 to a landline but I would wager at least 27 to a mobile--

Nope, my son and I have both done study abroad semesters, him just this year, and it's a flat 3 cents per minute to France to our French cellphones. He's got SFR and I've got Orange when we are there.
crepes_a_go_go is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 06:12 PM
  #10  
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Crepes--wow, I'll have to look into that. Not sure if I want to change Long Distance provider, though, since we'll probably ditch the landline in the new year. sf7307--27 cents per minute isn't bad. I'll be doing the wifi iChat most of the time, but I want the wife to be able to call with questions, while I'm out and about.
zeppo2 is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 06:42 PM
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zeppo, don't get too excited yet. I just checked Pioneer's website, and it looks as though the prices I quoted are not for new accts. I've been with them since before 2004, and it appears I'm on a plan that is no longer being offered. I had forgotten that my mom tried to get this plan when my son was studying in France this year, and she was not able to get it. Sorry for the misinformation.
crepes_a_go_go is offline  
Nov 30th, 2008, 07:31 PM
  #12  
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No worries, Crepes. If I had a dime for every time I'd jumped the gun and recommended a deal no longer there, I wouldn't be worried about saving a few cents on the calls
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