Calling international cellular phones is not a very difficult process. But it can cost you somewhat more if you do not do your research upfront.
International Cell Phone Codes/Prefixes
In most countries throughout the world, cellular phones are assigned exclusive mobile phone codes, also known as prefixes, within a country’s telephone numbering plan.
While area codes are used in some nations around the world, some countries may designate specific number ranges to cell phones that are easily recognized as different from the numbers associated with landlines from that country.
For example, in France where I call a great deal, cell phone numbers have the 06 area code. This means that a phone number starting with the area code 06 is a cellphone and not a landline which starts with 01 – 05 depending which part of France you are phoning.
You want to know if you are phoning a cell phone because typically, cell phone charges are greater than landline charges.
International Cell Phone Cost
Three exceptions to mobile phone versus landline area codes are the United States, Canada and the Caribbean. They run under the North American Numbering Plan that utilizes area codes and so the mobile phone numbers are not easy to tell apart from landline numbers.
Most people don’t realize that calling a cellular telephone is more expensive than calling a landline.
Again as an example, if I call a landline number in France I will pay about 2 cents per minute. If I call a cell phone I can typically pay between 14 cents to 24 cents depending on the phone card I use.
There are two main numbering plans that govern calling international cell phones:
1. plans that do not differentiate between landline and mobile telephone numbers, like the ones in the US, Canada and the Caribbean.
2. plans with different area code/prefixes for cell phone and fixed landline numbers
When you are calling mobile phones using the second option of different area code/prefix from fixed landlines, you the “calling party” pay for the cellular telephone network inside of the destination country you are calling.
That means you have to pay for the connection fee associated with that network. The person receiving your call is not charged on his or her mobile phone. You the caller pays the higher rate.
If you called that same party on their landline, you would pay a lower rate. Of course a lot of people no longer use landlines so you may have no choice but to call a cell phone abroad.
International Calling Cards for Cell Phones
The best way to control costs when calling an international cell phone is to buy a prepaid international calling card.
You want to research your different alternatives for calling card options and check out the costs involved with each card.
Some cards charge monthly maintenance fees and connection fees in addition to their posted rates, while others charge a higher per minute rate with no other fees or taxes.
It all is dependent on your expected call volume and exactly where you will be dialing.
I use three different calling cards depending on where I am calling because I can get very low rates to my call destinations.
It all will depend on on your call profile.
So do your groundwork and uncover the international calling card that can make sense for you.