How to Use a Calling Card and Tips for Finding the Right Card

02Sep11

Guest post by Jey

Using a calling card, also known as a telephone card, is pretty easy once you have it in hand. You just need to use the toll-free number on the card (this appears as either a 1-888 or 1-800 number), dial it and enter the PIN using the number pad on your phone, then basically follow through on the rest of the instructions on the card itself, if there are any remaining. Usually, you just need to enter the phone number you are calling at this point, and voila, you have a connection. Be careful when entering the number you are dialling, however, as it may be necessary to add codes according to the location of the number: for example, dialling a number outside the US would require you to enter a country code as well as a city code.

If you really want to get the most out of your card, you should find the card that is right for you. Many forget to ask key questions when purchasing their calling cards, such as the rates offered on the card for your particular calling destination, whether or not those rates change (ideally, they should not), and the minute rounding plan on the card. This last item is very important, as it tells you how you are going to be charged for your calls. The minute rounding number is usually expressed as a simple number, e.g. 4 minute rounding, that dictates the bills for your calls in this manner: with 4 minute rounding, a 5 minute call would be billed as an 8 minute call (the 5 is rounded up to the next multiple of 4).

As you can see, a call can easily escalate in price depending on the minute rounding for your card. The best cards are ones that have low minute rounding, e.g. 1 minute rounding or 2 minute rounding. These at least ensure that you pay for what you use, as opposed to the higher rounding schedules where you can end up paying for six or five more minutes than you truly used up, just because of the rounding plan. Some people advise just using up the card in one long call if you cannot get away from high minute rounding plans.

You need to ask the vendor too if your card has any extra fees on it. Some cards do not, but some cards do, and carry these in the form of taxes and other fees. The reason providers actually make cards of this type is for marketing: placing the taxes and similar fees as additionals permits them to drop the rates they advertise on the card to bottom prices, which makes the cards more attractive to consumers. While some of these marketing-savvy providers do disclose the additional fees, some do not, so be sure to stay away from such unscrupulous card carriers and retailers. All those extra fees shall end up biting into the total talk time you have in a very big way, leaving you unsatisfied when a call suddenly breaks off.

Jey specializes in writing about search engine marketing and social media, he enjoys playing World of Warcraft or reading books when he’s not finding new ways to do online marketing. He is also interested about sim cards.

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