5 Ways to Avoid International Roaming Charges When Traveling

June 11, 2012 | Rebtel

Roaming charges are the boogeyman of cellular phone users. When traveling, it always seems like you need to make a call when your phone is flashing that ominous roaming message! How can you avoid international roaming charges when you are abroad?

International roaming can be circumvented in several different ways. Depending on what kind of phone you have, you can find apps that allow you to get out of paying roaming charges no matter where you are, and stil make calls to the people you need to stay in contact with.

1. Skype. Using Skype to make phone calls from your computer allows you to take advantage of Skype’s low rates and make calls from anywhere, anytime. There’s no international roaming charges added, so you can talk all you need to without high per minute charges.

2. WhatsApp. The handy WhatsApp Messenger is a cross-platform mobile messaging that is available for iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Windows Phone and Nokia. It uses your internet data plan instead of your regular phone minutes, so you can message at no cost.

3. iPhone. You can use several different apps for free messaging on iPhone, and avoid data roaming charges by locking down your iPhone. Messages between the latest model of iPhones are free with a data plan, using iMessage - just make sure your cellular network is turned off and that the bar is green indicating you are using your data plan. Then when you use messaging, it won’t allow your carrier to charge you at the international roaming rate!

4. Prepaid SIM cards. WorldSIM is just one of many SIM card providers that offer free incoming calls and outgoing calls at or near local rates wherever you are. You can save up to 95% compared to international roaming charges simply by using a prepaid SIM.

5. WiFi. Many phone carriers offer better rates over WiFi than you will pay with roaming charges. Rebtel’s WiFi application is even better - it allows free calls to other Rebtel users and keeps you from having to pay international roaming charges, saving you serious money (up to 98%!) that you can then use for souvenirs or a hotel upgrade. Just find a hotspot and WiFi calls using Rebtel are free!

Don’t be a slave to insanely expensive roaming charges. Take control of your phone related travel expenses and avoid international roaming by using these tactics to prevent being charged for calls made and received while you are outside your carrier’s covered area.

If you want freedom from international roaming charges, check out these options. Of the five, WiFi offers the best chance of free calling since there are hotspots all over the world. Rebtel’s WiFi application saves the most money, and also allows you to call anyone else who has Rebtel for free.

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