When travelling, we make a point of never paying for international phone calls.
This can be done easily – without worrying about getting local SIM cards; racking up expensive roaming charges; or puzzling over country codes and the like.
We are free-wifi junkies and we also make use of apps that allow you to make calls at no cost.
Instead of using traditional phone networks, these apps rely on the Internet to transmit your voice, so all you need is free wifi – widely available with accommodation and in cafes, restaurants, pubs, airports, train stations etc.
FaceTime for video or audio
Our favourite app is Apple’s FaceTime.
Most people know FaceTime as a video-calling service, but it also has an audio only button. We’ve used it to make calls – both video and audio – from our iPad and iPhone across Europe and the US.
As long as the person you are calling also has an Apple device with FaceTime turned on in its settings, the calls are simple, fast, free and crystal clear.
One of our most memorable calls was back home to Australia while we waited for a train in Chicago. We had free wifi – and made the most of it.
If a person you want to call doesn’t have an Apple device, you can use the popular WhatsApp.
Free to download, this is a favourite for both texting and calls across the globe.
We’ve never tried it, but some travellers have told us that they also use Facebook’s Messenger app for free telephone calls.
Another that we haven’t spent much time on is Viber, which seems particularly popular for sending free text messages.
Naturally, you need to remember that, for these calls to work, the person you are ringing also need to have the app that you are using.