Author Topic: Making calls outside of the Philippines  (Read 5369 times)

Offline Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am

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Making calls outside of the Philippines
« on: March 27, 2013, 11:37:35 PM »
I put this topic under the "cost of living" topic, because it could affect your monthly living expenses if one does not know the costs involved!
About 1-800 toll free numbers. They are not free calling 1-800 numbers in the U.S. from a local RP land-line provider! Only 1-800 numbers within the Philippines are free! Most U.S. Government agencies and Bank institutions all have 1-800 toll free numbers. Some banks in the U.S. even have collect call numbers from anywhere in the world one may be located!
Also Skype and Magic Jack calls to U.S. 1-800 numbers are free, I just used my Skype the other day calling a U.S. 1-800 toll free number, works great, besides Skype's and Magic Jack's inexpensive long distance calls anywhere in the world which usually cost pennies on the dollar per hour! Skype to Skype or Magic Jack to Magic Jack calls are free! Magic Jack Plus now has the new type that a PC is not required, just a home outlet/phone or cellphone is needed! 
Your home RP land-line from any local phone provider isn't cheap! I avoid making long distance calls on it weather it be outside of our area code or international calls!
A friend/neighbor of ours can't seem to figure out how to use his Skype and ends up buying prepaid calling cards to call his bank in the U.K. using his home land-line and averages about  P4,000 a month whenever he has problems with his accounts in the U.K.! He only uses his ATM debit and credit cards to withdraw his money for their living expenses and there are times when his cards are blocked for some reason and then he has to call his bank in order to get his cards unblocked! Every time he calls his bank in the U.K., he gets a call center agent from India and gets passed around from one agent to the next until he can talk to a real person from the U.K. he can understand! 
Also whenever he tries to make reservations with agoda.com, he gets a call center agent with a Chinese or Indian imitating an American with a slang accent and all hell breaks loose again!  :o ??? ;)   
« Last Edit: March 28, 2013, 11:17:04 AM by Art2ro »
"Life is what we all make it to be"!
"It's always a matter of money"!
"Do on to others as they would do on to You, but do it first"!
"Different strokes for different folks"!
"Que Sera Sera"!

Offline Lee2

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2013, 10:20:36 AM »
I use a Magic Jack and a Magic Jack Plus in our condo here in the Philippines and wherever we travel in the world as well as at our home in the US. I find it an inexpensive way to have an extra phone line so both my wife and I can be talking to friends and family at the same time.
 
One thing I wish to clarify is that the Magic Jack Plus does need fast access and a router for it to work.
 
The Plus has to be plugged into the router or plugged directly into the modem which would not allow any other device (ie a computer) to be plugged into the modem at the same time. 
 
Magic Jack is a great little device but their ad here http://magicjack.com/plus-v05/  is a little misleading when it says you do not need a computer. First of all, in order to set it up initially it must be plugged into a computer and then after that it can be plugged into a power outlet with a cable then hooked to your router for it to work, so while you do not need a computer once set up, how many of us have fast access and would not have a computer. I guess we could set one up for a person but monthly fast access would be expensive when compared to just a phone line if one was to not use a computer also.
 
The reason we have both the old and the Plus is because they both have their advantages. The standard unit plugs into the computer, so it can only be on when you have your computer on, but the good thing about it is that it has an onscreen display which shows you who is calling and you have an on screen address book as well. The plus unit can be used the same way if a person wishes to or it can also be stand alone which IMO would require a phone with caller id in order to know who is calling you, that is if you even care to see who is calling you. The Plus also cost more, the standard unit was sold for $39.99 whereas the Plus sells for $69.99 and both renew for $29.99 for a year of $99.99 for 5 years.
 
BTW, call forwarding used to be included and now there is a charge on newer activated units. I still get call forwarding included in both mine but I suspect that they will take it away one day and make me pay for it if I wish to use it since the Terms of Service has changed.
 
Also let me clarify that calls to anywhere in the US, US territories and Canada are included but calls to anywhere else in the world would require putting money in your account and that money expires every 6 months, so if you do decide to use a Magic Jack for calls to other countries, be sure to use up the money in your account before the 6 months pass or they take it. I had put $30 in my account and my wife only used a short call to the Philippines from the US and kept the rest for emergencies, well an emergency came about right after the 6 month time limit passed and the money was no longer in the account and the company would not do anything about it even though they had changed the Terms of Service after we put the money in, because before that there was no time limit listed.
 
For those who use or wish to use a Magic Jack, be sure to read their Terms of Service often because they do not have to notify you when a change is made.
 
IMO they are good devices to have and especially when living outside the US or Canada so friends in the US can call you for a local call for them.
:) Happily married since 1994 & live part of the year in Cebu and the rest in S. Florida.

Offline Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2013, 11:13:39 AM »
Glad you clarified that Lee about the two types of Magic Jacks! The original type that I brought back from the U.S.  a few yrs ago is no longer working! Luckily I didn't get their 5 yr subscription! I now just mainly use Skype and has been working pretty well! 
"Life is what we all make it to be"!
"It's always a matter of money"!
"Do on to others as they would do on to You, but do it first"!
"Different strokes for different folks"!
"Que Sera Sera"!

Offline Palawan Aussie

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2013, 11:42:51 AM »
Like Art, we can thoroughly recommend Skype for all international phone calls.

Right now, I have to be in Australia for business purposes, and my wife is in Palawan. I'll be rejoining her as soon as the Phils embassy here posts back the permanent Emigrant Visa they have granted, and most importantly also sends my passport back.

While waiting for this, we video-conference by Skype for many hours each and every day. We both leave Skype permanently running 18/7 while we chat and as necessary walk around our two houses, and so it seems like we are both in the same house.

The signal is full-motion, full-color and full-screen video, together with quality stereo audio, much clearer than a normal phone. We can also easily send each other files at the same time (photos, docs whatever) while we are talking, and also share computer screens so we both see the same websites or whatever also at the same time. We can also group-video-conference with folks from our respective families, like we are all one big group in the same room.

All this is almost free. The Skype program itself is free to download, and we find, installs very easily.

Then, Skype to Skype is free, after paying Internet charges. My wife and I both use laptops and small USB plug-in dongles.

With laptops and dongles we can walk around carrying them if we feel like going outside etc. Mary's internet unit is a small white SmartBro USB wifi unit. She pays 100 peso ($2.30 whatever) for 24 hours unlimited use. These plug-in USB units work just fine and we find the signal is very reliable.

So, for around $2 a day, we have virtually permanent communication all day. It's just like we are together in the same house. Who needs silly and expensive little cell phones radiating against your head?  We can thoroughly recommend Skype.

Cheers,
Stephen

 

Offline Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2013, 11:51:00 AM »
Just don't be walking around bare_ss naked exposing the family jewels or whatever else
that is not too flattering to the naked eye when the whole family is on-line on Skype!  ;)
« Last Edit: March 28, 2013, 12:04:13 PM by Art2ro »
"Life is what we all make it to be"!
"It's always a matter of money"!
"Do on to others as they would do on to You, but do it first"!
"Different strokes for different folks"!
"Que Sera Sera"!

Offline Palawan Aussie

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2013, 12:09:14 PM »
Art writes,

Just don't be walking around bare_ss naked exposing the family jewels when the whole family is on-line on Skype!  ;)

Hahaha .. yes, haven't done that yet .. but must say these dang laptop and tablet microphones are pretty clear these day, and I'm told various body sounds have been known to have been broadcast internationally. Ah well, we are all family, walang problema :)

Offline Chicago Daryl

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2014, 09:21:32 PM »
Skype works great.   Free for video calls     Few pennies per minute for calls to cell phones.
Daryl

Offline cvgtpc1

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #7 on: January 01, 2015, 03:17:35 AM »
I like how Magic Jack will send voicemail msgs to your email so you can listen to it anywhere.  Let's me know who left a msg in the US when I'm in the PI.

Offline Steve & Myrlita

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2015, 09:58:19 AM »
I like how Magic Jack will send voice mail msgs to your email so you can listen to it anywhere.  Let's me know who left a msg in the US when I'm in the PI.
Yup....Same here.
Thank you...God Bless...
Bro Steve & Sis Myrlita
Bacolod City, PH
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Offline BudM

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2015, 11:39:41 AM »
After using Magic Jack for almost two years now, mine is screwed up and I haven't figured it out yet.  Their support stinks so guess what when it comes time here shortly for renewal?
Whatever floats your boat.

Offline Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #10 on: January 01, 2015, 01:42:00 PM »
I too had a regular Magic Jack if I recall correctly 5 yrs ago and it malfunctioned where I could hear the caller, but they couldn't hear me and I tried everything to fix it to no avail. Fortunately I only Paid for the 2 yr service.
Just a 10 months ago I bought a new Magic Jack Plus from a friend and it wouldn't load onto to my desk top or the 2 laptops I had at home. So I returned it to my friend for a refund. For some weird reason he was able to load it onto his PC and it worked. It wasn't that I didn't know how to load a Magic Jack onto to PC because I originally had one and used it for 2 yrs, but it was just weird why the Magic Jack Plus version wouldn't load on my PC! ??? :o
« Last Edit: January 01, 2015, 01:44:47 PM by Art, just a re(tired) Fil-Am »
"Life is what we all make it to be"!
"It's always a matter of money"!
"Do on to others as they would do on to You, but do it first"!
"Different strokes for different folks"!
"Que Sera Sera"!

Offline BudM

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #11 on: January 01, 2015, 07:10:49 PM »
When I first got my Magic Jack, it would not install no matter what I did.  I went back to the Radio Shack twice pertaining to it and even took my laptop in there.  I took it all home and was going to mess with it one final time before they had agreed to give me a refund and somehow I was able to get it installed and it worked great ever since.  Until now.  And whatever is wrong is completely different than when I was first trying to install.
Whatever floats your boat.

Offline starrt

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2015, 08:51:59 PM »
When I first got my Magic Jack, it would not install no matter what I did.  I went back to the Radio Shack twice pertaining to it and even took my laptop in there.  I took it all home and was going to mess with it one final time before they had agreed to give me a refund and somehow I was able to get it installed and it worked great ever since.  Until now.  And whatever is wrong is completely different than when I was first trying to install.

I am no expert on MagicJack, but one thing I have noticed is that the software was recently updated, and it forced me to update it before trying to use it.
I have heard conflicting things about this software/hardware, but I am still willing to give it a go when I move to Manila this coming year. I do know that it does require a fast and steady internet connection to work properly.

Thomas

Offline Lee2

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Re: Making calls outside of the Philippines
« Reply #13 on: January 01, 2015, 09:59:53 PM »
I have been using a Magic Jack since they first came out, I bought it and paid for 5 additional years and have since renewed and am about 2 years into the renewal, so I guess I have been using mine over 8 years and have had no issues with it and even bought a second one years ago and am into that one for many years too. I have found that the key to them working good is that they do not work well on windows XP, will not work well unless you have more than one GB of ram and have a decent internet connection. A year or so ago I upgraded both of my units to the Magic Jack Plus, so I no longer have to plug them into the computer to work and find the newer units work even better but they are not perfect, probably 98%, yet still great for us so that we have one phone number wherever in the world we happen to be.

Modify to add, they will not work on older computers with usb 2 either.
:) Happily married since 1994 & live part of the year in Cebu and the rest in S. Florida.

 


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