Am I saving Money using Vonage to Call India ? Rethink Again
Many people living in US are tempted to buy Vonage phone service to call unlimited to India. It may sound like a good deal for you when you have a heavy calling requirement like more than 60 minutes average/day (1800 minutes/month) to save your money. But if your International usage is less than 60min(1hour) a day then you are losing lots of money .
working families in USA get time only during weekends and Even if they talk like 2-3 hours over weekends by the end of month it would be close to 10 hours (600 minutes) or less.
If you take account into all the taxes and fee vonage adds, you will notice that your approx bill will be about $35 or more .
VONAGE PLANS: http://www.vonage.com/personal/phone-plans/country/India
Lets discuss what are the options other than Vonage:
Option 1 –You must be already paying your cell phone bills for unlimited calling(either AT&T,Tmobile)etc . Now consider buying a calling card service such as IndiaLD/Phone India/voxofone/Raza or any other provider. On average you will be paying $ 1c/min from these services. So for 600 minutes you will pay $6. Considering you are already paying for unlimited local calls (at&t,tmobile etc) you can’t consider it to be an added expense. So in this case you are paying only $6 a month and you will save a minimum of $29 or more compared to Vonage.
Even if you have a very heavy usage like 60 minutes a day (~1800 minutes) a month, through these calling card services you will pay only about $20. Now compare again, you will save $15/month still compare to $35/month from Vonage.
Option 2 –You love to own a fixed phoneline at home. Then you can consider VOIP service like magicjack . Magicjack does not add any indirect fee or taxes (it’s a prepay system). It will cost you about only $1.67/month if you buy the service for long term ($99.75 for 5 years).
MAGIC JACK PLANS: http://www.magicjack.com/plans.html
You can also use their international calling service which costs 1.5C/min to India.
Else you can use any other the international calling card service such as IndiaLD/PhoneIndia/Raza/voxofone/reliance/etc.
Even if you consider the heavy usage scenario, you will notice that $1.67 + $20 a month will account only about ~$22. No hidden fee, taxes etc. It still saves about $13 a month. If your usage is light (10 hours or 600 minutes) then it will save you more money.
More over with the option 1 and 2 above, you don’t need to get into any contracts. Vonage sign-up requires 1-year contract .They also have month to month but its very costly.