Top Five Ways That VoIP Can Save You Money
As of July 2009, US unemployment rates reached a frightening 9.7%. Most people have close family and friends who have been laid off as a result of the economic crisis, even if they have not experienced it themselves. Cautious consumers are focusing on ways to put more money in the bank, and are saving their salaries for a rainy day. In this economic atmosphere of penny-pinching caution, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) providers are seeing business actually improve. Why is that? Because for those looking to save money everywhere they can, are starting to look at their phone and utility bills. VoIP providers maintain a very low overhead by utilizing existing infrastructure and technology, and allowing consumers to maximize their dollar by tasking one utility to provide multiple services. With VoIP, that means using their high-speed internet connection to function as their telephone service as well.
#1. Capitalism Working and Control of Your Bill!
Billing transparency has become a lost service in the telephone industry. I have yet to open a traditional phone bill and not find some surprise surcharge or fee. VoIP service, when compared, is incredibly transparent, as well as completely under your control. You always know exactly what you will be billed for any given period, because you selected the plan yourself, as well as any additional services. The cost of additional services, where it is not a fixed cost, is extremely simple to track online, as are all of your incoming and outgoing calls. And you are not limited to using the 1-2 providers with a monopoly in your area like you are with traditional phone service, you can choose from a wide variety of national and international VoIP providers that have to compete in a real market to offer services and pricing that beats their competition, in which case, the consumer always wins!
#2. Low-Cost Choice of Virtual Phone Numbers
In addition to attempting to save money when you need to call friends, family and business associates in another state or another country, VoIP service allows you to save money when they call you! Since in many cases you as the consumer still wind up being financially responsible for the call, it is in your best interest to make sure they can make that call as cheaply as possible. This is where virtual telephone numbers come into play. In the US, for a small additional monthly fee, your VoIP provider can assign you a 1 800 or 1 888 number that people outside of your area code can call free of charge. Internationally, the virtual number assigned to you for areas outside of the US is simply a number within their area code and country code, so it is charged to them as a local call.
#3. Additional Features Included in the Plan!
Everyone has experienced the exasperation of reading a phone bill from a standard provider, and seeing the initial 'greatdeal.99' they promised you almost doubling as .99 cents here and $2.00 there is tacked on for every little extra service. If you are tired of paying for things like call forwarding, call waiting, voicemail etc, than VoIP is your method to mega-savings, since these and more are all covered under the standard service package with almost every provider!
#4. Unlimited Long Distance!
If you are someone who spends long hours on the phone with people in different states and different area codes, than you are well aware of the constant search to minimize long distance phone costs. Originally, you had to carefully track your minutes at the high cost being charged to you by your traditional phone landline service. Then you may have switched to cell phones, but that still left you counting minutes, trying to ensure you stayed within your plan's allotted minutes. VoIP service offers the relief of finally letting you stop counting because all calls to any number are completely free, and completely unlimited.
#5. Free International Calls!
With a traditional phone service, calling overseas or internationally can be an extremely expensive proposition. Unfortunately, for those with international business requirements, or close family members living abroad, simply not communicating is not an option. However, instead of paying the high rates of traditional phone companies, which can run anywhere from .75 cents/min to $2.00/min, many VoIP providers offer international calling at drastically lower rates. In fact, some providers, like Vonage, are now offering it free as part of their monthly service package!