A long distance call (otherwise known as a “Trunk Call” if you hail from the United Kingdom) is defined as being any telephone call made to a location outside a defined local calling area. Historically, Canadians have paid outrageous fees for long distance service due to a combination of high rates from telecom operators and the fact that the call tariff rate increased in proportion to the distance of the call. This was simply the price consumers paid, in large part because international calling was tied pretty much exclusively to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN), a system based on copper wires that carried analog voice data across vast distances.
Some relief came during the late 90s and early 2000s when international calling became more affordable thanks to the rise of long distance calling cards. However, even the lower rates offered by calling cards were still priced too high, maintaining the perception that international long distance telephone calls were, and would always be, prohibitively expensive. Fortunately, the rise of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology has made international long distance calling cheap and easy, to the point where it really makes no sense to put up with the expensive international calling rates offered by traditional telecom providers.
GoneVoIP has partnered with a large number of providers, giving a great choice to satisfy the majority of cheap international call needs.
The Difference Between PSTN and VoIP Service
Before diving into why VoIP is the way to go for long distance calling plans, it is important to keep in mind is that there is a difference between long distance and international calls. Anything outside of your local calling area is categorized as long distance, but this categorization falls into two separate groups: national or domestic calls between two points within the same country, and international calls between two points in different countries. Since a VoIP system employs a much simpler process for making a long distance call, the separation between long distance and international calling is smaller than it’s ever been, but it’s still important to clarify the delineation between the two. At the end of the day, international calls simply cost more than domestic ones, but you’ll find that VoIP gives you cheap long distance calls across the board.
While there are plenty of other advantages to choosing a VoIP service provider, here are the main benefits when it comes to long distance calling in particular:
- Overall lower fees
- Less infrastructure to maintain vs. PSTN
- VoIP infrastructure is constantly being upgraded
- Most VoIP providers offer unlimited domestic calling
Let’s start with the lower fees, as it’s worth explaining why VoIP providers are able to charge so much less for long distance calling than PSTN. Since an international VoIP call uses an internet connection as the transmission medium, as opposed to a circuit-switched, analog PSTN system, there are significantly fewer infrastructure costs. As a result, administrative overhead is reduced and the savings are passed on to you, the consumer. And because binary digital data is so easy and inexpensive to send, even over long distances, there is effectively no difference between a local call and long distance call on a VoIP network.
If you are someone who makes frequent telephone calls to one international country, in particular, there is a way to make free calls on a VoIP network. Some VoIP providers allow you to get a free long-distance calling number, meaning that you would get a virtual telephone number with a local area code from the country you are calling to. In effect, this would make any calls you make from that number local calls, eliminating the need for an international rate!
Make Cheap Long Distance Calls From Cell Phone
Believe it or not, international long distance calling from cell phones also benefit from a VoIP system. Most cell phone providers now offer unlimited nationwide calling as a standard feature, which means that any call you make from one Canadian number to another is essentially treated as a local call. However, most cell phone plans are still subject to high international calling rates. With a VoIP system, you’ll no longer need to worry about the international rates being offered by your cell phone provider, as you can easily connect your mobile phone to your VoIP system and make international calls this way instead.
How to Make Long Distance Calls For Free
If you are looking to make international calls for free, there are a few options available. Thanks to VoIP technology, services such as Skype and Viber have become popular options for those looking to stay in touch with friends and loved ones across borders. The only downside to both services is that they are only free if you are connecting from one account to another (for example, Skype allows you to call phone numbers, but it’s not a free service). Both Skype and Viber are great services for personal calling, but businesses with international clients would be much better served to choose a VoIP provider with the capacity to scale up its network solutions.
VoIP Makes Long Distance Calling Cheap and Easy
Overall, VoIP technology has eliminated so many of the traditional barriers to long distance calling, that there’s really no reason for Canadians to continue relying on old Public Switched Telephone Networks and their aging infrastructure. If you’re in need of a long distance telephone solution, GoneVoIP has all the information you need to make an informed choice. Below, you’ll find reviews of all long distance providers in Canada, as well as the providers offering the best long distance rates in Canada and your local area.