Internet Telephony? Callback? Telephone cards? How does it work? Why? Options?

You want discount telephone rates but are confused? What is callback? What other telephone options do you have?
Callback (Call-back)
uses a free "trigger call" to the switch of the callback provider. Immediately their computer calls back to your phone, that you registered before and give you an american dial tone. You use this dial tone to make your international phone call.   You will be billed only by the callback provider.
Nothing will be billed by your local phone company: From their point of view you made an international (trigger) call that did not complete. You received the callback call. Receiving a call is normally free (exception maybe cellphones or cellphone roaming charges).
Direct Dial or 800 Access
uses a toll free 800 number to access the discount phone service. Usually you need a pin number as identification. Then you call the destination number. Advantage: you do not have to hang up and wait for the callback. It also works from any phone without registration, even from public payphones and hotel phones. This is the same as a telephone card. You pay only to the discount phone company.


US based long distance click here for phone info  for US residents
Read below if you reside outside the USA

US based long distancelive in US?
Cheaper long distance phone calls with Callback German Germanygerman
Discount international long distance telephone with Callback Portugal Brasilportuguês

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Phone info  for US residents
FAQ, Explanations
International country codes
Telephone Services Overview
Business Opportunity
Cell Phone
Phone cards for Travellers
Net2phone cheap via internet
FAX, virtual office      

Dennis Rodman

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Who is

Summary: Due to excellent rates, instant web billing, and self-administration via internet I recommend TelCan Callback.  Net2phone has some excellent rates, but requires PC and good internet connection. Traveltel für frequent international Travellers. MCI card works almost everywhere in the World
Rate Search machines: for quick comparisons,1) TelCan ,2) Boomerang, debittalk, Net2phone. 3) Cognigen, Kallback.
TelCan Callback

TelCan Website

TelCan Rates

TelCan Signup

TelCan Callback: +++++ Excellent rates. TelCan's website allows you to change callback number, trigger callbacks, check your instantly updated bill online instantly. You can even talk to a real customer representative on the phone, free anywhere in the world.  Pay credit card, check, wire.
Callback by Boomerang, Debitalk 




Callback can be used anywhere in the World.    Compare Boomerang Callback and Debitalk prepaid. If you request the "follow me" option at signup, then boomerang can be used from all phones in the US with 800 access. Both have interesting rates for cellphone owners in Europe and elsewhere.
Calling cards

Call from the USA

Call from ouside the USA

Cognigen cards from USA

Calling cards by Nobelcom to call from any country in the world (yes they also sell MCI cards). Rates from US are unbelievably low,like US$ 0.02 to São Paulo, Brazil (connection charge applies)]. Also check calling cards from cognigen from the US. Best you read my Calling Card Info page so you understand the tricky small print, like connection charges.


Net2phone Website

Net2phone Rates

Net2phone download

Net2phone: Call any telephone in the world from your computer.  Incredibly low rates. Same rates no matter which country you call from.  From anywhere in the world no charge to US 800, 888 numbers. Under 10 US cents per minute to the USA, Germany, Britain.  Net2phone needs a computer, and a good Internet connection. Bad third world internet access may result in inferior sound quality and reliability (try yourself for free).  Net2phone download Compare also IConnecthere (Deltathree), and IP Telephony Hardware: computer and laptop cards that allow you to improve sound quality and plug a real phone or even cordless phone into your computer.

Traveltel Website

TravelTel Rates

TravelTel Registration

Traveltel: Prepaid Telephone card. Pay directly over the internet. Good for travels to over 40 countries. If you spend much time at the same place, you yourself can reprogram your Access Authority callback to that place, and get better rates.  In Germany and US Access Authority offers cheaper direct access via 800 number. If you need to use ever changing phones in foreign countries, then use Traveltel. Rates are much higher than callback. Rates from Switzerland, USA, everywhere.
 Other Callback      
CogniDial callback (either prepaid or billed to your credit card), Kallback. Compare the rates!!
Internet Telephone, Net2phone
Net to phone, internet to telephone. Your call is routed via internet (IP telephony) to the phone company's switch,then it is sent via telephone network to the destination telephone.

Telephone to internet, Fax to Internet,virtual office
You can receive have a virtual fax machine and an answering machine in London, Syndney, New York, Frankfurt. All messages will be sent to you instantly via internet. You can conveniently and cheaply send faxes via internet (email text or attached text or image files).


Callback: What is Callback??

A callback Telephone phone company saves you money on long distance and international phone calls. You circumvent local phone companies and get cheap phone rates from a USA based company. The rates are frequently cheaper than ATT, MCI, Sprint, so it may be interesting even for residents of the United States (Access Autjhority/World Access offers a phone card service that allows 800 access from any US payphone. Callback discounted rates are especially interesting for residents of other countries.

What do I need to do to use callback

You need to sign up for a callback company. For this you should have an international credit card. Once you have signed up, you get your personal Trigger number. To make a phone call, you call this Trigger number, let it ring only once (so it does not pick up and no charges accrue). In seconds, you receive a call back to your phone and get a dial tone. So your phone company thinks you received a phone call. If in your country receiving a mobile phone call is free of charge, then this is very interesting for cell-phones, too. Once you receive the callback, you dial as if you were in the US, you will receive detailed instructions as to which prefixes to use. Sample dialing instructions for Access Authority.

You can program the callback procedure into your telephone . If you have large volume of calls you can even get a machine for 160 dollars that does all this for you so it feels like a normal long distance phone company.

WHy are these rates so low?

In the USA phone companies compete in a free market. The telephone companies fight for their market share. This is why their rates are so much lower than the rates in countries with a state monopoly phone company that is protected from competition and can thus afford inefficiency and high phone rates.

What is needed to use callback?

You need a touch tone phone (a rotary phone or pulse phone does not work). It is ok if your local phone system is a pulse system, but once you get the callback you need to switch to tone. All fax machines and most modern phones have a tiny switch on the bottom or in the back that allows to choose "tone" or "pulse".  If you dial a digit and hear a molodious tone, your system is already touch tone. If you hear a number of clicks, then it is pulse. You will have to switch right before you get the callback. Often this can be done by pressing the # button (in this case the word "tone" is next to the # button).  
You pay with an international credit card, Eurocard, Mastercard, Visa, American Express, .. The credit card must be valid in the USA. Make sure your credit card is valid outside your own country.. Prepayment with American cheques or wires is possible, but usually too complicated.  If you do not have a credit card, I recommend you find a relative or good friend who signs your application and allows you to charge his or her card. In this case you register the callback in your name. But the credit card information, the address (!), and the signature must be your friend's. The address should be the billing address of the credit card used.


Callback is complicated??

All important numbers can be programmed into speed dial buttons on your phone: callback trigger number, 800 access number, pin codes, etc. So you just need to press one or two buttons. After you receive the callback return call, make sure your phone is in "tone" position.  The dialing prefixes are the same as if you were calling from the United States. This takes a few minutes to get used to. See Access Authority callback dialing instructions and the country code list and explanations for a few examples.

Example: a number in the USA/Canada/Virgin Islands etc. is like a interstate long distance call inside the US
instead of 001 310 123 4567 simply dial 1 310 123 4567.

In all other countries dial 011 instead of the more common 00, for example to Brazil
instead of 00 55 21 123 4567 dial the telephone number 011 55 21 123 4567  

Callback for your travelling teenage son, your girlfriend, or your business partner 

You can install callback for other people in foreign countries. You can set up any phone anywhere in the world for callback. The owner of the credit card has to sign the application and is responsible for the usage from that phone.

Access Authority offers "forced completion". Your friend dials his or her personal trigger number in the USA, rings once and hangs up. He receives the callback.   When he answers the callback, he does not need to dial, it automatically connects to yor phone. This makes dialing so easy, even children can do it. And you can be sure that they can call only you, they cannot call other people and bill it to you. 

Callback while travelling

Some companies allow you to reprogram the callback to another phone (Access Authority). Additionally, Access Authority has toll free access in the US, Germany, and many European countries. You can use the toll free access from any phone or payphone in the US, and many other countries.  

What about the mobile phone?

Callback counts as a only received call.  You make a call to the trigger number and hang up. then you receive a call, you use this line you received to make a phone call.  In many countries, cellphones are not charged for receiving calls.

In Germany, for example, it is cheaper to use callback via USA to call your friend who lives a block away. Cheaper than the rates charged by the over priced German providers.
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You will be billed from the moment you receive the callback. All callback companies do that, but they are reluctant to tell you so.  (Note: if your call does not complete, i.e. if the other party does not answer or their telephone is busy, there is no charge).  But, due to this billing procedure, it is recommended you dial very quickly once you receive the callback.

internationale Telekom Telefongebühren Our local Telecom
has excellent rates

This is the end of "Callback FAQ: How, why, options, rates. Call back, internet telephony, phone cards".

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