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Calling Philippines from the U.S.

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Hi, I was wondering what kind of international telephone calling plans everyone is using to call your families back in Phils. My wife, R, has a plan with Verizon that allows 500 minutes a month for a monthly fee of $19.99 but we're finding even 500 minutes isn't enough!

We're considering one of the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol ) setups like Vonage which gives you unlimited minutes for an even lower fee. My main question is, does your family in the Phils need any special equipment to call them this way, or can you just call their regular cell phone? My wife's family lives in the remote hills and has no internet.

Any other ideas for unlimitied international calling?

Thanks,

T and R

Edited by Penguin_ie

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Moved from Off Topic to Philippines regional forum.


Our journey:

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September 2007: Met online via social networking site (MySpace); began exchanging messages.
March 26, 2009: We become a couple!
September 10, 2009: Arrived for first meeting in-person!
June 17, 2010: Arrived for second in-person meeting and start of travel together to other areas of China!
June 21, 2010: Engaged!!!
September 1, 2010: Switched course from K1 to CR-1
December 8, 2010: Wedding date set; it will be on February 18, 2011!
February 9, 2011: Depart for China
February 11, 2011: Registered for marriage in Wuhan, officially married!!!
February 18, 2011: Wedding ceremony in Shiyan!!!
April 22, 2011: Mailed I-130 to Chicago
April 28, 2011: Received NOA1 via text/email, file routed to CSC (priority date April 25th)
April 29, 2011: Updated
May 3, 2011: Received NOA1 hardcopy in mail
July 26, 2011: Received NOA2 via text/email!!!
July 30, 2011: Received NOA2 hardcopy in mail
August 8, 2011: NVC received file
September 1, 2011: NVC case number assigned
September 2, 2011: AOS invoice received, OPTIN email for EP sent
September 7, 2011: Paid AOS bill (payment portal showed PAID on September 9, 2011)
September 8, 2011: OPTIN email accepted, GZO number assigned
September 10, 2011: Emailed AOS package
September 12, 2011: IV bill invoiced
September 13, 2011: Paid IV bill (payment portal showed PAID on September 14, 2011)
September 14, 2011: Emailed IV package
October 3, 2011: Emailed checklist response (checklist generated due to typo on Form DS-230)
October 6, 2011: Case complete at NVC
November 10, 2011: Interview - APPROVED!!!
December 7, 2011: POE - Sea-Tac Airport

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September 23, 2013: Received NOA1 in mail (receipt date September 19th)

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**** Full names and location removed. For your own safety and privacy, please never post case numbers, full names, phone numbers or email addresses publicly. ******


Bye: Penguin

Me: Irish/ Swiss citizen, and now naturalised US citizen. Husband: USC; twin babies born Feb 08 in Ireland and a daughter in Feb 2010 in Arkansas who are all joint Irish/ USC. Did DCF (IR1) in 6 weeks via the Dublin, Ireland embassy and now living in Arkansas.

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ME and my wife does not call each other a lot, but we do text each other several times a day. I have an unlock dual sim phone. I use at&t prepaid for my plan here. I can send her text for free using the at&t sim card .I think it cost a little bit for her to receive text from me, like one piso per text. In the other sim Slot I have a Philippine smart sim card that she can text to me for free and I can receive text for free,

We also chat on webcam twice a week on Facebook on my days off.

We do call each other occasionally. but keeping in touch as much as we do other ways it is really not something that we need to do everyday


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I-130 RFE for NSO copy of marriage certificate: 2014-11-03
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Pay AOS Bill : 2015-02-05
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Viber is free ... You just need internet or wifi connection

She has not internet......

When I go to Philippines I carry a dual sim and keep Smart and a SUN IDD.

Sun IDD cost like 1 peso per minute to call USA and the quality is very good, I think it is for international only calls to USA.

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She has not internet......When I go to Philippines I carry a dual sim and keep Smart and a SUN IDD.

Sun IDD cost like 1 peso per minute to call USA and the quality is very good, I think it is for international only calls to USA.

If she doesn't have internet, she may buy cheap phone cards

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Hi, I was wondering what kind of international telephone calling plans everyone is using to call your families back in Phils. My wife, R, has a plan with Verizon that allows 500 minutes a month for a monthly fee of $19.99 but we're finding even 500 minutes isn't enough!

We're considering one of the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol ) setups like Vonage which gives you unlimited minutes for an even lower fee. My main question is, does your family in the Phils need any special equipment to call them this way, or can you just call their regular cell phone? My wife's family lives in the remote hills and has no internet.

Any other ideas for unlimitied international calling?

Thanks,

T and R

I am in the US and I get my fiance to sign up for Globe's US Duo program. It's only $10 for unlimited calling for 1 month! The promo is until May and after that it will cost I think $20 only. They assign him a US number that I use to call him at anytime. I can use my cellphone (TMobile) to call him at anytime and for as long as we want as I have unlimited minutes as well. Check Globe's website for the promo! Hope this helps! Only I can call him though so it doesnt use up his load. But he always gives me a missed call if he needs me to call him. Edited by macpao20

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I am in the US and I get my fiance to sign up for Globe's US Duo program. It's only $10 for unlimited calling for 1 month! The promo is until May and after that it will cost I think $20 only. They assign him a US number that I use to call him at anytime. I can use my cellphone (TMobile) to call him at anytime and for as long as we want as I have unlimited minutes as well. Check Globe's website for the promo! Hope this helps! Only I can call him though so it doesnt use up his load. But he always gives me a missed call if he needs me to call him.

OK, thanks! I'll check it out.

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If you have internet service then here are some possibilities that we used and still do to stay in touch with family.

Skype. Good if you have a camera and it's free but no camera is needed.

We also installed Magic Jack initial cost 49.95 which gives you the equipment (little gadget to plug in the internet usb) and 12 months free calling. $35 for each year after. Just set it up in the US with a local phone number and bring it with you on your next trip and plug it into the computer or internet box)


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Adjustment of Status

AOS March 5, 2014 Submitted AOS with EAD/AP package to Chicago USICS

Delivered March 8, 2014 AOS packaged delivered to USCIS drop box

Accepted March 19, 2014 Text message with receipt numbers

Biometrics April 16, 2014 Biometrics completed

EAD May 23, 2014 Employment Authorization Document approved and went to card production

TD May 23, 2014 Travel Document approved and went for card production

Receipt EAD/AP May 30, 2014 Received combo card EAD/AP

Green Card Approved July 11, 2014 Approved, no interview. Went to card production.

Green Card received July 17, 2014 GC received without interview

Removal of Conditions

Mailed I-751 Dec 16, 2015 Submitted ROC (removal of conditions)

Received Dec 18, 2015 USPS notification of successful delivery

Check Cashed Dec 21, 2015 Check was cashed

NOA-1 Issued Dec 21, 2015 NOA-1 for ROC issued

NOA-1 Issued Dec 26, 2015 NOA-1 Received

Biometrics Appt. Jan 29, 2016 Biometrics Appointment Scheduled [Completed]

 

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Google voice with an OBI is light years better than Magicjack. Cost of google voice - free. OBI device as little as $39 (and it will also work with most all VOIP phone services). Been using OBI and google voice for almost 4 years now, call quality is always excellent, which I could never say with magicjack.

I am bringing more OBI boxes with me to the Phils this next trip.


Hank

"Chance Favors The Prepared Mind"

 

      HandArrow.gif.adeb854ba620933849ae921ca0b44a0c.gif  Link to the Visa Process for Manila Embassy once you have your NOA2 : Click Here

 

Contact Hank: HERE

K-1 visa approved 21 March 2012

...Citizenship... complete!

 

 

 

 

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Google voice with an OBI is light years better than Magicjack. Cost of google voice - free. OBI device as little as $39 (and it will also work with most all VOIP phone services). Been using OBI and google voice for almost 4 years now, call quality is always excellent, which I could never say with magicjack.

I am bringing more OBI boxes with me to the Phils this next trip.

Great suggestion. Found some information here: http://www.cnet.com/news/swap-your-landline-for-google-voice-with-an-obi/

and here: http://www.obihai.com/product-primer

Used ones on Amazon $34.99.


Spoiler

Adjustment of Status

AOS March 5, 2014 Submitted AOS with EAD/AP package to Chicago USICS

Delivered March 8, 2014 AOS packaged delivered to USCIS drop box

Accepted March 19, 2014 Text message with receipt numbers

Biometrics April 16, 2014 Biometrics completed

EAD May 23, 2014 Employment Authorization Document approved and went to card production

TD May 23, 2014 Travel Document approved and went for card production

Receipt EAD/AP May 30, 2014 Received combo card EAD/AP

Green Card Approved July 11, 2014 Approved, no interview. Went to card production.

Green Card received July 17, 2014 GC received without interview

Removal of Conditions

Mailed I-751 Dec 16, 2015 Submitted ROC (removal of conditions)

Received Dec 18, 2015 USPS notification of successful delivery

Check Cashed Dec 21, 2015 Check was cashed

NOA-1 Issued Dec 21, 2015 NOA-1 for ROC issued

NOA-1 Issued Dec 26, 2015 NOA-1 Received

Biometrics Appt. Jan 29, 2016 Biometrics Appointment Scheduled [Completed]

 

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I have Verizon FIOS with the international calling. I used it to call my wife when she was there, and now she uses it to call her family.

Recenlty, my wife discovered voice calling through Facebook chat, 100% free, that she uses sometimes so as not to use up the 300 minute allocation on FIOS. Only works on a smartphone, and you need the FB app installed, but voice quality is good. Also make sure you are in wifi because if not it wil use up the data allocation on your smartphone plan.

Edited by Al422

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Great suggestion. Found some information here: http://www.cnet.com/news/swap-your-landline-for-google-voice-with-an-obi/

and here: http://www.obihai.com/product-primer

Used ones on Amazon $34.99.

I tripped over the OBI after I had bought two of the new Magicjack II and they wouldn't work for carp ;) , I had been searching all over the net for a reliable VOIP that I could bring a unit to the Phils and leave for making call back and forth very cheap... and free is for sure very cheap. When I was in the Phils the last time I was there for two months, called the neighbor to check on the house and he was amazed at the clarity of the call, he thought I had flown back home already and was calling from the house, and this was over DSL doing maybe 1.5MB most of the time. The OBI is the cat's meow in my book.


Hank

"Chance Favors The Prepared Mind"

 

      HandArrow.gif.adeb854ba620933849ae921ca0b44a0c.gif  Link to the Visa Process for Manila Embassy once you have your NOA2 : Click Here

 

Contact Hank: HERE

K-1 visa approved 21 March 2012

...Citizenship... complete!

 

 

 

 

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