Top 3 Phone Card Companies Reviewed
Reviews of the Best Prepaid International Calling Cards
Today prepaid calling card or phone cards are still widely used today. As shoppers we want the cheapest calling cards to make international calls and even local telephone calls in the USA. But where do we find reliable calling cards and who can we trust for providing reliable minutes and customer service. Are there any companies offering free trial minutes to try before buying? All of your questions will be answered here.
Whether you want to call Mexico cheap or avoid high telephone charges for calling Thailand a prepaid calling card can help you save money and make your calls cost a 1 penny.
So who are prepaid phone cards perfect for?
They are perfect for parents who want to stay in touch with their children studying abroad.
For expatriates who are working overseas and long to hear a familiar voice.
For families who want to know if their mother, father, son or daughter is doing well at the military base they are stationed in.
For vacationers who want to brag to their coworkers about their latest adventure in some far off beach in the middle of nowhere.
For business people who need to check the status of an order at a factory in a country halfway across the globe.
Whatever the reason anyone would need to make an international call, prepaid phone cards are a reliable way to connect you around the world.
Which phone cards to choose?
What You Will Learn From This Hub
In this Hub you will learn how to choose prepaid phone cards and how to avoid some common pitfalls and mistakes before spending your hard earned cash.
You will learn 3 helpful tips that will assist you in your search for a phone card.
You will also learn some common phone card terminology that will help you make a better choice on which calling card to purchase.
At the end of the Hub you will find three of the "Top 3 Phone Card Companies" that I have reviewed. The top 3 have been picked from a website called Phone Cards Reviews.
3 Helpful Tips On Choosing A Phone Card
1. Decide on your calling frequency ahead of time.
You will have a large variety of cards to choose from. And figuring out how long you will be talking may help you choose a better card. Ask yourselves these simples questions when choosing a prepaid phone card:
- Where will you be calling most often?
- How long will you calls last?
- Do you need high quality calls or will standard service be enough?
- Is the phone card for personal or business use?
2. Understand your options.
Phone card denominations come in $5, $10, $20, $30 and $50. But don't start thinking that the call per minute rates are the only charges deducted off of your phone card.
There are fees such as connection, maintenance, carrier service, etc. However, not all phone cards carry all of those fees. But one general rule of thumb is that the lower the call per minute rate, the higher the fees will be. This is a rule you should repeat to yourself whenever you are price shopping for phone cards.
3. Choosing your phone card.
Deciding on which kind of phone card you need and how much you want to spend ahead of time will make your phone card search a little easier.
So let's say for example you need to purchase a phone card for calling a major business client overseas in Japan.
Which phone card's call per minute rate would you choose?
(A) 1 cent per minute
(B) 5 cent per minute
If you chose B then you're learning. Yes the call cost more per minute because you're paying for higher quality calls. And phone cards with higher call per minute rates have lower fees too.
Now if I was calling my Uncle Phil in Australia I would choose A. Because Phil will understand if my call drops or if I ask him to speak up a little more he will be more forgiving. And if you end up speaking for hours about sport fishing than more power to you because as I mentioned before cheap phone cards are perfect for short time use.
Again don't let me put you off from buying cheap phone cards. Just know when to use them and not to use them, that's all.
Stop! Don't Buy That Phone Card Until You Read This
In this day and age, the mobile phone is the greatest invention that every day people have in their possession. Today all over the world it is the preferred method of contact as people are moving away from the traditional land line.
So you whip out your brand new prepaid phone card with a 2¢ per minute call rate and call your brother Johnny's cell phone in Thailand. Everything is going fine until you get a one minute warning that your prepaid phone card's airtime is running out. How could that be you ask yourself. You've only spoke for an hour and you did the calculations and know that you have at least thirty minutes left.
So you end you conversation and call customer support. That is when you will find out that your call to Johnny's mobile phone cost 9.4¢ per minute. The 2¢ per minute rate applies to land line
So what happened?
The initial price you see for phone cards are based solely on land line rates. Phone card companies just automatically assume that you are dialing to a land line instead of a mobile phone.
I don't know if they purposely make you search for the mobile rate or not but I'm just going to assume the best of phone card companies.
So should I give up on calling mobile phones?
Absolutely not. Phone card companies recognize that communicating with mobile phones is getting more popular these days. So they now make phone cards specifically for dialing out to mobile phones with really reasonable rates.
Of all the companies I have used, Nobelcom has the best phone cards for calling mobile phone numbers specifically.
- Nobelcom Phone Card Company
Nobelcom offers a free 15 minute trial offer on their website.
1. Nobelcom Phone Card Company
Nobelcom is the phone card division of a larger corporation called Nobeltel Ltd. They have been providing phone cards to the public for over a decade and have built a reputation for excellent phone cards as well as rock solid customer support.
What makes Nobelcom so unique is that they offer their own brand of phone cards and have control of their own facilities based carrier division. This is a key advantage they have over their competitors.
Does Nobelcom offer the cheapest rates?
I wouldn't necessarily say Nobelcom has the cheapest rates. I would say that the rates they offer are very fair. Remember the cheaper call per minute, the higher the fees are. I find that Nobelcom's phone cards have the least amount of fees and the call per minute rates are very reasonable especially considering that your calls will be higher in quality. This does not mean that you will not experience any problems at all. It just means you have a lower possibility for call problems.
I think what is most important is paying a non premium price for quality phone calls is very important. Otherwise what good is a phone card if the call quality is so poor that it makes you sound like you're speaking next to a waterfall.
Another good thing about Nobelcom is their 24x7 customer service. Whenever I called, I never had to wait more than 3 minutes and everyone I spoke to so far were very knowledgeable and friendly. They also offer live chat support which I have used only a few times and found them just as helpful.
All of the phone card companies I have reviewed here take your credit card transaction and security very seriously.
Once you have made your order online at Nobelcom your transaction is only complete when a customer representative has contacted you by phone to confirm your identity. Once that is completed only then you will be able to use your new prepaid phone card. The customer rep will only ask you for basic information that only you will know to confirm your identity.
The only gripe that I have with Nobelcom is that they charge a $2.00 processing fee for all purchases under $40.
Watch Me Log Into My Nobelcom Account
Speedy Pin Website
Speedy Pin is a good company because they offer customers 100% guarantees on all of their products.
2. Speedy Pin
They are basically one of the biggest Internet stores that carries a large line of prepaid phone cards. One great advantage of using Speedy Pin is that they offer a 100% Guarantee on all of their products. This is the only phone card company in this top 3 review that offers this incentive. I have never had a problem with their products which made me request a guarantee but it is always good to know it's there if I ever need it.
Does Speedy Pin offer the best prices?
They do offer very good rates on their phone cards. But watch out for their phone cards with the lowest call per minute rates. Remember the cheaper the call per minute rate the higher the fees.
But don't let those types of phone cards turn you away from purchasing a cheap phone card. I still use them. But I use them to my advantage.
What I do is, I buy a cheap $5.00 phone card that has low call per minute rates but has high fees. The fees are usually deducted after I finish my call or at a weekly basis.
So what I do is I finish that prepaid phone card off within the week. This way I have avoided the fees and took advantage of the low call per minute rate. This goes to show that a little bit of call planning will help you choose the best phone card for the moment.
Speedy Pin offers phone cards with toll free 24x7 telephone customer support with a quick response time.
When purchasing a phone card on their website they take your security very seriously. Your online purchase transaction is not complete until you have confirmed your identity through a form that is on their website.
Keep in mind that Speedy Pin does charge a $1.00 processing fee for orders under $10. But you get a 5% discount on orders over $40.
Watch Me Log Into My Speedy Pin Account
- Cloncom Phone Card Company
To find rates for the country you want to call visit Cloncom's website.
3. Cloncom Phone Card Company
Just because I ranked Cloncom #3 does not mean you should not even take a look at them. As I mentioned earlier each of the phone card companies I have reviewed have certain advantages and disadvantages between them.
Cloncom has been in the phone card industry longer than their competitors and I have used their services for years and I have never had any serious problems. I experienced just a few minor issues like dropped calls or connection problems. But those are the same issues that come up with phone cards offered by any other phone card company.
Their prices are a bit higher but that is because they offer high quality prepaid calling cards. I use their "Sonico Red" brand of phone cards mainly for business. I strongly believe that if you are making business calls you will need a high quality phone card.
There is nothing more embarrassing then speaking to a client and the phone quality is poor. I may be paying a bit more per minute for the call but it'll be worth it.
Though they do offer a phone card called "Super Saver" which has some very low call per minute rates but come with the most fees. There is a way to use high fee phone cards to save money. Go read my "Speedypin Review" and you will see how.
Cloncom offers excellent 24x7 telephone customer support who are always helpful and they do have a live chat option. I never had to wait too long to speak to a customer rep but a few times when I used the live chat I noticed that it was busy and a message came up asking me to try again later. To me this is not a serious matter as buying a phone card is not a life and death matter.
Watch Me Log Into My Cloncom Account
Find A List Of Great Phone Card Companies Here
- Phone Cards Reviews Website
Click here to see a review of Top 10 phone card companies including the Top 3 that was mentioned here.
Questions and Answers
Here are some questions you might be asking if you are thinking about purchasing a phone from from one of my recommended phone card companies.
How soon will I receive my phone card after I order it online?
You are not ordering a physical phone card like the ones from a convenience store. Internet phone cards are virtual, so the records of your minutes are kept at the phone card company's database, including your purchase history, credit card information and billing address.
Phone cards are activated and ready for use once the phone card company has confirmed your purchase either by calling you directly or through a confirmation process on their website.
What is minute rounding? Sometimes I see a phone card that will say "1 minute rounding" or "3 minute rounding"
This is one of the silliest fees imposed by phone cards. It's really just another tactic for phone cards companies to suck more minutes our of your card so you will buy another one sooner.
3-Minute Rounding: A phone call lasting 10 minutes and 30 seconds will be billed for 12 minutes.
1-Minute Rounding: A phone call lasting 10 minutes and 30 seconds will be billed for 11 minutes.
Yes, I'm guilty of using the same phone cards that employ such same tactics but I keep track of my minutes like a hawk.
Is it safe to purchase a phone card through the Internet?
If you buy from reputable phone card company like the ones being reviewed here than yes. Depending on which phone card company you have chosen you will able to purchase your phone card with a major credit card or through PayPal.
Phone card companies take your credit card security seriously and a customer service representative will call you to confirm your transaction by asking you for information that only you should know.
What is the difference between PIN & PINless dialing?
PIN stands for Personal Identification Number. Basically when you dial the access number you will be prompted to enter usually a 10 digit PIN number for your security to deter unauthorized use of your phone card.
Phone card companies also give you the option of purchasing a PINless phone card where they will keep a record of your phone number in their system. So that every time you use your phone card you will not need to enter a PIN number. PINless phone cards are very convenient since you do not have to remember a set of numbers. However, PINless phone cards inur a slightly higher call per minute rate but it is still worth it to me.
What are "Rechargeable" and "Auto-Rechargeable" phone cards?
Since Internet phone cards are virtual they are stored in the phone card provider's database including the credit card information that you used to initially purchase your phone card.
So if your favorite phone card requires a PIN and is low on credit you will be able to log on to your account and make a payment to refill the card without having to remember a new PIN. This is called a "Rechargeable" phone card.
If your phone card is "Auto-Rechargeable", then you can set your account to automatically make a charge to your credit card on file so that your phone card will refill with it's maximum credit. This is useful when you lose track of your minutes and don't want your call to get dropped. Nobelcom will give you a $5 discount for orders over $40 to setup a free "Auto-Recharge" system.