a VirtualTourist member from Brooklyn
So....I am headed back to Thailand on Thursday. Just curious....what is the cheapest way to make a few phone calls back to the US?
I have used my hotel phone in the past just to let a few people know that I arrived and was alive. This is a vacation so I will turn off my cell when I leave JFK and have no interest in buying a local cell. Also will not travel with my laptop so no Skype, etc. Any advice? Maybe one of the internet cafes?
Tks in advance. Like I said, I will prob make 2 or 3 5 min calls during my entire trip.....Tks!!
Phone card the best way? Just did a little research....
Use email to tell everyone you are okay. etc. Make a point to check once or twice a day to see if there is anything important that needs attention or can be put off until you return home. Maybe one half baht to 1 baht per minute.
Too bad you aren't bringing a smaller netbook or iPad type device becauseso many hotels have free wifi. I read my hometown newspapers online overseas and even listen to my local radio stations too!!
Some internet shops have cell phones you can use and pay for the service by the minute.
Up to you.
Tks. My hotel(Dream) has a computer in the lobby(for customers) so I have access to that whenever I need it...that's one of the main reason I don't take my Macbook with me.
I will go that route then...use an internet shop to make a few calls. So you recommend that over a phone card? Tks...
I personally never call anyone back home! I do use emails pretty often. I can can even use a computer to send an email to my brother's cell phone in the US. He can send emails with his cell phone to my email address that I read on a computer.
I have a Nokia cell phone bought in Thailand years ago where I can be reached at in an immediate emergency. But so far I only use it for local calls in Thailand other than once for a test call home so the number can be stored.
Fonecard is the best, or use internet cafe, also plenty of long distance fone offices
You don't say what is you call you are swicthing off. I was just in two weeks trip, I have smartphone(s) and I swithed mobile data off and occasinally used WiFi with the phone. Phone was open part time (unfortunately those operators didn't provide incoming number presentation). I have skype in the phone, so with WiFi calls were free, but I have found most resonable to use email to say I am ok (as said here before). Then I updated shortly photos here and facebook, again with WiFi. My (private) telco costs were zero. As said before, your have options, depends how you build your own on-line-visibility. You can do with no equips (and use hotel/internet bar), purchace (or take your) small laptop, upgrade smartphone, take an iPad. Btw, iPads WiFi access was the most easy to use, so I am eagerly waiting similar products with phone.
Living in Bangkok, since 2007, we have used the CAT Phonenet card for all our calls to the States. I cost 1 baht per minute. You can get a Phonenet card for 300 baht. There is a CAT shop in Chamchuri Square, at the Sam Yan MRT stop.
1b/minute to US is reasonable :) I checked the price plans and this is good choice for other destinations also. There are chargeable and prepaids, prepaid price is a little higher, still reasonable. I didn't quickly find the rules, and regulations, but this is suitable for OP's needs, for sure. There are 200, 300, 500, 1000 and worldwide prepaid, right.
Here is the option:-
If your cell could use SIM card like T Mobile you could buy SIM card in Thailand at AIS booth at Bangkok Airport or at any 7 Elven. Remember! The cheapest way to back to USA you must dial 005 then 001 follow with your area code and the number. You will pay only 3 THB a minute.
Walmart have a phone.
Good luck & have a safe trip
If you will be in Thailand for a few days or weeks, why don't you consider buying a local SIM card with data capability? AIS and DTac offers a 7-day 300mb plan at 99 baht, enough for an average data user as long as you don't download movies. And you can then use google map or surf the web for shopping tips, finding addresses etc, or message/call your friends using whatsapp/viber/tango. And you still can use the 005 or 008 IDD calls from this local SIM. At 5 baht/minute (008), a 10-minute call to USA costs 50 baht or US$1.70. You can go for cheaper ways to call of course, but how much of this US$1.70 do you expect to save? You might as well spend your time enjoying your holidays.
Very few US phones come unlocked; they are tied to a specific carrier.
If you have an I phone download the magic jack for free app. Then connect anywhere to a wireless signal and call the us or Canada for free. If you have a good wi if signal you will have a very clear connection on the other end.
Oops. I wasn't aware of that. Guess I understand your needs better now.
Thanks for the info/suggestions everyone. Not interested in buying a cell or SIM card..or even using my iPhone. If I needed to be in constant contact, maybe.
I think the phone card will be my best bet. I will make 1 or 2 calls back to the states to let a few people know that I have arrived.
When I travel, I try to leave everything behind me...so I turn off my iPhone/leave my laptop at home/have LIMITED internet access/etc. I will probably check my e-mails MAYBE 3 times during this trip. I will probably use the hotel PC to access my local newspaper here in NY to see if anything interesting is going on.
I would rather ingulf myself in the Thai people/culture/food/etc than focus on staying in constant contact with people at home. That's just me. That has always been how I travel. The only electronic device that I constantly have on me is my camera. I used to carry a netbook....then I got a MacAir and thought that I would use that for travel. I never do. I love just having a true vacation...no(limited) electronic contact....
Tks again all for the great suggestions...
What and not tell us about your experiences till you return home? Have a great trip and enjoy.
"When I travel, I try to leave everything behind me..." - beautiful concept.... something that I'm still learning to do. Enjoy your trip, ter1413.
Thanks all. I just finished packing. Flight is at 10am in the morning. It's a little after midnight and I am finally getting excited for this trip. I will try to check in to VT during the week. This time tomorrow, I will be 1 hr away fro m HK!!! And a few hrs closer to Thailand.
I am out! My next contact will be at HK airport or at my hotel in Bangkok!!!
Most internet cafes are Skype set up already, so just get in and out, cost a dollar for an hour.
cheers tommy x
Tks all. I just returned this morning. Ended up making just 1 call and I did it from my hotel. Great trip!