It’s no fun having the festive season in the UK without having your family and friends around you and whilst it’s not always possible to be with them in person, you can emulate some of that family feeling by speaking at length on the phone, catching your family up with what’s been going on in your life and perhaps planning to meet up in the new year if you’re planning on flying over, or indeed if they’re coming over to the UK. Whilst speaking to your loved ones on the phone is almost always cheaper than a flight over to Poland, the costs do mount up and many people find they’ve overspent on their phone calls, leaving them some work to do to get their finances sorted. However, there are a myriad of different options you have to ensure you keep your costs to a minimum whilst still keeping in contact with your family and friends, and here we take you through them.
1.Check how much your mobile provider is costing you
Costs vary across network providers, so the first step would be to find out how much you’re paying for your calls and whether there’s any way of switching to a better tariff. At present, with EE, calls to Poland cost a whopping £1 per minute including VAT, whereas if you opt into their pay monthly add on, it’ll cost less, at 15p per minute to mobiles and 5p per minute to landlines. Looking at Vodaphone, call costs to Poland again are charged at £10 per minute, but you can purchase bundles that will save you some money. For example, if you opt in at £20 per month, you’ll receive 200 international minutes, which obviously works out much less than £1 per minute. However, whilst these add ons can help, if you go over your minutes you’re likely to get stung with a pretty big bill.
2.Consider your other options
There are, of course other ways of keeping in touch, and if you don’t mind messaging, then Facebook and Twitter offer you the ability to keep in touch with your loved ones for just the cost of your broadband bill (or someone else’s bill if you want to spend time in coffee shops, or at libraries with free Wi-Fi. The only trouble with this is that it’s not quite so personal, and many people miss the sound of their loved ones voices, but at least it’s free.
3.Video calling on Wi-Fi
Skype is a great tool for video calling, and again you can use a free Wi-Fi connection to keep in touch with your family and friends in Poland in 2016 if you wish. Only 2 problems with this – the connection often drops, especially if you’re using coffee shop Wi-Fi, and you’re likely to end up spending a small fortune on coffee and snacks whilst you get reconnected!
4.Consider Call Apps
If you have a smart phone, the likelihood is that you’ll be able to download call apps to save you some substantial amounts of money, and they’re actually pretty easy to use. They solve many of the problems that come with communicating overseas. You can stay in control of what you’re spending by only topping up the app with what you need, (or what you can afford) you don’t have to sign up or opt in to a contract, it can be ready to go in seconds, and the call rates are substantially lower than those offered by the mobile providers (FooCall are currently offering calls to Poland from just 1.4p per minute!). In addition to this, Wi-Fi connection is just one way to make a call. If there’s no Wi-Fi available, apps such as FooCall can connect using 3G or 4G, and even if you’ve no data, they can use your free monthly minutes to connect you to a local number that will then connect to the number in Poland, ensuring you’re not getting charged any more than you should be to call abroad.
Whether you’re only away from Poland for a short time, or you’re missing friends and family there after a long time away, by doing your research and using apps like FooCall, you can certainly lessen your homesickness and your phone bill all in one go!