Send an international SMS cheaply!

The internet allows us to communicate with each other more easily, and at a cheaper rate than ever. However, when you’re travelling abroad you’ll often find that it’s impossible to find an internet connection, leaving you with the only option of making calls and texts the old-fashioned way, at premium prices.

Why limit yourself when you travel? SMS messages are the quickest, and easiest way to communicate. With a simple text you can let everyone know where you are and what you’re doing, and many people prefer texting to phone calls, for good reason.

So, when you’re abroad, what are your options?

 

 

Local Data

Of course, if you have any type of mobile you can send texts by using your data plan. Everyone’s plan differs, though, so you’ll need to check the exact details of yours. If it doesn’t cover international SMS and calls, you’ll have to pay extra for them.

Furthermore, you may incur roaming charges when abroad. Needless to say, these are pricey!

 

Pros

- You’ll always have this option

- If your data plan covers international texts, you won’t have to pay

 

Cons

- You may be paying for extra data outside of your plan

- You may incur roaming charges

 

Calling Cards

You can buy calling cards from many shops on the high street, or as ‘virtual’ cards online. These have a set price for international calls and texts, and you’ll know exactly how much credit you have on them so you won’t be stuck with a frightening bill at the end of the month.

However, if you run out of credit in a place where it’s not easy to top up, you’re stuck. Some will charge you premium rates for extra texts if they’re linked to your account. Also, it can be a little tricky working out the best rates as there are so many calling cards on the market.

 

Pros

- Easy to keep track of credit

- Set rates which are cheaper than using your own data plan

 

Cons

- It may be difficult to top up

- It takes time and research to find the cheapest rates, and there are sometimes hidden charges

 

IM

Instant messaging is a great way to go. If you have a service like Skype, Whatsapp or Hangouts and an internet connection you can message anyone you wherever they are for free. IM also allows you to send pictures, short videos and voice messages.

On the other hand, if you don’t have an internet connection, you’re paying to use a mobile network instead and roaming and international charges still apply. IMs can sometimes be reliable too, depending on the service.

 

Pros

- Free with WiFi

- Allows you to send and receive media

Cons

- Occasionally unreliable

- Expensive when used over mobile network

 

Apps

How about an app which combines the cheap, easy-to-top-up rates of calling cards with the free service of instant messaging? ChilliTalk not only lets you switch between using a WiFi connection and network, it also has the cheapest international calling and SMS rates.

Not only that, but with ChilliTalk you can call or text any other ChilliTalk app user for absolutely free! It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, with ChilliTalk you won’t have to pay premium rates for a premium service.

 

Pros

- Free calls and texts

- The cheapest international rates

- Easily switch between WiFi and network usage

- Fast, reliable worldwide service

Cons

- If you can think of some — we always love feedback.