Canada Calling Cards

Written by Kevin Tavolaro
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There are two basic types of Canada calling cards available. The first type includes cards configured to provide you with favorable rates when placing a call to Canada from outside its border. The other type consists of cards configured to provide cost-efficient international rates when placing a call from Canada to anywhere else in the world. The two varieties of cards can be found for sale on both sides of the Canadian border.

A significant difference between Canada calling cards and those specifically designed to place calls from other countries, can be seen in the way additional charges and fees are handled. Charges related to payphones, hotels, and access numbers, are significantly smaller when using a Canadian card to place a call from Canada. Since it's these hidden charges that tend to deplete prepaid cards faster than the actual international calling fees, you can most likely save yourself money by buying a Canada calling card if you're planning on traveling there. Although your existing prepaid card can probably still place calls from inside Canada, Canadian-based cards might provide additional savings, and are a good choice for people planning an extended stay in Canada.

A lot of calling cards deduct a connection fee for every call placed using the card. In many cases the call does not even have to be received in order for the connection fee to be deducted. The connection fee is charged independently of the rates, and can devour a large chunk of the prepaid long distance time. Calls placed from payphones usually require especially large connection fees. These fees can cost several units of prepaid time, often equal to one or more dollars. Such high connection charges make it highly inefficient to use a prepaid card from a payphone, especially if the card is already low priced. For example, a $5 prepaid card can become completely worthless after being used to place five unanswered calls from a public payphone.

Canada Calling Cards and Payphones

When Canadian prepaid cards are used to place a call from inside Canada, the hidden fees and charges are often much less severe. For example, if you use your card to place a call from a public payphone in Canada, you will still be required to pay a connection fee, but it will be much smaller. In addition, you will usually have the option of preventing the fee from being deducted from your card. This is because most Canadian calling cards allow you to pay for a payphone connection fee by simply inserting a coin in the phone, just as you would to make a local call. The connection fee is rarely higher than the cost of a local payphone call, making it between 25 and 35 cents.

Because many hotels charge an extra fee for the duration of any phone call, local or international (in addition to the actual toll cost of the call itself), some phone card users might be surprised to find themselves with a large hotel phone bill after using their prepaid calling card. Even though the access number on most phone cards is toll free, if a hotel also charges you for the duration of the call, you can still run up quite a debt very quickly. In order to prevent this situation, some Canada calling cards now feature an additional toll-free number that allows you to place your call via a callback service. After dialing the number, the service will quickly disconnect your call, and then return a call to the same number you're calling from. At this point you will be prompted to enter your information, in order to place the call. Your connection to your prepaid account can now be made via an incoming call, which should help you to avoid any large charges from the hotel.


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