Knowing how to call Russia can be an expensive affair if you are using your standard telephone company’s long distance plan. However, with the onset of VOIP, it is possible to call any number of countries for a much lower price than what you would normally pay if you decided to use the phone. VOIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol, and it uses your Internet connection to make the call for a much lower price.
One of the most popular programs for VOIP calls on the Internet today is Skype. Skype offers competitive rates for many countries, and the price for calling Russia from the United States is just $0.048 per minute (that’s just 4.8 cents per minute, not 48 cents!). This is much lower than normal long distance rates. Making calls with Skype is easy. First, you need to purchase Skype credits, which come in denominations of $10 and up. After you have purchased your credits, simply dial the number using the program as if you were using a normal phone, and you will be connected to your number.
If you would prefer not to purchase credits, since it can get costly if you are making frequent calls, you might want to consider purchasing a Skype subscription. A subscription is a recurring monthly fee that you pay for connectivity to any country in the world. A subscription cost for Skype to Russia is only $12.95 a month, which is a much more viable option if you will be calling frequently. Of course, if you can persuade the person you will be calling to download Skype, then you can chat all you like for free – that is to say, at no cost to either you or the person you are calling in Russia.
Another option that is open specifically to Americans is Google Voice. Google Voice gives you your own number and allows you to make international calls for a very low rate. It is in beta right now and requires an invite to join, but once you are invited, you receive $0.10 free for making an international call, and calls to Russia after that are only $0.02 to $0.04, depending on the area in Russia that you call.
As you can see, Google Voice is the cheaper option to go with, if you will be making per credit calls. If you will be calling on a regular basis, then you might want to consider a Skype subscription in order to save money. Both Skype and Google Voice are free to use in the United States, so even if you do not want to go this route for making calls to Russia, they are still invaluable to have.