> I routinely dial a toll free 866 number from my cell phone to retrieve
> e-voice calls. They do not have a regular local number for this
> It costs me .35/min from my cell phone (no long distance plan). It
> could cost me .03/min if I could use my calling card. The calling card
> does not allow toll free calls.
A "toll free" number is just that -- toll free. Accordingly, I don't
understand why you're getting charged, regardless if you have a long
distance plan or not. I thought long distance plans were included in
the cell phone.
I think you first need to determine exactly who is charging you that
As Pat noted, perhaps your voice mail service is the one charging the
fee, not your cell phone.
Now, some cell phones do charge their normal airtime rate when you
fetch your messages. But getting a calling card won't change that.
Perhaps you need to look at your entire cellphone service and make a
[For myself, I pay a lot per minute on my cellphone, but I use it so
rarely and pay a low monthly rate it works out ok for me.]
[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: The way those guys pull this off is by
saying "YES, the telephone transit or toll is reverse charge; it is
FREE to you and paid for by us ... what you are paying for is the
_SERVICE YOU PURCHASED_ -- i.e. a voice mail box -- not the cost of
reaching us. We are _here_, you are over _there_, you want to use our
service, we pay the toll charge for you to call us long distance, but
you pay for the services you purchased." And further in their defense
they say "you call lots of 800 numbers; catalogs, credit cards,
etc. Do you expect those people to pay for the services you got from
them just because they agreed to pay for your phone call in the first
place? Then why do you expect us -- your voicemail provider -- to pay
for your voicemail costs as well?" And just because their principal
-- or only product -- happens to be delivered over the phone lines,
for example an 'advice' line or 'consulting' service or 'secretarial'
service, i.e. voicemail, even though we did take your phone call for
free, you want our services for free also? Our service happens to cost
35 cents per minute, whether you call us on our toll-free line or if
you want to call us on our regular number at your expense." Is it a
rip off? Well, some would say so. Depends on how well you shop around.
Many cell phone carriers provide voicemail with no charge at all, or
the charge embedded in the overall cost of the service. PAT]