IPhone Skype Calling To the USA for American visiting Europe?

Hey all. I know someone that got the iphone 6 by switching from tmobile to verizon for a 2 year contract for 199 dollars as oppose to paying 700 dollars for the iphone directly from tmobile.
They will be going out of the country for a vacation to Greece and would like to make phone calls back to New York. Apparently i read that verizon charges like $1.99 a minute for phone calls from greece to the usa? Does anyone know if a better option than this as the person will be making phone calls to the usa quite a bit during their vacation?
I know with tmobile its only 20 cents a minute but does anyone have any other options since the person has verizon? They will be calling to a landline. I heard about skype and they have a skype account but they only use it for chatting. I hear skype rates are very cheap but not familiar with how it works for calling landlines. Does that mean as long as they have a wifi connection, they could then log into skype then make phone calls from Greece to New York? If so, what are the rates because I’m a bit confused as it says its 1.7 cents a minute pay as you go. So that means thats how much it would cost only if they use the wifi then log into skype and call directly to New York? If so, that seems like a great idea.
Can someone who done this explain me how this works? Would they have to buy minimum $5 or $10 or whatever skype credit is in order to do this? Obviously if this works, its much better than paying $1.99 a minute. Also i assume the wifi has to be strong as well? The thing is if they had t mobile still, i know they would have free international data at 2g and text but the person told me they switched to verizon.

So long as they call using Skype and can access free WiFi then the pay-as-you-go rate with Skype should be just a couple cents per minute. They can call a landline or mobile phone. The rate is based upon the country where the call is received without regard to the which country the call is placed from. Per minute rates may be higher for calls to a mobile phone than to a landline in some countries.

If they make the mistake of accessing the internet using the data services for the phone then the rate for that international roaming data services could be much higher.

To use Skype in a pay-as-you-go format they will need to buy credit. They can buy credit with a credit or debit card or pay via Paypal. If they go more than six months without using credit they will get an email explaining that the unused credit will become inactive unless they use some. No problem, just make a brief call to a landline.

So long as they can access decent WiFi then this is usually the cheapest way to make calls to the States or Canada from abroad.

Hey thanks for that information. Do you know what the minimum amount of credit they would need to purchase? Since its 1.7 cents a minute, even $5 would be more than enough.

Also they would need a skype number is that correct? Thus would they need to set up the skype number on their phone before they leave the usa? I assume they can’t do this while in Greece right?

You can purchase a USA based phone number in whatever area code you please from Skype for a few bucks a month, it only accepts incoming calls and rings your Skype when someone calls it and it is unlimited. So as long as you’re using Skype over wifi and the person in the USA calling you has unlimited minutes no one is charged anything above the monthly flat rate fee.

You can also purchase unlimited out calls to USA numbers from your Skype account for six dollars a month I think.

It is the opposite actually the rate is based on the country where the person with the phone is calling you from, or the country you’re calling a phone in. If you’re using Skype you can be anywhere in the world and it doesn’t change the cost.

If they are using pay-as-you-go then they can just add $5. No problem. They do not need to have a Skype number if they are only placing calls and not receiving them. The OP’s friends can make calls from Greece to the USA with this setup. They could not receive calls from a landline or mobile phone unless they also set up a monthly account and a Skype number for incoming calls.

Again, for pay-as-you-go the rate is based upon where the call is received, not where the call is made from.

Example using Skype international rates:

  1. Person initiating the call is in the USA, calling to a landline in Trinidad and Tobago. Rate is 11.1 cents per minute because call is received in T&T. *
  2. Person initiating the call is in Trinidad and Tobago, calling to a landline in the USA. Rate is 1.7 cents per minute because call is received in the USA.*

They could still chat direct from their Skype account to the recipient’s Skype account free of charge, including voice chat with video.

grude is referring to rates you would be charged for receiving a call if you have a Skype account and a Skype number. For such a short trip the OP’s friends don’t need to do that.

  • Skype also charges a 6.6 cents connection charge fee that you pay once per call.


Sorry Iggy I realized you said the same thing I did! I thought you meant someone calling the Skype account for some reason.

Can you explain this? First off in order to use skype to call whether call or receive, you still need to pay for a skype number no matter what right?

The thing is this person only needs it for a short time as its a short vacation.

Could they purchase unlimited calls to usa numbers just for a month?

I believe theres also a connection fee that applies as well for each call?

The thing is this person would rather call to the usa as oppose to receiving phone call from the usa. The phone being called to is going to be a usa landline so the landline doesn’t cost any money to call or receive calls.
So which option is the best then?