onage was the first major VoIP provider in the industry and continues to be one of the most popular providers out there today. Today, we’re going to help you decide if it’s the right choice for you.
- Pricing Packages
- The Good
- The Bad
Unlimited: The Vonage World plan provides unlimited calling to landlines in the United States and 60 countries around the world. Users also get unlimited calling to mobile devices in over 15 countries – including the United States.
International Calling: International calling is free on the Vonage World plan if you’re calling landlines in over 60 countries. If the country you’re dialing isn’t supported, then you’ll pay the international per minute rate. Vonage’s international rates are generally quite competitive and can be as low as 5 cents per minute.
Free Vonage to Vonage Calling: If your friends, family, or customers use Vonage, then you’ll be pleased to note that Vonage-to-Vonage calling is free.
Vonage Call Management
Voicemail: Vonage includes Voicemail on both the Vonage World and U.S & Canada 400 plans.
Caller ID: Identify your callers with Vonage’s Caller ID system.
Call Waiting: Put calls on hold.
Anonymous Call Block: Prevent anonymous callers from connecting to your number.
Three Way Calling: Talk to three people at once using Vonage’s built-in three way calling system.
SimulRing: If you don’t pick up on your home phone, you can tell Vonage to call up to 5 different mobile devices until you pick up.
Many Other Call Management Features: Vonage comes with a bunch of useful features which come standard on plans, including call transfer, call return, do not disturb, repeat dialing, and more.
Other Vonage Features
Multiple Packages: If you don’t need to call international numbers on a regular basis and don’t use a lot of monthly minutes, then the U.S. & Canada 400 plan might be your best option. That plan starts at $12.99 per month and supports 400 local or long distance minutes throughout the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. If you do find yourself calling international numbers and using more than 400 minutes per month, then the Vonage World plan offers unlimited service at a slightly higher monthly price. Other customized Vonage packages are also available if neither of those plans suit your needs.
24/7 Customer Service: No matter which Vonage plan you choose, you’ll enjoy 24/7 customer service and support. Customer support can help you solve problems with your Vonage adapter or answer any questions you might have about billing.
Caller ID Blocking: Prevent a specific number from connecting to your Vonage phone.
U.S. and Canada 400
400 Minutes of Local/Long Distance Calling
5 cents per additional minute
No Annual Contract
No Setup Fee
Unlimited Calling: United States/60 Countries
Unlimited Mobile Calling: United States/15 Countries
No Annual Contract
No Setup Fee
The Good About Vonage
Easy to Setup
Vonage’s setup process is remarkably easy. Some people think setting up a VoIP system would be complicated and difficult, but Vonage proves that it doesn’t have to be. Whether you’re setting up Vonage for your business or you’re adding it to your phone system at home, you’ll find the process to be completely straightforward. You can add an existing phone number or create a new one during the setup process. Vonage walks you through the entire setup process. If you need additional assistance, Vonage’s live sales chat staff are there to help you.
When I say Vonage is “mostly” affordable it’s because they’re often criticized for deceptive pricing practices. Vonage often lures customers with low monthly rates before increasing those rates after the introductory period is over. There isn’t anything wrong with this, since all fees and monthly prices are disclosed beforehand, but you definitely have to do your research to make sure you’re getting a good deal. For example, the Vonage World plan promises a rate of $4.99 in large text and then in smaller text, says that the rate increases to $26.99 per month after the first three months. Users will also have to pay additional fees and taxes on an annual subscription. Do your research and this won’t be an issue. It’s also important to note that this practice is widely spread among ISPs, VoIP services, and telecom providers, but it’s still a bit annoying.
Affordable International Rates
The biggest advantage of Vonage World is being able to call landlines throughout the United States and 60 countries around the world. You receive unlimited calling with this plan, which can save you a lot of money if you regularly call friends, family, or businesses overseas. Those 60 countries include most of the developed world and many countries also include unlimited mobile dialing. Whether you’re calling family in Australia, Romania, Turkey, or Mexico, Vonage World is an excellent deal for those who spend a lot of time calling international phone numbers.
Unlimited Mobile Dialing
The Vonage World plan also includes unlimited mobile dialing to a number of countries, including Canada, China, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Thailand, and the United States. You receive unlimited mobile calling to these countries and more, as well as unlimited landline calling to 60 countries in total around the world. It’s hard to beat this deal.
Affordable Rates Throughout the United States and Canada
If you don’t need unlimited international calling, then you can save a lot of money using the Vonage U.S. & Canada 400 plan, which offers 400 minutes of outbound local and long distance home phone service across the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. You pay 5 cents for every additional minute and other price premiums for international numbers. This plan costs $12.99 per month with a one year agreement and comes with the standard Vonage features like call waiting, voicemail, three way calling, and more.
Extensive VoIP Functionality
Vonage’s slightly higher pricing comes with a bunch of bonus features that are genuinely useful. Those features include voicemail, call-waiting, three-way calling, online faxing, and much more. If you’re willing to pay a few extra dollars per month for these services, then Vonage is undoubtedly the better deal. For businesses, things like voicemail and call-waiting are must-haves, although some individuals may be okay without them.
The Bad About Vonage
Educate Yourself On Extra Fees and Charges
Vonage is a largely affordable VoIP service. However, it can quickly become expensive if you’re not careful. While the Vonage World plan costs only $4.99 for the first three months, that price jumps up to $26.99 after the introductory period is over. You also have to add fees and taxes to that price. If you’re calling international numbers without unlimited international coverage, you’ll have to pay additional fees. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, since every phone provider has some fees and taxes, but you’ll want to do your research. If you know which countries you’re going to call and how many minutes you’ll use per month, then finding a good Vonage deal should be easy.
Vonage equipment is largely reliable and users experience clear, high-quality connections on the vast majority of calls. However, no electronics equipment is immune to failure, and if something goes wrong with your Vonage adapter box, then you’ll need to fix it yourself or send your box back to Vonage for repairs. That means you don’t have a phone for days or even weeks at a time. If you’re not good with electronics or following tech support instructions online, then this downtime can be annoying. If you’re running a business and Vonage is your only source of communications, then this downtime can be crippling. However, Vonage equipment is mostly reliable and the majority of problems can be fixed without sending any equipment to the company.
The Verdict About Vonage
Vonage is a good-value VoIP service. However, navigating its pricing policies can be difficult. Most plans have introductory prices for the first three months that are significantly lower than the price you pay after those three months. In addition, plans can be charged extra taxes and fees even if you don’t call international numbers.
However, don’t let confusing pricing policies turn you away from Vonage because you can save a lot of money with this service. The Vonage World plan lets you call landlines and mobile phones around the world for free with an unlimited number of minutes – even if you don’t spend a lot of time on the phone, that’s an amazing deal. There are no overage fees and additional countries are priced at competitive per-minute rates as well.
For all of these reasons, we recommend Vonage to careful consumers: be aware of the pricing plan you’re locking into and make sure you know what the monthly price will be after the three month introductory period is over. If you can do that, then you’ll be able to save a lot of money using Vonage whether you’re an individual user or a large business.
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