Park a number but forward calls?
September 24, 2009 2:04 PM   Subscribe

What's the cheapest way for my dad drop a land-line (US) but keep the number permanently (Vonage?) solely to forward to cell phone of another number?

Google Voice with number porting would be perfect, of course, but this has to happen soon.
posted by glibhamdreck to Technology (7 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Vonage, Skype and Google Voice are not options for number portability. Below is information that should help.
And what if I want to take my home wireline number and assign it to a wireless phone?

If you are getting new cell phone service, don't cancel with the old company, just go to the new provider and tell them what you want, and let them take care of it. Again, you should bring a copy of a recent bill on the phone number you are trying to switch so the company can easily access your records.

If you want to keep your current cell phone service, but change your cell phone number to match your home landline number, contact your cell phone company. Your company may require you to enter a new contract or change service plans.

Switching numbers between landline and cell phone will also take some time. Your new service could be interrupted. Right now, the FCC thinks companies will take a few days to complete the switch so ask your new provider how long it will take.
posted by McGuillicuddy at 2:11 PM on September 24, 2009

When I tried to cancel my landline with AT&T and keep the number for use with another carrier, draconian measures prevented me from doing so.
posted by jefficator at 2:20 PM on September 24, 2009

McGuillicuddy, I don't think glibhamdreck wants to port his landline number to a wireless phone. Unless I'm mistaken, glibhamdreck wants to port it to a VOIP service that can then forward all calls to his wireless phone.

The last time I checked, Vonage could do this. But my personal recommendation is Voicepulse. I ported a landline number about 3 years ago. I use a VOIP adapter, but you could just as easily log in to your account and set "absolute forwarding" to his cell phone. They have very good customer service, which can be crucial for number porting. Cheapest plan would run $16 per month.

I think Callcentric (heard about them in another VOIP forum) could do it even cheaper, but I have no personal experience with them, so I can't recommend.
posted by sharkfu at 2:30 PM on September 24, 2009

Vonage, Skype and Google Voice are not options for number portability.

What? I used Vonage to take over my old phone company number, and if I wanted it released to another provider, they would do that. It'd work perfectly for this need, too, even if you don't even connect the voip router, and just forward from the web interface.

That said, at about $20/mo minimum, it's probably not your cheapest option.

I also use Google Voice for another number, and while it's sort of slick, it's nowhere near as versatile or reliable.
posted by rokusan at 3:14 PM on September 24, 2009

I ported a number from Verizon to a tracphone account.
posted by theora55 at 3:24 PM on September 24, 2009

A lot of telco/ISPs here offer a free landline service (because almost no-one is willing to pay $30 per month here just to keep a landline they don't use connected) with some package of free calls (usually local and long-distance calls are free, as are calls to GSM mobiles on that carrier's service) - so it's worth finding out if either your dad's ISP, cell phone provider, or current landline provider offers a similar service.

The fact that you want to use the landline to divert calls means that making it an incoming-only service isn't an option, but there still should be some way you can avoid paying line rental fees on the landline, even if you are still stuck with diversion charges.

All telcos here offer a stand alone diversion service, but I recall it as being extremely pricy and aimed at large business.
posted by Lolie at 5:35 PM on September 24, 2009

Sorry about the misinformation. When I looked at Vonage a few years ago, they couldn't port my number. I see now that Vonage can port "most" numbers, but Google Voice and Skype have not enabled that functionality (yet).

My answer was colored by recent experience with folks wanting to keep multiple numbers because family and friends already knew the number(s). When considering the options and costs, it became clear that phone books, whether paper or phone-based, are constantly updated. An ongoing ~$20 or more a month bill is a high price for a negligible number of "missed calls" which should drop off to zero after a couple months. Before the rather recent advance of number portability getting a new number was commonplace. Notifying likely callers of the change is not too difficult.

There are good reasons for using VoIP as a call forwarding service, but for forwarding to a single mobile phone it seems an expensive solution. I use VoIP for international call-forwarding, but I haven't used a service with number portability. I would recommend you choose a company with a good track record and not necessarily the lowest cost option.
posted by McGuillicuddy at 2:42 AM on September 25, 2009

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