How to pay for someone from Canada to call the US? + Easy & affordable
December 3, 2017 1:24 AM   Subscribe

What’s the easiest way for them (in Toronto, Canada) to call me (in California, USA) that allows me to pay for their call? We are emailing with someone from Canada but we’d like to be able to talk to them on the phone. I want to pay their costs in Canada for calling me in the USA.

I could send them a calling card or Skype or google hangouts or ???

I’m on AT&T wireless and they’ll be calling from an unknown number (could be cell phone, could be land line).
posted by unclezeb to Technology (6 answers total)
If they can use Skype, buy them prepaid credits.
posted by third word on a random page at 1:32 AM on December 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

If you both have access to Skype or Google Hangouts or Facetime (in other words, some kind of computer or smartphone with internet on each end), you could just use that and there will be no costs at all. Or is using the traditional telephone network a requirement?
posted by zachlipton at 1:38 AM on December 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

Best answer: IPlum gives you a local number they can call. It costs you $2 per month, and $0.02 per minute for each call. For them it will be a local number.
posted by Tunierikson at 2:50 AM on December 3, 2017

Does your AT&T plan not permit you to accept collect calls?
posted by Mitheral at 4:50 AM on December 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

Is there some reason you can't ask them to message you when they're ready to talk, then you call them back?

And as everyone has said, there are lots of free services these days - Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger, LINE, etc. I think even Slack has voice service....
posted by Umami Dearest at 7:35 AM on December 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks for all the useful suggestions!

I ended up getting an iPlum toll free number - $5/month and $4 in credits for a toll free 877 number. Thanks, that was a good recommendation and easy to set up. The number works regardless of whether the caller is in the US or Canada, but Canadian calls use more credits than US calls.

The person who is calling me may not have easy internet access and receiving the collect call would have been quite expensive with my cell phone plan. I had suggested Hangouts or Skype to them but it didn't work out. I also checked out line2 and sideline, similar I guess.
posted by unclezeb at 3:39 PM on December 4, 2017

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