Travel Assistance 101: How to Make an International Phone Call

Here at On Call, our travelers know they can call our Global Response Center for emergency assistance 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. However, while making an international phone call is pretty easy, there are some specific steps you need to take  to help ensure the call goes through without a hitch! The Global Assistance experts at On Call walk you through the process of making a successful international phone call below.

Make Sure Your Phone Will Work
Before leaving for your trip, it’s crucial to know if your phone will actually work in your destination. The best way to go about this is to check with your cell phone carrier. Newer phones are less likely to have an issue, but some mobile devices are not compatible with different cell networks around the world. In the event your phone is not compatible, your carrier can guide you through the next best steps. If it is compatible, ask your carrier to enable international calling features on your phone before you leave for your trip.

Consider an International Phone Plan
Now that you know your phone will work in your destination of interest, it’s time to explore your options. While it’s typically free to enable international calling, as described above, actually placing an international call is a different story. We recommend exploring different international phone plans to see if the package and price makes sense for you. The last thing you want is a (surprise!) bill when you get home. Take the time to review options with your carrier beforehand.

Know How to Dial
To make a phone call from one country to another, use this simple rule of thumb:

Country exit code + destination country code + phone number 

For example, to make a call from France to the United States, you would dial 00 (France’s country exit code) then 1 (the United States’ country code) and then the U.S. phone number – 001 (xxx)-xx-xxxx

If calling from France to Italy, dial: 00 (France’s country exit code) then 39 (Italy’s country code) then the area code and phone number – 00 39 xx-xxxxxxxx

Take advantage of Free Wi-Fi
Internet-based VOIP services like Google Meet, Zoom, WhatsApp, and Skype are cost-effective and easy to use. For example, the popular international phone call app, WhatsApp, allows travelers to instant message and make international calls to other WhatsApp users for free.

Now that you know how to place an international phone call, don’t forget that our travelers can call us for global emergency assistance, 24/7/365. Everyone else can visit our website to learn more about our global emergency assistance services.

About On Call International:
When traveling, every problem is unique–a medical crisis, a political threat, even a common mishap such as a missed flight. But every solution starts with customized care that ensures travelers are safe and protected. That’s why for over 25 years, On Call International has provided fully-customized travel risk management and global emergency assistance services protecting millions of travelers, their families, and their organizations. Contact us today and visit to learn more.