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BRB! How to stay in touch and on budget when abroad

When you’re not spending time getting to know amazing new people and seeing incredible sights while on your travels, then you might be investing your other hours finding ways to contact home.

From the short and sweet SMS “help, I’ve run out of cash”, to the hour-long video call catch-ups with a bestie, there are many reasons why you might need to get in touch while you’re traveling. The problem is, depending on the medium, it can be crazy expensive, time-consuming, or just plain old inconvenient.


Put the enjoyment and simplicity back into long-distance communication by following these tips and tricks below:

Send a Letter


No, really, it’s simpler than you might think. And while the the art of crafting a meaningful and heartfelt letter may be dying, there’s no doubting the emotive power that a personal message on paper still possesses.

This means that sending a letter home is your ideal way to show a loved one that you really do care about them despite being on the other side of the world. And now, with sites such as PixelLetter providing a link between your computer and the real world postal system, it’s super simple and quick to send a personalized, beautiful letter to someone back home when you’re afar.

What’s more, it pretty much eliminates the need for you to head to a local post office in some far flung corner of the world and figuring out how the system works.

Beat Roaming Charges with the Tele-pros

Apps that work with inflight wifi phone plane

Let’s face it, roaming charges are the nemesis of travelers who need to communicate via their phone. And if it weren’t for those sky-high rates imposed on us, we’d probably call or text home a lot more.

That’s where the tele-pros (a name I gave them) come in to save the day. Tele-pros are companies like Call254, Inter Telecom and Joxko, to name a few. They offer affordable rates for users at home and abroad to use their phone for calling and messaging.

So if you want to have a five minute phone catch-up with a sibling, partner, family or update your friends in your group messaging chat, the tele-pros are your go-to guys for keeping it cheap and simple.

If you do choose to call upon one of these services, then it is worth considering a payment method such as the paysafecard system. The clue is largely in the name: companies like paysafecard provide travelers with a secure way of making payments wherever they are on the globe. Meaning you can top-up your account with the tele-pros without having to expose your all-important bank cards in a foreign hostel or Internet café.

Be Smart

There are a few clever ways you can cheat the system and keep costs down when contacting home. Here they are broken down into bullet point form so they’re easier to remember:

  • Use your hostel’s or local café’s free Wi-Fi for messaging on Facebook or WhatsApp
  • Pay local prices by unlocking your phone before you set off and then buying local SIM cards wherever you go
  • Alternatively, purchase a new SIM before you begin your trip. Something like Dataroam is ideal as it offers a variety of pay-as-you-go and 30-day+ plans that can save travelers “up to 90%” (their words, not mine) with pre-paid data SIMs

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Megan is an Australian Journalist who has been travelling and blogging since 2007, with the main aim of inspiring others to embark on their own worldwide adventure. Her husband Mike is an American travel photographer, and together they have made the world their home.

Committed to bringing you the best in adventure travel from all around the globe, there is no mountain too high, and no fete too extreme! They haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on their list.

Follow their journey on Facebook, TwitterYouTube, Pinterest and Instagram.

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