For a few years, we did without regular phone service and only used cellular phones. At times, we found it inconvenient, especially when a tower was not working. When we moved, we opted for Vonage VOIP, which stands for Voice Over Internet Phone. The price of Vonage is what attracted me to this service. For $24.99 plus tax per month, you get unlimited free long distance to anywhere in the United States, France, United Kingdom, or Italy. You can call any Vonage customer anywhere in the world and also pay no additional fee. If you call China, Sweden or selected cities in other countries, you can get rates for only .01. Where else can you get rates so cheap?
In order to use Vonage, you must have digital internet service. You will be sent a Vonage router that connects to your digital modem. Setup is simple and only takes a few minutes.
Voicemail is included with your Vonage Service. Everytime someone leaves you a voicemail, you are sent an email notifying you. You can then click the link in the email and listen to your message right there on the computer. This is great for checking you voicemail while you are out of town! You can also view your calls on their website allowing you to see if someone is calling you without leaving a message. Of course, you could check that with caller ID available on most phones, but not while out of town!
We were also able to get a security system routed through our Vonage system (another carrier, not serviced by Vonage). I was always under the impression that you had to have a landline phone to have a security system but I was wrong.
I do have a couple of issues with Vonage. It is not always 100% reliable. First, because it uses your digital internet to work, Vonage will NOT work if the electricity if out or if your digital internet is down. Also, when there are storms in the area, the reception sometimes has static. On a few occasions, the person on the other end could not hear me even though I could hear them. Still haven't figured that one out!
Overall, I am happy with Vonage. The price is great and fits my budget!