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Thread: Calling Nicaragua from Canada

  1. #1

    Default Calling Nicaragua from Canada

    While I am in Canada I make many calls to Nicaragua, for personal and business reasons.

    Most of the time If the person I am trying to reach is connected to the internet I used Facebook Calling, Skype Call, or WhatsApp call (WhatsApp being very popular in Latin America). Some people also use LINE (referred to as Linea, although you won;t find it searching the app store with the spanish name from Canada).

    Of course, these are the best options as they are free, but requires the person you are trying to contact having access to internet, which is not always the case. Outside of Managua I find the amount of people who have a phone with a data plan are very few, and those with a smartphone capable of running the apps is rising but a lot of them still have the little plastic 400c movistar phones.

    Anyways, I'm often forced to find other methods of calling mobile numbers.

    Skype is probably the most common method people would think of and with the pay as go, non subscription, option is costs 26c/minute. Its a bit cheaper if you get the 26.99 monthly subscription, at 22.5 c/minute, which gives you 120 minutes. The minutes do not roll over so although the rate is slightly less you have to make sure that you use all the minutes in a month otherwise its not a better deal. I also find that the Skype connection is not the best when it comes to calling Nicaraguan Mobile numbers. Skype has a connection fee which, iirc, is about 60cents...which isn't cheap as calls are often dropped.

    Another option is the smartel phone card available at shoppers drug mart. It used to be available at 7-11 but they have gotten rid of them in place of the card called ci-ci...which has a higher/minute rate and makes you call a local number to connect, not a 1 866 number like smartel. This means that if you are calling from a cell phone and have only X amounts of minutes/month and not an unlimited plan, the use of the calling card will actually eat into your own minutes where as, for me, the 1 866 number does not. The connection, i find is actually better, although typing the pin number and selecting the options from the menu does take more time than Skype. Price is 25c/minute

    Cheapest option I have found for pre-paid phone cards is called TALK South America. I have bought it online, they send the code to you via email. Costs 19.8 cents and no connection fee.


    I have tried a few places that advertize 15c/minute but they often have high connection and maintenance fees which brings the actual cost/minute up quite a bit.

    I'm hoping someone has a better option, if not, this the info I have.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Calling Nicaragua from Canada

    I have a Magic Jack at my house in Estelí and when we have a bit more infrastructure, will have one at the farm too.

    I have another MagicJack here in Tucson, so can call the Estelí house free. This is the primary means of communication between my wife in Arizona when I am in Nicaragua.
    I use this to keep somewhat in touch with my foreman, and the young lady who watches my house. Jayro comes by the house at least once a week.
    Shelley can also call my Nicaragua cell in an emergency.

    Calling a landline -- (I used to have a landline in Condega) -- in Nicaragua costs me 20 cents /minute, and Claro is 30 cents /minute using the MagicJack. I buy the time as I need it online, in $20 blocks.
    It doesn't expire.


    I like the ease. Dial the 011 505 and the number. It works well. Clear, no issues.

    The price annoys me, calling Mexico would cost from 3 to 11 cents /minute, with most of the destinations around 4-5 cents.
    Mexico is a much more competitive market than Nicaragua, of course.

  3. #3
    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calling Nicaragua from Canada

    We use www.ontariophonecards.ca/

    We typically get the connection fee type as there is no such thing as a quick call.

    "Good Call" and "best call" seem to give the best service with typically the stated (30min for $2.50 and 76 min for $5 )
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