Making a Collect Call to a Cell Phone

Quick Summary:

  • Normally, a collect call can only be made to a landline (and that landline must be equipped to receive collect calls), cellphone cannot receive collect calls
  • Collect calls are EXPENSIVE and cost varies depending on time of day AND distance
  • FedPhoneLine allows cell phones and landline phone to receive collect calls and the rate is the same regardless of time or distance

A Collect calls is a telephone call that is paid for the person receiving the call instead of the person making the call.

To place a collect call, the caller must first request that a collect call be placed (either by speaking to an operator or automated attendant), then they dial the number of their friend/loved one.
When the friend/loved one picks up the phone, the operator or automated attendant informs them that the caller is placing a collect call and do they want to accept the charges. If the charges are accepted then the bill shows up on the friend or loved ones next phone bill.

Now here’s where the problem arises….
In Canada more people use cellphones than landlines (click here to read a Toronto Star article on cellphone usage).

Cellphones cannot receive collect calls, if someone is in bind and needs to make a collect call, chance are they will not be able to reach anyone.


Here’s how you can make a collect call to a cell phone

There are services, like FedPhoneLine, commonly called ‘trap lines’ where you can set up a virtual phone number and that virtual phone number will be able to receive collect calls and link that call to a cellphone.

Not only can you now receive collect calls on your cellphone, the calls are also cheaper than using a landline phone (depending how many collect calls are made).

Let’s use a simple example…

Someone making a collect call from Milton to Toronto would pay around $15 for a 20 minute call (rates are constantly changing so this cost is an estimation), so if you talk 4 times per week for one month the cost would be: $240 per month

A company like FedPhoneLine charges a flat rate of $39.99 per month plus $1.50 per call (depending on which plan you get)

Meaning that if you made those same 4 calls per week, instead of costing you $240, your cost would be $69.19

How many times do you talk to your loved one each month and how much is it costing you? Please leave your comment below.