|Tuesday, June 18, 2013|
Rates And Phone
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It is very likely that you do not recognize the companies and the plans that are listed in TollChaser.com 's comparison tables. Basically, there are a lot of options out there, hence the reason for our site. Many of these companies are small long distance service re-sellers who do not have the large advertising budgets or the tremendous overhead of the big players in the market (affectionately referred to as the Big Three). Thus, they have lower costs that they generously pass on to the consumer in the form of lower rates.
What Is A Re-Seller
In short, a long distance re-seller is a company that can commit to buying large blocks of bandwidth at wholesale prices from the companies that actually own and operate the physical network (i.e. the telephone poles, wires, cables, fiber optics, satellites, etc.) that your phone call actually travels across. Bandwidth in this case is essentially the volume of total minutes of all calls placed over a given period of time. Because these companies commit to such large volumes, the network operators give them discounted rates. These re-sellers then try to keep their overhead costs low so that they can pass the savings onto you.
Quality Of Connections: The quality of the phone connection is usually as good as the Big Three. In fact, as mentioned above, re-sellers are frequently buying time on the same networks that AT&T, MCI/WorldCom, and Sprint use. So the technology is identical.
Quality Of Customer Service: Part of the agreement these re-sellers make when they purchase the blocks of time at wholesale prices is that they must take on the responsibility of billing and serving the retail customer. As is true of any industry, this will vary from company to company. All plans listed on this site do go through a screening process which demands reliable customer service as part of the listing criteria. In order to keep costs down, some companies may not have 24 hour customer service, may not have a toll free customer service number, or may not staff a huge number of customer service agents. So, to save some money, you may have to make customer inquiries during normal working hours and you may be on hold a bit longer when you place that call. Of course, this will not always be the case, many of these companies offer customer service that surpasses that of the Big Three.
Billing: Billing varies from provider to provider. Some include a bill with your local telephone bill. Others, send a separate bill. Some providers only provide an on-line billing statement that requires you to have access to the internet and the world-wide-web. This is another way for companies to keep their overhead low. If you have any questions about the billing practice of any provider, ask them directly.
Payment: Payment methods also vary. Some providers will send you an invoice for service with normal terms of payment, usually a 20-day grace period to pay by check, money-order, or credit card. Some providers may require that you set up an automatic payment or electronic transfer from your bank account. Others may require that you allow them to bill directly to your credit card. Again, these are ways for these companies to keep their cost down.
Will They Be Around Tomorrow? While this site can make no guarantees about whether any business will stay in business, all the providers listed here have passed an extensive screening process. To the best of our knowledge, these are all valid, legitimate, and reputable companies. If for any reason a provider fails to continue to meet our standards, they are removed from the listings.
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