Trading Posts

Talk Is Cheap

When you're traveling overseas, making phone calls can be difficult and expensive. For one thing, some hotels block calling card access, forcing you to go through their switchboards and spend $7 to $10 a minute. For another, if you're traveling on business, you probably need constant access to a phone. The solution? Rent a cellular phone before you leave the United States.

Some airlines and other communications companies offer the service, but it can be costly, and country access is limited. Now, thanks to Bethesda, Maryland-based International Mobile Communications (IMC) Inc.'s WorldCell International Cellular Service, you can make and receive calls in 56 countries at a price that won't break your travel budget.

Phone rental costs $75 for the first week and $50 per week thereafter; air time is extra. You get one phone number, pre-printed business cards and voice-mail service. Plus, IMC has roaming capabilities, which means you can receive phone calls in Paris on Wednesday, Bahrain on Thursday and Beijing on Friday. Speaking of which, IMC is the only operator that offers cellular service in China.

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This article was originally published in the May 1997 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Trading Posts.

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