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Door Suzanne 15-02-2023 (laatste wijziging 02-01-2024)

How to call from The Netherlands to a country abroad [2024]

Door Suzanne 15-02-2023 (laatste wijziging 02-01-2024)

Maybe you're planning to move to The Netherlands, or you might already live here. A question that might have passed through your mind, is how stay in contact with your friends and family.

Sure, you can videocall them using FaceTime or Skype, but there are often moments when a regular phone call is more useful. 

Do you like to call them from time to time? And would that still be possible with your existing phone plan? Read this blog article for all our tips and tricks.

Table of Contents

Roam Like at Home

With the Roam Like at Home rule in effect, you can use your existing phone plan in the European Union just like you would in your own country. (Note that your home country must be part of the European Union as well.)

This means you can call anyone still residing in your home country as if you would still be there yourself, even if you're in The Netherlands. You can use the minutes of calling that you have in your existing phone plan.

Let's say your phone plan exists of 500 minutes of calling. And if you would exceed that bundle, you would pay € 0,15 per minute of calling. If you move to The Netherlands (or any other European country), nothing would change. You could still use your entire bundle, and you wouldn't pay more than you would right now if you were to exceed that. 

Of course, as with any rule, there is one exception:

Establishing a durable residence in The Netherlands

The Roam Like at Home rule applies for people traveling abroad for a short amount of time. If you are going to work or study for an extended time in The Netherlands, you might not benefit from this rule, or only for a short while. 

Your mobile phone operator can keep track of your data usage. If you're using your phone plan more in The Netherlands than in your home country for a period of more than four months, your mobile operator may reach out and contact you. At first, the operator will give you a warning. But if you continue with your extensive usage 14 days after this warning, you will start paying extra for your usage.

Ask your provider how they deal with this situation. Some can be more strict than others. 

If you don't want to deal with this or if you also want to be able to call Dutch phone numbers, consider choosing a Dutch phone subscription.

Calling to your friends and family using a Dutch phone plan

Are you staying in The Netherlands for an extended period of time? 

Then you're best of choosing a Dutch phone subscription!

We advise choosing a SIM only subscription. With these kind of subscriptions, you receive a SIM card with the data and calling minutes of your choice. You can keep using your existing phone and just stick the Dutch SIM card in there. The contract duration for a SIM only subscription ranges from just one month to two years, so choose wisely. 

If you have figured out what kind of subscription you'll need (if not: make sure to consult our guide on choosing the right subscription), it's time to figure out which provider to choose.

Options for calling abroad from The Netherlands

You don't have to worry about the options you get for calling abroad. There's a lot of options to choose from. 

Lebara Internationaal

With a Lebara subscription, you can opt for International Calls. This costs an additional € 5 per month on your phone plan, and allows you to call to 44 countries. This includes the EU, but also China, Israël and South-Africa.

Lebara claims these International Calls are unlimited, but there's a very strict fair use policy. This means that you receive a maximum of 1250 minutes of calling each month. This is a little under 21 hours. 

This might feel like a lot, and would probably be enough for you, but it's still good to know that it's not entirely unlimited. 

Pros of Lebara

  • Very affordable subscriptions
  • Calling to EU-countries as well as countries outside the European Union

Cons of Lebara

  • Strict fair use policy (1250 minutes per month)

See Lebara subscriptions

Here you can find all Lebara subscriptions. Make sure to opt for 'Internationaal' when you have reached the website of Lebara:

Lebara subscriptions

Budget Mobiel

The name says it all: Budget Mobiel offers very affordable SIM only subscriptions. 

And every subscription offers you the possiblity to call to 45 countries. These include not only EU-countries, but also the United States and Canada. You receive 100 minutes of calling you can use.

Pros of Budget Mobiel

  • Very affordable subscriptions
  • You don't pay extra for calling abroad
  • Calling to EU-countries as well as countries outside the European Union

Cons of Budget Mobiel

  • Very few minutes of calling (100 minutes)

See Budget Mobiel subscriptions

Here you can find all Budget Mobiel subscriptions. You don't need a special subscription to receive the 100 minutes of calling abroad, these are included in every phone plan:

Budget Mobiel subscriptions

Vodafone Red or Red Unlimited

Vodafone is slightly more expensive than the providers we stated previously. 

But there might be a reason for that. Vodafone offers so-called 'Red' subscriptions. In these, you automatically receive 100 minutes of calling to EU-countries.

If you have a Red Unlimited subscription, you even get unlimited calls to EU-countries. 

Pros of Vodafone

  • You don't pay extra for calling abroad
  • Possibility to call unlimited to EU-countries

Cons of Vodafone

  • Vodafone subscriptions are expensive
  • No option for calls outside the European Union

See Vodafone subscriptions

Here you can find all Vodafone subscriptions. Make sure to opt for Red or Red Unlimited when you have reached their website:

Vodafone subscriptions

KPN

Like Vodafone and Odido, KPN offers subscriptions that are a bit more expensive.

But for some, KPN can be the right choice. That is because you can call to EU-countries with every subscription you choose. 

For instance, if you choose a phone plan with unlimited calls, you can use these unlimited calls for calling abroad as well. Without extra costs!

Pros of KPN

  • You don't pay extra for calling abroad
  • The exact same phone plan you choose can be used for calling abroad as well
  • Possibility to call unlimited to EU-countries

Cons of KPN

  • KPN subscriptions are expensive
  • No option for calls outside the European Union

See KPN subscriptions

Here you can find all KPN subscriptions:

see KPN subscriptions

Odido Unlimited

Lastly, you can consider an Odido subscription. You could compare this with Vodafone and KPN, since it's also a little more expensive.

With most of their Unlimited subscriptions, you receive 120 minutes of calling to EU-countries. If you want to call unlimited, you could choose the Unlimited Premium subscription. This allows you to call unlimited within The Netherlands and also to EU-countries.

Pros of Odido

  • You don't pay extra for calling abroad
  • Possibility to call unlimited to EU-countries

Cons of Odido

  • Odido subscriptions are expensive

See Odido subscriptions

Here you can find all Odido subscriptions. Make sure to opt for their Unlimited subscriptions when you have reached their website:

see Odido subscriptions

In conclusion: what should you choose?

Luckily, there are a lot of options if you want to stay in contact with your family and friends living miles away. But this can make choosing difficult. 

First consider whether you're going to need a Dutch subscription or not. It's recommended to travel to The Netherlands first and see for yourself if Roam Like at Home is enough. Are you staying longer than 4 months? In that case we would definitely recommend a Dutch subscription. 

But which one? Well, that depends on what you're looking for. Do you want to call to a certain country within the EU? Or are you looking to call to a country outside the EU? And do you want unlimited calls, or is that unnecessary? 

I want unlimited calls

Either choose KPN Unlimited, Odido Unlimited Premium or Vodafone Red Unlimited. 

compare these providers

I want to call to a country outside the EU

That is possible, either choose Lebara, Budget Mobiel or Odido.

Lebara

Next to the EU-countries, these are all the countries you can call to if you were to choose Lebara (keeping in mind you have a maximum of 1250 minutes per month):

Canada Korea Turkey (only the landline)
China Liechtenstein United Kingdom
Cyprus Malaysia United States
Hongkong Morocco (only the landline) South-Africa
Iceland Norway Switzerland
India Singapore  
Israël Thailand  

Budget Mobiel

Next to the EU-countries, these are all the countries you can call to if you were to choose Budget Mobiel (keeping in mind you have a maximum of 100 minutes per month):

Alaska Hawaii United States
Andorra Liechtenstein Scotland
Canada Norway Wales
Cyprus United Kingdom Switzerland

Odido

Next to the EU-countries, these are all the countries you can call to if you were to choose Odido (keeping in mind you have a maximum of 100 minutes per month):

Switzerland

Turkey

United States 

compare these providers

Sources

Roam Like at Home rules in the European Union

Calling abroad with Lebara

Calling abroad with Budget Mobiel

Calling abroad with KPN

Calling abroad with Vodafone

Calling abroad with Odido

 
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Home>Informatie>Smartphone>How to call from The Netherlands to a country abroad [2024]
Monica
01-02-2024
I have just called odido. I have been a client of t-mobile since 2015 with the 120min unlimited calls to EU numbers. I changed to odido since november and I noticed higher invoices and calls to EU numbers were charge, they just told me that with odido that is out the suscription packsges. So their marketing is a lie!
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