Pingo.com is one of the 5 biggest calling card companies according to our most recent Alexa rankings.
Pingo is the calling card subsidiary of iBasis, one of the largest international VoIP carriers in the world. iBasis is owned by Royal KPN, a leading international telecommunications company.
Unlike calling card resellers (e.g.,
Comfi.com) who sell cards for other companies, all Pingo calling card minutes are carried directly by iBasis.
This is the best approach because it simplifies things for you as a consumer. Why? Because it means that Pingo.com handles all aspects of your calling card account, including customer service and billing as well as call quality.
In contrast, if you buy a card from a reseller you have to deal with at least 2 companies: the reseller for customer service and billing, and the carrier for connection and call quality issues.
Pingo offers a single integrated calling plan with competitive low rates on all calling routes. This compares with many calling cards that offer low rates on a few routes, but much higher rates on others. If you make calls to several different destinations, this can be a huge benefit.
The Pingo card is a true world card that can be used from practically any location worldwide. The company has access numbers in over 35 countries. Via their PC SoftPhone, cheap calls can be made from any country in the world.
Pingo is a very innovative calling card company. It offers value-added features such as a smartphone dialing app (EZ Dial), and a PC calling app (Pingo SoftPhone). These offer added flexibility and cost savings over most calling cards.
Bottom line: Pingo.com offers the best all-around calling card plan of any company in the market today. We strongly recommend them.
Pingo.com Company Information
Type of company
full service provider (a company that both sells and services it's calling card)
Pingo is among
the 5 biggest calling card companies. Pingo sells a calling card with a single rate plan that covers all locations worldwide. Rates are very competitive. All Pingo calls are carried by iBasis, their parent company. iBasis operates a global VoIP network and delivers over 2 Billion minutes calls per month.
(Hours: 10am - 12PM US Eastern time)
iBasis (Pingo's parent company)
Other products & services
Smartphone dialing app called EZ Dial for easy mobile dialing
Internet 'soft phone' for dialing from any PC worldwide
iBasis, which operates an global VoIP telephony network. iBasis is a subsidiary of KPN, a major international telecommunications carrier.
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'Clean' pricing / Hidden fees
Privacy and security
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For a detailed version of this ratings table, please click below.
Detailed Pingo ratings table - click to view
Detailed Ratings Table for Pingo.com
This version includes detailed comments on each evaluation factor.
Pingo has consistently low per minute rates between a huge number calling destinations -- and they have fewer extra fees than practically any other company. Unlike many companies who advertise rates much lower than you actually end of paying because they pile on extra fees, Pingo's advertised per minute rates are almost exactly the price you actually end up paying. This is a huge plus in our book.
Pingo pricing is also set up so you call make cheap calls to any destination using just one card. We strongly prefer this type of 'integrated pricing' over cards where rates are cheap for one destination, but expensive for another one.
'Clean' pricing / Hidden fees
In an industry rife with firms that actively hide fees and impose onerous conditions, Pingo does an exemplary job with disclosure. The company has no hidden fees anywhere. The $0.98 maintenance fee and $0.65 payphone surcharge could be even more prominently shown, but they are well stated -- and you can't complain too much when the $0.98 fee actually is plainly shown on every page of their website.
Pingo sells only 1 card, but since this card works everywhere worldwide, it serves all needs. With other companies, you may need to buy 2 or 3 cards to get the cheapest rates between all the destinations you call. With Pingo, you get that in one card.
Pingo has a very simple rate plan compared to most calling cards -
this is how all calling card pricing should be. Pingo pricing includes only 3 elements: per minute rates, a monthly maintenance fee, and payphone surcharges (which are mandated by the FCC). Some people complain about the monthly maintenance, but compared to many cards, this small fee is practically a gift.
Pingo clearly states that all calls are carried by iBasis, its parent company. iBasis is a highly reputable global communications provider. This compares to many resellers who either don't list carriers at all or who identify carriers that are completely unknown / unbranded.
The Pingo.com website is very simple and easy to use. It wouldn't hurt if they added a bit more information, but nothing significant is missing. For instance, their new EZ Dial and SoftPhone add-ons could be explained more fully.
Privacy and security
Pingo.com customer support is among the best in the calling card industry. Despite the fact that you'll find numerous complaints on this site and elsewhere on the web, we are confident in saying that Pingo customer support is better than 99% of the companies they compete with.
Personally, we've never had a problem reaching Pingo customer support -- and in every instance we are aware of, Pingo has made a solid and timely effort to meet customer needs.
Pingo has reliable dial-in access in the United States through national toll-free numbers and dozens of local access numbers around the country. Pingo has dedicated toll-free numbers for Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Chinese.
Pingo also has access numbers in 35+ countries worldwide -- this is exceptional. All 35 countries have at least a toll-free number. Many countries also have local access numbers. Few other calling card companies have such strong global presence (aside from the global carriers such as AT&T which can charge up to 10x more for minutes).
If you search online, Pingo seems to get more than it's fair share of complaints -- we don't quite know why. As compared to other firms (e.g.,
Phonecardsmile), Pingo is an absolute pillar of the calling card industry -- there aren't many obvious things they could do better. We suspect much of the trash talk comes from competitors who aren't happy Pingo is doing so well in the marketplace.
Pingo has some excellent advanced features - things few calling cards don't offer at all. One thing is their EZ Dial smartphone app. It works on over 450 mobile phones, including the iPhone, most Blackberrys, most Android phones, and with a huge number of carriers.
Another Pingo extra is the Pingo Soft Phone which enables you to make calls directly from your PC to any location worldwide. The Pingo Soft Phone can be used from PCs located anywhere in the world.
Pingo also provides PIN-less dialing, speed dialing and auto-recharge.
Pingo offers a wealth of trial offers and special deals that allow you to try their cards out for free -- many offers allow you to talk for many hours before you start having to pay. No other vendor comes close to this. If you don't like their service, you can cancel the card during the trial period and no money changes hands. Understandably, they do not offer refunds after the trial period.
Pingo offers a $5 immediate credit for each friend who signs, $20 for 3 friends. Follow the
referral directions carefully to get your credit.
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Having problems with Pingo account activation? - click below.
Pingo account activation - click to view
Pingo Account Activation / Verification
Pingo, like all calling card companies, runs first time customers through an account verification process. This protects the company against credit card fraud (which is a large problem for all calling card companies), but it can sometimes lead to snafus.
Usually the Pingo verification process is quick and painless. It has two parts: 1) you reply to their confirmation email and 2) they confirm your credit card is in good standing.
The account approval piece is generally pretty simple and straightforward - you simply need to respond to a confirmation email Pingo sends you after you complete your new account submission. This process is like many other sign-ups you've done with other sites, meaning you should watch your inbox for the account confirmation email and respond as directed (i.e., click a link and log in). If the message doesn't arrive relatively soon, check you spam folder in case it's gone in there. If the verification email seems badly delayed, you should contact customer service.
On the credit card approval step, Pingo now approves the vast majority of customers immediately using an automated system operated by the credit card companies. The automated system handles up to 85% of new customer approvals and works for anyone using a Visa card and for people using other cards who have signed up for the card's special transaction verification process. Though most of the remaining 15% are also approved quickly, if there is going to be a problem, it is more likely to affect these customers. People in this group include folks with credit issues or who have cards that aren't part of the automated approval system.
In the vast majority of cases, both steps in the account activation process occur without incident and your account will be activated in short order.
If you do have problems with account activation, please do the following:
Check your junk mail folder for a Pingo verification email
Contact Pingo Customer Service by phone or email (U.S. and Canadian customers only):
By phone: 1-888-878-8838 (Hours: 10am - 12PM US Eastern time)
By email: pingoaccountverification @ pingo.com
Please do not post a message here until / unless you've taken the steps above.
Pingo.com Calling Card Review - Recap
Pingo.com is our top calling card pick - by far. Pingo is the best calling card for more people, more of the time than any other option. We strongly recommended Pingo and suggest you consider them for your next calling card purchase.
Best overall ratings Consistently cheap calling cards rates for destination worldwide
One-stop pricing plan covers all destinations
Simple, clean pricing with no hidden fees
Access numbers in 35+ countries
Multiple connection methods - phone, mobile, PC
Strong advanced dialing features
Industry-leading customer service
High customer renewal rate
Some new customers experience account activation delays
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