If you are searching for an unlimited SIP trunk provider, chances are that the simplicity of a predictable monthly service fee without usage charges is appealing to you. We couldn’t agree more and offer unlimited SIP channels. However, clients who have switched to SIP.US from other providers have told us that pricing provided by some vendors is somewhat confusing and that bills were not as expected. We thought it might be helpful to provide some pricing questions to ask any unlimited SIP trunk provider that you consider.
What Geography is Covered by Your Unlimited Plan?
Included coverage varies from provider to provider, so you want to be clear about what geographical area is included in the unlimited plan. SIP.US, for example, includes coverage to the lower 48 states and most of Canada.
What are Your International Rates?
If you will be calling outside the unlimited plan area, be sure to check the vendor’s rates to the countries you call most. There can be a surprisingly big difference between the rates of different vendors, so if you do a lot of calling internationally or to Hawaii and Alaska, it makes sense to shop around.
What are Your Monthly and Set-up Fees for DIDs?
You can expect to pay a monthly fee and a setup fee for each local, toll free and International DID that you require. It shouldn’t be a lot. For example, SIP.US charges just $1.00 per month and a $1.00 set up fee for each local DID.
How Much Do You Charge to Port Phone Numbers?
Moving numbers from an existing carrier is more complicated for the vendor than you might expect, so there will be a fee. If you will be moving existing numbers to your SIP trunk, ask the unlimited SIP trunk provider about the cost. (Hint, also ask them about the lead time.)
Do You Provide Nomadic e911 and What Are the Fees?
Nomadic e911 is a service that lets you set any address in the US as your address to be transmitted to the nearest PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point) when you place a call to 911. This helps ensure that emergency responders can reach you quickly. Not only should you understand the fee for this service, but you should also ask about how the address can be modified if users are working remotely.
What About Taxes and Fees?
The Federal Universal Service Fund (USF), created by the federal government, is designed to help ensure first-class, affordable telecommunications service for all consumers across the country, especially residents in high-cost rural communities and low-income customers. It also provides for discounted telecommunications services for schools, libraries and rural healthcare facilities. All telecommunications providers are required to pay into the Federal USF, and their contributions may be recovered from customers. Almost all vendors pass these charges along to customers. In fact, you should be concerned about the legitimacy of one that doesn’t. SIP.US charges a percentage of the customer’s telecommunication charges. The percentage is based on a contribution factor announced by the FCC and is subject to modification by the FCC.
Are There Any Other Fees That We Haven’t Discussed?
We think this list covers most of the customary fees that you can expect, but, you never know, so it is a good idea to make sure that you’ve got everything on the table.
If you’ve covered all of these questions with the unlimited SIP trunk provider you select, you can feel confident that the charges you receive will align with what you expect. We provide all of this information on our pricing page and are happy to answer any additional questions that you have. Beware of any provider who isn’t.