Prospects call us all the time saying, “We want customers from all over the world to reach us via one number.” While we would gladly provide such a number for our customers, one number that works in every single country does not yet exist. A universal international freephone number or a UIFN can be registered in multiple countries but it is important to note that it does come with some limitations.
Some of the common misconceptions about a universal international freephone number are:
- A single UIFN works in every country in the world X
- The UIFN dialing prefix is the same for every country X
- UIFN can be dialed from every network in every country X
- There is no difference in cost between an ITFS and a UIFN X
Don’t lose hope. A universal international freephone number can be a very useful business tool and works in almost 60 countries around the world. In addition, when you cannot get a universal international freephone number, you may still be able to get individual toll free numbers for the desired country. International toll free service, commonly known as ITFS, is available from a wider variety of countries (100+) and it may be a better option for your business.
It is important to consult with your toll free number provider and check the restrictions that apply in the countries of interest. Your toll free provider will also be able to discuss with you the dialing prefixes in each country. Be prepared to pay a one-time universal registration fee for a universal international freephone number which is passed from your toll free provider to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). On the other hand, ITFS numbers do not carry this charge.
As with many solutions in business, one size does not fit all, so make sure you choose a UIFN or an ITFS based on what will best satisfy your specific business requirements.