Verizon Wireless comes to aid of global road warriors

Verizon Wireless now is offering customers the ability to roam internationally while using one phone and one number.

The service provider announced last week that it is exclusively offering the Samsung SCH-a790 Global Phone, a handset that supports two frequency bands for both GSM and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA).

Verizon Wireless customers will have the ability to roam over Vodafone's international networks that span Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Verizon Wireless is a joint venture between Verizon Communications and Vodafone.

Verizon Wireless already offers an International Travelers Program in which customers can rent or purchase phones that are compatible with Vodafone's networks overseas. Although customers cannot use their domestic CDMA phones overseas with this program, Verizon supports call-forwarding to the international phones so users don't miss calls. But users cannot forward their address book or contact lists to the rented phones.

The Samsung SCH-a790 device eliminates the need to rent a phone or even own two phones for international travel.

Placing calls from outside the U.S. typically costs $1.29 per minute, unless calling from Maldives, Indonesia, Sri Lanka or Latvia, where calls cost $2.49 per minute.

Charges for placing calls within the U.S. are part of a customer's monthly America's Choice calling plan. Prices depend on the user's plan.

The cost of calling from the U.S. to other countries ranges from 60 cents per minute up to $2.49 per minute. For a full list of per-minute rates go to www.nwfusion.com, DocFinder: 3547.

The phone costs $350 with a two-year wireless service contract.

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