US companies offer free calls to the Philippines

Posted at 11/13/2013 1:40 PM | Updated as of 11/13/2013 1:41 PM

MANILA, Philippines - US residents can call and text their relatives and friends in the Philippines for free for the rest of the month, thanks to US companies AT&T and Time Warner Cable.

Telecommunications giant AT&T said it is offering international calling and texting relief efforts for U.S. residential wireless and wireline customers trying to connect with loved ones in the Philippines, in the aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda.

From November 8 to 30, AT&T wireless postpaid customers will not be charged for:

International long distance usage for calls placed from an AT&T wireless number in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and U.S.V.I. to the Philippines.

Text messages to the Philippines, originated from an AT&T wireless number in the U.S., Puerto Rico and U.S.V.I.

For any of the above activity, customers will see no charges reflected on their monthly statement for the period November 8 to 30, 2013.

For AT&T wireline and U-verse Voice customers, we are also waiving charges up to 60 minutes for direct dial calling to the Philippines, effective November 8 through November 30. Customers will either see no charges for these calls reflected on their monthly statement, or they will receive a credit in a later
statement.

"We want to help our customers connect with loved ones in the Philippines in any way we can... Connecting with family and friends is most important at times like this and we want to make it as easy and worry free as possible for our customers," said Mark Collins, senior vice president, Data and Voice Products, AT&T Mobility.

AT&T is also making a $25,000 contribution to AmeriCares, an organization that has been providing medical and humanitarian aid to the Philippines.

At the same time, Time Warner Cable said all calls placed by its Home Phone and Business Services customers to landline and mobile numbers in the Philippines will be free through November 30, and is retroactive for all calls placed since November 8.

"It is a difficult time for those who have loved ones in the Philippines and our thoughts go out to those impacted by Typhoon Haiyan. To help the Filipino-American community keep in touch with family and friends, we are making all calls placed to the Philippines free for our phone customers," said Rob Marcus, Time Warner Cable President and COO.

TWC Phone customers who make calls to the Philippines during the eligible time period do not need to make any changes to their accounts. Customers who were charged on or after November 8 will automatically be credited.

Time Warner Cable has also made The Filipino Channel (TFC) available at no additional cost to digital TV subscribers through November 15 to help customers better connect to news and information recovery efforts in the Philippines.