What is International Call Forwarding?

International call forwarding is a call-routing service that is applied to global businesses. International businesses take advantage of call-forwarding services for a number of reasons. Always cheaper and generally more reliable than maintaining regional call centers across the world, international call forwarding allows businesses to maintain a worldwide telephony infrastructure with almost no startup costs, limited IT maintenance and no commitment to local labor and infrastructure.

Global Reach, Local Feel

International call forwarding attaches a specific phone number — either local or toll free — not to a dedicated line, but to a routing service that can connect incoming calls to any predetermined number or numbers. International call-forwarding systems provide callers the familiarity of dialing a number that appears to be local, without realizing that their call is actually being transmitted to different locations across the world.

Benefits for Business

For the business owner, the service allows him or her to centralize all telecommunications to a specific location, no matter where the incoming call originates. Aside from convenience and, of course, reduced expenses that come from not having physical call centers established in regional offices, businesses choose call forwarding because of pitfalls associated with international business telephony. Some developing countries are plagued with dilapidated, outdated infrastructure, and electrical grids and phone lines that are unreliable. Call forwarding bypasses local systems and routes the calls to a host country that has dependable infrastructure and hardware.

Time Zones and Sequential Dialing

One of the benefits of call forwarding for international businesses is that it can overcome hurdles associated with regional times zones. The service can divert calls from anywhere in the world to a predetermined call center. If a call is placed after hours to a business that is closed for the night, the call can be routed to a center or regional office that is still open and able to accept the call. Sequential dialing — a service that comes for free with many call-forwarding plans — establishes a bank of several different numbers to be dialed sequentially in the case that one or more line is occupied. If the primary number is busy, the call will automatically be routed to the next number in line, and so on, until the call is received.