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Call minutes deducted even for toll free number

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

Hi.

 

I have very less usage of phone so using the $15 plan but I noticed that for below toll free number (ENMAX), minutes got deducted:

 

rahulguptabit_0-1679010970099.png

 

Is it supposed to be like this?

40 REPLIES 40


@rahulguptabit wrote:

Are you sure that 877-571-7111 is toll free?


Yes, that is a toll free number. However, the point that others are trying to make is how toll free doesn't mean a call is free to make.  Toll free only means no long distance charges.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

But the minutes still deducted 😞

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

Are you sure that 877-571-7111 is toll free?


@wetcoaster wrote:

Poor wording on ENMAX' part if they call it a toll-free number.


Well, they're not wrong. It is toll-free. It's just not airtime-free. 😉

 

But yes wording it as "will be treated as a local call" would be better wording than calling it toll-free...


@rahulguptabit wrote:

I am using public mobile from Alberta only but still the minutes were deducted for toll free numbers.


@rahulguptabit 

Go back and read all the replies. It's been explained multiple times that the 310 number is rerouted so that it becomes a local call for landlines (meaning that it's a "free" call on a landline). Poor wording on ENMAX' part if they call it a toll-free number. It is not.

On a cell phone a call to that 310 number is a regular call that will deduct minutes, no matter how you slice it.

 

Really, just let this go and consider it a learning experience. Next time call the actual toll free number 1-877-571-7111 and Public Mobile will not deduct the according minutes.

 

 


@rahulguptabit wrote:

Ideally there shouldnt be any deduction for toll free otherwise what is the meaning of toll free.


For cellular/mobile service in Canada, the concept of long distance/toll calls was separate form cellular airtime.

 

A call to a toll-free call would have no long distance charge, but would still be subject to airtime against your wireless plan.

 

With Public Mobile we are lucky that toll-free calls also happen to be exempt from deducting airtime, which has historically not been the norm for most post-paid wireless services.

dust2dust
Mayor / Maire

310 numbers are not officially toll free numbers. 1-8## numbers are.

If I understood what I read about 310 numbers, they use your location or the area and prefix of your number that converts into a standard phone number that then routes to the local defined location. This is not an official toll free call.

DennyCrane
Town Hero / Héro de la Ville

"toll" refers to long distance toll, not the core phone service. It sounds like a moot point anyway as PM allegedly treats them as free calls anyway, but historically with phone companies the local minutes were separate from long distance (aka toll) charges.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

I am using public mobile from Alberta only but still the minutes were deducted for toll free numbers.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

Ideally there shouldnt be any deduction for toll free otherwise what is the meaning of toll free.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

ENMAX site says that its toll free in Alberta


@dust2dust wrote:

@Nezgar-> @popping ??


Around 1AM MST this morning, the self-serve Portal was down.  I cannot monitor my minute usage.  Sorry for the delay.

I was using

1.  my PM mobile phone and

2.  my VoIP home phone using the FREE freephoneline DIY self-configured ATA box over 8 years ago.

 

Calling 310-2010 from my PM phone: I got 5B1 error from PM, NO record of my call on the call history.

Calling 310-2010 from my home phone, I got (something) is blocked.  I cannot understand what she was saying.

This is one of the reason why I don't all ENMAX.  I use the online chat while I am working on my laptop.

 

Calling 1-877 from my PM phone and my home phone, I was connected to ENMAX voice prompt.

It was a free PM call with the 1-877 toll free number and confirmed with my call history.

 

Update 1:

1.  Calling the ENMAX 1-877 toll free number works even in Alberta and Calgary.

2.  I prefer online chat after login to my ENMAX account because I like to have a record of what is discussed.


@DennyCrane wrote:

It's interesting to me that some toll free numbers aren't deducting minutes;


If anyone ever finds a toll-free number that consumes minutes with Public Mobile, I would love to know. Noone has ever found one yet.

 

310-XXXX numbers are not toll-free numbers, they're treated like any other local or national call that consumes minutes.

DennyCrane
Town Hero / Héro de la Ville

It's interesting to me that some toll free numbers aren't deducting minutes; i would consider that a bonus and not an expectation OP. As a general rule toll free just indicates no long distance toll; it should have nothing to do with your local minutes. I.e. yes you should expect to have minutes deducted for making a toll free call. 

dust2dust
Mayor / Maire


@softech wrote:

May I know what exact toll free number is that?


According to the screenshot in OP, their calls were to "03102010", so that would be 310-2010, which would be treated as a local call and consume airtime. If it was a call to an 8xx toll-free number, PM wouldn't have deducted airtime. According to ENMAX's contact page, OP could try calling 1-877-571-7111, but ENMAX might block calls from Alberta numbers. Would be interesting to hear the results of such a test from someone in AB, or who has an AB phone number...

dust2dust
Mayor / Maire

From wikipedia:

In addition to NANP toll-free numbers, carriers Bell Canada and Telus offer 310- numbers that can be accessed at local-call prices as shared-cost service (free from landlines, incurs local airtime charge from mobiles and local price from payphones).

And:

In Canada, toll-free numbers are drawn from the US SMS/800 database. A seven-digit number 310-xxxx (not a true toll-free, but may be called from anywhere in its home area code at local rates from certain, but not all, carriers) is available in Bell Canada and Telus territories. From a landline, these are free. From cell phones, airtime is not covered, but there are no long-distance charges.

For the first one, that's the key phrase - "incurs local-airtime charge from mobiles"

310 numbers aren't really toll free numbers.

They can also be used as shared use where they know the area you're calling in and direct your call to the local area. Like my pizza shed example. I called it and they said my city. But it has a much wider area of answering.

@rahulguptabit  technically, the toll free numbers will also go against your minutes bucket, just PM never did it.  I am not sure if PM start deducting toll free or just that particular one

 

May I know what exact toll free number is that?

 


@wetcoaster wrote:

My guess is that the OP dialed 310-2010. In my world using 1-877-571-7111 does not deduct minutes. (With the caveat that I called from BC, I don't have an active AB number at the moment, so can't actually talk about potential re-routing. )


I guess it would be interesting to know if someone in alberta tries calling 1-877-571-7111 if ENMAX accepts the call or not, forcing an AB caller use 310-2010...


@rahulguptabit wrote:

Ideally 300 numbers are also toll free even from ENMAX site but still minutes got deducted. 🙂


You mean 310 numbers? Yeah, those are not "toll free". Airtime still counts. Next time use the actual 8xx area code number if one exists. 🙂 You can't "get back" the minutes, but you can buy the cheap $5 500 minutes add-on, which is a great compliment to the $15 plan. Those minutes never expire and will carry over month-to-month until fully consumed.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

In my case, I called 300 ENMAX number and after sometime my call got disconnected saying that the minutes are over.

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

Ideally 300 numbers are also toll free even from ENMAX site but still minutes got deducted. 🙂

rahulguptabit
Good Citizen / Bon Citoyen

Can i do something to get back the minutes?

Nezgar
Mayor / Maire

@rahulguptabit wrote:

Hi.

 

I have very less usage of phone so using the $15 plan but I noticed that for below toll free number (ENMAX), minutes got deducted:

 

rahulguptabit_0-1679010970099.png

 

Is it supposed to be like this?


Nothing on this "Usage History" page in the self-serve portal tells you which calls consumed from the 100 minute bucket, and which ones didn't. It only tells you when and how long all calls lasted.

 

The only way to tell if a call actually consumed minutes is to check your minutes remaining prior to a call, and again after.

 

But from my experience with the $15 plan over 4 years, I've never seen any call to a tollfree number ever consume minutes. (This includes area codes 800, 833, 844, 855, 866, 877, and 888).

 

Calls to voicemail, 811, and 7-digit 310-xxxx numbers do consume minutes though.

dabr
Mayor / Maire

@rahulguptabit    Did you dial the shortcode and not the whole 1-800 number for this vendor?  I know shortcodes can sometimes be mistaken for long distance calls and remember calling a similar number (local pizza place) and got charged a ridiculous amount of $12+ for 2/3 min. as my then carrier treated as a call to Indonesia or Thailand (dont' remember which).  While I got the charges reversed, I was told to dial the full 1-800 # instead of the shortcode.  

 

Generally, toll free numbers should not be deducted from your available minutes, however, there probably are exceptions to this exemption.

Yes @wetcoaster , they may have called the local number.   I was just wanting to 'believe' when they wrote otherwise on the subject line of their thread.   I'm inclined toward your thought instead.


@HALIMACS wrote:

@wetcoaster 

 

The number the OP dialed was likely 1-877-571-7111 (per ENMAX site).  Contact us (enmax.com)

 

 It shows up on PM's usage as a 310 number (likely the local calling number).

 

It's not a 1-800 number, ergo it'll count toward their outgoing calling minutes.

 

Should it... not for me to say.   But it does.


@HALIMACS 

The statement I reacted to was that "800 numbers are deducted from your 100 minutes".

I disagree with that statement:

Screenshot 2023-03-16 17.29.42.png

Both of these calls did NOT deduct minutes.

 

My guess is that the OP dialed 310-2010. In my world using 1-877-571-7111 does not deduct minutes. (With the caveat that I called from BC, I don't have an active AB number at the moment, so can't actually talk about potential re-routing. )

@wetcoaster 

 

The number the OP dialed was likely 1-877-571-7111 (per ENMAX site).  Contact us (enmax.com)

 

 It shows up on PM's usage as a 310 number (likely the local calling number).

 

It's not a 1-800 number, ergo it'll count toward their outgoing calling minutes.  (EDIT:  perhaps 800, 866, 877, etc numbers don't count... whaddya know  😉 )

 

Should it... not for me to say.   But it does.


@hairbag1 wrote:

@rahulguptabit 

800 numbers are deducted from your 100 minutes.


I'm quite sure that they don't? I just called the CRA 1-800 number. The call shows up as usual in my usage history, but my minute counter is still the same as before the call. 

 

I don't get a connection to the number in OPs usage history, the way the number is displayed.

Edit: Went to dig a bit deeper and calling ENMAX's toll free number (1-877-571-7111) does NOT deduct minutes.

BKNS27
Mayor / Maire

@rahulguptabit 

All outgoing calls are deducted from your 100 minutes. Only 911 calls are not deducted from your 100 minutes.
Toll free calls are free on landlines but wireless calls can be charged by carriers.

https://www.fcc.gov/sites/default/files/what_is_a_toll_free_number_and_how_does_it_work.pdf