8 Best international texting options

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international texting

Mobile phones have entirely revolutionized the way we communicate in our day-to-day lives. Our friends, family, and colleagues are just a call or text away! But, when you are in another country, staying connected can become daunting due to ridiculously costly International texting and calling plans.

However, with the emergence of internet technology since the mid-1990s1, communication patterns have modernized drastically by providing near-instant communication globally. Instant messaging, VoIP, web-based apps, interactive video calls, social networking are a few of the ways we communicate nowadays.

Today, reaching anyone is easier and faster due to technological advances that allow you to stay connected with friends, family, and colleagues even if you are miles apart or living abroad. The Internet has improved both domestic and international communication over the past few decades.

Web-based apps and communication systems have evolved dramatically through the years , many phone carrier services are trying to bridge the gap between people and standard phone services. Today, numerous carrier services offer international texting and calling plans that may start from as low as $0.25. However, many companies offer it for free with the shared data plans.

Is international texting free?

Texting internationally can be expensive. However, using the right platform and resources can make a huge difference in the amount of money you spend to send international texts.

For instance, it may be a good idea to turn off your mobile service (Picture 1) and switch to Wi-Fi for using apps and websites for online calling or texting. This way, you save your data and extra charges on roaming and international texting.


Picture 1: Turning off your mobile data

It is important to know the international SMS options available to you. This guide offers info on:

  • International chatting apps
  • Web-based online messaging channels
  • Carrier services for international texting

The services available are typically divided into two categories:

  • Over Wi-Fi
  • Without Wi-Fi

Read on to find out the best options in each category.

Texting international numbers without Wi-Fi

For sending texts without a Wi-Fi connection, you either need cellular service or offline messaging apps. If you are traveling with roaming turned on, international messages are costly. However, Wi-Fi may not be available everywhere you travel. Therefore it is essential to have apps that let you send international messages without it.

You need to consider options that enable you to send texts without Wi-Fi.


MyLine app is an international texting and calling app that doesn’t require an internet connection to make international calls, you can always use MyLine access numbers, previously registering your account. With the MyLine app, you can make calls, send texts, and exchange multimedia messages anywhere in the world.

Long-distance calls to the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, and India are just a tap away with this app. You can use this app from your PC, iPad, Android, or even iOS.

Wondering how to text internationally without additional charges? Adding funds to your account will allow you to make free international SMS, according to the mobile credit you purchase. You may also use the credit to make cheap calls to over 150 destinations.

The app allows you to choose your plan, where you can buy minutes according to your need and get SMS as a bonus without any charges. You can also decide to top up your account for as low as $2 only. This amount expires after 180 days, which means the credit can be used to send free international texts for six months.

With a MyLine subscription, you get:

  • One-Touch Dialing
  • PIN free and PIN required dialing
  • Voice App Calling
  • Country Code Integration

It also offers the low charges on calling through their international calling cards and other added benefits included with each plan they offer.

International texts, calling, and data plans

When you can’t use a Wi-Fi connection or offline apps for international texting, having a roaming data plan is a must. Here are a few services that let you send free international text messages anywhere around the world, along with exclusive stateside international texting:

T-Mobile – Magenta Plan

T-Mobile Magenta Plan allows all of its users to send international text messages to around 200 universal destinations, with unlimited text & data in Mexico & Canada starting at $44 per month2.

Verizon – unlimited data plans

To use Verizon for Free international text messaging, you need to subscribe to their unlimited data plans3 or shared data plans4. With these data plans, Verizon offers a total number of free messages for no additional charges. In addition, the plan includes coverage for messages from and to other countries for US residents.

Furthermore, if you buy Verizon’s shared data plans, you can avail of 5 or 10 GB of 5G/4G LTE high-speed data Nationwide every month.

You can also get a supplement plan for free international text messages. In addition, you can also check the International Usage and Services page at Verizon’s website to choose a plan that you like.

Furthermore, if you need a messaging or calling plan when traveling abroad, you can learn about:

  • International Travel Services
  • Prepaid TravelPass FAQs

AT&T – international day pass

AT&T offers unlimited texts and unlimited calls to all International Day Pass countries5 for $10 per day for one line. Also, with this data carrier, you get 24 hours of your mobile data in addition to your existing plan. You can opt for that additional line for the same plan for $5 per day.

Sending international texts over Wi-Fi

Sending international texts over Wi-Fi ultimately saves money and the hassle of subscribing to additional plans. Here are some ways you can opt for free international text messaging over Wi-Fi.

Free international text messaging apps


  • BOSS Revolution

    Apart from the social media apps being used for international and nationwide texting and calling, we can now see more apps emerging and gaining popularity BOSS Revolution is one of those significant apps – making a difference by bringing the world closer. But it is imperative to make sure that the user and receiver have the BOSS Revolution app downloaded to enjoy seamless and free app to app communication over text.

    With over 4.4 and 4.6 star ratings and over 114K and 93.4k Reviews on Google Play Store and iOS App Store, respectively, the intuitive app offers convenience to people. But does it cost extra to text internationally with it?

    Actually, no.

The downloadable app offers:
  • Unlimited app to app texting for free
  • VoIP data and calling plans
  • Top-Up for family and friends
  • Promotions from various carriers
  • Multimedia sharing
  • Google Hangouts

    Google Hangouts is a text messaging app available worldwide. It offers new ways of interaction with cross-platform availability. You can use Google Hangouts free of any cost by signing up on Google. However, both the user and the recipient need to have the Google Hangouts app to enable texting for free.

    You can send text messages, make calls, video calls, send voice, share multimedia, and conduct group calls over any device. You can access it over the browser or download an app to message your loved ones on the go without any limitations.

  • WhatsApp

    WhatsApp is a globally used text messaging app for all kinds of devices and Operating Systems. With over 2.5 billion global users6, and 2 billion7 monthly active users, it is the most popular messaging app globally. Also, the app has been downloaded over 5 billion times up till 2021.

    You can use the app for domestic, personal, professional, international, or any other purpose without any charges. Both the users need to have the WhatsApp application downloaded for free texting. It offers excellent convenience with simple features that work smoothly. You can make calls, video calls, send text messages, documents, multimedia files, and whatnot. The best part is that all your communication is end-to-end encrypted8.

  • Facebook Messenger

    Facebook is one of the most used social media platforms and a robust messenger app. The total number of Facebook’s monthly active users accumulates to 2.701 billion9. Moreover, the service is entirely free and only requires a simple download. Similar to WhatsApp, Facebook offers many free services for all sorts of usage – whether domestic or international.

    With Facebook messenger, there are no bounds; you can make unlimited international calls and send text messages to anyone residing anywhere in the world.

Web-based online messaging services

Before the emergence of international chatting apps, people used to rely on web-based international texting services. These web-based services are typically websites offering two-way messaging service over the Wi-Fi or data. However, these web-based international texting services make a massive difference for people using a desktop or tablet. To name a few services:

  • SendSMSNow

    SendSMSNow is a widely used, web-based service that offers free international texting across the world. It also provides an online inbox to receive replies. You can register on the website to send and receive messages to over 40 countries without any charges or restrictions.

  • afreeSMS

    afreeSMS is another popular web-based texting app for international communication. However, it offers a free service with a limited set of 160 characters per text message. But the best part about this service is that it provides global coverage without leaving any gaps. The app doesn’t require any signup and allows you to send one message at a time.

International texting for iPhone users

Being an iPhone user, you are left with limited options as most apps don’t have iOS supporting versions. However, Apple, as always, takes care of its users. Hence, when it comes to international texting iPhone has provided its users with a magnificent iMessage feature – which works as a cellular network messaging app and an over the Wi-Fi messaging app.

This allows iPhone users to communicate with other iPhone users across the world without any additional charges. However, people looking for an additional international text app for free can opt for all the texting options mentioned above as the methods support all sorts of devices.

Apple users accumulate to over 55%10 of the global smartphone users making iMessage one of the most used apps for texting – both domestically and internationally.

Is iMessage free internationally without Wi-Fi?

This app can be used:
  • Over a cellular network for sending SMS
  • Over the Wi-Fi for sending text, voice, and multimedia files
  • Over cellular data for sending text, voice, and multimedia files

The iOS messaging app uses cellular data or network for sending and receiving messages when not connected to Wi-Fi. Hence, it depends on your coverage plan if international texting will be free for you or not.

Most people subscribe to Data Roaming plans when traveling abroad, and most offer free international texting. Thus, it depends on the project to plan if iMessage will be free or charged when used without Wi-Fi.

The take-away: how much does it cost to send text messages internationally

Sending text messages internationally can be astronomically expensive. However, choosing the right strategy, option, and subscription plan case saves massive amounts of money. You can go through the options listed in this guide to find some of the best options that will help you save money on international texting and calling without any hassle.


Sources: all third party information obtained from applicable website as of July 30, 2021

  1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/solrogers/2019/10/15/the-role-of-technology-in-the-evolution-of-communication/?sh=19362a8d493b

  2. https://www.t-mobile.com/cell-phone-plans?src=spr&rdpage=%2Fen%2Fshop%2Fplans&showTables=true

  3. https://www.verizon.com/support/plans/

  4. https://www.verizon.com/plans/#shared

  5. https://www.att.com/international/day-pass/

  6. https://www.businessofapps.com/data/whatsapp-statistics/#:~:text=Worldwide%2C%20WhatsApp%20is%20the%20most,downloaded%20over%20five%20billion%20times

  7. https://backlinko.com/whatsapp-users

  8. https://faq.whatsapp.com/general/security-and-privacy/end-to-end-encryption

  9. https://backlinko.com/facebook-users#confusion-facebooks-family-and-platform-user-count

  10. https://financesonline.com/number-of-smartphone-users-worldwide/

This article is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to address every aspect of the matters discussed herein. The information in this article is not intended as specific personal advice. The information in this article does not constitute legal, tax, regulatory or other professional advice from IDT Payment Services, Inc. and its affiliates (collectively, “IDT”), and should not be taken or used as such by any individual. IDT makes no representation, warranty or guaranty, whether express or implied, that the content in this article is current, accurate, or complete. You should obtain professional or other substantive advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the information in this article.

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