Learning Uruguay

Every day brings ????

Telephone service

Posted by urufish on May 16, 2007

Today, we received a stack of telephone bills in the mail.  For some reason, all of our bills come on the same day.  We get a separate bill from Antel, (national telco), for each number and for each ADSL service we have.  Not sure if you can ask them to concatenate them but my best guess is they wont.  Seems the way their computer systems are set up. 

We have 3 land lines.  One for the summer house in Piriapolis.  One for the padres in the city and one for our daughter, (northern habits are hard to break).  We have 2 ADSL services.  One for the city house and one for the winter house.  This time of the year, our ADSL service is cancelled at the summer house.  

You can have the bills mailed to a different address than the service.  Not sure you can have that address outside of Uruguay, but inside, yes.  We added this tidbit because not all utilities will do that.  So be warned. 

The typical home telephone bill includes several services.  The basic service is around $200.  On our run of the mill, basic plan, that fee includes call waiting and no answer voice mail.  Other services are extra, like caller ID, call forwarding or ‘0’ call blocking (prevents someone calling long distance or cellphones).  For detailed charges, go to www.antel.com.uy

Unlike service in Ontario (Canada), you pay for all outbound calls here under the heading ‘Computos Urbanos’.  In conversation, we refer to them as ‘pulsos’.  Not sure if we’re an average family or not but our monthly fee for this service hovers around $650 for 685 ‘computos’. 

Occasionally, you’ll also see, (as the word suggests), Cargos Ocasionales… like traslado..

The next heading on the bill is in-country Long Distance.  This includes calls to cell phones (the caller pays cell charges here – not the recipient), as well as other cities in the country that are not local calls.  Outbound calls to cell phones are around 4 pesos per minute.  Next heading is Long Distance out-of-country.  Last heading is 0900 service. Last month, we called for an appointment to renew my Cedula and sure enough, it’s on this month’s phone bill…. $186.   

One thing to keep in mnd when dealing with Antel…  Unless you tell Antel otherwise, they’ll put charges on cuotas for you.  We moved a phone line in April so now we’re payng $37.5 every month for the next 15 months.  

Usually, you get a week to pay Antel bills from the time they arrive until they’re due.  If you miss the date, the penalty is 10% and interest on top of that.  We pay ours through bank auto-debit.   All phone bills include the 23% IVA tax.

ADSL comes on its own invoice. It’s associated with a phone number in the Antel computers, but the invoice doesn’t show that relationship.   We used the 1536 service for the first year we were here but we recently switched to the 1024 service.  So far, no one has experienced a difference in performance.   If you’re a newbie to Uruguay and want ADSL, you must order the phone service first.  You cant oder ADSL until after the phone service is installed.  Figure a 3-5 working days for the phone to be installed and pretty much the same for an ADSL line. 

Phone service where we live in Pocitos, is excellent.  So is the service in our summer house unless a lightning storm takes out serivce.  Then it can take several days to restore it.  ADSL service is excellent.  You get what you pay for and downtime is rare. 


4 Responses to “Telephone service”

  1. Lisa said

    I am assuming the values listed are for Urugayan Pesos and not dollars…

  2. urufish said

    Yes :-). Fortunately, the difference is so great it’s not likely anyone would seriously take it the wrong way. When someone’s writing about Uruguay, they use $ for pesos. For dollars, they use U$S or USD.

  3. Brazzie said

    Excellent article. Very informative. I am sure this information is going to be very useful to a lot of people.

  4. […] Neutral (anywhere between 80 and 120% of USAP) Quality wines Coffee, sugar, olive oil and products with world prices Imported fruits Home furnishings Inexpensive Chinese products Natural gas Telephone […]

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