How to check voice mail on my iPhone4s (AT&T) when overseas without roaming charges?

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I have an iPhone 4s, with AT&T as my provider, and travel abroad multiple times each year. I don't have an international plan, so to make calls, send and receive e-mails, browse the internet, or download data for my apps (like my weather apps and newspaper apps), I use a wi-fi connection at airports, airport lounges, and hotels, utilizing Skype to make calls, while keeping Data Roaming turned off to avoid incurring pricey roaming charges. That all works very well for me, and I almost never go more than 24 hours without wi-fi access.

One thing that has always bugged me, however, is when I get voice mails while abroad: my iPhone displays the red icon indicating that I have one or more voice mails, but I've become accustomed to waiting until I land back in the U.S. to retrieve my voice mails so I don't get charged. And, of course, until then, I'm always in the dark as to whether the voice mail I know I have is time-sensitive or (most likely) not time-sensitive.

Surely there must be some good way to retrieve my voice mails while abroad when I have a wi-fi connection (including access to Skype). But what is it? I can't call my own phone using Skype on my own phone to retrieve my voice mails (to my knowledge). Is there an AT&T number (not my own cell number) which I can call using Skype to retrieve my voice mails? Can I check my iPhone's visual voicemail purely using wi-fi, but without data roaming or incurring any other surcharge? Should I sign up for a free service like Google Voice and alternate between enabling it when I am leaving the country and disabling when I return? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
If you call your own phone, even from your own phone, you should just get voicemail. Then type in your password and you'll be able to listen.

Otherwise, AT&T has various backdoor voicemail numbers - search around and you should be able to figure out the one for your account.
If you call your own phone number using Skype (or any other way) and press * during the voicemail greeting, you can enter your PIN, followed by # and listen to your messages.
Quote: I have an iPhone 4s, with AT&T as my provider, and travel abroad multiple times each year. I don't have an international plan, so to make calls, send and receive e-mails, browse the internet, or download data for my apps (like my weather apps and newspaper apps), I use a wi-fi connection at airports, airport lounges, and hotels, utilizing Skype to make calls, while keeping Data Roaming turned off to avoid incurring pricey roaming charges. That all works very well for me, and I almost never go more than 24 hours without wi-fi access.

One thing that has always bugged me, however, is when I get voice mails while abroad: my iPhone displays the red icon indicating that I have one or more voice mails, but I've become accustomed to waiting until I land back in the U.S. to retrieve my voice mails so I don't get charged. And, of course, until then, I'm always in the dark as to whether the voice mail I know I have is time-sensitive or (most likely) not time-sensitive.

Surely there must be some good way to retrieve my e-mails while abroad when I have a wi-fi connection (including access to Skype). But what is it? I can't call my own phone using Skype on my own phone to retrieve my voice mails (to my knowledge). Is there an AT&T number (not my own cell number) which I can call using Skype to retrieve my voice mails? Can I check my iPhone's visual voicemail purely using wi-fi, but without data roaming or incurring any other surcharge? Should I sign up for a free service like Google Voice and alternate between enabling it when I am leaving the country and disabling when I return? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Not sure why you make a federal case here.

Call your own phone number with skype, when the greeting picks up hit # or * (cant remember which), enter your password and bingo you can listen to your messages.

Gfunkdave, I think you didn't read the entire message of SAT Lawyer, but even SAT lawyer seems confusing, mixing voicemail with email........

Anyways, have all a happy day!
When you're overseas, you could forward your phone to your Google Voice number, and then have GV e-mail you the transcription of the message, which would save you from having to check messages.
Thanks to everyone for the advice.

I was thrown off previously when trying to dial my own number from the iPhone associated with that number, by the fact that I seemingly had to decline my own call to get the badge off the screen; didn't realize, until today, that I could continue and get my voice mails that way.

In any event, I signed up for Google Voice and like it a lot. I think I will use it as my out-of-the-country voice mail repository going forward.
I forward my iPhone AT&T calls to my Vonage home line and it in turns emails me the voice message as an attachment along with the transcribed text of the voice message.

I take out the AT&T SIM card from my iPhone and use a local SIM card instead while overseas and so I still get my AT&T calls forwarded via email.
I subscribe to the voicemail to email service with my carrier (Bell in Canada) which sends me a email with an attached audio file of the voicemail within 5 minutes. The header will have the time and caller ID stamp. It can also send SMS to any number of voicemail received with caller ID and date/time.

I just set the SMS to the local phone number wherever I am at. I just open the email of the calls that I need.
Quote: I have an iPhone 4s, with AT&T as my provider, and travel abroad multiple times each year. I don't have an international plan, so to make calls, send and receive e-mails, browse the internet, or download data for my apps (like my weather apps and newspaper apps), I use a wi-fi connection at airports, airport lounges, and hotels, utilizing Skype to make calls, while keeping Data Roaming turned off to avoid incurring pricey roaming charges. That all works very well for me, and I almost never go more than 24 hours without wi-fi access.

One thing that has always bugged me, however, is when I get voice mails while abroad: my iPhone displays the red icon indicating that I have one or more voice mails, but I've become accustomed to waiting until I land back in the U.S. to retrieve my voice mails so I don't get charged. And, of course, until then, I'm always in the dark as to whether the voice mail I know I have is time-sensitive or (most likely) not time-sensitive.

Surely there must be some good way to retrieve my voice mails while abroad when I have a wi-fi connection (including access to Skype). But what is it? I can't call my own phone using Skype on my own phone to retrieve my voice mails (to my knowledge). Is there an AT&T number (not my own cell number) which I can call using Skype to retrieve my voice mails? Can I check my iPhone's visual voicemail purely using wi-fi, but without data roaming or incurring any other surcharge? Should I sign up for a free service like Google Voice and alternate between enabling it when I am leaving the country and disabling when I return? Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Are you aware that on GSM systems if someone calls you and your call rolls to voicemail you'll get charged for two international calls? One to try and find you in your foreign location and the other for the trip back to the US to deposit the voicemail in your voicemail inbox.
Quote: Are you aware that on GSM systems if someone calls you and your call rolls to voicemail you'll get charged for two international calls? One to try and find you in your foreign location and the other for the trip back to the US to deposit the voicemail in your voicemail inbox.
I was about to post the same thing. I always hard forward my phone number to Google Voice when jumping on a plane. Many years ago, I had a a $20 voice mail in Tanzinia (counting the retrieval). Conditional call forwarding which happens when you don't answer or decline a call adds up quickly.
Quote: Are you aware that on GSM systems if someone calls you and your call rolls to voicemail you'll get charged for two international calls?
I wasn't. My company pays my cell phone bill and nobody has ever brought this to my attention. Hmm . . . I wonder how much that has cost us over many, many international trips.

All the more reason to go with Google Voice, I guess.
Quote: Are you aware that on GSM systems if someone calls you and your call rolls to voicemail you'll get charged for two international calls? One to try and find you in your foreign location and the other for the trip back to the US to deposit the voicemail in your voicemail inbox.
This doesn't apply if the call goes directly to voicemail, which it would if the phone radio was turned off. There is no charge for "trying to find you" in this case.

For most networks you won't get charged even if the phone is on, it rings, and it goes to voicemail.
I am abroad every week and found an easy answer to this one. I usually have wi-fi in the airport lounge and hotel, and like you use skype etc.

Get an app called Hullomail and sign up to it. It asks for an email address.
http://hullomail.com/us/index.html

At the airport as I depart I put divert voicemail calls to Hullomail, and when I get back I turn it off. What it does is convert your voicemail to a .wav file and emails it to you as an attachment. You pick it up as an email on the wifi.

It is a free app, so you can sign up for it and try it at home before you depart so you can see how it goes. At that price you cant really go wrong!
Quote: This doesn't apply if the call goes directly to voicemail, which it would if the phone radio was turned off. There is no charge for "trying to find you" in this case.

For most networks you won't get charged even if the phone is on, it rings, and it goes to voicemail.
In theory you are correct, but if you flip the radio on and off it is not instantaneous. Many cellular companies hold your registration information cached in their system to keep you locked to their network. In 2008, I was at Gitex in Dubai and there were companies exhibiting this equipment. I got burned in Africa when I tried turning my cell phone on for only ten minutes in the morning in ten minutes in the evening to see if messages arrived.

Spend a few minutes googling on the phrase "roamer OR roaming AND capture AND revenue"

When I go down this path, historically people have argued the point with me. I'm only relating my experience.
Quote: In theory you are correct, but if you flip the radio on and off it is not instantaneous. Many cellular companies hold your registration information cached in their system to keep you locked to their network. In 2008, I was at Gitex in Dubai and there were companies exhibiting this equipment. I got burned in Africa when I tried turning my cell phone on for only ten minutes in the morning in ten minutes in the evening to see if messages arrived.

Spend a few minutes googling on the phrase "roamer OR roaming AND capture AND revenue"

When I go down this path, historically people have argued the point with me. I'm only relating my experience.
I find that what you are saying is the norm worldwide base on my experience.

My procedure is to reroute my communications based on my new location before departure and device not turned on in a new location until the local SIM is installed
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