Mobile operator Globe Telecom has announced that it is extending its free call service abroad to help overseas Filipinos connect with family and friends in the Philippines, while sister firms Smart Communication and Sun Cellular said they have rolled out additional free calls and device charging stations to assist communities affected by Typhoon Ruby.
In a statement, Globe said it will continue its ?Libreng Tawag? program until 11:59 PM EST on December 9 or about 12:59 PM on December 10 in the Philippines.
?Globe is bringing its ?Libreng Tawag? initiative to eight countries around the world with some of the biggest OFW and migrant populations, knowing how important it is during these trying times for families separated by geography to communicate with each other and send messages of encouragement. We are pleased to extend this service overseas for one more day as our way of being united with our countrymen who may be affected by Typhoon Ruby,? said Globe senior vice president for international business Rizza Maniego-Eala.
Globe said the service has been well-received abroad, with Filipinos trooping to various convergence points where the telco provided free calling stations.
In Saudi Arabia, at the Philippine Consulate General in Jeddah, the downtown district in Balad as well as partner stores of Globe, including in Riyadh, will serve as locations for the calling stations.
In Spain, Filipinos based there may avail of ?Libreng Tawag? at four strategic points along Joaqu?n Costa Street in Barcelona. In Italy, the new Globe store in Rome, which opened last December 6, as well as its six month-old counterpart in Milan, will have calling stations for Pinoys in the Italian peninsula. Those in the United Kingdom will also be able to call home at no cost at Earl’s Court in London.
In Hong Kong, particularly in Central District, Filipinos can have the privilege to contact the Philippines for free, while OFWs in Singapore may avail of the service at the Lucky Plaza along Nathan Road.
In Canada, Filipinos can get call cards for free in Winnipeg in Manitoba; Joyce-Collingwood in Vancouver; Calgary in Alberta; St. Catherine?s in Niagara; Montreal in Quebec; and in Eastern and Western Ontario. Pinoys based in the US can also have complimentary Globe call cards at Seafood City branches across the said country.
Smart and Sun, meanwhile, said its free calls and charging of mobile devices are available in the following sites: Cebu City Hall; San Vicente Parish in Bogo City, Province of Cebu; Municipal Hall of San Jose in Mindoro; Malabon City Hall; Caluag in Quezon; and in Sta. Cruz and Boac in Marinduque.
For Eastern Samar, which was among the provinces heavily affected by the typhoon, the telcos are setting up Libreng Tawag stations at the Borongan City Hall; and at the municipal halls of Dolores, Taft, and Catarman.
Additional Smart Satellite phones were also handed over to the Department of National Defense to augment government coordination for emergency assistance and disaster relief.
The companies are also set to deploy additional Libreng Tawag sites to help affected residents communicate with loved ones. Smart and Sun are also deploying portable power generation sets for free charging stations in areas where commercial power has not been restored such as parts of Samar, Sorsogon, Quezon and Marinduque.
More company facilities will also be opened for free mobile device charging in areas that will have more prolonged power outages.
Updates are made available via official company social media accounts in Facebook and Twitter as well as through the #SafePh page at www.smart.com.ph/about/safeph.
Meanwhile, a second team of network personnel and equipment arrived today in Eastern Samar on-board the an aircraft of the Philippine Air Force (PAF). They will join the first team that was pre-deployed prior to the arrival of Typhoon Ruby.