1-800-COLLECT is a collect calling
service run by WorldCom
and the first to offer an alternative to dialing
before a phone number
, which automatically used the collect calling service provided by the company the phone is managed by.
Originally, 1-800-COLLECT was set up for Americans traveling in Europe to be able to call home using collect calling. It can be used in the United States and Canada to call anywhere in those countries and over 130 international locations. Most of its popularity has come from its television ads, featuring Alyssa Milano as Eva Savelot, Mr. T as Inspecta Collect, Michael Jordan, and Verne Troyer. Features of the service include the ability to leave messages, third party billing, and card billing. Like a number of other telephone "savings methods", you need to use it for 20+ minutes to save money with the service.
What makes 1-800-COLLECT so profitable is that most people don't realize that they need to be connected for a long time to save anything and like any collect calling service an number of extra charges are added to the cost of the call. Most collect calls are very short and made from pay phones, which people rarely spend long period of time chatting on. This increases the chances that the person using the service will stay on for very long and the company can "legitimately" charge them for a full 20 minutes.
"Use 1-800-Collect!" - Mr. T