Have you ever tried to call a US number through AT&T Collect Call service from India. AT&T has a short code for India 000117. When we call this number it lands onto AT&T call center. Then we can use our long distance calling card to dial a USA number from India. Or if the number is collect-call enabled we can have an operator to connect the call. Here are my experiences with calling this short code.

June 2014: Airtel (Maharashtra and Goa) was charging for this service even though it was toll-free. After repeated escalations they stopped charging on this number.

July 2014: BSNL (Maharashtra and Goa) does not support this option. It says the number does not exist. Adding to the woes the customer service for 1503 was not functional then. The only option is MIS.BSNL and they take three days only to respond they do not know about this number. After escalating it to their higherups they fixed it after four weeks.

March 2014: BSNL (Chennai) had a similar issue. I am surprised by the attitude of this network. If a network issue is solved on one region, can’t they propagate it across the switches. Why do they expect the customer repeat for each of their networks?

And another trick is that with BSNL, this number is not directly dial-able now. You ought to have ISD facility activated. I am not sure how it is going to work for postpaid because for postpaid BSNL charges 2000 rupees security deposit for ISD. For prepaid, send a SMS ‘ACT ISD’ to 53733. Wait for a confirmation and after a few moments once the confirmation comes you can dial this number.