Caution! The cell phone that you may have brought from home is likely to be extremely expensive to use for local or U.S. calls.
If you need a cell phone, you can purchase an inexpensive one at WalMart, Target or other stores. They usually work by purchasing minutes for calling and are commonly referred to as “TracPhones”, because it is the most common brand.
It is usually best to purchase a phone that you can use pre-paid minutes or cards with. Don’t sign up for a cell phone plan without careful consideration of the fees and policies. They are usually 1-2 year contracts with high cancellation fees.
The following website assists in finding the lowest priced international phone cards: comfi.com
Computer to Computer Communications
You can often save a lot of money using Skype or Yahoo to access free computer to computer communication.
Software can be found online and downloaded both to your local computer and a computer back in your home country. You will also wish to have speakers on your computers and a camera for face-to-face communication.