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Cheap UK calls set Bangladesh buzzing


With a population of 168 million people to call, it’s no wonder Bangladesh scoops the top spot as the UK’s favourite international destination to dial.

The findings which were based on consumers using Firstnumber [] – an online directory offering cheap access codes – saw 12% of people dialling Bangladesh. The findings were especially striking given the 300 codes available.

Surprisingly, Bangladesh managed to beat off strong competition from the likes of the China and India; China in particular boasts a population size over eight times bigger than that of Bangladesh.

Firstnumber representative Andy Steele put Bangladesh’s popularity with UK citizens down to the clarity of calls:

“There’s not one outright reason why the people in the UK have made Bangladesh their favourite international destination to call although the quality of the connection is definitely key. Firstnumber’s service is often as good as calling a regular UK landline so callers no longer have to worry about their calls being interrupted by crackling sounds, crossed wires or lines breaks which were commonplace in the past.”

Perhaps what makes these findings most interesting though is the lack of phone connection to be found in certain parts of Bangladesh. Almost 90% of the country’s rural towns and farming communities still lack a basic landline service. In some areas it’s not uncommon for village people to travel tens of miles to use a communal landline shared by numerous remote settlements.

Needless to say, in the absence of landlines, many Bangladeshis have turned their attention to mobile phones. Currently, Bangladesh boasts 50million handsets nationwide with this number only set to rise as technology becomes more affordable and accessible. UK citizens with Bangladeshi friends and family needn’t worry about a hike in price though, as Andy Steele explains.

“Firstnumber and our competitors are constantly trying to get the best deal for consumers and as a result the prices just keep getting lower. Firstnumber currently allows people to dial Bangladeshi mobiles and landlines []for just 3p a minute, that’s just 1p dearer than calling your next door neighbour from the same phone. While dialling international destinations may have once proved a costly process this is quickly becoming a thing of the past. A trend that is only cemented by the number of people choosing to call Bangladesh.”

About Firstnumber: is an online phone directory offering direct dial access codes that reduce the cost of making international calls from a UK landline. was launched in 2004 and is a trading style of Wavecrest.

Contact Details:

First Number / WaveCrest, 1st Floor, Bishopsgate Court, 4-12 Norton Folgate, London E1 6DB.

Enquiries: 0870 801 7800



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