When in Melbourne I was staying at a friends flat with my wife. (We did a house swap.) The flat has no land line, and I was using my Telecom cell phone on roaming mode. (only $6 per day for data.) We also had access to their wifi. When it came to booking a cab to the airport this came down to a choice of:
1. Online booking… but having to register and use an NZ cell phone, or
2. Ring up via Skype and make a booking.
I chose Option 2, although whether they would have text/rung an NZ cell phone is an interesting question… It also seemed like the “safer” option i.e. most familiar to me. As it turns out they got the name confused and sent the cab early – but no particular issue.
In hind sight the first option would have been better, there is no ability for human error, there is evidence of the booking and the process is automated and well tested. It certainly overcomes communication challenges (e.g. accents, stutters) on both sides of the phone line… BUT it does need confidence, and confidence can only be gained by having used the service successfully.
I wonder which option my teenage students would choose?