Skype, our favorite service for making Internet phone calls, just came up with a $30 calling plan that allows you to make unlimited calls to people who use regular phones and don’t have Skype. That’s $30 for the year, not a month!Skype

Calls are restricted to the United States and Canada and can be made to either landline or cell phones. If you sign up before the end of January, the charge is only $15 for a year of unlimited calls.

You have to sign up at the Web site: You cannot use this service to make calls to emergency services, like the 911 police number.

Competitor Vonage ( says it has fixed this problem for emergency calls made by about 93 percent of U.S. callers. When you make such a call, however, the service reports your location as the one you used to register with them, which may or may not be where you are when you make the call.

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