A lot of us use Skype to get in touch with each other. Skype for those who may not know, is a Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) service which allows unlimited free calls between users using the desktop, mobile or iPhone application. Sign up: http://www.skype.com/

Many hotels and accommodation establishments now have free WIFI.
(Sadly a number charge you for WIFI use as well so beware when choosing your accommodation). 

If you pay for Skype credit, you can also call out from Skype on your computer to normal phones (wireless or landline) at a discounted rate.  http://www.skype.com/en/features/call-phones-and-mobiles/ (works well if usage is low)

If however you are a power user, you may wish to consider Skype Premium – call mobiles and landlines in over 50 countries.

For an additional cost, you may also get a “Skype-In” phone number http://www.skype.com/en/features/online-number/ , which is essentially a Skype number disguised as a local land line, so that all calls to that number will be forwarded to your Skype account, allowing you to take the call anywhere and on any computer with Skype installed. This benefits the caller — if Skype is not available, he/she can always contact you simply by dialing a local number. Skype Number, 3 month subscription, AU$ 24.00 (cancel when you return).

Voice messages

If you’re busy or asleep, Skype offers a free voicemail service that can take a message for you. Listen to your messages and return any calls at your convenience. http://www.skype.com/en/features/voicemail/

Once the above is done and you are ready to go on holiday, divert your phone to Skype. (may I recommend doing this a couple of days in advance just so you can practice a little bit).

If you really wish to be mobile, I would also recommend installing the Skype App on your smartphone (iPhone or Android):
1. http://www.skype.com/en/download-skype/skype-for-iphone/
2. http://www.skype.com/en/download-skype/skype-for-android/


One final bit of advice:
Personally, I prefer to use my laptop to read and answer emails as opposed to using webmail but find switching outgoing SMTP all the time a nuisance.
I use http://www.smtp2go.com/ to solve this problem. (Free to cheap depending on email volumes you send)

Need to share your screen
Skype now has a ‘share-screen’ option

A better option may be to use http://www.teamviewer.com/
The ‘Personal Version’ is free.

Happy Travels…