Making Skype Calls

Once you have set up Skype you can start to make calls.

There are two types of calls you can make: PC to PC (these are free) and PC to Phone (these require Skype Credit which you can buy here

PC to PC

Everyone on Skype has a “Skype Name”. This is like an ID. It is a single string of letters and/or digits – e.g. jsmith436, fredflintstone.

If you know the Skype Name of the person you want to call, you can just type it straight into the box at the bottom of the Skype window, then press the green “Call” button to call that person.

If you don’t know the Skype Name of the person you want to call, you will need to search the global Skype network for it. To do this, choose “Contacts > Search for Skype users…” from the main Skype menu. A search window will appear. Enter the full name of the person then click the “Search” button. Keep in mind that there are millions of registered Skype users, so there may be a number of people with the same name as the person you want to contact. If this is the case you will need to narrow your search by entering other criteria, such as Country, State etc. Another option is to enter an email address instead of the name. (All of these additional criteria require that your contact has filled in all the relevant details in their Skype profile).

Once you locate the person, you will probably want to add them as a contact before you call them. To do this, click the contact then click the “Add Selected Contact” button. If you don’t want to add them as a contact, just write down or remember their Skype Name, close the search window, then type the Skype Name straight into the box at the bottom of the Skype window and press the green “Call” button to start a call.

If you added the person as a contact, simply select the contact from the list of Skype contacts in the main Skype window, then press the green “Call” button to call the contact.

PC to Phone

Jargon alert: This is known as “SkypeOut”. To learn how to make calls to normal phones from your PC, click this SkypeOut link.

Recording Skype calls

a href=””>Download your free 30 day trial of CallBurner to start recording your Skype calls.

How SkypeOut works

SkypeOut is a service which Skype offer which allows you to make calls on your computer with Skype to ordindary phone numbers (such as landlines and cell or mobile phones). SkypeOut calling is typically a lot cheaper than calling on an ordinary phone. You can call people on SkypeOut locally, and internationally. See the latest SkypeOut calling rates. Buy SkypeOut Credit.

How does SkypeOut work?

On the Call Phones tab within Skype, enter a phone number (we’ll help you get the country code right) and hit the big, green call button and start chatting. When you begin to run low on credit, it’s a quick trip back to your Account to top up.

For more information on SkypeIn, see the SkypeOut page on Skype’s website.

How to record phone calls made from Skype to ordinary phones (landlines and cell phones)

Follow these steps to record Skype calls to ordinary phones (landlines and cell phones).  These steps assume you have Skype and CallBurner installed.  Do you need help with installing CallBurner, or perhaps installing Skype?

1. You will need to purchase Skype Credit to make Skype calls to ordinary phones if you don’t already have credit.  The term for making calls to ordinary phones with Skype is known as SkypeOut.  SkypeOut calls are relatively inexpensive compared to making calls on ordinary phones (especially when it comes to making international calls).  Here is Skype’s list of SkypeOut calling rates for your convenience. Tip: On the SkypeOut calling rates page, be sure to select your local currency from the “Show rates in” currency drop down box.

2. Click on the CallBurner chilli icon in the system tray to bring up the CallBurner Call Monitor window as shown below:

3. Click on the ‘Options’ tab (4th tab from the left) as shown below, and then click on ‘Configure…’:

CallBurner Options Button

4. When you see the ‘CallBurner Options’ dialog, select the “Recording” (as shown below):

Skype Recording Options

5. Note the ‘SkypeOut and SkypeIn’ subheading on the above dialog.  The following options pertain to both SkypeOut calls (calls made from Skype to ordinary phones), and SkypeIn calls (calls made from ordinary phones to a Skype account):

  • Record my voice only – This option will only record your side of the call (as in, your voice) in the event of a SkypeOut call with another party, or a multi-party Skype call (i.e. a Skype Conference, SkypeCast etc).  If you select this option, you will only be able to hear your voice during call playback.  This option is sometimes used by sales companies who want to record their side of the conversation for training purposes.
  • Record all voices – This option records both your side of the SkypeOut call and all of the other parties in the call.

6. This dialog also allows you to configure advanced CallBurner options such as which audio format to record to, which audio encoding to use etc.  See our How to record Skype calls using your choice of format and bit rate page for more information on these options.

If you have any problems getting this to work, we can help – just email us at for assistance.