Does the Location of Your Hosting Company Matter?

The global nature of the Internet means that there are web hosting companies all over the planet that offer services to customers in the United States. However, there are many disadvantages to having an overseas host, as well as some advantages. Here is what you can expect to run into.

Currency issues are first and foremost. If your hosting company does not state their prices in US dollars, you may end up paying a lot more than you expected. The dollar continually fluctuates, so it is very hard to gauge what you will be paying each month.

However, many of these international companies do offer a set price in US dollars, as well as a payment method that will allow you to automatically convert your hosting fee. Try to make sure that your international host offers this type of payment method.

Time zones are a common complaint among webmasters with international hosts. You will need to find out where your host is located and then convert the time if you need to contact them. Even though it may be the middle of the afternoon in the United States, it could be the middle of the night in another country.

Many companies combat this issue by offering support offices that are located in the United States or Canada. If you can, try to look for an international hosting company that does offer this type of customer support.

In addition to time zones, international phone calls can be very expensive, and confusing to place. If you are not familiar with country codes and international long distance rates, you could be in for a very trying and expensive experience.

Support problems can typically occur with an overseas company. If you are at opposite ends of the clock, you may not be able to find someone available to answer your technical questions.

When looking for an international host, try to find a company that does offer 24-hour support. This will ensure that no matter what time it is where you are, you’ll be able to get a quick response.

Phone lines and electrical issues may be a problem in certain parts of the world. If your hosting company is in an area where this service is spotty at best, you will not be able to get the level of service you are used to in the United States.

However, there are many countries that are completely up-to-date and may even surpass the United States in abilities. Just make sure that you are familiar with this issue before selecting an international host.

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Posted on 12/14/05 10:36 PM

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