A good way to keep in touch is by text messaging on your mobile phone. Phoning from abroad is relatively easy from call boxes. If the family have a computer and you can get to an internet cafe this is another way.
When traveling, Skype is always a very unique and personal way to speak and see my loved ones at the same time. It is amazing to be in a foreign country and then turn on my computer and see my Granny sitting in her kitchen in Utah.