The potential cost benefit from integrating data and voice in a single network provides a strong motivation for packetized voice transmission. In this study, simulation models are used to characterize the delay distribution of voice packets in a single hop as well as in a multi-hop network environment. The trade-off between the number of speakers that can be multiplexed using speech activity detection technique and the delay performance are quantified. This is contrasted with the performance obtained by using a lower bit-rate voice input without speech activity detection. Finally, a procedure is presented which guarantees that the delay for any packet belonging to a call will not exceed a given value throughout the duration of the call, once the call is set up. This procedure can be used with or without speech activity detection. © 1989.