But I know different countries have different rules for cell phones so you’d have to check the country’s rules; Italy, for example.
My new phone/sim card worked ok, albeit a little slow ( I believe it was running 3G) until I got to Republic of Ireland. The big benefit to me was that the site was in English, and I could easily see my usage, bump up my balance, etc. Or would we need to get SIM cards for each country? GSM and CDMA are legacy systems. Thanks! I just returned from Europe, and there are plenty of iPhone 4 and 5 phones out there. Your SIM card controls your phone number. Thank you. I bought it at the airport and the guy at the counter was supposed to register it on line but didn’t (which I didnt know until later) so after 2 days unable to call anyone at home I spent 2 hrs today trying to find an orange shop (no google map to help remember – only rude Parisians with a barge pole up their dierrieres) and when I went in the assistant was so arrogant he wouldnt even let me finish my sentence to tell him what was the problem.. the place was full of internet equipment but he couldn’t even be bothered. £20 Phonecards will expire 90 days after first use. We have lots of London tips, but feel free to reach out if you have any more questions. (As noted above, T-Mobile customers with “Simple Choice” plans already get free texting and data throughout Europe and calls at $.25 per minute.
We will be there for 1 month, so the Sim package duration works out perfectly.
Also, if she doesn’t end up using up all her SIM card data/text/minutes…can we save it for and give to anyone else traveling?
BUT My other concern is this: if i take a phone that’s still on a U.S plan I’m still paying a large monthly smartphone bill for a phone I’m not using any US data or minutes on and then I have to buy the SIM with a plan in Europe so I’m basically paying a bill for services I”m not getting (in US) and then for minutes in Europe.
I recommend buying before the trip, unless standing in line at a mobile phone store is how you want to spend valuable vacation time. I’m reading as much as I can before our family heads to Europe this summer, and I’m so thankful I ran across this article. Sorry, an error occurred and your subscription request could not be processed. Good information, thanks. Is there a deposit I would forfeit for not returning the SIM card?
You receive a U.S. phone number that friends and family can call at local rates but reach you overseas. Has anyone purchased the Orange Holiday sim card on Amazon prior to traveling abroad? It was only £15 and includes unlimited data and a bucket of texts and minutes in not just the UK but throughout most of Western Europe at no additional cost, the U.S. Is even on the list. Photo: EuroCheapo. Receiving calls and texts is free. The convenience may be worth the price to you – it was not to us, and we waited and got much better deals the same evening or the next day, locally. 3. I have tried SIM cards in many countries, only to be stymied by the language barrier while trying unsuccessfully to get them to work properly, and mysterious charges on my credit card after I got home.
I’m not sure about transferring a SIM Card but you could check with each carrier to see their policy. In total that is 3 EUR. But this article was VERY helpful and i think I am going sim card. For making calls to and from the U.S. That’s what I would like to know as well!
Can I now download onto my laptop? (These usually come in increments of €5 / €10 / €15 / €25, and often include small bonus credits that increase the more you purchase. This has been so helpful but I’m still a little confused. I tend to keep a travel phone which is unlocked and seperate from my USA phone .
Or could I elongate all that data for a month, or 3 weeks per se? However, there is just one more major, if obvious, point worth considering. I spend 2 days in Ireland can I buy a UK ready sim card in Ireland. Last year I have visited three different countries. If you are going to France, check out this article on the best SIM cards in France. Do you recommend a specific SIM package/carrier for her needs? Check out your collection of old phones to see if any of them operate with SIM cards.
Hi David, We should do a follow-up on the different plans available — interesting point about the roaming charges. If I need more time I can buy extra time by buying the cards at most kiosks depending on what country I’m in.
What would you recommend as the best solution?
Voice tariffs. It includes unlimited calls and text and limited, but enough data. If they expire can you top them up? I am also traveling to Paris this fall, and this time I’m taking my old iPhone 5 and buying a local sim card there, as the phone is unlocked. Many telecom are at the Airport. Tom, thanks for the great article, very informative. There are many, many European phone carriers, and each offers different SIM cards, packages and options. I’ve never had a problem.
I have used a TruSim since 2012. • 20 GB of mobile data throughout Europe. Have questions about how it all works?
You very clearly laid out everything I wanted to know. Local SIM cards come with a variety of options and plans depending on the country.
I have also done this with a Mobile Mi Fi in which you can tether an I Phone , I -Pad, Computer etc . In this case you are buying Data only Sim Cards- you can get a lot 1-5 gigabytes for very little euros in Europe. Beats worrying about needing an extra phone as well. Whenever I travel to Germany I buy a sim card from a telephone/internet store in any city . Activation: write ON GIGA to 4071160. I bought a European SIM card for my smart phone while in Italy. Here are listed Poste Mobile data offers for surfing with your phone (no tethering): And you can call the U.S. at very low rates. That might be an option too. Hi, Tom!
I’d pop my Verizon SIM card in every couple of days to check voicemail or call my mom who doesn’t do online and then pop the French one back in. I happily bought out my contract and walked away in order to have a phone that would work in Europe. I have a 5S iPhone which I will use to access the internet, use my apps, and offline maps.
The most of the reviewers are right about the SIM card. I lived in France for a month last year and purchased a SIM card there when I arrived.
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