Heading out of country with your cell phone and don’t know how to control your cell phone costs? Most of the ROAMING charges users experience are related to data usage. By controlling data, you can susbtantially control your costs. iPhone users notoriously get charged for lots of data things because the iphone is trying to be smart and will switch between wifi and cellular mode without the user knowing. You might think you are sending imessages on wifi but they could be going out as SMS at a higher cost.
Following these options could save you an ugly bill.
GUARANTEED NO COST OPTION – If you are a fan of this option, then there is only one solution and its pretty easy. Once in the plane and flying at 30,000 ft, pop the SIM card out of the phone. Tape the SIM card inside an envelope, seal envelop, place in a safe place 🙂 Anything but this, and you could incur some charges from your provider back home. With a smart phone and no SIM card, you could login to WIFI at the airport, hotel, cafes, many places and send emails, skype, WhatsApp, anything really…for free. Please note that with this option, would not have access to regular text messaging and phone calls.
LOWER COST – NORMAL PHONE USAGE – This option is often very affordable, in the order of $20-50 for a 30day period. Get that Canadian SIM card out of the phone once at 30,000 ft. Buy a SIM card from the first country you land in, load it up with a bit of money, use at your hearts desire. Telecom costs in other countries is often much lower than in Canada. You’ll have plenty of data for all those wow moments (Snapchat, Instagram, etc). You maintain ultimate control of the budget with a pre-paid foreign SIM. Europe, South America, and Asia offers lots of data and calls for very reasonable rates. Practice your language skills to negotiate getting a SIM card at a local cornerstore or grocery store…they sell SIM cards everywhere. We also need to get your phone unlocked with your home provider…unlocking can cost between $20-$50.
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