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Thread: US Iphone in England

  1. #1
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    US Iphone in England

    I am going to call ATT wireless when I get a chance but does anyone have any first hand experience with taking a US iphone to another country and NOT having crazy charges. I'm only there for 4 days. Im not planning on spending a TON of time on the phone but do want to be able to text and call home. It seems like they have tons of international plan choices and they do pro-rate them so I can cancel when I get home.

  2. #2
    I know this doesn't really answer your question, but when I travel internationally, I usually just rely on wifi. There are hotspots all over europe. I use skype on my phone when I want to call home. Skype isn't perfect, but its cheap and fairly reliable. If most of your family/friends have iphones, you can text free over wifi.

  3. #3
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    I am going to London in July and will be interested in what you do but from what I've looked at I'll probably add international texting for just the period that I'm there. My family will have to deal with me not calling. But I'm also not a wife or mom so I realize it's a bit different.


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  4. #4
    There are iphone APPs which have free texting using Wifi. I use textie. The only caveat is that people either have to respond to your initial text or you give them your textie address.

    I generally use emails rather than text because a lot of my correspondence uses stuff on my computer so I would rather have the ability to go back and forth seamlessly between my iphone and my computer as necessary. I don't find texting easier to do than email but I am a Luddite.

    I almost never use the voice phone calls so not having the use of a voice phone to communicate daily wouldn't affect me at all.

    I don't know if things have changed but one issue with iphones was that some apps regularly check in so that people were unknowingly amassing huge bills. Before departing, I would check with your provider to make sure that your settings don't do this.
    Last edited by amarante; 05-08-2012 at 01:02 PM.

  5. #5
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    We have found AT&T's international calling plans to be worthless - very little savings above just using your phone without signing up for the plan.

    We use an app similar to Skype. Wifi is so readily available that it hasn't been a problem. As I recall, the app we used last year transcribed voicemails into emails also. We haven't had a need to text while out of the country, so I can't answer to that.

  6. #6
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    You can make the changes to your plan online and all the prices are there. You can choose any or all of phone, text and data depending on what you think you will need.

  7. #7
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    I have an iPhone with Verizon and they have some pretty reasonable international plans that you can add/drop for specific trips (vs paying for the plans all the time).

    You get the crazy charges if you DON'T add an international plan before you travel. The intl packages are definitely more expensive, but if you just buy a certain block of data/voice/text time, then it's pretty doable, esp for a short trip like yours.

    I would assume AT&T has something similar, since all the CSPs are pretty competitive with each other, but don't know specifically.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by amarante View Post

    I don't know if things have changed but one issue with iphones was that some apps regularly check in so that people were unknowingly amassing huge bills. Before departing, I would check with your provider to make sure that your settings don't do this.
    There is an option in Settings to turn off cellular data and restrict all data transfer to Wi-Fi which is what I plan to do while abroad.


    "Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself" ~ George Bernard Shaw


  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SusanMac View Post
    I have an iPhone with Verizon and they have some pretty reasonable international plans that you can add/drop for specific trips (vs paying for the plans all the time).

    You get the crazy charges if you DON'T add an international plan before you travel. The intl packages are definitely more expensive, but if you just buy a certain block of data/voice/text time, then it's pretty doable, esp for a short trip like yours.

    I would assume AT&T has something similar, since all the CSPs are pretty competitive with each other, but don't know specifically.

    I know choices change, so AT&T may have added something in the past year or so, but last time I checked AT&T had absolutely nothing worthwhile for Europe.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the advice guys! I ended up purchasing AT&T World Traveler for $5.99 a month which discounts phone calls from $1.30 a minute to .99 a minute. I also have Sype and will use that if I can.

    Also I purchased 50 international text messages for $10.00, and 275 MB of global data for $99.00 (month charge My charge will be about $10.00)

    Everything I purchased will be pro-rated for JUST the 3 full days I am there. I will call and cancel as soon as I get back.

    So total I *THINK* this will cost me about $15.00 or so.

    It could be (HOPEFULL!) overkill because like Robyn mentioned when I can get ON Wifi I will!

    I'll also reset all my data usage so I can track how much I am using and not go over.

  11. #11
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    Google Voice is another option. I think they charge 25 cents a minute or less everywhere.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by katygirl View Post
    Thanks for the advice guys! I ended up purchasing AT&T World Traveler for $5.99 a month which discounts phone calls from $1.30 a minute to .99 a minute. I also have Sype and will use that if I can.

    Also I purchased 50 international text messages for $10.00, and 275 MB of global data for $99.00 (month charge My charge will be about $10.00)

    Everything I purchased will be pro-rated for JUST the 3 full days I am there. I will call and cancel as soon as I get back.

    So total I *THINK* this will cost me about $15.00 or so.

    It could be (HOPEFULL!) overkill because like Robyn mentioned when I can get ON Wifi I will!

    I'll also reset all my data usage so I can track how much I am using and not go over.

    Not bad for texts - I will have to remember to check that out next time we travel. Probably more than I would be willing to spend for data except for a short trip.

    I still think $0.99/min is a ridiculous charge for calls. For calls, the break-even point for the plan is about 19 minutes; more than that and you save incrementally more.

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