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cell phone or phone card
Janice023
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Will be going to Austria, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Copehagen, Paris…. Is there a cheap way to keep in contact with hubby at home?

rob_co2
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Some internet cafes have a phone set-up that will allow you to call for very cheap.  From watching friends, I’ve found cards to be a hastle. 

kestul2
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Hey guys …. Im also hoping to find someway to communicate back to the states.  My friend and I are traveling together for a month through Ireland, France, Switzerland, and Italy.  Does anyone have any knowledge  about renting a phone abroad?? Any info would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!!!

auher
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Quote:
ORIGINAL: rob_co2

Some internet cafes have a phone set-up that will allow you to call for very cheap.  From watching friends, I’ve found cards to be a hastle. 


Is this common? I’ve been out of the european backpacking loop for several years now as I’ve been explore Asia & the ME – but since I’m getting back to Europe on this trip – curious to see what to expect. In the past I used to do things like make a quick call from a pay phone and have family call back with 10-10-220 or another service, but I’m sure there’s a better way now. Is Skype or similar usually found in Internet Cafes like you mention? How’s the cost / service?

aether1515
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I used my Cingular cell phone from the U.S. and I am extremely glad I did. It was always a convenience in case I needed to call home and there were a couple of times that I let other backpackers use it because for one reason or another phones at some of the hostels weren’t working.

Christina
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I bought a international phone that I can use pretty much everywhere in the world at Cell Abroad. All incoming calls are free and you pay as you go.
It is a UK number and there are some int’l call plan from US that u can pay <10cents/min to UK.
Phone costs around USD 190

luv_the_beach
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If your phone is dual band and takes a sim card, you can bring it to Europe and buy a SIM card there, one that allows you to replenish your credits with phonecards. 
 
The trick is finding such a thing that works in multiple countries. (Anyone know if it exists?)


beach-lunch-siesta-beach-shower-dinner-nightlife-repeat

cire16
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This type of SIM card does exist and is widely available on the internet, but I have no idea how you hard it would be to find once you are in Europe. I got my SIM card through http://freeglobalsim… because they dont charge you for the card itself (many other sites charge $35+ for the card), everything you pay is credited to your account. The number they gave me is a UK number so incoming calls to most Western European countries are free, and it is about $00.40 per minute to call the US from these same countries. I bought a world phone (quad-band, because they use 900 and 1800 in Europe) on ebay for $40, and bought the 25 pound SIM card, so for $90 USD I got connected for my entire trip and future travels.

Slayer
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I have a Verizon cell phone which I am pretty sure won’t work in Europe…can anyone confirm this? Also, I have a spot for a sim card if i get one in europe will it work?

Christina
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www.cellularabroad.com sells SIM cards that works pretty much everywhere, including Africa, South America and Asia.[Smile]

apyf
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Verizon phones will not work in europe.  They are on a CDMA network, most of the rest of the world uses GSM network.
 
In the US, only GSM network phones take SIM cards.  The cellular service providers sells phones at such a discount (i.e. those free phone deals) to get you to sign onto their contract.  These phones are LOCKED.  You can not switch another service providers SIM card into your phone for it work.  Your phone number is encoded on the SIM card.
 
You can buy unlock phones from ebay.  They are also commonly sold in asia.
 
To unlock a GSM phone, you need a code.  There are services on ebay that will do it for you.  Some service provider will unlock your phone after a certain amount of time (3 months), but you have to call and ask them to do it.   And there are phones that you can find the unlock code on the web (just google your phone model number and unlock code).
 
In order to use your GSM phone overseas, your phone has to be a quad-band phone (850/900/1800/1900 MHz).  You can either sign up for your service providers “International Roaming Plan” (which means people could reach you through your regular phone number, disadvantage, it’s expensive, depending on the plan…I think one of the cingular plan is $0.99/min, but incoming text messages are free).    Or if you have an unlocked phone, you can buy a SIM card once you are overseas.  It is often cheaper, however, you will have a new phone number.
 
So which one you go with depends on how much you plan on using your phone.
 
I have seen people use internet phones at some internet cafes, usually only at internet cafes that are geared toward online gaming.  I think in part it’s because they provide headphones…
 

Just_Call
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There’s a $5 &days unlimited Phone Card if you are to call from USA and keep intouch with your friends and love ones when you are back in USA.
 
This is for real…nothing can beat this card…
 
GoodLUCk!
 
 

gqstatus718c
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how do i get the internet on my fone to work in europe…

heavydrinker
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you need a MIKE TELUS phone with blue-tooth with a prada case, otherwise you jus’ won’t be worth a shite in Europe

gqstatus718c
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where you from ontario no i mean like a pda liek the treo i was going to bring my laptop but i think that might be a waste of space

Don
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Realizing the original question is 2 years old… but this might help someone researching the same or similar issue about phones and travelling.

I used Boingo with my wi-fi Nokia phone in Rotterdam and surrounds recently. They had a 1 month free trial (might still do?). It had access at all KPN hotspots—KPN apparently is the largest provider in the Netherlands. Boingo claims 100,000 hotspots worldwide which you’ll have access to. I’ve only tried a few, and it worked as advertised. Boingo.com

Their subscription for wi-fi enabled mobile phones is $8 per month (I paid it in GBP and got it about $6.60 USD currently). Finding open hotspots for free is getting harder. In fact, I check in places all the time with my phone, and 99% are locked-down these days—even at cafes.

I also have Fring installed on my phone (free) connected to my Skype and Skype out account. That means an open hotspot, skype-to-skype, are free from my mobile phone. Hopping on a Boingo-participating hotspot ($8 month) gives me access if I can’t find a free hotspot. Skype-out, to any regular phone, is 2.2cents/minute.