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Author: joejaneg

Joined: 6/13/2012
Posts: 10
GCT Trips Taken: 1
OAT Trips Taken: 0

August 12, 2012

I'm getting an iphone, and reading about 'data service charges' and 'roaming charges' and getting an international plan before you leave, and 'turn your data service off when you travel'; ?? Do you have to constantly hook up to a new wifi spot; can someone make it easier? thanx alot

Author: svncontinents

Joined: 11/25/2011
Posts: 230
GCT Trips Taken: 7
OAT Trips Taken: 6
Traveler Since: 2007

August 12, 2012

 We have iPhones and always turn off data roaming when traveling, so as to avoid having the phone seek a local provider, which will result in large charges.  We learned that lesson the hard way when we first got our iPhones.  You should contact your provider to see about an international plan, which does reduce the charges somewhat, over the non-international charges.  That would be up to you to decide after you get the information. 

 

We have oftern avoided using the data plan by using the Internet, but as you indicate, you would need a wifi hotspot to connect, and one that offers free access, which is not always available.  We have found that when traveling with Grand Circle, most of the hotels offer free internet, so we use their codes to connect, or use their computers, if they offer same.  The biggest problem we faced with the iPhones is keeping them charged, which had to be done every couple of days if we used them, and a bit less frequently if we didn't.  We would recommend that you purchase the Apple International Adapter kit, which contains both a transformer, and attachments for all Apple devices as well as socket adpaters which cover most of the world.  The cost is around $29.00.  If you want to avoid that, you can use the connector that came with the iPhone, as it is for dual voltage( 110/240 ), but you'll need a socket adapter to plug it into the wall socket. 

 

Hope that helps.

Author: vapork8

Joined: 5/13/2013
Posts: 1
GCT Trips Taken: 1
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2013

May 13, 2013

 Thank you Svncontinents for the useful recommendation.

It's been a decade since I have traveled to Europe. At that time, I was not as connected to my electronic devices like I am today.

I have an iphone and a MacBook Air. I am hopeful that the Apple World Travel Adapter kit will keep everything easily charged during my river cruise.

 

Author: rosemarynj

Joined: 3/10/2010
Posts: 34
GCT Trips Taken: 4
OAT Trips Taken: 1
Traveler Since: 2010

May 14, 2013

I have an iphone with Sprint and I jus tgo to Settings APP, General, Settings, Cellular  - turn off the cellular data and then go to  roaming voice and data and turn off voice roaming and data roaming  and international CDMA  and I do not get any charges.  It is a problem finding free wifi but you can definitely get them in Starbucks or Gloria Jeans if not in hotel or hotel lobby.  We used Gloria Jeans in Australia and NZ.  We are going to South AFrica and I checked all the hotels we are staying at and they give you 100mb of free WIFI which I do not think will be enough so we will also be looking for Starbucks.  I charged my iphone every night with the adaptor for country that I have from a set I had bought  and charger that came with the iphone.

  I have heard that you can incur charges with ATT when people leave you voicemail on the phone as you pay for it.  To avoid this you can have your phone calls forwarded to your home phone so no charge.

  I love Skpe and downloaded the APP on my iphone and put $10 on it and it lasts a long time for making calls in WIFI areas as calls are only a couple of cents a minute.   You can even get it to put your cell phone number as caller id so people will answer your calls rather than a strange number.  There are instructions online at Skype.  I also have an Ipad but like using Skype on the iphone better as just like using a phone rather than talking into a speaker on the Ipad. 

  Enjoy your trip!

Author: mctz666

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 47
GCT Trips Taken: 5
OAT Trips Taken: 2
Traveler Since: 2004

May 14, 2013

>>   I have heard that you can incur charges with ATT when people leave you voicemail on the phone as you pay for it. <<

That won't be true as long as you don't call up to listen to the voice message.

Below I'll just expand on what RosemaryNJ has already said,

1) Turn Data Roaming OFF - so that your cellphone cannot connect to a 3rd party cellular carrier.
In iPhone5 this is via Settings --> General --> Cellular ---> Data Roaming -->OFF

2) Turn Cellular Data OFF - this will turn off cellular data, forcing it to use WIFI or else don't connect at all. (Voice and text message will still be on.)
For text message and voice, if you don't reply or answer, you won't be charged the international fee.
In iPhone5 this is via Settings --> General --> Cellular ---> Cellular Data -->OFF.
    
3) Put your phone to Airplane Mode - this will turn off both voice/text and data. So you may not need to do this if you have already done both (1) and (2).
In iPhone5 this is via Settings --> Airplane Mode --> ON.

------------------------

An inexpensive alternative is to sign up for an International Text Message plan. With AT&T, and assume you have already had a regular text message plan, then it is:
         50 TXT messages for $10 (only what you sent out count toward this.)
         200 TXT messages for $30

If you do not already have a text message plan, then the price per text message is higher, but still very economical and convenient. You can receive/sent text message regardless whethere you have access to WIFI. This was very convenient when our group of 8 was in Bermuda last week, and needed to see if other members were in the same vicinity to meet for lunch etc.

Author: gmechoc

Joined: 5/19/2011
Posts: 27
GCT Trips Taken: 3
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2011

May 15, 2013

 We are going to London, then France on a river cruise.  Has anyone bought a phone there and left it?  How did it work out.  I am talking about a prepaid phone or such.

Author: gatormom89

Joined: 8/21/2012
Posts: 1
GCT Trips Taken: 10
OAT Trips Taken: 1
Traveler Since: 2008

July 30, 2013

In regard to the previous questions about traveling overseas with your iPhone (iPad, any smart phone or tablet), the best advice I can give is - turn it off before you take off in the plane and keep it off while overseas.  If you MUST check your email or whatever, go to a local internet cafe or a bistro where they have WiFi - have a cup of coffee while you're there.  Usually your program director will know the local places and prices.

Or if you are on a GCT river cruise with internet available in port, then you can turn your device on, using only WiFI.  I'm a real internet junkie and I managed to check my email and read the news while traveling doing the above.   Love GCT - have done 10 trips!

savvytraveldiscounts.com

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