Using my Cell Phone in England

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belmontpaul
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Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by belmontpaul » Sun May 12, 2019 6:46 am

Hi All,

I will be going to England this summer. I have an iPhone 6 plus. What do I need to do to be able to use my phone (calls, texts, web) while in England?

Thank you for any help and/or advice. :)

aristotelian
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by aristotelian » Sun May 12, 2019 6:48 am

If your phone is locked to a US carrier, you may be out of luck. If you have an unlocked phone, buy a SIM card from a kiosk in the airport and you're good.

FederalFIRE
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by FederalFIRE » Sun May 12, 2019 6:51 am

Primary thing is to make sure your phone is unlocked from your US carrier. That *should* be the case, but probably good to give them a call and check.

Once you get to the U.K. You can buy a SIM at an airport kiosk, most newsstands, a Carphone Warehouse store, etc. Should be pretty quick and easy and then you just pop the SIM in and go. It's worth bringing a small paperclip or SIM pin with you to make sure you're able to open the phone's SIM tray when you get a card - especially if you buy one from a kiosk.

student
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by student » Sun May 12, 2019 6:53 am

Which carrier do you have?

Topic Author
belmontpaul
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by belmontpaul » Sun May 12, 2019 6:54 am

I use Verizon

wilshuer
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by wilshuer » Sun May 12, 2019 6:59 am

Depends on your carrier, and how long. If you’re only going for a week, and you want to have the convenience of still communicating through your current number, there maybe be a roaming deal through your carrier. AT&T has one that is $10/d and is very convenient. Granted could probably save a few dollars getting a local sim. I’m there about a week a quarter and the $60-70 isn’t bad. You use your data from your existing plan, etc.

dcabler
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by dcabler » Sun May 12, 2019 7:00 am

Depends on your carrier, but you have a couple of options
1. Contact your carrier and enable international roaming on your phone. Many carriers give you an option to purchase minutes/data for international roaming to cover a certain amount of time, often a month. If you don't do that, you're going to be looking at some incredibly steep charges for roaming. Beyond that, try and use WiFI as much as you can and, if possible, enable WiFI calling on your phone (again, depends on the carrier). Bottom line: for this option, contact your carrier to see what options they have available.

2. As others have noted, if your phone is unlocked, you can purchase a SIM card for the UK. Again, you'll get a certain number of minutes/amount of data, but you can top it off periodically. You'll have a UK phone number associated with the SIM card. They're sold just about everywhere over there and there are options to purchase them here as well before you leave.

wilshuer
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by wilshuer » Sun May 12, 2019 7:01 am

belmontpaul wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 6:54 am
I use Verizon
Looks like Verizon has an international day plan too at $10.

dcabler
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by dcabler » Sun May 12, 2019 7:02 am

belmontpaul wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 6:54 am
I use Verizon
Start here: https://www.verizonwireless.com/support ... nner-tool/

The Wizard
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by The Wizard » Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am

You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Attempted new signature...

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oldcomputerguy
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by oldcomputerguy » Sun May 12, 2019 7:07 am

As Aristotelian noted, your phone being locked to your existing carrier might be a deal breaker. You should ask your existing carrier first.

Your phone also might not be compatible with the London providers on a hardware level. You can check www.willmyphonework.net to answer that question.
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student
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by student » Sun May 12, 2019 7:32 am

The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
OP has an iphone so it won't work unless he changes phone.

The Wizard
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by The Wizard » Sun May 12, 2019 7:43 am

student wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:32 am
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
OP has an iphone so it won't work unless he changes phone.
Actually, newer iPhones, 6 and above, are now supported by Fi as of the end of 2018...
Attempted new signature...

student
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by student » Sun May 12, 2019 7:48 am

The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:43 am
student wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:32 am
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
OP has an iphone so it won't work unless he changes phone.
Actually, newer iPhones, 6 and above, are now supported by Fi as of the end of 2018...
Oh. I did not know that. Thanks for the info.

gs2offroad
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by gs2offroad » Sun May 12, 2019 7:51 am

With Verizon, add TravelPass to your account, $10 per day overseas ($5 in Mexico/Canada). Works well for casual use.

https://www.verizonwireless.com/support ... pass-faqs/

Grogs
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by Grogs » Sun May 12, 2019 8:32 am

gs2offroad wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:51 am
With Verizon, add TravelPass to your account, $10 per day overseas ($5 in Mexico/Canada). Works well for casual use.

https://www.verizonwireless.com/support ... pass-faqs/
I use TravelPass for short trips, and it's very convenient. Once you add it to your account, it will activate anytime you turn on wireless in a foreign country. One nice feature is that it only turns on for 24 hours at a time. On days when I was in a hotel/working with access to WiFi, I would just leave the wireless turned off and receive texts/emails via WiFi. On a week long trip to Australia, I only used 4 days' worth of TravelPass, which I thought was reasonable. For work trips, I always use this for the convenience since the company will reimburse me. For vacations, I'll get a SIM card if it's longer than a week because the savings start to be worth the hassle. Make sure you have a secure location to store your old SIM card during the trip. Those things are TINY and very easy to misplace.

I spoke with VZ about unlocking phones a few months ago, and they told me they haven't locked them for several years. Unless you've had your phone quite a while, it's unlikely it is.

wilshuer
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by wilshuer » Sun May 12, 2019 8:32 am

The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Which works for data and text, however voice is $0.20/min unless calling on WiFi per their website. That could get expensive quickly if looking for voice calling.

CRTR
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by CRTR » Sun May 12, 2019 8:56 am

Verizon phones are unlocked and can take a SIM. When doing so, you get a new phone number. If you use Whatsapp for international texting, you can still use your old number/account.

My GF is French and we go there every year for ~10 days. $200 for the Verizon daily rate (2 PHONES) or $140 for monthly plan is a bit steep.

What we do is buy one SIM card from AMAZON (Orange network - largest in France) for one of the phones (8GB data 300 text messages, 300 min calls) for ~$20. The other phone, we set up the Verizon daily plan but rarely use it (keep the phone in airplane mode). What we do is make the phone with the Orange SIM into a hot spot and share the data. This allows wifi calls and text messages on the other phone. So . . . $20 for 10 days, two phones!

neilpilot
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by neilpilot » Sun May 12, 2019 9:48 am

As other's have said depends on your phone, carrier and your needs. Last spring we used our Xfinity Mobile sim and paid $0.10/min for voice, $0.10 per text, and limited our data usage to wifi (free). Since we are not using our phone much, our cost for that brief 2 days stay was a couple $$. We will be in the UK for 20 days this fall, and plan to stay on Xfinity. For our purposes it's not worth the trouble of getting a local SIM, since we won't be using our phone extensively outside of wifi.

Note that on previous visits we've used AT&T, and the voice charges were 10x that of Xfinity.

It's also worth noting that you can use your phone for GPS navigation without using any data service, so long as you've previously downloaded the map(s) onto your phone. Many travelers mistakenly believe that they need to buy a data package and/or a local SIM specifically for foreign GPS navigation, and that just isn't the case.

The Wizard
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by The Wizard » Sun May 12, 2019 10:37 am

wilshuer wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 8:32 am
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Which works for data and text, however voice is $0.20/min unless calling on WiFi per their website. That could get expensive quickly if looking for voice calling.
Quite true.
So it depends on your expected use profile...
Attempted new signature...

pdn
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by pdn » Sun May 12, 2019 10:53 am

I used gigsky service for 2 weeks recently in BKK. Very handy. We didn't use texting or voice, just data. $30 for 4 gig/2weeks. It came with an eSIM (newer iPhones are dual SIM) which can just be set to use data from the purchased plan. Other plans were probably marginally less expensive, but I bought it on the plane and it was ready for use when I landed. For an iPhone 6, you may need a physical SIM card though.

hdcd
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by hdcd » Sun May 12, 2019 12:53 pm

T-Mobile is the way to go for international travel. It’s included in your plan and just works beautifully. Of course read the details on their website. We have travelled to Spain, England, France, Italy, Switzerland and no extra charges. If your going to be there a while might be worth the look.

inbox788
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by inbox788 » Sun May 12, 2019 2:20 pm

belmontpaul wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 6:54 am
I use Verizon
Verizon iPhone should be unlocked.

The best choice depends on your needs, what you're using it for, and how long. Do you need a US or UK number and will the calls be mostly local calls in England or England to US? From where are you receiving calls from?

I used a card like this one (new UK number) for a short visit that worked well in England and other parts of Europe. I activated a few days before I left to make sure it was working as recommended. My usage was mostly data and making a few local UK calls. I used text and social apps to communicate to the US.

https://www.amazon.com/PrePaid-destinat ... 01FI1JW72/

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whodidntante
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by whodidntante » Sun May 12, 2019 2:27 pm

hdcd wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 12:53 pm
T-Mobile is the way to go for international travel. It’s included in your plan and just works beautifully. Of course read the details on their website. We have travelled to Spain, England, France, Italy, Switzerland and no extra charges. If your going to be there a while might be worth the look.
Meh. I have T-mobile and travel extensively. They give you 2G data for free, which is roughly similar to dial up Internet in terms of real world speeds. It works in a pinch but can be pretty frustrating. If you want speeds similar to the USA you have to pay extra.

captaindorky
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by captaindorky » Sun May 12, 2019 2:33 pm

I have brought unlocked phones (Moto Types) to Europe multiple times, while having service with Verizon in the states. My understanding is that the issue is Verizon uses CDMA and Europe is GSM. If the phone you have is compatible with GSM bandwidths and is unlocked, get a SIM card locally in England. We recently used '3' which had coverage throughout the majority of Europe. It was incredibly inexpensive and rather simple to do. Just make sure you have your passport with you when you go to get the SIM card.

CD

alter
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by alter » Sun May 12, 2019 2:44 pm

I go to Europe a lot with my unlocked android phone. I used to buy those rental sim cards at the airport etc. But now I buy a plan before I go, I switch to my Gigsky sim (which is re-usable,unlike those sim packs, which are often a local provider) So pretty much anywhere in the world I can rent a data plan and be connected as soon as plane lands. It saves the hassle of finding a phone store, buying a pack, dialing in, registering, having to enter pins, entering card info etc etc.

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dollar_elbow
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by dollar_elbow » Sun May 12, 2019 2:47 pm

TMobile 2G speeds in Europe are very slow (though free).

You can actually buy UK sim cards on Amazon for travel to Europe (they only work in Europe, but can be activated in the US so should work immediately once you land), if you are concerned about buying a SIM card once you get there:

https://www.amazon.com/PrePaid-destinat ... 124&sr=8-3

alter
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by alter » Sun May 12, 2019 2:49 pm

I'm on a T-mobile plan in the USA that does not work in Europe at all...it is a $30/mo unlimited data pay as you go plan though that I've been grandfathered in for like 10 years. I think T-mobile probably works in Europe if you have a full-price plan.

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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by LadyGeek » Sun May 12, 2019 3:13 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (cell phone).
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IHateCasinos
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by IHateCasinos » Mon May 13, 2019 8:25 pm

Actually, gone are the days of needing international roaming on your sim card/ carrier.
What replaces it VERY successfully is called Wi-Fi Calling. Iphone has it. hopefully your carrier allows it to be turned on (in the USA). Then when you join a wifi network *anywhere in the world*, the calls arrive over the magik of the internet and your phone rings. ie your USA number works for calling in and out. Calls are the same charge as back in the USA.
google how to set it up on your iphone for your carrier/service provider.

International roaming is dead. Thank the lord!!

M

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GerryL
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by GerryL » Mon May 13, 2019 8:57 pm

I'm on Consumer Cellular, so no international plan. A few years ago, I bought a sim card from Le French Mobile and have used it on multiple trips to France and last year in other EU countries. I add credit to my account when they have a sale (e.g., buy 25 euro of credits for 20 euro) as I know I will be heading back. Only available online as far as I know. Website is easy to understand (English) and support is responsive.
According to the website I will be able to use it in the UK next month.

nepats
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by nepats » Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am

The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!

neilpilot
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by neilpilot » Tue May 14, 2019 6:46 am

nepats wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am
The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!
To each there own. I find it easier and cheaper to not pickup a local SIM card for stays under a month. There just aren't many times I need to make or receive calls other than to/from the USA, and wifi calling is available anyway.

One of the best things is that I can continue to receive calls and texts to my actual phone number. Without having to use a 2 SIM phone.

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GerryL
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by GerryL » Tue May 14, 2019 7:13 am

neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:46 am
nepats wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am
The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!
To each there own. I find it easier and cheaper to not pickup a local SIM card for stays under a month. There just aren't many times I need to make or receive calls other than to/from the USA, and wifi calling is available anyway.

One of the best things is that I can continue to receive calls and texts to my actual phone number. Without having to use a 2 SIM phone.
For me, the ability to make calls is an extra. I got the sim mainly so I can use data when wifi is not available. I don't use all that much, but it's handy for map and transit apps.

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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by The Wizard » Tue May 14, 2019 7:48 am

GerryL wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 7:13 am
...For me, the ability to make calls is an extra. I got the sim mainly so I can use data when wifi is not available. I don't use all that much, but it's handy for map and transit apps.
Yes.
I hardly made any calls my last two European trips, just a call back to the US on my last day to update flight status.

But I used cellular data quite a bit when I was out and about, away from convenient WiFi...
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nepats
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by nepats » Tue May 14, 2019 8:14 am


For me, the ability to make calls is an extra. I got the sim mainly so I can use data when wifi is not available. I don't use all that much, but it's handy for map and transit apps.
Exactly, what I used it for. Also, I have done the Verizon International plans before in Europe and the data speeds sucked and I got charged $10/day!
I had no such problems with Vodafone in England and mainland Europe.

Starfish
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by Starfish » Tue May 14, 2019 3:41 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:46 am
nepats wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am
The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!
To each there own. I find it easier and cheaper to not pickup a local SIM card for stays under a month. There just aren't many times I need to make or receive calls other than to/from the USA, and wifi calling is available anyway.

One of the best things is that I can continue to receive calls and texts to my actual phone number. Without having to use a 2 SIM phone.
Using WiFi is not always convenient.
SIM prices are usually <10$ for huge amount of data (4-5-10Gb, sometimes unlimited). 4E or 5E or common prices.
The time you lose with one single detour to get to wifi or getting lost somewhere on the road is much more than the time to buy a SIM card.
Yes, you do lose your phone number, that is the downside. There is Whatsapp, facebook messenger etc.

northtexan
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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by northtexan » Tue May 14, 2019 3:47 pm

I am going to be in europe, while its not england. I purchased a one month international plan that was 60 dollars, it includes 1gb of data, I plan on using wifi most of the time. It also includes unlimited text massaging, and included international calls at 30 cents per minute. If I did not get the plan it would be 3 dollars per minute phone calls and 50 cents per text message. This is through AT&T

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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by neilpilot » Tue May 14, 2019 4:09 pm

Starfish wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 3:41 pm
neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:46 am
nepats wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am
The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!
To each there own. I find it easier and cheaper to not pickup a local SIM card for stays under a month. There just aren't many times I need to make or receive calls other than to/from the USA, and wifi calling is available anyway.

One of the best things is that I can continue to receive calls and texts to my actual phone number. Without having to use a 2 SIM phone.
Using WiFi is not always convenient.
SIM prices are usually <10$ for huge amount of data (4-5-10Gb, sometimes unlimited). 4E or 5E or common prices.
The time you lose with one single detour to get to wifi or getting lost somewhere on the road is much more than the time to buy a SIM card.
Yes, you do lose your phone number, that is the downside. There is Whatsapp, facebook messenger etc.
I use very little data in the USA, typically less than 1G/month, so have absolutely no need for a data connection when I travel in the EU beyond wifi. I certainly understand that there are users who can't live without their data quota. However, that's no excuse for "getting lost somewhere on the road", since there are very capable phone/iPad navigators that don't require any data. Assuming you know where you are going, HERE with downloaded maps hasn't let me down yet, both driving & walking.

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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by Starfish » Tue May 14, 2019 4:15 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:09 pm
Starfish wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 3:41 pm
neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:46 am
nepats wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 6:41 am
The best (service) and cheapest way is to pick up a local SIM card if your phone is unlocked . Verizon phones are unlocked so you should be good. You can buy them at any grocery store etc. I was in London last month and used Vodaphone. They had couple of good deals, €10 for 2 GB data and umlimted text and calls. Or €1/day for 500 MB data, unlimited text/calls. One of the best things was that I could use my UK number in number of Euro Zone countries on the same plan!
To each there own. I find it easier and cheaper to not pickup a local SIM card for stays under a month. There just aren't many times I need to make or receive calls other than to/from the USA, and wifi calling is available anyway.

One of the best things is that I can continue to receive calls and texts to my actual phone number. Without having to use a 2 SIM phone.
Using WiFi is not always convenient.
SIM prices are usually <10$ for huge amount of data (4-5-10Gb, sometimes unlimited). 4E or 5E or common prices.
The time you lose with one single detour to get to wifi or getting lost somewhere on the road is much more than the time to buy a SIM card.
Yes, you do lose your phone number, that is the downside. There is Whatsapp, facebook messenger etc.
I use very little data in the USA, typically less than 1G/month, so have absolutely no need for a data connection when I travel in the EU beyond wifi. I certainly understand that there are users who can't live without their data quota. However, that's no excuse for "getting lost somewhere on the road", since there are very capable phone/iPad navigators that don't require any data. Assuming you know where you are going, HERE with downloaded maps hasn't let me down yet, both driving & walking.
Good point about Here, I have never used it but I am going to take a look. I also use around 1Gb/month, maybe a little more but definitely under 2.
Which Here it is, I see a lot of apps with this name?
Without a connection it does not have traffic info like Waze, or, most important for me, it does not tell where police hides (or where speed cameras are).
I would be very interested too see how good are the maps in less than mainstream places, where Google maps and Waze have limitations.

Also with data you can communicate with local friends or partners from your group if you get split. I remember hanging out in a McD in Paris to message a friend about the meeting place. It wasn't fun to spend my time there.

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Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by neilpilot » Tue May 14, 2019 4:38 pm

Starfish wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:15 pm
neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:09 pm
....... no excuse for "getting lost somewhere on the road", since there are very capable phone/iPad navigators that don't require any data. Assuming you know where you are going, HERE with downloaded maps hasn't let me down yet, both driving & walking.
Good point about Here, I have never used it but I am going to take a look. I also use around 1Gb/month, maybe a little more but definitely under 2.
Which Here it is, I see a lot of apps with this name?
Without a connection it does not have traffic info like Waze, or, most important for me, it does not tell where police hides (or where speed cameras are).
I would be very interested too see how good are the maps in less than mainstream places, where Google maps and Waze have limitations.
On my android I use HERE_WeGo, and I have the IOS version loaded onto my iPad. I use it, set to wifi only, both domestically and when traveling. I don't much care about traffic alerts in Europe since, except in very rare exceptions, I don't drive in the major cities. So far in Europe I've used HERE in Spain (walking in Madrid, Barcelona, & Menorca; driving in Andalusia and Majorca), France (walking in Paris, driving in Corsica & the Dordogne region), Portugal (Algarve), Gibralter, UK, Scotland, Italy (driving in Tuscany, walking in Rome) and Bavaria.

MathWizard
Posts: 3369
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:35 pm

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by MathWizard » Tue May 14, 2019 5:17 pm

The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Yes. I did smile when I landed in the UK in 2017 with my Fi phone, and
it just worked, both phone and data.

My wife's iphone did not work, so we bought a cheap dumb phone in case
we got separated. My data worked as well, and cost the same as it did in the US
($10/GB pay only for what you use). This worked great navigating London with
google maps guiding us.

neilpilot
Posts: 2400
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2015 1:46 pm
Location: Memphis area

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by neilpilot » Tue May 14, 2019 5:22 pm

MathWizard wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 5:17 pm
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Yes. I did smile when I landed in the UK in 2017 with my Fi phone, and
it just worked, both phone and data.

My wife's iphone did not work, so we bought a cheap dumb phone in case
we got separated. My data worked as well, and cost the same as it did in the US
($10/GB pay only for what you use). This worked great navigating London with
google maps guiding us.
Just to repeat earlier comments, you can navigate just fine without data so long as you don't need current traffic and have maps downloaded. Even using Google Maps. https://support.google.com/maps/answer/ ... roid&hl=en

User avatar
sperry8
Posts: 1749
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2008 9:25 pm
Location: Miami FL

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by sperry8 » Tue May 14, 2019 6:19 pm

The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Google Fi is the way to go for frequent international travelers. Simply can't be beat for price, ease, and speed, collectively.
BH contest results: 2018: #150 of 493 | 2017: #516 of 647 | 2016: #121 of 610 | 2015: #18 of 552 | 2014: #225 of 503 | 2013: #383 of 433 | 2012: #366 of 410 | 2011: #113 of 369 | 2010: #53 of 282

Starfish
Posts: 1088
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:33 pm

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by Starfish » Tue May 14, 2019 6:31 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:38 pm
Starfish wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:15 pm
neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:09 pm
....... no excuse for "getting lost somewhere on the road", since there are very capable phone/iPad navigators that don't require any data. Assuming you know where you are going, HERE with downloaded maps hasn't let me down yet, both driving & walking.
Good point about Here, I have never used it but I am going to take a look. I also use around 1Gb/month, maybe a little more but definitely under 2.
Which Here it is, I see a lot of apps with this name?
Without a connection it does not have traffic info like Waze, or, most important for me, it does not tell where police hides (or where speed cameras are).
I would be very interested too see how good are the maps in less than mainstream places, where Google maps and Waze have limitations.
On my android I use HERE_WeGo, and I have the IOS version loaded onto my iPad. I use it, set to wifi only, both domestically and when traveling. I don't much care about traffic alerts in Europe since, except in very rare exceptions, I don't drive in the major cities. So far in Europe I've used HERE in Spain (walking in Madrid, Barcelona, & Menorca; driving in Andalusia and Majorca), France (walking in Paris, driving in Corsica & the Dordogne region), Portugal (Algarve), Gibralter, UK, Scotland, Italy (driving in Tuscany, walking in Rome) and Bavaria.
Thanks, I downloaded Here_WeGO to check it out.

langleybc
Posts: 40
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 6:40 pm

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by langleybc » Tue May 14, 2019 10:02 pm

order a sim, giffgaff will send it to US free of charge, load 10 pounds before you go.

https://www.giffgaff.com/freesim-international

MathWizard
Posts: 3369
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:35 pm

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by MathWizard » Wed May 15, 2019 6:15 pm

neilpilot wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 5:22 pm
MathWizard wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 5:17 pm
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Yes. I did smile when I landed in the UK in 2017 with my Fi phone, and
it just worked, both phone and data.

My wife's iphone did not work, so we bought a cheap dumb phone in case
we got separated. My data worked as well, and cost the same as it did in the US
($10/GB pay only for what you use). This worked great navigating London with
google maps guiding us.
Just to repeat earlier comments, you can navigate just fine without data so long as you don't need current traffic and have maps downloaded. Even using Google Maps. https://support.google.com/maps/answer/ ... roid&hl=en
I did that in France a few years before I got my Fi. But what was great about the FI was I could get directions in the UK which combined subway, bus and train schedules. If I figure the total cost of my trip to the UK, and divide by 16 hours each day, I get a figure over $50/hr.

The $10 to $20 I spent on data to shave 10-30 minutes of waiting around for public transit each day was a bargain.

Whakamole
Posts: 912
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:59 pm

Re: Using my Cell Phone in England

Post by Whakamole » Wed May 15, 2019 6:22 pm

MathWizard wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 5:17 pm
The Wizard wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 7:04 am
You could change your service to Google Fi here in the US and then just smile when you land in the UK and it connects automatically to a local cell provider.
I'll be doing this in a few months...
Yes. I did smile when I landed in the UK in 2017 with my Fi phone, and
it just worked, both phone and data.

My wife's iphone did not work, so we bought a cheap dumb phone in case
we got separated. My data worked as well, and cost the same as it did in the US
($10/GB pay only for what you use). This worked great navigating London with
google maps guiding us.
Many iPhones now work with Fi. They even have "visual voicemail" (transcripts of voicemails) working now.

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