Can I activate & use an US-iPad with an european credit-card?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by snub, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. snub macrumors newbie

    Jun 20, 2010
    Hey guys,

    I am from Switzerland, but going to California in a week for vacation. I plan to buy an iPad 3G over there since they haven't been released here yet.
    I have 2 questions:

    - Will they sell it to me in an Apple store without signing a contract?
    - And can I just buy 250mb worth of data transfer on the device itself or my Swiss iTunes account using my VISA that is linked to my Swiss adress, without being an AT&T customer?

    Bonus question: I would also like to use my (unlocked) iPhone during the vacation, especially for Google Maps. Is there a cheap way to do that? Obviously I could just use my normal Swiss sim card but that would probably cost me like 1$/mb.

    Thanks for any help
  2. barkomatic macrumors 68040

    Aug 8, 2008
    You won't be able to activate 3G service with AT&T with a foreign credit card. Some have been able to activate service using a Visa or Mastercard gift card purchased in the U.S. using a local billing address--though I have not tried this myself.
  3. snub thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 20, 2010
    That would be too bad if I couldn't use the iPad's 3G functionality right away - it would be the perfect travel companion. :/
  4. jzuena macrumors 6502a


    Feb 21, 2007
    Lexington, MA, USA
    To answer the other half of the iPad question: you don't have to sign any contract when you purchase an iPad, so if they have them in stock they will sell one to you. You could then wait to activate the 3G when you get back to Europe.

    For the iPhone, you would need a GSM PAYG sim from either AT&T or T-Mobile. Ones from T-Mobile will only work over 2G EDGE due to use of a non-standard 2100 MHz band for 3G. Ones from AT&T work on 3G for the US iPhone, no idea if they will work with 3G on a Swiss iPhone. I have no idea how hard it is to get a PAYG sim with both voice and data from either of these companies, either.

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