Carrier carrier with international rates that just works?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Somian, Feb 7, 2019.

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  1. Somian macrumors regular

    Somian

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2011
    Location:
    Cupertino, CA
    #1
    Hi,

    I've been using AT&T for years, but they keep canceling my renewing international add-on packages without notice and then charge more than the value of the (supposedly auto-renewed) monthly packages for a single call. It happened so often, even after talking to customer service multiple times, that I believe they do this on purpose so they can charge higher international rates by the minute.

    A friend of mine switched to T-Mobile because he had similar experiences with AT&T. Their international packages sounded good (although more expensive). After a couple of months of international business trips to Europe and Asia, however, they said they would just cancel the entire plan if he continued to use it abroad.

    Is there any US carrier that works internationally and isn't a scam? It's fine if they charge extra for international travel and calls, but I'm looking for something that's transparent and that doesn't keep canceling your packages or the entire plan if you actually use the international service.

    If they charge $100 per month I'm abroad, then so be it and I can book that as a business expense, but what I can't book as a business expense is the time I waste talking to customer support or the potentially missed calls because my plan might get canceled because they don't want me to actually use the package I'm paying for.

    I have a US iPhone XS that supports e-sim, if that helps.
     
  2. 1080p macrumors 68030

    1080p

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Location:
    Planet Earth
  3. Jasonx82, Feb 8, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2019

    Jasonx82 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2008
    #3
    I have att and used my phone daily in korea and japan with my unlimited data/txt/voice with no issues for a month at 10.00 a day. Upon arrival of korea/japan I would receive a intl txt from att asking if i wanted to use the daily intl plan by responding “Yes” simple as that. The plan was activated and renewed daily just by using it. Dont get the prepaid monthly intl plan.
     
  4. jpiszcz macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2010
    #4
    Keep in mind though the $10/day is ~$13-17/day depending on where you live due to taxes.
     
  5. andiwm2003 macrumors 601

    andiwm2003

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #6
    same experience here. I have now two phones with t-mobile and ATT and I pick local plans when IO travel. It's beyond me why to this day there is no reasonable international plan. Especially since some of the carriers are multinational companies anyway.
     
  6. janeauburn macrumors 6502a

    janeauburn

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
  7. slippery-pete macrumors 65816

    slippery-pete

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
  8. NoBoMac macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2014
    #9
    Imo, OP and friend did not read the T&Cs for the big cellco international plans. If they did, all say something like "majority of use needs to be in the US". ATT specifically says "over 50% over two months" is in violation.

    Yeah, sucks, but not a conspiracy. Those international plans are for tourists. Guessing need to move to a business plan to maybe get a longer international plan.

    Guessing EU rules, government controlled telcos, tariffs, etc make offering an open US international roaming plan difficult to deploy.
     
  9. kevink2 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    #10
    If I spent enough time overseas I would strongly consider this. Cheaper than the $10/day+tax I used on a vacation 2 years ago. Easier than getting a local SIM like I did last September on vacation.

    If I do another vacation in the future, I'll look at my options then.
     
  10. KeepCalmPeople macrumors 65816

    KeepCalmPeople

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2012
    Location:
    San Francisco Bay Area, California
    #11
    T-Mobile ONE. My wife travels to Brazil and Singapore regularly, and recently we have also traveled to the UK and France. You get 3G speeds in 100+ countries for no extra charge, and can bump that up for a flat rate per month. Unlimited international data (albeit it at the slower speeds). Phone calls are something like 25c per minute when abroad.

    When we travel abroad, there is nothing we have to do with our cellphone plans, and we don’t have to buy local SIMs. You may not be able to stream Netflix, but for email, navigation, social media and web browsing it works just fine.
     
  11. E3BK, Feb 9, 2019 at 8:46 PM
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019 at 8:55 PM

    E3BK macrumors 68030

    E3BK

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #12
    To clarify, TMO said they would cancel the plan or did AT&T say that? I think all carriers have some kind of limit (I think 50% for TMO & Verizon) of international data use over the period of a few months. I think part of it is to protect users, and themselves.

    If you have an XR, why not move your US service to eSIM and get a local physical SIM? I think carriers care more about data than voice/text usage. I travel often, mostly to the UK so I have had Three PAYG for a long time. I just top it up when I'm heading over and use that. With Dual SIM, it has made a HUGE difference. Verizon on eSIM and Three nano SIM is my set up. The Three SIM also allows roaming in the EU - it's called Feel at Home and I can use it here in the US also but I keep data roaming off.

    There is also Verizon Travel Pass which is $10/day but you basically get to use your bucket of calls/text/data just as you would at home. They have an add-on plan as well for really frequent travelers.

    If you really travel that often I think getting local SIMs for data is really your best value and would eliminate problems w/ your US carrier. EE (UK) allows eSIM on post-paid only but they also have roaming included on their higher end plans. If you're willing to spend $100/mo US, why not just use that to get a local international SIM for the EU and Asia?
     
  12. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #13
    Honestly, $10/day seems excessive to me ($300/mo + tax). I usually spend just $20-30 for 30 days service with local SIM. Last time, the airline even gave away free complimentary local SIM cards that we were able to refill at the customer service desk at the airport. Granted, my trips were always recreational rather than business so I didn't need my US number to work.
     
  13. janeauburn macrumors 6502a

    janeauburn

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
    #14
    Make that MUCH slower speeds, as in "so slow that it's worthless." I've been there w/ t-mobile.
     
  14. Somian thread starter macrumors regular

    Somian

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2011
    Location:
    Cupertino, CA
    #15
    AT&T cancels add-on packages, T-mobile threatens to cancel the entire plan. From my experience.

    With my older iPhones I used to fiddle with prepaid SIM-cards, but it's a hassle With the e-sim, which I haven't used yet, It should be more convenient. Then, I just need a phone plan that allows roaming so I can be called on my US number and use that on the physical SIM slot.

    I guess I'll just stick with a "local" plan for the US and get an e-SIM plan next time I travel.
     
  15. E3BK macrumors 68030

    E3BK

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #16
    Well, the problem is that eSIM prepaid isn’t readily available yet. That’s why most us have our main US line on eSIM. And if it’s just 1 overseas SIM, you just leave it in the phone. Maybe switch out for an Asia SIM when needed. You can still get calls on the US line even if you use the international SIM for data.

    But talk to Verizon. They are probably have the most business friendly travel plans if you’re willing to pay.
     
  16. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Location:
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    #17
    I went to Mexico in December, thinking "no worries, I have ATT's Mexico/Canada plan." Evidently they removed it at some point without mentioning it, and it isn't even available anymore.
     
  17. yukari macrumors 6502

    yukari

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    #18
    I use LINE2 as a second number and get data plan when overseas. I then use only data when placing a call or texting using LINE2.

    If there is any wifi, I use wifi to call with LINE2. Of course you have to pay LINE2 monthly fee of $10, but since I use that number as my business number, it works out perfect.
     
  18. bpeeps macrumors 68030

    bpeeps

    Joined:
    May 6, 2011
    #19
    Doesn't work well with iPhones. Tons of features missing. And you need to know someone with an Android to activate. Too cumbersome for most.
     
  19. EDH667 macrumors 6502a

    EDH667

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    Location:
    Northern California
    #20
    Google Fi now supports iPhones so you no longer need to activate the SIM on an Android.
     

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