Student spending semester in UK

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by brn2rnjk1, Jul 14, 2014.

  1. brn2rnjk1 macrumors regular

    Feb 24, 2008
    I have a iPhone (Verizon) and will be spending a semester abroad in UK. What are the best solutions for a phone. I know that I could get a chip in UK and exchange it (but I have to be able to sync and need to call Verizon, I think). Are there other options people are happy with?

  2. 617aircav Suspended

    Jul 2, 2012
    If you can't use a local UK sim then what other options can there be?
  3. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    Call Verizon and ask for the phone (sim card side) to be unlocked. That's if it needs to be?

    When you get here pick up a pay as you go sim for three or gifgaff slap it in. Top up and away you go.
  4. James Craner macrumors 68000

    James Craner

    Sep 13, 2002
    Bristol, UK
    His other option would be to get an International data roaming plan from Verizon.

    However it would be more cost effective to use a UK Sim.

    Sync should not be an issue as you are presumably syncing your iCloud account that will not change.

    Using a UK Sim will give you a UK Mobile (Cell) Phone number and a Pay as you go telephone and data plan.

    If you only make a few calls the other option would be to use WiFi only data while you are in the UK and turn mobile data roaming off.
  5. AppleFanatic10 macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2010
    Encino, CA
    Which iPhone do you have? If you have the iPhone 5 it should already be unlocked. You would just have to suspend the account, I believe you're only allowed to suspend it for 3 months unless it's something like military related or something like that.
  6. Martin81 macrumors regular


    Oct 14, 2013
    6 month ist quiet a long time to spend on roaming. Even ''local'' calls in the UK are extremely expensive.

    If possible, I would go for a local sim card. I've heard good thinks about Three. I think there are prepaid plans available, so no long time contract.
  7. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    If you have an iPhone 5/5c/5s, I think all you have to do is buy a prepaid SIM when you get there. Just pop out your Verizon SIM and switch them. You'll have a local UK number, but iMessage should still work for your US contacts. Your contacts should also be synced on your iCloud account and not stored on your Verizon SIM.

    You will probably want to contact Verizon and let them know you want to suspend service while traveling unless you or your family want to pay for double the cell service. Their website says there is no charge for suspending and reinstating service, but I'm not sure how long you can do that before they recycle your number.

    If you have a 4S, it will need to be unlocked by Verizon before you can use it overseas. If you're no longer in a contract, they should do it no problem. After that, you should be able to buy a prepaid SIM like above. If you have an iPhone 4, I'm not sure if it can be unlocked.
  8. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Folks here have it right. iPhone 5 and later won;t require unlocking. Just pull the sim, drop the UK sim in, and you are on your way.

    You will want to call Verizon on what they can do about your service while you are not in the states using it. They may waive part/all of the fees or it may just end up cheaper paying the ETF (or I suppose you can always pay for service that you aren't using should you want to keep your phone number or something).
  9. iGeek2014 macrumors 68000

    Jun 29, 2014
    === Nowheresville ===
    I'd definitely go for Three UK out of all the carriers here within the country.

    For example for £15 a month on their PAYG plans you can have AYCE data, 300 minutes and 3000 SMS.

    Top ups last for 30 days before allowance expire.
  10. Azzin macrumors 601


    Jun 23, 2010
    London, England.
    There are SIM Card vending machines at Heathrow (and I assume other major airports too)...

  11. merrickdrfc macrumors 6502


    Jan 8, 2011
    Another thumbs up for Three over here, cheapest by far with the best data services (if you are in a city/town of course, rural is a different story).

    Not too sure on the LTE compatibility of a Verizon iPhone, it's free on Three but if you can't get it, in city centre's I've seen speeds of ~20 MB/s on 3G
  12. iGeek2014 macrumors 68000

    Jun 29, 2014
    === Nowheresville ===
    Looking at the tech specs over at Apple's LTE support page assuming the OP has an iPhone 5s/5c in theory it supports Band 3 (1800 MHz) over here in the UK.

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