Traveling to Europe

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Jnardis, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. Jnardis macrumors 6502a

    Jun 2, 2010
    I'll be traveling to Europe for a few weeks and was wondering what the cheapest way I could use my IP4 on ATT. I was thinking Skype or Google Voice, but wasn't sure if there's anything else out there that would work well and maybe cheaper.
  2. nburwell macrumors 601


    May 6, 2008
    Have you jailbreaked and unlocked your iPhone? If you have, you can buy a SIM card over in Europe and use your phone to make calls, send texts, check email, etc. However, if your phone is not unlocked, then it probably would be best to leave your phone on airplane mode, and pick up any free wifi hotspot to use for Skype and/or Google Voice to keep in touch back home. Whatever you do, do not get an AT&T international voice/data plan. You will run up quite a lengthy bill.
  3. JamesMB, Feb 22, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2011

    JamesMB macrumors 68000


    Jan 2, 2011
    There are some international plans that are very reasonable. You could add one to your account and cancel when you get back.

    EDIT: The plans are cheap, but the calling rates are not.:(
    I agree nburwell, wifi, with Skype or GV.
  4. AFPoster macrumors 68000

    Jul 14, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    When I was in Iraq I used Skype, worked great over wifi and free. Google Voice I hear is amazing as well, never used but that's what I hear. Like some above posts you can jailbreak and switch SIM cards but to me that's a hassle I don't want. I'd suggest just calling AT&T and doing an International plan for 3 weeks or however long you're there.
  5. Jnardis, Feb 22, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2011

    Jnardis thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 2, 2010
    Thanks for all the responses. I am JB, but not unlocked.
  6. h1r0ll3r macrumors 68040


    Dec 28, 2009
    Just an FYI, data over in Paris/Ireland is a whopping $20 per MEGABYTE on AT&T roaming. I had a fun bill the following month :mad:
  7. citizenal macrumors regular

    Apr 25, 2010
    Will be going to europe this summer... very interested in the responses. sub.T
  8. drummingcraig macrumors 6502a


    Sep 19, 2007
    "Armpit of the South"
    I travel overseas quite a bit and I can say from experience that you definitely do not want to count on AT&T for any service if you can help it.

    -Be sure to turn "data roaming when abroad" OFF.
    -If you need to send SMS, note that they cost 50 cents a pop unless you buy one of the global packages.
    -the world traveler calling plan sucks as others have noted. You pay a monthly fee for discounted rates, but you're still paying ~$1.30/minute plus taxes.

    Skype works well if you can access solid wifi - super cheap rates and good call quality.
    If wifi isn't something you're going to be around, you can always look into buying a used unlocked GSM phone off of eBay (even a Razr will do) and buying prepaid SIMs.
    I used to use a prepaid Global Roaming SIM. The rates were something like 25-50 cents/minute as I recall, but you didn't need to switch cards as you moved from one country to the next.

    Since you're jailbroken, if you have BiteSMS you might consider buying credits for texting via their network, but I am still unsure how that works exactly and if it used data or what.
  9. himesh macrumors regular

    Dec 7, 2010
    Birmingham, England
    Could you not unlock your phone and then get a UK sim card, there are a few good pay as you go deals here at the minute. £10 gets you unlimited texts and a few hundred minutes, some offer free data. Or Could just turn your data off and use the wi-fi. If your going to be in the cities, have a look at BT Openzone and The Cloud.
  10. goosnarrggh, Feb 24, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2011

    goosnarrggh macrumors 68000

    May 16, 2006
    Google Voice, by itself, will not get you very much in this case. By default, every conversation using the official Google Voice iOS application is still routed through a normal cellular phone call. The difference, is, Google Voice attempts to route the call to a local access number, so that you aren't hit with international long distance fees (which you'd otherwise face, if the call were being placed directly to the intended recipient).

    By default, Google Voice appears to only have local access numbers in the United States, so it's not much use when you take your phone outside the USA, because you'll still be hit with an international long distance call to get back to the local access number in the USA.

    (You can link Google Voice with a 3rd-party VoIP service, so that the call back to the local access number in the USA can be made at a reasonable rate -- but then, why bother with the added complexity of layering Google Voice on top of the VoIP service? Why not just use the VoIP service directly?)

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