Visitors to USA using AT&T Sim Card

Discussion in 'iPad' started by macmedal, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. macmedal macrumors regular

    May 17, 2008
    This question is raised a lot and having just visited the US from the UK and successfully activating an AT&T sim I can confirm it can be done.

    First step go to an AT&T store and buy an iPad simcard. Apple will not sell them and unlike here in the UK the simcards are not free cost me $16.

    Then you need to have a US registered visa card and address to activate it. If you have friends relatives who can help with this then great, if not then go buy a Visa pre loaded gift card and put enough money to cover the monthly subscription on it, I got mine from Best Buy. Then I put the sim card in my iPad went to the settings, the simcard was recognized by the iPad and allows you to register it (even though it was a UK model) use your hotel address and zip and enter the visa card details. At the end of your trip remember to cancel the recurring payment so that you can reinstate it in the future or the sim card may be blocked.
  2. stujmac26 macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2009
    I'm sure this has been said before by plenty of others, but it bears repeating.

    How - exactly - does this fit with Steve's promise that we can simply buy a SIM in the country we travel to? I am going to be on holiday in the US in December/January and if I want to pick up a SIM card I certainly don't intend to start using false addresses and loading pre-paid Visa cards.

    The situation will, presumably, improve before then :mad:
  3. macmedal thread starter macrumors regular

    May 17, 2008
    I agree that the system both in the US and the UK and other Countries that support the iPad does not support foreign visitors, as you should have an address and Visa card registered in that country. It goes against what Steve Jobs said and Apple actually still proclaim on their website.

    However if the greedy networks are not going to support us as they want us to pay ridiculously high roaming charges, then I am going to do anything I can to get around the system. At the end of the day going into a store and buying a pre paid visa card is not that much of a hassle when you consider how much money you will save, and as far as I am concerned AT&T are still getting paid for their service so its your decision.
  4. steviem macrumors 68020


    May 26, 2006
    New York, Baby!
    I sent him an email, hopefully he'll reply! lol
  5. TraceyS/FL macrumors 601

    Jan 11, 2007
    North Central Florida
    You can actually go in and cancel the recurring charge right away if you want.

    Check the fees on the gift cards, some are higher than others. They are a set balance so you don't have to load them. Some might require you to register them on a website and will use the address you put in.

    And, if you are using the addy of your hotel - don't consider that lying! You living there at that moment :D

    As an American I'm sorry that AT&T is a pita about this. It doesn't jive at all with what was said and it sucks. Period.

    But, I thank you for your tourist dollars, especially if you come to central Florida!!
  6. jb1280 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 13, 2009
    No, none of this actually goes against what Jobs said at the iPad presentation or any information that is proclaimed on their website (exception being the actual terms of the ATT packages on unlimited data).

    At the keynote, Jobs stated: "How do you turn this on and manage it? Activate it right on the iPad itself and there's no contract... Cancel at anytime you want."

    This is demonstrably true. iPads with 3G purchased in the United States include an ATT microsim. Users are able to manage all of this on the iPad without going into a store or calling ATT. There was no mention of Apple Stores carrying ATT microsim cards for international users arriving in the United States. There was no mention during the keynote nor on the current website that says ATT waives information that they normally require for service from international iPad users in the United States that are trying to use domestic microsim cards.

    During the keynote he stated: "What about international? All iPad 3G models are unlocked and they use the new GSM microsim, so internationally if some of the carriers offer microsims there is a high likelihood they will just work."

    Again, this is demonstrably true. All iPad 3G models are unlocked. International users are able to contact local carriers and gain access to microsim cards under the terms of service that the carriers have.

    I personally think that it should be easier for foreign nationals to obtain prepaid microsim cards in foreign countries, but at least there are work arounds in the United States.

    Apple has clout, but not enough to really push around the telcoms internationally. Selling iPads unlocked is as good as Apple can do in this regard.

    Finally, the "spirit" of the website and the presentation on this matter was geared towards people using the iPad in their home country - not towards those of us who constantly go back and forth between continents.
  7. carpets macrumors member


    Jul 11, 2008
    Warwickshire, UK.
    Anyone had any experience taking a UK iPad to France?

    I'm going in the summer, and would love to get a sim card while there.

    My French is not so good. I don't go hungry when I'm there, but setting up a sim card in-store could prove tricky:D
  8. macmedal thread starter macrumors regular

    May 17, 2008
    I beg to differ this is from Apple's UK website:

  9. Pring macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2003
    We're discussing that in this thread. I have a SFR SIM in my possession and I'm off to France in a fortnight so at the latest I'll have an answer by then...
  10. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    Thanks for the info.

    Not in Japan. :(

    Again, not in Japan. :mad:

    Japan is loosening up over time, but still so many things are Japan centric. Even American Express cards! An American Express card will work anywhere for charges. However, for cash advances and other features, you must have a Japanese issued card. Internally the cards are different.

    My first experience with Japan's closed system was at a Mobile Oil gas station. I had a US issued Mobile Oil credit card that I used for business gas charges. Well I tried to use it at a local Mobile Oil station here in Japan and the attendant tried to explain that it wouldn't work. I was very naive at the time. So I held up the card and pointed to it and the station sign and said they were the same. The attendant gave the usual teeth sucking, smiled, apologized and bowed. I ended up paying with cash. I drove away amazed.
  11. Sidewinder2 macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2011
    Visitors to USA using AT&T Sim Card

    You little bloody rat Macmedal with you rotten stupid stories creating unnecessary problems for a pleasant holidays

    Don’t believe this Dom super zombie just go every where to AT&T and get a sim card for 20 US$ in cash easy

    Don’t believe this piece of shirt
  12. nickbarbs macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2009
  13. Stefx73 macrumors regular

    Mar 26, 2011
    The strange necromancer is wrong.

    Th OP lists the correct way for foreign visitors to enable an AT&T 3G plan while visiting the US.
    The only thing where the OP is wrong is that you need a microsim card, not sim card.
  14. Sidewinder2 macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2011
    Visitors to USA using AT&T Sim Car

    Again just go to the AT&T shop and buy a sim pay as you like i paid cash
    The service is great they put the sim in etc. etc.
    I have bought one for Ipone 3 one for Iphone 4, 10 cents a miniute calls
    Don't let you holiday be spoiled by some idiots, wankers
    Wifi every where and calling home and you love ones use skype
  15. Stefx73 macrumors regular

    Mar 26, 2011
    Do you realize this thread is about activating an iPad AT&T microsim card plan, while you are talking about an iPhone sim card?

Share This Page