Traveling will allow you to take a break from your day-to-day life and not have to deal with phone calls or emails. It can still be useful to have access to the internet.
Most of our flights are for destinations outside of the country. It can be useful to have access to the World Wide Web.
You have options to stay connected while on the road.
Options to get online abroad
If you want to use your phone in another country, you have 2 options.
Get a local sim card from your provider.
1. International Bundles
I don’t use this option and I strongly recommend against it. It’s the most expensive option, except for very short trips to the US.
If you pay a fee of $7 to $12 per day, you can use your phone the same way as if you were in Canada. It adds up to a lot more.
Canada has some of the highest telecom prices in the world, so it is not the best choice if you are traveling there.
Freedom Mobile is one of the providers that have great plans for North America, but are limited to 2 countries. If you have a US mailing address, you can get a good plan from T-Mobile that is good for travelers.
We tested FreedomPop’s 100% Free Basic Plan, which includes 500 texts, 200 minutes, and 500 MB per month unlimited data sim, but you have to cancel the larger plan in order to enjoy it. It’s easy to forget about it and have to pay the fees at the end of the month. It is free if you cancel it before.
2. Local SIM Card
I think the local pre-paid card is the best option. It is usually cheaper back home than it is here.
- There is an unlimited internet for 15 days on the Thailand sim card.
The internet for 15 days for 600 bath is $22 Canadian.
- For 30 days, the cost is $10 for a 2 gigabyte sim card.
For 30 days, there is 2 gigabytes for 35 soles.
For 30 days, you can get a France sim card for 19 euro.
I use this card every day because it allows 25 gigabytes per month when roaming in 71 countries.
For an entire month and a lot more data, most of the data plans will be the same price as a Canadian travel bundle.
If you want to find out which company is the cheapest in your country, check out this site.
It is a very affordable option since all of them are far away from the 2 gigabytes plan I had back in Canada. To use the new network, you will have to make sure that your phone is unlocked. Since December of last year, it is free for you to call your carrier to unlocked your phone. You can buy unlocked phones. I bought a cheap Elephone P9000 and it worked well in all of the countries listed above. There are a lot of options to choose from.
If you plan on only visiting one country or 2 countries during a single month, this is a great option. You can use an international sim card to use in multiple countries. They are more expensive than single-country cards.
For longer trips, there is a third option.
If you want to keep your phone number, there is a third way to do it. I decided to go this way as I studied this more and more while I was gone. I received my text messages and voicemail in my email inbox after changing my phone number to an online company.
It is possible for me to forward it to any local number that I have at the moment without having to pay for anyone to call me from Canada. It is still on my Canadian number and therefore a local call, as far as I am concerned. Since there are not many data only plans in Canada, you can always use a tablet plan, which is cheaper when you return.
It can be difficult to set up this option, but it was worth it. Let me know if anyone is interested in a more complete post on the topic.
It is possible to stay connected while on the road, but not break the bank. You can add a travel bundle to your phone plan or get a local sim card in the country you are travelling to.
Do you use your phone while on the road? Do you use it?
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