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Home / Tips and Tricks / Do you travel abroad with your mobile phone? Here's what you need to know – LifeSavvy

Do you travel abroad with your mobile phone? Here's what you need to know – LifeSavvy

  Woman phoning in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin
Bojan Milinkov / Shutterstock

Is the thought of going somewhere without you talking on the phone scared you? Here's what you need to know about international travel with your mobile.

Not All Phones Work Automatically

Some years ago, traveling with your phone was a little trickier, and it still may be if you use a cellphone older phone. There are two 3G standards: GSM (used by most of the world, and AT & T and T-Mobile in the US) and CDMA (used by Russia, Verizon and Sprint). Some older phones were either GSM or CDMA, which meant they had problems if they were traveling internationally. Fortunately, most major smartphones ̵

1; like the iPhone XS, Samsung S10, and Google Pixel 3 – are now working everywhere. If you are using a phone older than five years and are worried about it working, contact your network operator for assistance, or search online for the model number.

The bigger problem now is that not all phone plans support roaming by default. If you are traveling abroad for the first time, you often have to opt for it so that the airlines can say you have agreed to the exorbitant tariffs – which we are about to examine.

If you have not taken your phone abroad (or it's worth checking to see if roaming is turned on, if you want to use it), either contact support or check the terms and conditions for defined international fees

Roaming charges can be expensive

Roaming standard charges are usually ridiculous, we're talking about $ 2 a minute for calls, $ 0.50 a text and (most terrible) 2 US dollars. Dollar per MB of data, so watching a five-minute YouTube video costs you about $ 500, and opening Instagram costs about $ 20. As you can see, using standard roaming charges is a terrible idea. [19659006]  Verizon's Roaming Rates (Pay as You Go).

Luckily, most network operators now offer international roaming rates or add-ons at existing rates monthly or monthly fee, you can get significantly lower roaming rates. For example, Verizon's TravelPass costs $ 10 a day and allows you to use the default amount for calls, text and data – up to 500MB at high speed and then unlimited at low speed. It's still expensive, but far more reasonable than the standard roaming rates. As long as you stick to your allowances, you will not bring any unexpected bills home.

If you're traveling a lot, you have two great options:

  • Sign in to Google Fi. The prices are the same in over 200 destinations. At $ 10 per GB, it can be expensive at home or when you stream many videos. However, if you are traveling a lot, the savings are crazy. and buy local data SIMs. Even if you only stay for a few days, it's nice not to worry about exceeding a set data limit.

You're more likely to lose it.

Traveling on your phone is rough. It's far more likely that you'll drop it, lose it, or steal it in a hectic, unfamiliar environment than just frolic at home. You must be extra careful and take additional protective measures, especially if you tend to damage your phones.

Before taking the flight, follow these steps to protect your phone (and your data): [19659013] Secure it. Phones are interchangeable, but photos of your child's first birthday are not. Your data is far more important than the physical phone. Make sure that they are fully secured. If you have an automatic backup, you must now make sure it is running. Follow these links to learn more about iPhone and Android backups.

  • Request a case. Brand new smartphones look great, but are not always practical without a bag. The iPhone XS has a nice, but expensive glass rear, and the rimless screen leaves no room for extra safety when you drop your phone. A decent case can help protect your phone from damage.
  • Consider insuring it. This is sometimes not as easy as it sounds. You may not be assured of what you think you are, especially with travel insurance. For an insurance company, a lost phone usually does not mean that you left it in your hotel room or in an airplane. it means that an airline has misplaced it. There may also be limitations on the size of the claim, high deductibles, and cumbersome claim requirements. Be sure to check the fine print if you want to insure your phone or take out travel insurance.
  • It's the most useful thing you can bring.

      Young woman takes a picture of the Eiffel Tower with her phone.
    Song_about_Summer / Shutterstock

    Yes, roaming charges are ridiculous and there is a possibility your smartphone will be stolen, but it's well worth the effort. A smartphone is one of the most useful things you can take on a trip as it does all its usual smartphone stuff. It keeps you in touch with your friends and family; You can stay at work and – after a long day – show some Netflix shows on it.

    However, your smartphone is also useful for a lot of travel-specific things:

    • Navigating and getting around. Your smartphone makes it easier for you to travel in an unknown city. Google Maps lets you view directions on foot or by transit wherever you go. Uber and Lyft can call a ride that will not cheat you. You can look up local trains and bus travel times or buy tickets online. I do not know how I could navigate through new places without my phone.
    • Keep all information in one place. With your smartphone, you can easily access confirmation numbers, addresses and more from your email account – no printout required! This is especially useful when coordinating a trip with multiple bookings.
    • Check in for flights and make bookings. If you fly now, your smartphone can be your boarding pass. It saves trees and makes your life easier. You can also book flights and accommodations at short notice. And because you can search for offers, you can save money on hotels.
    • Stay up to date at home. Remote work makes the border between vacation and working hours blur. With your phone you always have the overview, no matter where you are. In a few extra days of "working from home", your phone will help you maintain the illusion of being in the office.

    These are just the four things that immediately came to my mind. There are countless ways in which your smartphone improves travel: it is a camera, a research tool and a communication device.

    Since it is so useful, there is a good chance that you will discharge the battery more often when you are not there. Make sure you have the correct plug adapter so you can charge your phone in your destination country. It's also worth investing in an external battery so you can recharge your batteries on the go.

    When I travel internationally, my smartphone is never out of my pocket. If you bring your own, be sure to follow our advice – both before and during your trip.

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