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wisniak (Offline)
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Default Prepaid GSM SIM for USA? - 09-06-2011, 17:51

Hi,

My friend is about to travel to Canada and the US.

Is there any prepaid GSM SIM prepaid plan available that will cover both countries?
Are there plans that enable voice AND data?

Thanks.
   
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RTuesday (Offline)
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Default 09-06-2011, 18:47

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Originally Posted by wisniak View Post
Hi,

My friend is about to travel to Canada and the US.

Is there any prepaid GSM SIM prepaid plan available that will cover both countries?
Are there plans that enable voice AND data?
For voice, eKit Simple Calling have a SIM that covers both the USA and Canada, roaming on multiple carriers. It roams on T-Mobile and AT&T in the US, and Rogers (GSM) and Telus (3G) in Canada, plus some minor carriers.

I've been using it for several years now, it's reliable.

eKit have several different sims. The one I use is 9c/min in the US (calling and receiving), 29c/min in Canada, PLUS a 50c connect charge per call. It has a US number. There are other "international" oens with a UK number as well that are less suitable for your needs, be sure to check carefully which one it is.

The best place to buy eKit sims is direct from eKit, on eBay, cheaper than their own store.

For short term prepaid data, there isn't really any affordable option in the USA and Canada with good coverage. But free wi-fi is everywhere (example: at 90% of the McDonalds in both countries), so it's easy to avoid having to use mobile data.


Sims: Telcel MX, T-Mobile US, Virgin Mobile UK, Orange UK, Knowroaming
Voip: Localphone UK, Anveo US, Google Voice
   
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Default 09-06-2011, 19:01

For data in the US, you can consider tmobile - They have unlimited data for $1.49/day. AT&T's rate are not so bad either. They just recently revamped it. As already mentioned, there is a lot of free wiFi in the US. So that may just be enough depending on your needs.


Phones: ASUS zenfone 3, Nexus 4, Lumia 650 dual sim
Sim cards: AT&T (Contract), 3 UK, Piranha Mobile
   
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wisniak (Offline)
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Default 09-06-2011, 19:13

Thanks, guys.

As I said, this is for my friend, I'm not really sure he can rely on WIFI.

Bossman, sounds like the Tmobile solution is not really prepaid? As it has a daily charge (unless this is reduced from the remaining $ on the card, for every day of actual use?).
Can it be purchase on line and have it delivered to a US or Canada address? Because he's starting the trip in Canada, visiting relatives, and only afterwards will begin the US part of his trip.

And most important - he'll be using a GSM iPhone - do these SIM cards support it?

Last edited by wisniak; 09-06-2011 at 19:23..
   
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RTuesday (Offline)
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Default 09-06-2011, 20:42

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Originally Posted by wisniak View Post
And most important - he'll be using a GSM iPhone - do these SIM cards support it?
Does that have a normal size sim, or one of the little micro-sims? Assuming the phone is: 1. unlocked 2. has GSM 1900 band and ideally GSM 850 band and 3. uses a normal sim; then yes the eKit sim will work fine in both countries.

With 3G (850) coverage may be improved in some areas, but it's not essential to have 3G.


Sims: Telcel MX, T-Mobile US, Virgin Mobile UK, Orange UK, Knowroaming
Voip: Localphone UK, Anveo US, Google Voice
   
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Default 09-06-2011, 20:58

Not sure what you mean. It's prepaid. He signs up for it daily if he wants, and $1.49 is deducted from his credit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wisniak View Post

Bossman, sounds like the Tmobile solution is not really prepaid? As it has a daily charge (unless this is reduced from the remaining $ on the card, for every day of actual use?)


Phones: ASUS zenfone 3, Nexus 4, Lumia 650 dual sim
Sim cards: AT&T (Contract), 3 UK, Piranha Mobile
   
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wisniak (Offline)
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Default 10-06-2011, 06:13

RTuesday, he has an unlocked GSM iPhone 4 with a micro SIM. But he wants a data SIM, not a voice one (a combined SIM is OK though).
I'll check out the eKit.

I agree 3G is not essential, he's going to use the phone mostly for emails & browsing.
   
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Default 10-06-2011, 09:18

You should know that T-Mobile operate their 3G network at 1700/2100 MHz (so-called AWS-band), which the iPhone does not support, so with his iPhone your friend could only access T-Mobile's 2G network, which as any 2G network is relatively slow (theoretically up to 236 KBit/s which however in practice is often less).


terminals: Samsung: Galaxy S5 DuoS (G900FD); BLU: Win HD LTE; Nokia: 1200; Asus: Fonepad 7 ME372CG; Huawei data: E3372, Vodafone R201, K3765, E1762;
postpaid: O2 on Business XL; prepaid: DE: Aldi Talk, Lidl; UK: 3; BG: MTel, vivacom; RU: MTS; RS: MTS; UAE: du Tourist SIM; INT'L: toggle mobile
VoIP: sipgate.de (German DID); sipgate.co.uk (British DID); ukddi.com (British DID); sipcall.ch (Swiss DID); megafon.bg (Bulgarian DID); InterVoip.com
   
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wisniak (Offline)
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Default 10-06-2011, 09:35

Thank you, inquisitor.
Is that throughput equivalent to EDGE?

I also looked at the AT&T web site, found their prepaid sim option.
If he chooses AT&T, will he need to activate the SIM in some AT&T store?
   
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Default 10-06-2011, 13:59

Yes, I was actually referring to EDGE which delivers a maximum bandwidth of 236 KBit/s.


terminals: Samsung: Galaxy S5 DuoS (G900FD); BLU: Win HD LTE; Nokia: 1200; Asus: Fonepad 7 ME372CG; Huawei data: E3372, Vodafone R201, K3765, E1762;
postpaid: O2 on Business XL; prepaid: DE: Aldi Talk, Lidl; UK: 3; BG: MTel, vivacom; RU: MTS; RS: MTS; UAE: du Tourist SIM; INT'L: toggle mobile
VoIP: sipgate.de (German DID); sipgate.co.uk (British DID); ukddi.com (British DID); sipcall.ch (Swiss DID); megafon.bg (Bulgarian DID); InterVoip.com
   
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