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Tally Ho! Travel (Offline)
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Question Need help - France SIM - 16-05-2007, 04:14

I'm new here (great site by the way), but I've done some searching and don't see an answer to my question in any old threads.

I am about to leave for France for a 6 weeks stay. I have a cellphone I bought at Orange a couple of years ago, but my number has expired. Does this mean I need to buy a new SIM? Specifically, where can I buy the cards? Is there possibly a kiosque at CDG? I'd like to be able to make calls as soon after I land as possible. Is it necessary to buy an Orange SIM or can I purchase any brand? How do I determine which one provides the best rate? My son will be traveling with me and bringing his unlocked quadband, so we will also need a SIM for his phone.

If it helps to know, I need to be able to make calls to numbers in France and to the US, and to receive calls from numbers in France and the US (all at the cheapest rates, of course! ).

Thanks for any assistance you can give me. This is all new to me.
   
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maccoy (Offline)
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Default 16-05-2007, 11:11

You need to buy a new sim card.
I don't think you will find a sim card in the CDG airport but you can take a look at the "Virgin" Shops.
With your phone (it should be operator lock) you can only use a sim card by Orange or by a MVNO working on the Orange net: Virgin Mobile, Carrefour Mobile and Tele2 Mobile have a prepaid offer.
The "cheapest" one is Carrefour Mobile (39 cents a minute to France and 80 cents to the US) but you can only buy it in a Carrefour store (there is only one in Paris near to the metro stop "Porte d'auteuil" on the line 10).
The second cheap one, Tele2 Mobile has to be buyed online.
And the third one is Virgin Mobile (42 cents a minute - 27 with the XTRAJ offer that gives you less time to spend your money - to France and 85 cents to the US) that you can usually find in the bigger Virgin Shops (there is one on the "Champs Elysées") and in all "The Phone House" shops.

The cheapest MVNO works on the SFR net and is Auchan Mobile but you have to buy it in an Auchan store (there is one at the metro stop "La Défense" on the metro line 1 or the RER line A, in the "Quatre Temps" mall - and "La Défense" worths a trip...)
Your brother (and you if you decide to unlock your phone: you would pay between 10 and 20 euros to do it here in Paris) could buy this one.
It costs 39 cents a minute to France, Western Europe and North America.

You need any more informations?


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I: Vodafone, Wind, 3; F: Bouygues Telecom; M: Melita; INT: Travelsim, Zeromobile.

Last edited by maccoy; 16-05-2007 at 11:26..
   
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Tally Ho! Travel (Offline)
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Default 16-05-2007, 12:39

Merci maccoy! I am familiar with all the places you mention, but I did not know that there was a Carrefour and Auchan in Paris. And I know the Virgin Megastore on the Champs Elysées all too well - my son loves to spend my money there!

With those per minute charges, I wonder if it would be cheaper to use one of the callback services I am reading about on this forum - callbackworld or elinea? Can someone advise me on this? Which of these services is cheaper and would that be worthwhile for me?

Merci encore!
   
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default Je ne comprends pas........ - 20-11-2007, 01:56

Quote:
Originally Posted by maccoy View Post
............
The "cheapest" one is Carrefour Mobile (39 cents a minute to France and 80 cents to the US) but you can only buy it in a Carrefour store (there is only one in Paris near to the metro stop "Porte d'auteuil" on the line 10).
........
Maccoy or other French participants:

Sorry 'bout the misspelling......... and probably bad verb ending.

May be going to FR next summer. 39 cents for national calls is the lowest rate? Really? I was checking my UM + rates from FR to a FR landline..... 29 e-cents. Same to call US from FR. Of course there is the setup fee. And sending SMS is more expensive. And to other FR mobiles is more.

So if it is just a matter of PRICE, why don't more French mobile users switch
to UM +? Inbound is FREE, plus you good have EU roaming and lower rates to place outbound international calls........

Reasons contra:

1. National pride.
2. Who wants a new #, especially a FOREIGN one.
3 Harder to call INTO such a foreign #.
4. Late to market.

I am sure there are other reasons.

Why are FR mobile minutes so expensive? Hardly a monopoly.

Should I even consider buying a SIM for FR?

Mecri beaucoup.

Stan


Phones: DASH V3 (3)
Service: US T-MO post paid (2) - US T-MO prepaid (2) - UM+ - TravelSIM DE SIMYO - DE SUNSIM T-Mobile DE
Calling Cards: Onesuite Enjoyprepaid AT&T MCI Mobivox
   
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maccoy (Offline)
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Default 20-11-2007, 07:05

Most people in France have a postpaid contract, that is cheaper than the prepaid cards.
And some prepaid cards can become quite cheap with the heavy users' options.


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I: Vodafone, Wind, 3; F: Bouygues Telecom; M: Melita; INT: Travelsim, Zeromobile.
   
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default Merci encore! - 20-11-2007, 13:49

Quote:
Originally Posted by maccoy View Post
Most people in France have a postpaid contract, that is cheaper than the prepaid cards.
And some prepaid cards can become quite cheap with the heavy users' options.
Thanks again. It seems you are saying for a 2 week stay on vacation an international (or 2) would suffice..... Unless perhaps I could pick something up on eBay at a steep discount to retail.

Stan


Phones: DASH V3 (3)
Service: US T-MO post paid (2) - US T-MO prepaid (2) - UM+ - TravelSIM DE SIMYO - DE SUNSIM T-Mobile DE
Calling Cards: Onesuite Enjoyprepaid AT&T MCI Mobivox
   
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MATHA531 (Offline)
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Default 20-11-2007, 14:07

Before the advent of international cards, I felt the need to get a French prepaid card from Orange FR for my annual trips to France...but they made it difficult to retain the number with their theft of my credit after very limited times (and it is theft of credit) and then the termination of the validity of the sim card 6 months later with no means of topping up except via vouchers bought before leaving France.

I think this practice should be banned...the system should be similar to the system in other countries namely that if you make a call or send a sms once every 180 days or 9 months or one year, the sim should remain valid and your credit should be left intact.

To me, as I think I've said before, this is highway robbery.
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andy (Offline)
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Default 20-11-2007, 16:40

SFR La Carte has 2 30 cents a call options, daytime weekdays or at weekends, for €5 a month each. Or there's a favourite number option with 50% off; or another with unlimited calls for a week for €4. All useful with calling card or similar access.

http://www.sfr.fr/offre-sfr/particul...carte/options/


Orange has unlimited bundle options as well, but they change these from time to time, and it isn't easy to find them on their website

Last edited by andy; 20-11-2007 at 16:46..
   
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default Thanks all! - 20-11-2007, 19:09

Thanks.

Still seems to me that for a short 2-week stay on vacation, my 2 international calling cards, plus SUNSIM card would be sufficient. Especially since these represent for me SUNK, prepaid costs. Would rather use these up rather than invest in something new that will last me 2 weeks.

Appreciate all the comments.

Stan


Phones: DASH V3 (3)
Service: US T-MO post paid (2) - US T-MO prepaid (2) - UM+ - TravelSIM DE SIMYO - DE SUNSIM T-Mobile DE
Calling Cards: Onesuite Enjoyprepaid AT&T MCI Mobivox
   
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christophe (Offline)
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Default 20-11-2007, 22:25

you can also use bouyguestelecom.fr prepaid offer called ' la carte' wich offers very competive prices; i use bouygues for usual calls and local calls in france, you have dfferent offers on net to reload..
check also the tarifs with celtrek.com wich offers local numbers like yackie do. prices are also competitive with a classic call back to a the virtual local numbers. with the actual USD rate, its a choice..........
   
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