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Fonzeroid (Offline)
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Default best way to keep in touch Germany - US - 03-06-2007, 00:20

Friend has a US Verizon cellular phone and will be going to Germany for a month.

She might have access to high speed internet there.

What is the best cheapest way that we can keep in touch?


(I'm relatively inexperienced to this. But I have heard that Verizon phones are GSM and can't be used abroad? ) Other options I have heard are: Skype (never used it--is this for me to call her or vice versa?); phone card (me call her or her call me ?); T-mobile or Cingular phone.

Just remembered--I also have an old T-mobile phone that is no longer in service. Could give that to her to put a Sim card into but I guess this phone is not unlocked?


Please help!

Thanks!
   
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DRNewcomb (Offline)
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Default 03-06-2007, 00:57

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Originally Posted by Fonzeroid View Post
(I'm relatively inexperienced to this. But I have heard that Verizon phones are GSM and can't be used abroad? ) Other options I have heard are: Skype (never used it--is this for me to call her or vice versa?); phone card (me call her or her call me ?); T-mobile or Cingular phone.
Verizon phones are CDMA and can roam in some countries (e.g. S. Korea) but not in Europe.
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Just remembered--I also have an old T-mobile phone that is no longer in service. Could give that to her to put a Sim card into but I guess this phone is not unlocked?
If you did not ask to have it unlocked when it was in service it's probably locked to the T-Mobile SIM. It also may not have both the 900 & 1800 bands needed in Germany. BTW what model phone is it?
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default look around - 04-06-2007, 00:48

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fonzeroid View Post
Friend has a US Verizon cellular phone and will be going to Germany for a month.

She might have access to high speed internet there.

What is the best cheapest way that we can keep in touch?

Please help!

Thanks!
Have you seen the thread (pinned above) on Americans going to Europe?

Cheapest way is to call on landline phones (her hotel or place where she is staying). Calling cards or good LD service from both ends.

If she is taking a laptop and does have HS internet, you might consider skype or VOIP calling. If you both have the same service, these calls are usually FREE. Software must be installed on the laptop (hers) and your home (or laptop).

Not sure it would be worth purchasing a GSM phone and German SIM card. Better if you can find a friend or relative to loan her one.

Too bad she uses Verizon; As DRN wrote, that is worthless in EU. They (VZW) will be glad to rent her a phone, but I doubt that is the cheapest way to go.

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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andy (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2007, 00:59

With internet access, you'd be able to talk over VoIP for nothing

At the moment, I reckoned Sunsim the best mobile option for me - 8c German landlines, 16c German mobiles, and used with a Voipcheap callthrough number costing 1c/min for about 40 countries
   
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Fonzeroid (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2007, 16:23

Hmm... thanks for replies guys...

I was thinking of getting one of those $30 GoPhones from Cingular then she buy a Sim card in Germany.... (how much do those run) ?

But then... if only for a month, might be just better to spend that $ on a calling card....


DRN -- will check on what model my old T-Mobile phone is... if she could use that and only have to buy a German Sim card then maybe the cost will be better. (I do know that I did use that phone once or twice in Italy in an emergency and it jumped on to their local network for $$$ !! )
   
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DRNewcomb (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2007, 16:42

Remember that the $30 GoPhone is probably SIM-locked and probably won't have the 900 & 1800 bands.
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2007, 18:39

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Originally Posted by Fonzeroid View Post
Hmm... thanks for replies guys...

I was thinking of getting one of those $30 GoPhones from Cingular then she buy a Sim card in Germany.... (how much do those run) ?

DRN -- will check on what model my old T-Mobile phone is... if she could use that and only have to buy a German Sim card then maybe the cost will be better. (I do know that I did use that phone once or twice in Italy in an emergency and it jumped on to their local network for $$$ !! )
The SUNSIM card which Andy recommends runs ~15 Euros or ~ $20 with 5 Euros credit. I believe you need a German address and is only available via www. Should be able to use the hotel or place where she is staying.

Another choice would be SIMYO and I believe they are now being sold in RETAIL locations. Used to be only over WWW.

The key will be WHICH PHONE you have or buy. Used unlocked phones are readily available on eBay if you do that. Or find a friend who has a spare. MUST BE UNLOCKED, however, and many users don't even bother to have the carrier unlock the phone.

It has been my experience that MOST newer but LOCKED T-MO US phones (last 3 years - V188, V300, V330, Treo 600 & MDA have been tested by me) will work with a German T-MO SIM. Those T-MO SIMs are also readily available in retail, but the rates are a bit higher than SUNSIM or SIMYO.

Look on the national ops page. I think German local SIMs will cost you about 10 - 20 Euros with varying amounts of credit. The SUNSIM offer is, I think, a bit pricey at first (low initial credit). HOWEVER, if most of the calls outbound will be to landlines, then that is definitely the best buy at the moment for the LONG term. Some calling cards (Enjoyprepaid) have local German landine #s and low rates Germany to US.

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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snaimon (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2007, 18:42

Oh, BTW, you don't need to spend a fortune for an unlocked phone. I just sold a used, unlocked V188 on eBay. The total with shipping & insurance was < $15. I was a bit disappointed in the sale price.


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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