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mingelli (Offline)
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Default Mexico prepaid SIM - 01-02-2010, 11:33

Will go to Mexico shortly and would like ho know what is best Sim there.
Also what rates wil look like to call Europe and if receiving calls from abroad are charged.
   
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petkow (Offline)
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Default 01-02-2010, 13:40

I was there during the last month and I bought a Telcel Amigo pack for 149 pesos. (8 Euros) That also came with 50 pesos of credit. Be prepared to go to a main Telcel office, as the smaller shops will not be able to sell you without you having a national ID number. In a Telcel shop you can buy with a photocopy of your passport.

I mainly used my SIM for incoming calls (I had setup a callback) but overall it served me very well. Incoming calls are free only in your area code, which is usually quite a small area. In my case it was a 50km length of the coast, but I was there most of the time.

Do a search for Telcel here on the forum. The other provider is Movistar, but I think their prepaid packs are a bit more expensive. Maybe RTuesday will also come back with some more details.



Edit: To call Europe, the best rate I found was with dialnow.com or rynga.com. The callback to Mexico is 5c/min or 6c/min, and rates to most landlines to Europe are 0c/min so total price is 6c/min! You need to download the Betamax Java voipclient for your phone from voipbuster. Too much to explain for that, but there are already some good instructions elsewhere here on the forum. Just do a few searches.

Last edited by petkow; 01-02-2010 at 13:50.. Reason: Added use of voipclient
   
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RTuesday (Offline)
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Default 03-02-2010, 00:43

Quote:
Originally Posted by petkow View Post
Maybe RTuesday will also come back with some more details.
I would just add that the price of the startup pack may vary by region, in some areas it's 200 pesos.

As you mentioned, make sure you get a sim in the area code where you will be using it most often, to avoid domestic roaming charges.

Like calling European mobiles, it can be very expensive for somebody to call your Mexican mobile directly - for example the standard British Telecom daytime rate is around a pound (EUR 1.15) per minute! (and still 30p/min on their discount plans).

For incoming calls, localphone UK do a free UK landline number that can forward to Mexico mobile for 6.4p/min (localphone US is cheaper at 8.8c/min). Either of these would be a way to receive calls without it costing the caller too much (and also makes it easier for them).

Sorry, I don't have any better suggestions for international outbound calls from Telcel, as I use other ways for that (mainly voip).
   
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Default 03-02-2010, 12:19

Quote:
Originally Posted by RTuesday View Post
.... suggestions for international outbound calls from Telcel, as I use other ways for that (mainly voip).
I also mainly stuck to Voip, but there is one decent route for making cheapish international calls with that Amigo pack via gateways/calling cards in the USA. First of all they advertise that you can nominate Mexican numbers to call for a fixed fee. However these have to be Telcel numbers so unfortunately it is not possible to nominate a local gateway for example. Gateways in Mexico have ordinary landline numbers and these get charged at 4 Peso/min (22c/min) from Telcel Amigo.

However, what they do not make very clear is that you can also nominate 10 USA numbers that you can call for a fixed fee of 11 Pesos (0.60) for 10 minutes which is only 6c/min. You can then nominate a local access number of one of the Betamax providers in the USA, and make onward calls to Europe at no further charge.
   
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mingelli (Offline)
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Default 03-02-2010, 14:56

I was planning to use it mainly to receive calls
using a callback. Main point I understand is ho buy
The sim in the are of use to avoid charges for incoming
calls using the callback.
   
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petkow (Offline)
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Default 03-02-2010, 15:09

Yes. Just double check your telephone number when you buy the SIM, to make sure you are getting the right one. The area code are the first 3 digits which they call LADA in Mexico. If you are moving in the area of this LADA, you do not pay for incoming calls. An easy trick is to check the telephone numbers of known businesses, hotels, shops and restaurants in the area where you will be to see if they have the same LADA as the one on the SIM.

If you are outside your SIM's LADA, on Telcel Amigo you pay just under 4 pesos/minute for incoming calls. Still not too bad!
   
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mingelli (Offline)
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Default 22-03-2010, 00:06

I have just bought a Telcel sim with local LADA but found out that they charge for receiving international calls but cant seem to know how much. Do you know if is normal to be charged for incoming international calls in my LADA? And how much is it?
   
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Default 22-03-2010, 05:36

Quote:
Originally Posted by mingelli View Post
I have just bought a Telcel sim with local LADA but found out that they charge for receiving international calls but cant seem to know how much. Do you know if is normal to be charged for incoming international calls in my LADA? And how much is it?
I've just checked before and after a call, I don't get charged for international incoming calls (and never have been). I route other numbers (US, UK) to my Mexican mobile and never get charged (by Telcel) when I receive those.

Were you checking the balance before and after receiving the call? Remember there's a 0.88 peso (0.85 in border areas) charge for checking a balance.

I had a look at the rates and it appears Telcel have done some major updates to their rate structure, I can no longer see any national roaming charges, either incoming or outgoing. If true that's good!
Telcel: Fichas Amigo y Tarifas
(it may be different in a different region, mine is Baja California).

They've also altered the data price structure as well, maybe because Movistar made some major changes to their data rates recently. Main prepaid change is a hard cap at 3GB for 30 days, rather than slowing down the speed when the limit is reached.
   
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petkow (Offline)
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Default 22-03-2010, 12:17

I can also confirm that I was not charged for international incoming calls when I was in my area. On my last trip, I received more than 10 hours of incoming international calls, all within my 49 Peso startup credit. When I later went out of my area, this credit quickly disappeared after a mere 15mins of incoming calls!

Having said that, as I was using callback, many of my incoming calls did actually originate from a switch of Betamax/Finarea which may well have been within Mexico. However, I am fairly certain that I was not charged for either international incoming or national incoming within my LADA area.

A quick separate question to RTuesday, or whoever may know this: I have not used my Telcel SIM since around mid Jan 2010. It was bought around the 30th Dec 2009 but apart from the startup credit, it was never topped up. A friend is off to Mexico this week, and wants to use my SIM again. Will it now be completely dead due to inactivity, or can it be topped and reactivated? I could not find the details on validity on the site just yet...
   
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Default 22-03-2010, 14:45

I am in Nuovo Leon Zona 4 and bought a sim amigo telcel with 892 LADA that confirmed to be the local number. I have received 4 calls initiated from Europe using SMSDiscount access number in France and I have been charged 8 pesos per minute to receive these calls. The number showing on my mobile when ringing was my fixed line home french number where the call started.
Can anyone explain and if there is a fix like using callback instead of receiving a straight call from abroad?
   
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