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Steve13 (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 02:05

Hello to all, I am new to the forum. I am from the States and will be taking a trip to Greece in the summer. I want to have a cell phone while there and was wondering how I could go about doing this without paying a bundle. I don't have a GSM phone right now, I have Verizon Wireless and they use CDMA as opposed to GSM. So my question is, would it be cheaper to buy a phone in Greece and get a SIM card there or can I buy a phone here somewhere and then just buy a SIM card in Athens? I appreciate all the help.

Thanks

   
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 02:35

My 2 cents, but I am sure others will weigh in with differning views.

INTERNATIONAL CALLING CARD

You must have some kind of calling card such as ATT, MCI, Sprint, Onesuite, Enjoyprepaid or other card you can use from Greece at a minimum. You may be able to purchase such a card in Greece, but you may not be able to compare rates in advance. Always best in my opinion to have a backup or two. For international dialing even from your cell phone, you may be able to use the calling card more cheaply.

PHONE

1. BORROW an unlocked TRIBAND GSM phone from a friend, co-worker, colleague, etc.
2. Failing that, BUY a used TRIBAND GSM phone like off Ebay.

[In both cases make sure the power supply allows 110 - 240 volts and that you have the proper adapters.

You should be able to pass that Ebay GSM phone along to someone else or resell it on Ebay after your return. I would NOT buy a phone in Europe as you may not need it again and if you bring it home, the resale value may be lower, much lower than you paid. Many European phones are 900/1800 and cannot be used in the US.]


SIM CARD

If you will be staying only in Greece......

3. If you will only be staying in Greece and you can deal with not sharing your phone number IN ADVANCE, then buy the SIM there.
4. You should be able to pick up a SIM on Ebay.com or UK Ebay for Greece and you can have the number in advance. Watch out for the expiration date, however.
5. Perhaps some of our Greek colleagues on the board can help -- buy one for you.

IF you may be travelling beyond Greece and anticipate additional world travels.....

6. You may wish to consider an international SIM of some kind. Our UK friends are very keen about the Isle Of Man cards. I have a Riiing (United Mobile) card and that seems to work fine EXCEPT for the high inbound to Liechtenstein mobiles (+423) from most LD providers. If you choose UM, you may want to look into Callbackworld.com.

=================

Some questions to consider:

1. Will YOU be making calls out and to where?
2. Do you want people in US to call you?
3. It will be cheaper for you to have your family reach you at a land line rather than on your cell phone.
4. It will be cheaper for your family to reach you via SMS than calling you on the cell phone.
5. Will you be doing SMS?
6. Will you have access to a computer?
7. How long will you be away?

Depending on the answers, your final choice of SIMs may be different.

Stan

PS. Ditch Verizon; I did.


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 23-04-2006, 02:51

For instance.................

http://cgi.ebay.com/Vodafone-a-la-Carte-Gr...1QQcmdZViewItem

Vodafone Greek card for sale on Ebay. There is a reserve and I imagine it is probably quite high. Just watch it rather than jumping in. You are in no rush, correct? My point is there are such things for sale. There are other internet sites that sell new SIMS and you should check those out, too. USUALLY, they are quite high. Some of them also offer phones.

As I said, our Greek friends may be of some help and provide an idea of a sane price to pay for a new or used SIM.

Look around the forum; there are others coming and going places and the advice is usually about the same.

On one of the German boards, they even have a SIM swap discussion where they loan out their vacation SIMs. I have not seen that here or on Howard Forums.

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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EllasDevil (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 10:19

I just looked at the eBay listing. His buy it now price is a little expensive. But if yoy were interested in having the card before you go, I'd probably big up to $25 on his listing.

If you were to buy a brand new sim card here, the retail prices are ?19,90 with ?8 already included on the sim card. You can buy SIM cards at various places.

Where do you land in Greece? Athens? If so, there's a "ΓΕΡΜΑΝΟΣ / GERMANOS" in the airport who sell the connection packs for the networks as well as the top up cards.

As for unlocked handsets, there's many for sale on eBay etc. Although does anyone else in your household (who's coming to Greece with you) usa GSM (Cingular or T-Mobile), if so, maybe you can unlock their handset.

If we can be of any further help, let us know
   
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unobtrusive (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 12:32

Here's my advice (I live in Greece)

Regarding the calling card option - check out www.talktalk.gr. You can get this card from most kiosks, it has good rates and quality. You can use it from any payphone or fixed phone but NOT from a mobile (this is common with all cards). There are other cards which are cheaper but you get what you pay for, more or less. Avoid the Q Telecom Ya! card because calls are rounded to the next minute.

Regarding the phone/sim problem. One solution that springs to mind is to buy the Motorola C115 that Vodafone currently offers for 40 euros. For this money you get:

a) The Motorola C115 phone (very basic, dual band I believe but it has good battery life, signal and audio quality)
B) The Vodafone a-la-Carte SIM with 8 euros credit (This would usually cost 19.90 on it's own)

You should be able to get it from any Vodafone store, the a-la-Carte price list is here http://www.vodafone.gr/live1/page.jsp?pid=...vars=0000000000. It might not be the best for your needs but as we don't know exactly what your needs are I can't suggest anything better!

Edit: The phone comes unlocked, as do all phones in Greece.
   
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Steve13 (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 15:44

sorry but this might be a dumb and stupid question. when you guys say an unlocked phone... what exactly does that mean?

Some questions to consider:

<span style='color:blue'>1. Will YOU be making calls out and to where?</span>
Maybe some but within Greece nothing International
<span style='color:blue'>2. Do you want people in US to call you?</span>
YES
<span style='color:blue'>3. It will be cheaper for you to have your family reach you at a land line rather than on your cell phone.</span>
<span style='color:blue'>4. It will be cheaper for your family to reach you via SMS than calling you on the cell phone.</span>
<span style='color:blue'>5. Will you be doing SMS?</span>
SOME
<span style='color:blue'>6. Will you have access to a computer?</span>
Not sure, I am debating whether to bring my laptop but I am unsure of internet access
<span style='color:blue'>7. How long will you be away</span>
1 month

Thanks to all for the input.
   
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andy (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 17:36

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve13
sorry but this might be a dumb and stupid question. when you guys say an unlocked phone... what exactly does that mean?
Many networks sell phones at a discount, especially on postpaid accounts, on the basis that they'll get their money back from use, and these are locked to be used only on their network. Any other SIM insertion may give a message to enter unlock or subsidy code.

Nokias are easiest to unlock, except the latest ones, and there are websites to calculate the code for free. Others makes can be done via cable at some dealers. For other phones, you probably have to discuss it with the network - some will ask for the remaining contract line rental, as though you would never come back, rather than just a 2 week holiday.

Recently, at first I thought this was just a metaphor or maybe a joke, but it is said that 3 UK have actually glued the SIMs into some prepaid phones.


But fortunately, unobtrusive has said
"Edit: The phone comes unlocked, as do all phones in Greece."
   
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snaimon (Offline)
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Default 23-04-2006, 19:18

Quote:
Originally Posted by unobtrusive
Here's my advice (I live in Greece)


a) The Motorola C115 phone (very basic, dual band I believe but it has good battery life, signal and audio quality)
The only problem is then that the phone is UNUSABLE in his home, US. He may be able to sell it on Ebay, but his scope of potential buyers is limited to folks willing to buy a phone for overseas (non-US).

That's 1 reason why I went to T-MO and ditched Verizon -- can use the same phone here as overseas.

ANYWAY, the 40 Euros = ~ $50 US and he has a phone and a card with a balance. Not a bad deal if he is willing to byte on the phone resale. He will NOT be able to give out his Greek mobile in advance if he buys it all there. Since he is there 1 month, that may not be too serious. With a new phone, he shouldn't have any problems with it not working or going bad in a few weeks (always a risk on Ebay or other used phone).

PERSONALLY, I still like the idea of borrowing a phone in US and purchasing the SIM either thru offers here on PPGSM or Ebay.

I think with SMS he will do better with the Greek SIM, true?

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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Bossman (Offline)
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Default 24-04-2006, 01:57

You've got some excellent advice from the folks here already. I like the idea of geting an unlocked triband on ebay before you go though. You can get a very good triband phone for around $100 or less on ebay. The Motorolla L6 is not a bad one. May be for a little more than $100 brand new and unlocked. You would also have the phone as backup here or for future trips.

You obviously need in international sim like riiing. But, you do not have much time. Check the buy/sell/trade forum. Someone in the US had a riiing sim for sale recently.


Phones: ASUS zenfone 3, Nexus 4, Lumia 650 dual sim
Sim cards: AT&T (Contract), 3 UK, Piranha Mobile
   
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