Data Roaming overseas

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6 years 1 month ago - 6 years 1 month ago #521365 by max2
Data Roaming overseas was created by max2
I'm heading out of New Zealand next week for 15 days. Mostly through Europe and then UK. My existing ISP is Spark. I have looked at their roaming data plans and I am really confused, apart from if I buy a ''pack'' it doesn't cover all of the countries I am travelling through.

My hotels have free WiFi so I can update general stuff then. However I will be relying heavily on google maps and possibly a translation app I have downloaded already. I would like to keep facebook messages active as well.

I have some electronic tickets saved on my smart phone, would I need roaming to be on to access those?

I'm not expecting to make any calls or send txts.

Am I better to rely on the general roaming pricing for each country or buy a ''pack''. They are around $49 each for 1 GB - zone wise I would have to buy two to cover the countries I am visiting.
Last edit: 6 years 1 month ago by max2.

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6 years 1 month ago #521368 by Hawkspur
Replied by Hawkspur on topic Data Roaming overseas
It might be best for you to contact them on [email protected] or 0800 466 3246, tell them your dates and countries and likely usage, and get their advice. They are usually very helpful.

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6 years 1 month ago #521375 by max2
Replied by max2 on topic Data Roaming overseas

Hawkspur wrote: It might be best for you to contact them on [email protected] or 0800 466 3246, tell them your dates and countries and likely usage, and get their advice. They are usually very helpful.


I did, she ''thought'' I would have to buy two zones but didn't have an opinion as to whether a pack was worth it or not based on my forecast of usage.....

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6 years 1 month ago #521385 by spark
Replied by spark on topic Data Roaming overseas
Hi Max2,

Another option to consider (though Spark no doubt will not approve of it), is to simply buy a pre-pay SIM card at your foreign destination, put that in your phone, and use the foreign phone co's mobile broadband instead of $park global roaming. This also gives you ability to make "local mobile" calls within your destination country (just like a local!) without getting hit with roaming charges for that either. However, one downside is that whilst using your foreign SIM, people will not be able to call/text your NZ mobile number - they will need to call/text your foreign mobile number instead (post it on facebook?).

For this to work, your phone needs to be "unlocked" so that it will work with any SIM (and not just Spark SIMs) - if you do not know if your phone is locked or not, Spark should be able to tell you (or try a mate's Vodafone or 2degrees SIM in your phone and see if it works). Hardware wise, if your phone is relatively modern (aka "quad band") you shouldn't have any trouble with the fact that much of Spark's network uses different radio frequencies compared to what they use in Europe.

I'd strongly suggest that you print paper copies of your e-tickets (maybe keep a copy with your passport, and another copy somewhere else?) - loosing access to your e-tickets because your phone is broken/lost/stolen/flat battery/etc would be a real pain in the proverbial, especially if you were running short on time until departure...

Cheers

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6 years 1 month ago #521396 by kai
Replied by kai on topic Data Roaming overseas
don't rely on google maps which will use your data, download something such as navmii which as long as you download the French and UK maps on your wifi before you go, will not use roaming data.

As I am heading in that direction in just over 24hours time, I have already done this, though I did not bother with the UK map as we know the area we are visiting and won't have a car in the UK anyway. But the French map is pretty good.

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6 years 1 month ago #521398 by kai
Replied by kai on topic Data Roaming overseas

spark wrote: Hi Max2,

Another option to consider (though Spark no doubt will not approve of it), is to simply buy a pre-pay SIM card at your foreign destination, put that in your phone, and use the foreign phone co's mobile broadband instead of $park global roaming. This also gives you ability to make "local mobile" calls within your destination country (just like a local!) without getting hit with roaming charges for that either. However, one downside is that whilst using your foreign SIM, people will not be able to call/text your NZ mobile number - they will need to call/text your foreign mobile number instead (post it on facebook?).

There are companies that do call forwarding, so you get a local sim, but your calls to you NZ number still come to your phone. I used to work for cellhire over 10 years ago and they did it then.

Alternatively give everyone your skype number and they can call you for free when you are on wifi at the hotels.

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6 years 1 month ago #521417 by max2
Replied by max2 on topic Data Roaming overseas
Enjoy Kai!

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