Top things you should know about using your cell phone abroad. Gone are the days when using your cell phone overseas was an expensive and stressful issue. Now cell phones are being used all over the world, and if you plan right, you can use your phone anywhere you are.
Having a phone is very important when you head to a foreign place so that your friends and family can reach you but also to use theirs in case of an emergency. Here are the top things you should do so that you don’t end up with a massive phone bill.
Find out your cell phone providers overseas policy
Know your carrier’s overseas poicy should be the first thing you do. If you have already decided where you are heading then asking them specific questions about that location can give you definite answers.
Most providers have international plans that can be the best bet if you are looking to travel overseas. Providers like T-mobile have reasonable prices for international calls and travel to U.S., Mexico, and within Canada, there are no roaming charges for both calls and text, data charges too remain the same as in your home country.
This is the most widely using messaging application. Downloading it can be the best way to keep in touch with your family and friends. If your friends or parents don’t have it already, request them to download it before you leave so that you can make voice calls, video calls and send text messages to them for free.
To use WhatsApp you need data or WiFi so it can be a good idea to buy an overseas data package or you could just rely on your hotel’s Wifi if you don’t want to. However, remember that WhatsApp can’t be used for emergency calls.
WiFi call only
Change your setting so you only get WiFi calls and not regular calls. No one wants to get a spam call when they are in another country and being charged by the second for incoming calls. Tell your close friends and family to message or text you before they call if they don’t have any other way of reaching you.
Forward your calls
You can forward your calls to a Google Voice number to avoid charges for incoming calls. Callers can leave a voicemail and you can later access your calls when you have WiFi. You can even get Google Voice to transcribe the calls and send them to you.
Bring a worldwide charging socket and your charger
Knowing the type of adapter and charger you will need in the country is very important. Charge your phone fully before you leave and bring along a fully charged power bank.
Use a phone that has a prepaid plan so that you can upgrade your plan online. This is the best way to ensure you have access to your phone at all times. Changing call and data plans on postpaid phones can be a lot more complicated than prepaid.
Don’t spend all day on your phone
Whether you are heading overseas on vacation or work, don’t spend all your time on the phone and instead use your time to soak up some of the local culture and experiences. Use your phone only as a communication device and stop checking your phone every other minute. If you are on holiday then this is the best to actually enjoy being away from your phone.