Remember when turning on your mobile phone while roaming in another country felt like opening up your wallet on a windy day? Thankfully, that ripped off feeling is on the wane.
Recently AT&T announced that it will add free roaming in Canada and Mexico. This comes on the heels of Verizon’s recent introduction of the helpful, cheaper TravelPass plan. And it all started with T-Mobile’s Simple Choice plan, offering free data and texting and 20-cent calls in 140+ countries.
Starting this Friday, all AT&T customers on Mobile Share Value 15GB and higher plans will have unlimited calling, texting and use of their plan data in Mexico. (Customers currently on one of these plans just have to call, use the MyAT&T app, go online to www.att.com to enroll.
Also starting this Friday, new and existing customers with AT&T’s new Unlimited Plan will have unlimited talk, text and data in both Mexico and Canada. To add the AT&T Roam North America feature on your phone or tablet, just go to www.att.com. (AT&T plan details here)
Business customers on a MSV 15GB or higher plan can get the new features as well. Business customers who activate on new Mobile Select plans priced $20 per month or higher will automatically receive Mexico roaming benefits.
If Verizon is your smartphone carrier and you travel the world a lot, you have a new option called TravelPass. Priced at $2 a day per line in Mexico and Canada and $10 a day in 65 other countries, the new plan lets you “take your domestic talk, text and data allowances with you,” Verizon says.
The $2 per day deal is excellent for quick trips to Mexico and Canada. But that $10 daily fee
elsewhere still seems pretty high, even though it’s at least better than Verizon’s pricey monthly plans.
Once you sign up for TravelPass, the fee kicks in when you receive a call, connect to a data service, or send a text inside one of the 100+ countries where it works. Once that 24 hours is up, the daily fee won’t kick in again until you receive a call, connect to a data service, or send a text – at which point another TravelPass day will begin.
To sign up go to MyVerizon.com and select “manage international services” or use the MyVerizon app on your phone to activate it before embarking on a trip. Once at your destination, you’ll receive a text message welcoming you to the country and reminding you of the service and the daily fee.
T-Mobile has the most economical plan for international travelers– unlimited calling, data and texting in the U.S., Mexico, & Canada is automatically included with its Simple Choice plans.
The Simple Choice Plan also offers unlimited data and texting in what it says are “95% of the places Americans travel most” That is currently 140+ countries and destinations. Details on using T-Mobile overseas.
I just wish T-Mobile worked better inside my house and around SF!
Which carrier do you use when traveling overseas? Do you instead rely on wi-fi connected apps like Viber? Are you happy with your current plan? Please leave your comments and tips for other readers below.
NOTE: Be sure to click here to see all recent TravelSkills posts about: United’s newest, longest flight + Tipping Uber drivers + Qantas 747 Trip Report + Confusion over PreCheck policies + No-fee earlier flights