What would cause you to be more upset if you left at home, your cell phone or your children? I know which one I would pick…my children of course, of course, it would be my children, why would I even think twice about that?
Second thought, it would be my cell phone.
These days, we don’t go anyplace without our smartphones.As much as you may try convincing yourself that you’ll limit phone usage while traveling, we all know that’s easier said than done.
Selfies have replaced enjoying the moment in the minds of many. We rush off to our next adventure without taking a brief second to enjoy the view, hence the video below.
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You will most likely want to post that perfect Eiffel Tower pic to Instagram or start a live video from the Great Wall of China, and you’ll be wishing you had been better prepared. Here are some traveling tips for your cell phone while on vacation.
Traveling Tips For Your Cell Phone While On Vacation
Below are some Traveling Tips For Your Cell phone While On Vacation to get the most out of your cell phone while traveling internationally.
Everything from battery life hacks and how much extra it may cost you to use your cell phone while away.
Before we start with the Traveling Tips For Your Cell Phone While On Vacation, the most basic thing you need to do to make sure is that you can charge your phone.
Plugs differ from country to country, so you need to check and see what adapters you will need to bring. The International Electrotechnical Commission has a handy guide to chargers, which includes voltage.
Most chargers will automatically switch voltage, but you should check before traveling to make sure you don’t need a voltage converter as well.
Your phone should have its voltage written somewhere on the phone, or, if you aren’t sure, you can always check with the manufacturer.
Have more than one adapter so you can charge a phone, tablet, e-reader, electric toothbrush, and anything else I may need to power up.
You can buy a universal power adapter, which can be converted to different plugs from several countries, and has USB ports to charge all of your gadgets.
This one from Huanuoav has 4 USB ports and starts at $15.99 on Amazon. You might also want to bring a portable charger, so during your long days of sightseeing and taking pictures, you can keep your phone powered up.
Keeping your phone charged is just a tiny piece of the traveling-with-your-phone puzzle. Once it’s on, there are a few options to consider for texting and data.
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The best and most obvious way to use your phone is with WiFi. Many museums, cafes, restaurants, and even stores will offer it for free.
Your hotel will also most likely have it (But be sure to check before booking.).You might have until you’re back at your hotel before uploading that amazing photo of you and an elephant, but this option will be the cheapest.
Don’t forget, you most likely will be charged for texting even if you have WiFi unless you have a plan that includes international texting.
International Texting and Data
You might travel somewhere that does not have WiFi widely available, or maybe you just don’t want to wait to post to your social media accounts. Don’t worry, there are plenty of options out there for you. International phone plans will vary by service provider.
plan for the international traveler, with unlimited texting and data included in their monthly plans. The data is slower at 2G, but you can upgrade to faster speeds for an extra $5/month, which might be worth it during the time you will be traveling.
Add On Plans
Verizon offers a Travel Pass, which is $5/day in Mexico and Canada, and $10/day in over 130 countries. This will give you unlimited text and data while abroad, as well as calls to the US. They also have a monthly plan that starts at extra $15/month with a lower cost per text, a data allowance, and talk minutes, all which vary by country.
You will find a similar plan with AT&T, with $10/day for international texting and data. If you choose not to add-on an international plan before you travel, pay-per-use rates start at $2.05/mb, with 0.50 per text on AT&T, and $.99/mb (in Canada and Mexico), with 0.50 per text on Verizon.
If you think you are going to be tempted to be on your phone, and you don’t already have T-Mobile or Sprint, your best bet is tacking on one of the international plans while you are away, to avoid any sticker shock on your next cell phone bill.
As far as prepaid phones go, ProjectFi and metroPCS both offer worldwide texting, calling and data.
Project’s is included in your base plan, and metroPCS offers a World Calling add-on for $10/ month on top of their base plan.
Or, another option is to buy an unlocked phone, and purchase a sim card once you arrive in the country of travel.
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You are on vacation, do you really want to know what Aunt Mary’s dog is wearing today?
Then step away from social media! If something is really important in your local area, trust me, you will find out.
Soak in every moment you have with limited interruptions, and just unplug!
Also to keep in mind, as soon as you land in a foreign country, your phone will know that you are not in your country anymore.
Messages will most likely pop up telling you that you are abroad along with rates in that country.
In order to not incur roaming or data fees (which can happen even if you are not actively using the internet or apps that require the internet/data), you have to turn off the cellular data and roaming on your phone, which you should also do even if you plan on using WiFi.
You may want to do this before you even land to avoid any surprises on your next bill.
You could even just turn your phone off or, dare I say it, leave it at home along with the kids.
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