Even my friends will agree, as I tell them often enough, that I love my iphone. But what I definitely don’t love is the shock of opening the bill when arriving home from Italy. I should know better – as I am aware that roaming charges are outrageous at around $7.00 a minute – and that is even if someone is calling you! But…there are always times when I have forgotten to turn my phone off and receive a call in the middle of the night, you know those calls…the local charity wanting to sell more raffle tickets. Even when I try to get them off the phone quickly, but politely, the call might have cost me $20 – ouch!
In addition to this, the iphone (and others) has a ‘fetch data’ function, which is great at home as all of your emails etc., are ‘pushed’ to your phone enabling you to check your mail in the coffee shop. This function overseas is a recipe for disaster – data charges can be huge. Here are some great tips for avoiding a heart attack when opening your post holiday phone bill……
Do you really need to be available to all and sundry on holidays? If not, maybe you need an Italian sim card (or any other country’s card):
To use an Italian sim card:
- Make sure your phone is unblocked – before you leave for holidays ask your provider how this can be done, usually over the phone
- When in Italy buy a sim card at a phone dealer i.e., Wind, Tim – you will need your passport to verify your identity
- Insert your new sim card
- Text close friends and family, give them your new Italian number and let them know that they will be charged international rates if they call
- You’re set.
If you need to be available on your own number, and want to keep using your phone, but avoid nasty surprises when you arrive home:
- Turn off 3G – this function allows your phone to work much faster allowing more data to download
- Turn off ‘Data Roaming’ – this will stop email etc., being sent to your phone (you can always check this at the hotel or an internet cafe)
- Use text to communicate with family and friends, this is much cheaper but still around $1.00 a text
- Use the hotel’s computer if you need to surf the web
- Of course, if you are in a wifi zone you will still be able to connect with the internet.
The way to turn off ‘Data Roaming” and ‘3G’:
- click ‘settings’
- click ‘general’
- click ‘network’
- click ‘Enable 3G’ and ‘Data Roaming’ Put these in the Off position
- You’re set