1. dennis246's Avatar
    We have been with Verizon for 20+ years, zero complaints, service everywhere and no dropped calls. My question is we go overseas a few times each year and I hear that Project Fi is great for International use with Pixel 2.

    How much of a hassle would it be to sign up for Project Fi, use it in Europe for 2 weeks and then "switch" back to Verizon. Is it complicated for this Mobile novice or should I simply sign up for the Verizon $10.00 a day International plan which includes texting, calls and limited data (Wifi is readily available most places).

    Not interested in staying with Fi, would like to hear from anyone who has used the service overseas and then switched back to Big Red.

    TIA

    Tom
    07-12-2018 02:17 PM
  2. Almeuit's Avatar
    I mean if you go to Fi without porting your numbers (because if you do then you Verizon account closes) you might as well just grab a local SIM and use it there. Since either way you would have a different number.
    07-12-2018 02:26 PM
  3. hallux's Avatar
    I agree with @Almeuit - even as a Fi user with a referral code that would get me a $20 credit.

    However, there is an alternate option - Sign up for Fi, get a different number. Forward your Verizon number to the Fi number (you won't get text messages unless they use the Fi number though). When not traveling, suspend the account, which you can do for up to 3 months at a clip (https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6079346/) so you're not paying for the account when you don't need it.

    I don't know what the local SIMs cost, Fi is $20 for a month plus $10 per GB of data used and calls may have rates associated on a per-minute basis (depends on the country as to IF there is a charge and how much it is) but there's a way around that on outgoing calls.
    07-12-2018 02:40 PM
  4. dennis246's Avatar
    Thanks folks, that was what I was thinking. Getting a local sim over there is the easiest way to do it.
    07-12-2018 11:21 PM
  5. PaulQ's Avatar
    Europe might be a little easier to deal with but let me just cut to the chase and tell you why I will be using Fi on all of my future international trips. I am saying this as someone who has travelled a lot and used local SIMs.

    On my most recent trip to Kenya.... I decided to go with Fi. Last time, I stupidly paid AT&T a chunk of change just to have texting and an "in case of emergency" option. I used WiFi when I could get it, which was about half the time in that region.

    So... I sign up for Fi before I leave. I don't port my phone number because it's only a couple weeks. I just use my Google Voice number. Yes, it was a little inconvenient telling everyone to use a different U.S. number to reach/text me. At the same time, it was easy for them to deal with a U.S. number rather than an international number.

    I switch on the eSim the night before I leave. Fire up Fi and I'm ready to go. (FYI - I left my AT&T SIM in my phone)

    Hop my flight from Phoenix to Chicago. Land in Chicago, phone works right away. Of course, it would be the same if I had been using AT&T. I'm still in the U.S.

    .....Keep following me here...

    Go to board my flight to Germany. Delayed. Delayed. Crap. Delayed. Finally takes off, running about an hour late.

    Land in Germany, phone connects to Fi immediately, before we even reach the gate.

    Flight attendant starts speaking German and I hear "Nairobi" -- finally gets around to the English translation where all he says is talk to the guy inside the gate. I know I'm running late for the connection. Get off the plane, guy at gate tells me I might be able to make the flight if I run.

    I literally embark on a 15 minute run after flying across the globe.

    I miss the connecting flight to Nairobi.

    .....Stay with me here...

    Long story short (I know the rest of this is long) - I get rebooked through Turkey and end up with an arrival time of 3am in Nairobi. The Nairobi airport is ... not a place you want to arrive in at 3am.

    Several hours later - and I had WiFi in the German lounge - hop on the plane to Istanbul.

    Arrive in Instabul. Turn off airplane mode, immediately connect via Project Fi. I was able to communicate with my family and my colleagues in Nairobi. Yes, there was ultimately WiFi in the Istandbul airport but I couldn't text.

    .....I'm leading up to the big reason I will never use anything else but Fi.

    Finally get on my last leg to Nairobi.

    Arrive just before 3am. Turn off airplane mode. Wait for it. Connect to the local network via Fi. There is no WiFi in the Nairobi airport. You can't buy a SIM in the Nairobi airport. You can't buy anything in the Nairobi airport (well, maybe the police). I was able to contact my driver and figure out where he was. I was also able to make a call, send a WhatsApp message, text, data, etc.


    I know this story takes place in Africa. In Europe, the availability of WiFi and modern resources is greater. However, I would have liked this when I was in Thailand. China. OMG - Japan! Does Fi work in Japan? It could have saved my a** in Japan. Japan uses a different cellular network.

    On the way home, it was nice to flip on the phone at each layover and it just worked before I could find WiFi.

    So.... Deal with a second number, no problem for me. I also didn't have to deal with managing data I purchased in blocks on a local SIM. I knew what I was paying for Fi.

    Again, if you are just going to western Europe, you are probably fine. You might consider paying the ~$30 ($20 + $10 for the base data) for Fi just as a back up to the local SIM option.


    P.S. The data speed sucked via Fi in Africa though. I'm not sure if a local SIM would have got me around it. It was fine.
    hallux likes this.
    07-16-2018 02:02 AM
  6. hallux's Avatar
    You might consider paying the ~$30 ($20 + $10 for the base data) for Fi just as a back up to the local SIM option.
    Actually, once the cycle is over it's only $20, you get credit for unused data so you get the full $10 back if the data is never used (I forget that we're pre-paying the data plan now).
    07-16-2018 06:02 AM
  7. PaulQ's Avatar
    Actually, once the cycle is over it's only $20, you get credit for unused data so you get the full $10 back if the data is never used (I forget that we're pre-paying the data plan now).
    That makes it an even better thing to do. If you use a tiny bit of data - like 20mb - you get charged the $10, right? I am talking about only signing up for one month here so carryover is not relevant.

    I'm asking because I bet you would end up using a tiny bit of data before you got the local SIM unless you were exceptionally careful to keep data turned off at all layovers and until that local SIM is installed.
    07-16-2018 02:50 PM
  8. hallux's Avatar
    If you use a tiny bit of data - like 20mb - you get charged the $10, right?
    You get charged $0.20 It's billed at $10 per GB but refunded down to the MB based on usage.
    07-16-2018 03:45 PM
  9. bbycrts's Avatar
    I agree with @Almeuit - even as a Fi user with a referral code that would get me a $20 credit.

    However, there is an alternate option - Sign up for Fi, get a different number. Forward your Verizon number to the Fi number (you won't get text messages unless they use the Fi number though).
    I have been wondering about this - we are leaving for vacation in Europe for 3 weeks; I signed us up for Fi to use while there, but I've been wondering about forwarding the Verizon number to Fi. Will Verizon still be able to tell that the call is going overseas when it hands it off to Fi? I don't want to end up with outrageous roaming charges because, even though it was forwarded to Fi, the calls went overseas.
    07-18-2018 05:02 PM
  10. hallux's Avatar
    That's a question you'd need to ask Verizon.
    07-18-2018 05:37 PM
  11. ALCingularUser's Avatar
    I can't imagine how they'd know or care. If someone calls your Verizon number, all Verizon knows is that your number is forwarded to another U.S. number. Once the call forwards, Verizon is done with routing it, and Fi takes over. You might answer in New York or Moscow, but it's Fi handling the routing at that point.
    07-20-2018 12:22 AM
  12. dennis246's Avatar
    Wanted to report back on my experience with Project Fi when I used it on a recent 2 week trip to Italy. Background, I have a Pixel 2 bought from Verizon and have service with Verizon (looooog time customer).

    Sitting at JFK airport waiting for our flight I downloaded the app, got a new temporary phone number and switched over to Fi. Very simple procedure, you can also join from a PC. For about 30 minutes before boarding I had excellent cell coverage (expected, we were in a major airport). Had my phone settings on "Global" and enabled "roaming" as Google suggests when signing up for Fi.

    Turned off the phone after boarding, landed in Milan 9 hours later. Turned on the phone and bingo instantly was connected to the local network in Milan. No problems browsing, signal strength etc. Walked out of the Milan Central Rail Station and used Google Maps walking directions to guide me to the hotel. Wow, this is great
    Did not have any issues with service even in some pretty remote areas. Obviously used WIFI a lot (hotels, restaurants etc) but also used data when out touring.

    Bottom line, Project Fi works unbelievably well in Europe and my bill for the trip was $24.00 (20 for service and 3 data plus a few phone calls at 20 cents each). Would not travel internationally in the future without Fi.
    Back in the US, simply canceled the Fi service, went into settings and switched back to Verizon. Took all of 30 seconds.

    One problem with Fi for me was the coverage back in the US. Before I switched back to Verizon as I detailed above I kept Fi on our trip from JFK airport on Long Island to Jersey City where we were staying before heading back to California. Cell service on the way was OK at best, there were "dead" spots. Same in New Jersey and I decided to switch back to Verizon then and not experiment with Fi back home in California.

    Sorry for the long winded reply. Bottom line, for us Fi is fantastic internationally but will keep Verizon in the US.
    hallux likes this.
    10-06-2018 10:49 AM
  13. Rukbat's Avatar
    In the US, Fi is TMobile, Verizon and Sprint. I suspect that, for some reason, from JFK to Jersey City you were on Sprint (not great coverage in the NYC area - never was) or it was at a time when so many people were using their phones that no one could get great service on any carrier (like right after 5 PM on a weekday)..
    10-06-2018 12:53 PM
  14. dennis246's Avatar
    In the US, Fi is TMobile, Verizon and Sprint. I suspect that, for some reason, from JFK to Jersey City you were on Sprint (not great coverage in the NYC area - never was) or it was at a time when so many people were using their phones that no one could get great service on any carrier (like right after 5 PM on a weekday)..
    Fi in the US is TMobile, Sprint and US Cellular, not Verizon. I know there are a lot of haters of Verizon but I have had nothing but outstanding coverage AND service for over 20 years. We are out a lot and need dependable cell service. Quite simply for us Verizon has it and Fi (and others) do not. Having said that after our Italy trip I would not be without it when traveling internationally.
    10-06-2018 02:28 PM

Similar Threads

  1. Can I use USB C ports on Asus Chromebook Flip for data
    By Android Central Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-15-2018, 03:12 PM
  2. Why is my internal memory filling up so fast after I just cleaned ?
    By Android Central Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-12-2018, 12:58 PM
  3. Can you share some tips or hacks in using a VPN?
    By Android Central Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-12-2018, 06:13 AM
  4. Social Media pixelation
    By wosey247 in forum General Help and How To
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 07-11-2018, 11:38 PM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD