1. Mike Eubanks's Avatar
    I want to take my Droid Turbo to Europe. Verizon says that they have 3G service and some 4G all over the continent. But I would prefer not to buy data from them while I am traveling. We will be in Europe for 5 weeks. Do any of you folks have any idea how I can save money and use my own phone?
    Thanks.
    02-07-2015 09:13 PM
  2. MA2GA28's Avatar
    Shut everything off except WiFi.
    02-07-2015 10:25 PM
  3. jec11718's Avatar
    Get a Sim card prepaid from any European carrier. Make sure right size, swap into turbo. Droid turbo is unlocked for international use.

    DRoID TuRBo this...
    02-07-2015 10:28 PM
  4. thekurrgan#AC's Avatar
    Get a Sim card prepaid from any European carrier. Make sure right size, swap into turbo. Droid turbo is unlocked for international use.

    DRoID TuRBo this...
    EU sim is the best bet.
    Its universally GSM unlocked, even for US country codes, as are most verizon LTE phones now.
    02-08-2015 10:58 PM
  5. KA1OTE's Avatar
    Interesting. I'm going to Germany later this year. Say I buy one of these European sim cards. A few questions...
    Where do you buy one?
    Once purchased and inserted into the Turbo, how do you activate it?
    Do these operate on a prepaid basis?
    Thanks. I've always made sure to purchase Global-Ready phones and just activate the 25MB Verizon feature for each trip. I've never used/known about swapping out the sim cards.
    02-08-2015 11:39 PM
  6. thekurrgan#AC's Avatar
    Interesting. I'm going to Germany later this year. Say I buy one of these European sim cards. A few questions...
    Where do you buy one?
    Once purchased and inserted into the Turbo, how do you activate it?
    Do these operate on a prepaid basis?
    Thanks. I've always made sure to purchase Global-Ready phones and just activate the 25MB Verizon feature for each trip. I've never used/known about swapping out the sim cards.
    Now in the airports over in EU they have various vending machines that sell them. Usually its prepaid, and activation is done at the time of purchase so by the time you insert it service is good to go. You may have to manually add the APN for data to work, but the sim usually comes with these instructions.
    Also, on the turbo the SIM is located on the volume rocker assembly. Get a small pointy object and gently pry it out.
    EU is very reasonable on cellular rates. I've only done this once with my turbo, it was vodafone. Worked great.
    KA1OTE and Mike Eubanks like this.
    02-08-2015 11:51 PM
  7. KA1OTE's Avatar
    Thanks you for that info.
    About how much do these EU sim cards cost?
    Is it a sliding scale depending upon the amount of minutes/data you want to buy?
    Just curious as to what the purchase options/tiers are and the costs involved so I know how much to plan for this.
    Thanks again
    02-08-2015 11:55 PM
  8. thekurrgan#AC's Avatar
    Thanks you for that info.
    About how much do these EU sim cards cost?
    Is it a sliding scale depending upon the amount of minutes/data you want to buy?
    Just curious as to what the purchase options/tiers are and the costs involved so I know how much to plan for this.
    Thanks again
    They have a myriad of options over there. Its not like here with only 3 major carriers.
    Basically it goes from complete rape to cheaper than anything you can find here. google carriers for your destination and see whats available.
    In the UK I just got a month of service for 60 pounds with unlimited text and calling with 3gb of data. I was doing a lot of calling to local companies and such though, so it made sense. Also take in to account WiFi / Google voice. This is a great way to keep in touch with your state side people without incurring massive charges for either person. Google voice is a GREAT tool for international travel and keeping in touch with the states. Skype also works great with a US number.
    KA1OTE likes this.
    02-09-2015 12:08 AM
  9. thekurrgan#AC's Avatar
    OH one more thing, you can check your Verizon text messages if you use the Verizon Messaging+ app, by turning on airplane mode, swapping to the verizon sim, rebooting and then turning on ONLY WiFi. It will connect over WiFi to Verizons servers and allow you to send/receive texts with your US number. Do NOT turn on the cellular radio though.
    02-09-2015 12:13 AM
  10. KA1OTE's Avatar
    They have a myriad of options over there. Its not like here with only 3 major carriers.
    Basically it goes from complete rape to cheaper than anything you can find here. google carriers for your destination and see whats available.
    In the UK I just got a month of service for 60 pounds with unlimited text and calling with 3gb of data. I was doing a lot of calling to local companies and such though, so it made sense. Also take in to account WiFi / Google voice. This is a great way to keep in touch with your state side people without incurring massive charges for either person. Google voice is a GREAT tool for international travel and keeping in touch with the states. Skype also works great with a US number.
    My husband travels to Germany for work. This year it seems he will be spending a month in Germany then a few weeks home, then a month in Germany.. a repeating process of which we do not know when it will end.
    We use Skype on our laptops to communicate while he is over the pond (in any country) but he needs full use of his phone also.
    He needs the ability to make calls (both local in Germany and internationally to the US and other countries as well), he needs data to access his company email (frequently) and he needs the ability to send and receive text and picture messages.
    Apparently, given his schedule for the next few months, he will need to buy the one month of usage plan on a sim card (if he decides to drop his Global Data plan and go this EU sim card route). If he does purchase a one month plan sim card, if he is only there and uses it for only three weeks, what happens to the remaining week of paid service? Does it remain on the EU sim to be used on his next trip? Or do they expire after a certain amount of time?
    Thanks so much for this info.. very enlightening and helpful!
    02-09-2015 12:17 AM
  11. KA1OTE's Avatar
    OH one more thing, you can check your Verizon text messages if you use the Verizon Messaging+ app, by turning on airplane mode, swapping to the verizon sim, rebooting and then turning on ONLY WiFi. It will connect over WiFi to Verizons servers and allow you to send/receive texts with your US number. Do NOT turn on the cellular radio though.
    Neither my husband or I really like the Messaging+ app. Too many bells and whistles for our taste. But thanks for the added info! I'm sure it will help someone else reading this.
    02-09-2015 12:19 AM
  12. Thomasmcse's Avatar
    Hi ladyk79,

    I think a "bill pay plan" in Germany is uninteresting, cause mostly you need a contract for two years. Some of the mobile phone provider are also having Prepay sim's (Vodafone and blau), starting between 20 and 40 $. Ask in the next mobile shop, they will give you the best options.

    If you speak a bit German, you can take a look in these website:
    billiger-telefonieren

    Thomas
    07-25-2015 04:05 PM
  13. Puzzlegal's Avatar
    I just bought a gig of data and a tiny bit of phone service (30 min) in the Munich airport for 20 Euro. It only works in Germany, but it's been fine. I'm using it now.
    07-26-2015 10:46 AM
  14. jerrykur's Avatar
    I got 3 plus gigs of data, 100 min of voice, lot of text for 20 pounds on ee in the UK. It was great using goggle maps everywhere

    Posted via the Android Central App
    07-26-2015 12:57 PM
  15. Puzzlegal's Avatar
    Fwiw, I didn't bother shopping. I was only planning to be in Europe for a few days, and wasn't planning to make any phone calls. So the possibility of an emergency call plus more data than I could use for 20e seemed like a good enough deal to just take it.

    I also used Google maps extensively, used Google translate, and did my usual browsing and email stuff.
    07-26-2015 04:04 PM
  16. mmpotash's Avatar
    What about charging? I'll be only in Germany and know converters can have just the plug or the plug with a transformer. What do I need for the Turbo?
    08-02-2015 10:10 AM
  17. doogald's Avatar
    What about charging? I'll be only in Germany and know converters can have just the plug or the plug with a transformer. What do I need for the Turbo?
    Probably just a converter. Look at the small text on the charger. It should have an input section. If the input section says "240" or "220" Volts AC is ok, and also 50/60 Hz, you won't need a step-down transformer.
    08-02-2015 12:41 PM
  18. Davidoo's Avatar
    EU sim is the best bet.
    Its universally GSM unlocked, even for US country codes, as are most verizon LTE phones now.
    My son is going to Europe (UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium) and we are debating the best way for him to continue to use his VZW device. We had settled on just getting the VZW international plan as it doesn't cost much and could be prorated over the 3 weeks he is there, but it only give you 100MB of data. He is reluctant to buy a sim because he thinks it might mess up his contacts and other settings. When you get there and put in a new sim, what does that do to your device? Also, I assume you will have a UK (or whatever county you buy it in) phone number for that time?
    08-02-2015 05:59 PM
  19. doogald's Avatar
    My son is going to Europe (UK, France, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium) and we are debating the best way for him to continue to use his VZW device. We had settled on just getting the VZW international plan as it doesn't cost much and could be prorated over the 3 weeks he is there, but it only give you 100MB of data.
    When I traveled last fall with my Droid Maxx, I did use the 100 MB plan primarily. I left data off most of the time and used it only when I needed it. (There were times when I wanted to look at maps, send emails, but most of the time I was fine keeping data off, connecting to WiFi when needed.) However, I also purchased an EU-wide SIM (it had a Latvian number, I believe) that had I think 500 MB of data that I could use if I knew I really needed it. After 2 weeks, I had used 99 MB on my VZW plan - I couldn't have planned it better.

    He is reluctant to buy a sim because he thinks it might mess up his contacts and other settings.
    It didn't for me.

    When you get there and put in a new sim, what does that do to your device? Also, I assume you will have a UK (or whatever county you buy it in) phone number for that time?
    It doesn't do too much different. Your Google accounts are still registered and syncing. Yes, it gets a local number (which is good for making local calls - say, to make a reservation, etc.) It changes the APNs so that they can send and receive data, but that happens with the Verizon SIM as well.

    You do have to make sure that the device is powered off when you change the SIMs, though. And, of course, be careful with them, and make sure that you buy a nano-SIM.

    But, I do think it's hard to buy local SIMs that work in many countries without paying lots of roaming charges. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but it'd be a pain, I think, to buy a SIM in Germany, and France, and the UK, and the Netherlands, and Belgium.

    This was the one that I bought: https://www.prepaidzero.com/product-category/europe/

    The Verizon plan may be best. Do note that it charges $25 for an additional 100 MB if you go over, and the default plan has charges for both sent and received texts - so he may want to reduce texting while he is there. There is a 100 sent text, unlimited received text, with 100 calling minutes plan for $40. It's 50 cents for sending a text and 5 cents to receive, so you may want to calculate whether it's worth the extra $15, if you go with the Verizon plan.

    By the way, be careful of prorating the plan - prorating for three weeks means that you get only about 75 MB of data. I ended up holding the plan for the full month and then having it stop at the next billing cycle.
    Bitterman and Davidoo like this.
    08-02-2015 08:41 PM
  20. Davidoo's Avatar
    Thanks for the excellent recap, Doogald. Lots of useful information. Because he is going to so many countries, the Verizon plan may be best. It gives you 100 minutes of talk too, which is a lot considering I just want him to check in every couple of days.

    Just a couple more questions...
    1. He knows to keep data off unless he really needs it and will use WiFi everywhere he can. As a self-proclaimed "techie" I should know this, but can't you still receive texts with your data off? Not sure why I was thinking texts came over the same signal as voice. I'm probably wrong though.
    and..
    2. When I need to call him, I assume I just use the 10 digit number? When he calls me he will probably have to use the country code first (I thought it was 011 for USA).

    Thanks!
    08-02-2015 08:59 PM
  21. doogald's Avatar
    1. He knows to keep data off unless he really needs it and will use WiFi everywhere he can. As a self-proclaimed "techie" I should know this, but can't you still receive texts with your data off? Not sure why I was thinking texts came over the same signal as voice. I'm probably wrong though.
    That's right - you can send and receive texts without data. However, you cannot send and receive MMS messages unless you turn on data. Remember that there is an option in messaging to make group texts go over MMS. In the US, anyway, data used for MMS does not count against your data plan. I'm not sure if that's so when you are roaming.

    [edit] Actually - you do get the MMS message - you just don't get the actual content. You get a download icon that will work when data is turned on. I'd just tell him not to use MMS...[/edit]

    2. When I need to call him, I assume I just use the 10 digit number? When he calls me he will probably have to use the country code first (I thought it was 011 for USA).
    Yes, you just dial the 10 digit number. He will get three free text messages each time he enters a new country (or attaches to a different roaming network) with instructions for dialing out, etc. They look like this:

    Free Msg! Welcome toCZECH REUBLIC.Dial +1 & 10-digit# to call US.?For Roaming Support call 1-908-559-4899.
    Depending on your plan,calls made & received: $1.49/min.TXT: Send=$0.5,Receive=$0.05.Pic/Video msgs, web use, tethering, and apps use data while roaming.
    Global Data Plan in CZECH REUBLIC is $25 for each 100MB used. For a full list of countries covered by your plan, visit International Travel Data Countries.
    Actually, I think all of the European countries require dialing +1, not 001. To dial a "+", you long-press the "0" number.
    Davidoo likes this.
    08-02-2015 09:19 PM
  22. Shaun P.'s Avatar
    I might be a little late here, but I actually just go back from traveling in Europe (Germany, Austria, France, Iceland) and I bought an Ortel Mobile sim card online via ebay, cut it down to a nano SIM, put it in my Turbo, and bought their Cross plan (described in lots of detail at (can't post a link yet so parse it out) prepaid-data-sim-cardDOTwikiaDOTcomSLASHwikiSLASHEuro4, with many helpful instructions on how to activate, etc.)

    The Cross plan was very convenient because it gave me a German base number and then roaming in all the other countries. The base plan is 750MB of data plus 300 minutes of talking for 20 Euros, and if you want/need more data, you can add another 500MB for another 9 Euros. They currently have an offer where, if you buy the packages through their Android app - which was very nice because it was in English, some parts of their website are German only - you get 25% off your order. So I paid ~21 Euros for 300 minutes and 1.25GB of data.

    Texting is not included, but if you use WhatApp, FB Messenger, Skype, etc for texting you are all set.

    The data signal was pretty good for the most part - 4G LTE in the big cities in Germany, 3G in Paris, H+ most everywhere else - in fact the only place where the signal was poor was at Legoland Germany.

    If your son can buy the sim card online before he goes, IMO that makes it a little easier, because it can take a few hours to get money on the account online and then to activate the service. And then he can leave his usual SIM card at home (no risk in losing it then). Good luck!
    Davidoo likes this.
    08-08-2015 02:56 PM
  23. jpdaballa's Avatar
    i used Lebara while i was in paris. I paid 20 euros for 3 gigs and just used hangouts and my google voice number for all my texts and calls. They even sent me a sim card for free at the hotel i was staying at (it took like a week and a half though). if i remember correctly for 10 euros more it was unlimited texting calling and 3 gigs of data. no hiccups and it worked great, the only time i didn't have good connection was while i was riding in the metro
    08-09-2015 05:59 AM
  24. RHChan84's Avatar
    Go and buy a prepaid SIM card. I made the mistake and bought data from VZW. Regretted it after a day. Found a carrier. O2, in UK that had a 5GB plan and 1000 SMS and 1000 minutes for $30USD. With VZW, you get 100MB, 100SMS, and 100Minutes for $40.
    08-10-2015 08:42 AM
  25. Puzzlegal's Avatar
    ...He is reluctant to buy a sim because he thinks it might mess up his contacts and other settings. When you get there and put in a new sim, what does that do to your device?...
    If you store your contacts with Google, a new SIM has no effect. None of the settings change except the ones that specifically interact with the SIM (and you may need change some of those by hand.) You have the same contacts, apps, game history, etc. as with your regular SIM.
    Davidoo likes this.
    08-11-2015 07:29 AM

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