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Chapter One. Before You Go > Trip Preparation

Trip Preparation

Here are the steps you'll need to take to ensure you'll be able to make phone calls when the plane lands:

  • Before you leave, check with your carrier.

    Tell them you're going overseas and want the ability to make calls. Ask if they have any special international calling plans that you can sign up for. If they say their network doesn't support international roaming, you might need to rent a phone.

  • If you're lucky enough to have a GSM carrier, make sure your phone has a SIM card.

    You can easily find this out by checking your manual, and if you've tossed the manual just look under the battery. You won't need to disassemble your phone. If you have a phone that does not have a removable battery, it probably doesn't have a SIM card either (although some higher-end phones such as the Handspring Treo 600 don't have a removable battery, but do have a removable SIM card).

  • Get a cheap, unlocked GSM phone with a SIM card.

    If you're on a GSM network, but don't have a phone that supports SIM cards, head to your carrier's retail outlet and pick up a cheap phone that has one. Most models manufactured in the last few years have this technology built in.

  • Rent a phone.

    If you're on a mobile carrier that isn't using the GSM network, then you'll need to rent a phone (or use pay phones or phone cards). The charges will depend on the call usage and length of rental. Usually, if the daily calls average more than $10 U.S. per day, the rental is free. Otherwise, expect a rental charge of about $1.50 U.S. per day.



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