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JackGlasser Jul 8th, 2012 06:20 PM

advise unlocked quard cell phone to purchase here in usa
Going to France mid September. On a lark signed up to get lebara sim cards for france mailed to USA. Now wish to purchase a easy to use, uncomplicated unlocked quard cellphone to use in france and belgium. I do not have any contracts with TMobile nor AT&T. Have my doubts about the unlokced samsungE 1080 unlocked GSMphone international version not for use in USA offered on Amazon. Other suggestions. Would like to set up the sim card here just in case of gliches which seem to happen quite often

DebitNM Jul 8th, 2012 06:28 PM

Verizon Incredible 2 is a quad phone, but they may not unlock it for you with such a short time owned. I read that you have to have had the phone for 90 days before they will agree to unlock it.

Sarastro Jul 9th, 2012 12:44 AM

Effectively, if you plan on only using the phone with the Lebara SIM, you do not need a quad band phone. You will need one capable of operating on 900/1800mHz which are the frequencies used in Europe.

However, any old GSM phone with this capability can be used, many are sold inexpensively on eBay, Craig's List and elsewhere. You may know a long time customer of T-Mobile or AT&T with an old phone they no longer use.

Sher Jul 9th, 2012 04:55 AM

I haven't tried lately but last year i looked on ebay for a very simple unlocked quad band phone. I wanted a quad band to be able to buy a SIM virtually anywhere.
Andyway. At that time I was only able to find one simple phone on Ebay. I think older more simple models are getting more scarce.
When I found one, it was only about $20. So good luck. I am afraid that those older simpler models, for those of us wanting one, will become more scarce.

JackGlasser Jul 9th, 2012 05:18 AM

would love one that I can use in the future just about anywhere in the world just in case I go to turkey or to asia

yipper Jul 9th, 2012 07:20 AM

I bought an Unlocked quad band on eBay for 40.00 USD. It does everything, but I will only use it for calling. I also wanted it to put in sims in the different countries I or family members might travel to in the next few years. I do not plan on using often, but thought it would be nice to have?


ggreen Jul 9th, 2012 07:32 AM

<i>wish to purchase a easy to use, uncomplicated unlocked quard cellphone

would love one that I can use in the future just about anywhere in the world</i>

FWIW, what is "easy to use" for me might not be for you, and vice versa. My suggestion is to go into a store selling phones from multiple providers - here in NYC, I go to the cellphone counter at J&R, but a place like Best Buy would work. (You also could do this at an AT&T or T-Mobile location.) Check out a number of phones and see which features you like/dislike: touch screen, flip/slide open, qwerty keyboard, etc. And just be noncommittal about purchasing anything that day. ;)

Once you figure out what type of phone works for you, you can return to online shopping with a much better idea of what you'd like to get.

Also, depending on how "future proof" you want your purchase to be, spend the extra $$ now to buy a newer phone. (A $40 one is bound to be already outdated...) In this respect, you're not so much concerned about, say, screen resolution, megapixels in the camera or even weight - but rather the speed of the network it can run on (currently the fastest/newest are 4G) and to a lesser degree, the processor speed.

Sher Jul 10th, 2012 07:42 AM

Jack. I have an old Nokia quad band phone. It is not unlocked but check to see if anyone can help you do this or take it with you to Europe and go into any no name store and they could do it for a fee.

I am willing to send it to you just for the postage.It is in perfect condition, has all of the books with it, the charger and even a couple of adapters.

It is in the original box. I never used it because my brother gave me an old unlocked phone of his so I never botherd to take this one with me.

It is not a fancy phone...just a plain one but you are welcome to have it. Look on my profile and email me if you are interested.

Travelnut Jul 10th, 2012 08:28 AM

I have ordered a used (but "tested") Samsung a187 phone on eBay, unlocked, with a QWERTY keypad. It was $29.99 'buy now', free shipping. A seller under two names (phonestoreusa2010 is the one I purchased from) had about 10 listings and they are all gone now. It is still on its way to me, so haven't seen how 'used' it looks. I liked it b/c it is qwerty for easier texting, and not a smartphone. Will be using a Lebara SIM with it, as you plan to do.
If you troll eBay on near-daily basis you may see a similar phone/deal. Maybe even a gently used one for only a little more.
p.s. the phone was sold with battery and charger, watch for that in any listings you review

kybourbon Jul 10th, 2012 12:09 PM

>>>Have my doubts about the unlokced samsungE 1080 unlocked GSMphone international version not for use in USA offered on Amazon.<<<<

What are your doubts? Do you have any old phones already?

cybertraveler Jul 10th, 2012 01:22 PM

Would an old Motorola Razr phone work in Europe with one of their SIM cards?

Travelnut Jul 11th, 2012 05:19 AM

I received my Samsung a187 phone from the eBay order yesterday - - it looks nice, only a very small 'scrape' on lower corner of screen, body is perfect, battery works, phone powered up, and charger came with it. I'm happy with it.

kybourbon Jul 11th, 2012 06:52 AM

>>>Would an old Motorola Razr phone work in Europe with one of their SIM card<<<

If it's quad band and unlocked. How can you tell? Look up the phone online for specs to find out if it's quad. Put a different SIM card in it (borrow one from a friend that didn't have the same carrier as you) and it will tell you if it's locked or not. If it is locked, call your carrier and ask for the unlock code.

ekscrunchy Jul 11th, 2012 06:56 AM

I bought a new unlocked Nokia, good for use all over the world, for about $50 from this NYC store; they do mail order:

chimel07 Jul 17th, 2012 11:53 PM

I have a new unlocked Galaxy nexus; my wife has an iphone. We plan to buy a cheap phone in Spain with a SIm card to talk to each other in case we get separated, etc, and use my phone to call the states if necessary. We don't want to take the Iphone and have it stolen. I can live w/o a phone for 2 weeks, my wife can't.I'll let you know how it works.

ekscrunchy Sep 25th, 2012 03:25 AM

Update: Back in Early summer, I bought a new unlocked NOKIA phone to use on a trip to Italy from which I've just returned. Unfortunately, I waited until the day before departure, several months after purchase, to charge the phone. NO GO! It would not charge!

I will attempt to return the phone to J&R today but, based on my semi-panicky phone conversations with them already, I have little hope that they will exchange the phone for a working one, since several months have passed since it was purchased. (Receipt states they will accept exchanges/returns only for 14 days)

Just wanted to remind people to charge the phones after purchase, to make sure they actually work!! (Somehow I imagined that I would have to wait to buy the SIM card before charging the phone--shows how savvy I am!)

Since I now have to buy a new, unlocked phone, would love any recommendations for an inexpensive not need SMART features, just a normal phone.

kybourbon Sep 25th, 2012 06:02 AM

Get a new battery for it. Do you have a Batteries Plus nearby? Call and see if they have one in stock. It's possible it could be the charger though. Batteries Plus has a one year guarantee on their batteries for exchange. I'm not sure how long for return/refund if it's not the battery. Check with them.

Sarastro Sep 25th, 2012 07:07 AM

It could be the battery, it could also be that your transformer is not working. If you touch the transformer when it is plugged in and it is not warm or its LED is not illuminated, try a different transformer. Most all mobile phones use one form of a USB connector and you might even try plugging the phone into your computer and use it as a power source.

Sometimes if the battery is completely dead, it needs to be plugged in for a while before the phone will turn on. If you haven´t yet done a little trouble shooting, you might find a simple fix. It would be a shame to toss a newly purchased phone if J&R will not take it back or exchange it for you.

MaineGG Sep 25th, 2012 07:57 AM

I bought a Motorola V180 unlocked quad band phone on eBay last year for under $20. It's a basic little phone and it worked fine during our three weeks in France.

The Lebara SIM card I ordered didn't arrive before the trip, so after trying to buy one in various places the day we arrived, I finally went into The Phone House in Lyon where a very helpful employee set me up with a Carte Bouygues Nomad V5 Kit SIM for €5.00 with a recharge of €15.00 that would cover the duration of our trip. She also activated the phone and verified that it was working correctly.

The free Lebara card and their low rates would have cost less, but I was happy to end my search, walk out with a working phone and get on with the trip.

nukesafe Sep 25th, 2012 09:28 AM

I got two Motorola V-180 unlocked quad band cell phones on eBay for $14.95 each, plus shipping. Total cost was less than $20 each. both arrived quickly, powered up and seem to work fine.

I had ordered two free Lebara SIM cards online, and they arrived fine, too. Then I screwed them both up by not recognizing the activation codes that were transmitted, and waiting too long to do the activation. Evidently one needs to have the activation page up and running, as I now know you have only a limited time to complete this. Now my phones just say, "SIM Activated" when I turn them on, but they are not really, as one needs the code to recharge them online. (I know, I know, you helpful Fodorites had told me about this -- but did I listen?)

I'll just carry the two phones with me to France and get new SIMs when I get there.

Minor PITA.

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