Cell phone rental in France

Old Jul 24th, 2002, 05:18 PM
  #1  
tim
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Cell phone rental in France

Will be renting a car in France and I am wondering if it would be a good idea to rent a cell phone. We will be driving in the South of France and some of the days we have left open and will book rooms as we arrive in each town. I have seen rentals for about $70 a week. What is your suggestions?
 
Old Jul 24th, 2002, 07:18 PM
  #2  
Rex
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Strongly urge you to buy once you get to France instead. Lots of pre-paid options.

See this thread (among others) for more info:

http://www.fodors.com/forums/pgMessages.jsp?fid=2&tid=1323447

Although its title is about renting cell phones, it evolves into my own good personal experience buying (in Italy) and the follow-on of someone who bought my phone "onward" and had further good experiences.

There are numerous similar threads here on this forum.

Best wishes,

Rex
 
Old Jul 24th, 2002, 07:31 PM
  #3  
StCirq
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What do you need the cell phone for? Is it to call back to the States (in that case, just buy a telecarte from any tabac and use it on public telephones). Is it so people can reach you while you're in France? Then the least expensive option, assuming you're spending more than a week in France, is to buy a cell phone in France (go to any France Telecom/Orange store) and buy a pay-as-you-go phone plus a Mobicarte of 25 or 50 unites. Either way, you'll probably save money over the $70 per week rental (which probably includes charges per phone call as well). And you can use the phone on later trips to Europe if you plan to take one.
But if you don't need constant contact, just plan on calling home using Telecartes. No one says you have to have a cell phone, even in Europe.
 
Old Jul 24th, 2002, 07:43 PM
  #4  
Rex
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In my opinion, if you have 30 minutes or more of "back home" calling minutes you wish to use, then a cell phone easily pays for itself per the more convenient/more economical - - when you think of the advantages of calling in spare snippets of time - - just before bedtime (in Europe) is a good time to check in with loved ones in the US.

And too often, calling options from the place you are staying are all less convenienet or far more expensive than cell phoning.

Keep in mind that U.S. placed calls are almost always cheaper than Europe-placed calls. On most pre-paid cell phone plans, INcoming calls are FREE! So call your family, and have them call you back.

This does not, of course, apply to your question of calling hotels to book. But it is relevant for many other readers of this question.

As for hotel rooms, I still think that the best places and the best bargains are always found by those who book ahead before flying to Europe.
 
Old Jul 25th, 2002, 06:46 AM
  #5  
Martine
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Tim, if I was you , I would already buy a cell phone that you also can use in Europe, in the US. When you buy one in Europe you will have a lot of work by reading the instuctions of the phone and the installation/working of the pre-paid card. It can somethimes be very difficult. And a pre-paid card bought in one country sometimes does not work in another (not always)or is very expensive in use.
I don't know if such a mobile is expensive in the US, but here (Belgium) you can buy a Ericsson T39M (3-band)for 395 euros and it also works in the US.
Try not to buy a very cheap one in Spain, because other than "spanisch cards" will possibly not work in it.
 
Old Jul 25th, 2002, 02:19 PM
  #6  
up
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way UP there, in my opinion.

paying 395 euros for a mobile phone, that is...

way too expensive for my tastes!
 
Old Jul 25th, 2002, 03:38 PM
  #7  
Kris
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Tim: Rental is OK. But remember that you have to speak French in the phone. It won't work if you speak English. Also the person speaking to you has to speak French. They have some kind of screening system that blocks everything else.
 
Old Jul 25th, 2002, 03:43 PM
  #8  
Worried
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Anyone who wants to take a cell phone to Provence should stay at home and talk quietly to themselves in a remote corner.
 
Old Jul 25th, 2002, 04:46 PM
  #9  
john
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Please keep negative remarks to yourself. There is no need to be sarcastic, Tim is just asking for your advice.

Getting back to Tim's question, I would suggest a tri-band phone that you can use in the US and in Europe. I think Siemens, Ericsson, and Nokia offer "world phones" here in the States. Why buy or rent a phone for more than $100 for one time use?
 
Old Jul 26th, 2002, 05:50 AM
  #10  
William
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Why a cell phone you sarcastic people ask? Well, I would have given most anything to have had a cell phone on my last driving trip through France. We were in Normandy, at night, pouring rain, when suddenly debris on the road punctered two, yes TWO, tires on the rental car. There we were, on the shoulder, pouring rain, in the middle of rural France, no village in sight, no emergency phone boxes by the roadside, and two flat tires. What to do? Wait and wait and wait until we finally flagged down a passing policeman that then called Hertz for us and got us towed away. A cell phone could have let me make one call to Hertz, and rather than sitting for hours, we could have been towed in and taken care of much more quickly. After that experience I refuse to travel by rental car without a cell phone available no matter what country I am in. If I am not driving then, no, I do not have any need for a cell phone.

So Tim, by all means rent/buy one and have it with you. It will give you great peace of mind and if you never use it just consider it insurance that you bought and never had to use.
 
Old Jul 26th, 2002, 05:51 AM
  #11  
William
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so sorry make that PUNCTURED not punctered.....if I had my cell phone I could call for a spell check!!!
 
Old Jul 26th, 2002, 05:59 AM
  #12  
david
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Well said William. This board has become nothing but a place for obnoxious know-it-alls to tell everyone else how stupid their question is. No one seems to ever give a straight forward answer anymore, preferring to expound on why they know more than the poster and telling the poster that is bloody stupid idea and if you don't do it my way you are an ignorant arse.

Again, thanks for an insightful and valuable answer to Tim's question. Oh, and by the way, I agree with you 100%, as I have been in the same situation and a cell phone is now part of my standard travel gear when renting a car.
 
Old Jul 26th, 2002, 06:01 AM
  #13  
Edward
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David
You sound like a pompous ass. Please take your cell phone and dial 1-800-328-7448
 
Old Jul 29th, 2002, 08:36 PM
  #14  
ttt
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topping
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 01:01 AM
  #15  
xxx
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Of course if you are renting a car you should have a cell phone the same way I absolutely insist my son have a cell phone with him whenever he drives if for no other reason than what was desribed.

It is stupid to spend $70 a week to rent a cell phone if you will spend the entire time in one country. In this case, the country is France. And somebody suggested you buy a phone for 385 Euro. What a bunch of stupidity which is a term I hate using.

When you get to Paris, go into any phone sotre. Tell them you want a prepaid cellular phone. They start at about 60 Euro including a mobilcarte. French prepaid plans are a little more expensive than English one but cutting through all the verbiage you can make calls within France for about 40 Eurocent a minute. The mobilcarte comes with built in time. Calling the US is something like 1 Euro a minute but there are two ways to cut the cost. One way is to buy a long distance card which involves a local call in France where you pay the domestic rate and then once n the network you get mucho minutes for little money. Or, since receiving calls is free, something you absolutely don't get with rental phones, you make a quick call and have your friend or family member return the call.

I just don't understand this garbage of how difficult it is or how you have to deal with French telephone folks. I went into the Phone House store near Halles, the employee spoke perfect English, sold me the phone, set up the phone by inserting the SIM card (a really tough thing to do???), the manual that came with the phone was in both English and French, not that there is that much to know (like which button turns the phone on and off and which button (usually a green telephone) serves as the send button).

Then there are the dummies who moan about wasting valuable time while on holiday to deal with this. From start to finish, the transaction took me 7 minutes and 22 seconds.

And I now have the phone so next time back to France, all I need is another mobilcarte and I am in business again.

So much much much more convenient than throwing money away by renting.
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 07:23 AM
  #16  
adeleh
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we will be in Italy in Aug.for 17 days. We rented a phone to take with us from US. The name of the co. is Daystar and their phone no. is 888-908-4100. It is costing us $130.00. This includes 2 hours of calling time and incoming calls are free. We have never used these people before but we thought the price is pretty good.
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 09:04 AM
  #17  
xxx
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Adeleh...

Why are you throwing away $130 when for half the price you can buy a phone with a better service plan that is yours to keep forever and forever...
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 06:16 PM
  #18  
adeleh
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xxx,
How do I do that?
Adeleh
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 06:19 PM
  #19  
xxx
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Because if you read the thread, you can get your own phone for half the price with a 100% better service plan.
 
Old Jul 30th, 2002, 09:25 PM
  #20  
up
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up
 
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