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Data charges - U.S. vs. European SIMs for iPad2?

Data charges - U.S. vs. European SIMs for iPad2?

Apr 15th, 2011, 03:38 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
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Data charges - U.S. vs. European SIMs for iPad2?

I know the topic of SIMs has been done to death here, but we will be going to France next month, and then to Italy in August. My wife just got her new iPad2, and I can hardly pry it from her grasp to even look at the thing. I'm sure she will take it with her at all times, and will be out of WiFi range frequently, so we will certainly have to have some connection to a network.

I have read horror stories about enormous data charges being run up on U.S, plans like AT&T and Verizon. Can anyone give me an idea what the price differential would be between those U.S. data plans and those provided by European SIM plans?
nukesafe is offline  
Apr 15th, 2011, 04:40 PM
Join Date: May 2010
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You don't want to use a US plan while roaming abroad. You can easily rack up thousands in charges.

Check prepaidgsm.net and other sites for info about local SIM plans. For Italy, you can get plans on networks like Wind which for 20 Euros will cover a couple of weeks to a month of use. And depending on where you stay, the speeds may be faster and more reliable than Wifi at some of the hotels in Italy.

Only thing is that you will have to trim the regular SIM to fit inside the iPad. There are cutters on eBay which makes it less error-prone. I'm sure there are iPad and iPhone specific plans with microSIMs but I would guess those cost more.

France is more expensive but you can search for that as well. Generally higher prices and less data allotment than Italy or the UK or Germany, I believe.

Another option would be iPhonetrip.com. They will send you a special SIM which can be used in more than one country at a cost of about $15 a day. I haven't used the service but someone on Flyertalk used it in Australia recently and report satisfaction.

Yet another service is Xcom Global. But they charge additional for more than one country and I think they rent you Mifi devices, which would be handy if you have more than one device you want to get online.
scrb11 is offline  
Apr 15th, 2011, 05:00 PM
Join Date: Apr 2007
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SFR has an iPad data plan that, while not inexpensive, is certainly cheaper than anything else I have found. The price is unlimited data for about 3€ per day. The Apple store has them as does SFR retail: outlets.

Sarastro is offline  
Apr 17th, 2011, 09:52 AM
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Thank you for your responses,scrb11, and Sarastro. I think, however, we are out of luck as far as using less expensive European data service for her iPad2. My wife bought the version of the iPad2 that is configured for Verizon only, because we use Verizon for our home service. It, therefore, has no SIM slot. We will be looking for WiFi hot spots a LOT, I'm afraid.

Sigh ----
nukesafe is offline  
Apr 17th, 2011, 11:13 AM
Join Date: May 2010
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Best option in that case would be to stay at a hotel that offers Internet access for a reasonable price.

Many of them charge per hour and the speeds are poor while others are free.

I wouldn't count on finding an open Wifi spot. You can search for some public Wifi spots but usually they're not in convenient locations. So you end up paying hotel Wifi, which can be pricey.
scrb11 is offline  
Apr 17th, 2011, 11:56 AM
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Well, we are OK when in Paris, as our apartment has WiFi, but when we move toward Belgium and Germany we will have to stop at Starbucks frequently, I suppose.
nukesafe is offline  
Apr 17th, 2011, 02:08 PM
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