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Need advice on mobile phone use in Europe

Need advice on mobile phone use in Europe

Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:36 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 38
Need advice on mobile phone use in Europe

I feel really stupid asking this question but am ging to do it anyway as I read similar posts but only ended up confused.

As you can probably tell by the fact that I said mobile instead of cell phone, I am an Australian and want to know if my mobile will work in Europe.

I've read a few suggestions that have said that you and your travelling partner should each have a mobile so that if something happens and you are separated, you can still find each other.

Well that's all well and good but i don't want us to have to spend a fortune buying a phone each that we'll only use for 6 weeks. I have read that renting is an option but the problem there is that we don't go through the same city twice so we start in one palce and won't be back there to return any phones.

I hope I am making sense, you're assistance would be most appreciated.

Angelblue71 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:43 AM
Join Date: Nov 2004
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If your phone..assuming you have a "mobile" already...is at least a tri-band phone it should work in Europe. My own is a quad-band which works almost everywhere in the world.

I would contact your current service provider in Australia and ask THEM..they know your phone and what it can and cannot do. My own phone doesn't need different sim cards when I go anywhere in Europe since it automatically links up with the local network and provides service without my having to do anything special.
Intrepid1 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:51 AM
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In any case you won't need to spend "a fortune" on phones. Most British high st retailers sell handsets for about £30 with £10 of credit on them. You can also buy them second hand just about everywhere.

If you bring your aussie phones you may well find that the call charges for using them abroad are so extortionate that buying a Europe based phone is cheaper.
david_west is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 04:30 AM
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Hi A,

What phone(s) do you have?

ira is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 05:25 AM
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Australia uses the same "GSM" standard and the same frequencies as Europe. No need to buy a 3 or quad-band phone. Make sure your phone is GSM and unlocked. Buy a united-mobile sim in Australia. www.united-mobile.com WCDMA standard phones from Australia work in Europe as well, but only in urban areas. So if you need fast internet take your "3" (www.three.com.au) phone with you. Internet roaming will be expensive.

To sum up: Austrlian cell phones are the same as they're used in Europe. No three band needed. No worries, but make sure the phone isn't locked.
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 05:29 AM
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Vodafone Australia had extremely low roaming charges for Europe last year. (about 0.30 AUD/min) Check their homepage as well, maybe an Aussie Vodafone Sim would be an altermative.
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 05:36 AM
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>but only in urban areas.
That's a little misleading, since all aussie WCDMA phones have GSM too. Outside of urban areas it automatically switches to GSM. Again make sure it`s unlocked. So no worries if you have a WCDMA phone.
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 07:57 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
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You can buy a Virgin Mobile "Joining Pack" (SIM) with airtime on eBay for peanuts. A few recent sales were under £5. Mobile-to-mobile calls are 20p/min. Recharge p.r.n with your credit/debit card.
Robespierre is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 10:47 AM
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Within a few minutes of your getting off the plane in London or Frankfurt, you'll find a "welcome to xxxx" message from your Aussie telco's local partner on the screen of your phone. DO NOT MAKE A CALL, as you'll be ripped off.

Go to any shady-looking electrics store, get your phone unlocked if it isn't already and buy a local SIM.

As David says, buying a second phone in London will be cheaper than renting (and actually, a few minutes' shopping around should throw up models from £20.) You'll be able to use it back in Australia, though again you'll need to buy an Aussie SIM when you get home if you're to avoid making Vodafone even more disgustingly profitable at your expense.
flanneruk is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 12:13 PM
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Vodafone rates were 0.30$ AUD/min last year, today they're up to 5.00$ AUD. What has happend down under?

You won't find sombody in a shop who is willing to unlock you phone in Frankfurt, you might be a cop or report him to the police! No problem it seems in London.
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 12:50 PM
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There's a fair chance that you can unlock your phone before you leave home so a European SIM will work in it. Just google unlock make model and you should find either free instructions or a commercial unlocking service. Here's a start:

Robespierre is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 01:16 PM
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If you have to buy a new phone in Europe do make sure it's WCDMA. Check www.three.co.uk for payasyougo phones. They're not only working perfectly in Australia, but are rather inexpensive and are so much fun! Fast internet, TV stations on the phone, GPS navigation all for a fraction of what you'd normally pay. And they can be used in Japan too.
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:04 PM
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If it's a nokia, the calculator to compute unlocking codes is freely available on the web...you need to know the phone's IMEI number (it's serial number) which can be found by entering a certain code...the calculator gives it and what carrier it is locked to....other models need a bit more work...you can walk down Oxford Street any day of the week including Sunday and for £8 or so they will unlock the phone for you if it needs to be...only it seems the Germans have some sort of aversion to the illegal practice of tampering with phones by mobile phone companies and locking them (I'm sure this will get logos all upset at me) but it's really a despicable act and the Italian and Finnish operators, at least on the GSM phones (3G phones might be different) do not have to resort to such low tricks.
xyz123 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:14 PM
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I'm not upset of course, but if it's illegal what can I do about it. Is it worth to fight with the authorities about it, or do I accept the german copyright law which is directly influenced by large american and japanese media companies which have more money than I do and will sue if they can. So it's illegal AND I'm sued...
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:21 PM
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Unfortunately what is legal isn't defined by you and me, so the problem is that what you claim is legal from your point of view is illegal by german law. What are we going to do about it ;-) You tell the state attorney you point of view why it should be legal and he and I'll be listening ;-).
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 03:54 PM
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In all seriousness, is it illegal to enter a code number into a phone that belong to you...it is not like a piece of software where in theory you don't own the software but a license to use it under certain conditions.

I buy a phone, it is my phone and I can do with it whatever I please including entering any number into it which just so happens to remove a piece of software coding that blocks the phone from booting up if a sim card not recognized by the writer of the code is inserted into the phone?

Again to the best of my knowledge, Finnish companies do not lock phones and Italian ones don't lock GSM phones although I have read some efforts to persecute oops prosecute people who try to unlock 3g phones.....


xyz123 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 04:03 PM
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> is it illegal to enter a code number into a phone that belong to you..

YES, I can't help it, it's the way it is. Don't do it on German soil, talk about it and get cought. If you're not a shop owner it's not that difficult to avoid these problems. If you get cought if IS the same thing as if you would distribute pirate copies of Microsoft Windows for money. It's the law...
logos999 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2005, 04:17 PM
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Some (stupid!) comparison. If a 19 year old murders somebody in Bavaria he gets probably 5 years, if he's in Virginia he get's killed himself. All this is not based on common sense, I honestly don't know why the same things are treated so differently...
logos999 is offline  
Feb 10th, 2014, 12:47 AM
Join Date: Feb 2014
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If you have a GSM mobile means you can use your mobile in abroad by buying a local SIM card for it. This is especially useful for making cheap, local calls.For using a local sim card in abroad you may need to unlock your mobile,you can unlock your mobile easily by getting the service from the provider directly or by an online vendor like http://www.unlocking4u.com/supported-phones/rs6wp7/ .However,you can also use this new pay-as-you-go phone to call home. One method is to use international phone cards. Affordable cards can be found at Time Dial, a website that searches multiple price comparison sites. Another option is to use Skype-To-Go. Available in 18 countries, this service works just like a phone card, except it is free for Skype users with a monthly plan or Skype credit. Plus, Skype-To-Go stores up to six speed-dial contacts, so you do not have to keep re-dialing numbers.If you have a CDMA phone, your best bet is to rent a phone when you get to your destination.
ravanrose is offline  

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