What cell phone to use in France?

Jan 12th, 2006, 06:34 AM
  #1  
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What cell phone to use in France?

I am traveling to France for 3 months. I do not own a cell phone and am looking to purchase one to use in France. I found CellularAbroad.com where they sell or rent phones and SIM cards for the phones. The rate is better for me to buy a phone than to rent for so long.
All calls from the U.S. to this cell phone in France will be free to me.
I can get a SIM card for the U.S. and use the phone when I return except I'm in a rural area and don't get reception so the phone would be basically useless to me once I return.
I figure the cost for phone and SIMs will run me $347. I want my husband to be able to call me as often as he wants, so we found an International Calling Card with 3cents a minute from the U.S. to France, etc.

My question is: Would it be cheaper to enroll in a cell phone company, get a promo free phone and pay the roaming charges from Europe?

What is the best cell phone program for me?

Thanks.
jackster748 is offline  
Jan 12th, 2006, 06:51 AM
  #2  
ira
 
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Hi J,

>What is the best cell phone program for me?<

You will have to do the numbers.

At this point you have free incoming (how much for outgoing?) for $347.

>Would it be cheaper to enroll in a cell phone company...?<

How much will the program from the US cost you?

ira is online now  
Jan 12th, 2006, 07:48 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 45,650
I would buy a tri- or quad-band phone when you get to France - probably under $100. A French SIM will cost you another $40 or so. Sign up for Orange service. When you get back to the USA, get a US SIM card if you think you can use the phone here.
StCirq is offline  
Jan 12th, 2006, 09:57 AM
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You can buy phones from Mobalrental.com or on E-Bay...
Travelnut is offline  
Jan 12th, 2006, 07:53 PM
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You can pick up an inexpensive cell phone once you arrive in France, a rechargeable phone. Some cost less than 40 euros (Vodafone) and offer free incoming minutes. Your husband can call you anytime and you are not charged any minutes on your phone. Use the calling card to return calls to the U.S. from your hotel, or some other location.
Robert2533 is offline  
Jan 12th, 2006, 08:13 PM
  #6  
 
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I researched this when we were going to Italy. My brother already owned a T-Mobile dual or tri band phone. He called T-Mobile and they were happy to unlock the phone for him. We purchased an Italian sim card and it worked out beautifully. Probably paid around $40.00 for the whole 12 day trip including the chip and minutes. You are correct about incoming calls being free to you.

As for T-Mobile, I like that you can sign up & get a brand new phone with only a 1 year contract. The choice of free phones are nice too. You would be able to find a dual/tri band phone.

Good luck!
LisaLou632 is offline  
Jan 12th, 2006, 09:29 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 20,239
We bought a CellurabBroad phone and the necessary chips and have used it in France, Austria, and Germany without any problems. We use it also here in California and are very pleased not to have to pay monthly charges to anyone.
Underhill is online now  
Jan 12th, 2006, 09:42 PM
  #8  
 
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You can get a nice tri-band unlocked GSM world Motorola flip on overstock.com for $80. There also are more basic models under $50.

CellularAbroad is very expensive compared to other phone sources. I'm sure many on expense accounts don't care, but for personal travel I'd rather have an extra couple hundred bucks to have fun with (especially because my trip next month includes Zermatt ....)

Buy a phone online, wait until you get abroad and buy a SIM card there. Incoming calls will be free on just about any SIM card you buy. Stores are everywhere and the process is very simple.

When you get your number, call home and give it to hubby. If you want to reach him and maximize your savings during the trip, call him on the cell and have him watch the caller ID but not answer -- or just pick up briefly - then call you back with his card.
repete is offline  
Jan 13th, 2006, 06:33 PM
  #9  
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Merci beaucoup to all of those who replied to my queries regarding which cell phone to get for France while my hubby minds the "farm" in the USA.

I feel I have a much better grasp of what is needed and I shall save money thanks to your advice.

I'll report back to let you know my successes after my journey.

The International Calling Card I found to call from the US to France is from www.onesuite.com. For about 3 cents a minute, he can call me while in France!

Thanks again.

jackster748 is offline  

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