Where to get a phone at Zurich airport?

Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 02:49 PM
  #1  
Les
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Where to get a phone at Zurich airport?

My son will be taking a 3 week trip to Switzerland and Germany, flying into and out from Zurich airport. Is there a place in the airport where he can get a phone that works in both countries to use during his trip?
Les is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 03:15 PM
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He may not need an entire phone, if he has a smartphone (i.e. 4G) and if his existing phone is unlocked. He can just get a SIM card and put it in his phone. The costs of roaming have been capped throughout Europe so he will be able to use the SIM in both countries without exorbitant costs. Or else use one of the overseas roaming plans that are in your own country. For instance, I am in Australia and I can use my Vodafone plan internationally by paying $5/day on days when I use my phone. This is on top of the cost of the call. It's not that bad because most days I don't make calls so the cost is tolerable.

Otherwise I found a shop on the Zurich Airport website:
https://www.zurich-airport.com/passe...mobile%20phone
https://www.swisscom.ch/en/residential.html

I don't know Zurich airport but I would think they would see a lot of people like your son.

Kind regards
lavandula is offline  
Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 03:32 PM
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<<I am in Australia and I can use my Vodafone plan internationally by paying $5/day on days when I use my phone. This is on top of the cost of the call. It's not that bad because most days I don't make calls so the cost is tolerable.>>
The cost of the call is free as I am assuming you don't pay for standard calls, SMS and you have number of free international minutes, plus data is free, so your only cost is the $5 per day cost
For the OP just get a Prepaid Sim from the airport, provided your phone is unlocked
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Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 05:04 PM
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Oops, that's something I didn't explain very well - I know you are allowed the same terms of your plan as at home so of course it would be free if you have a plan, but not if you are prepaid (as I used to be until recently). You can still do the $5 roaming with prepaid but you pay for calls then too.

Thanks for the correction, hope the OP finds this useful (as I do).

Lavandula
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Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 07:45 PM
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Les
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Thank you both for the information. My daughter-in-law has an iPhone, and my son has an Android phone (is that Google?), but I don't know whether they're unlocked. It sounds like a prepaid SIM is the way to go. I assume that you can recharge minutes when needed, is that correct?

Lavandula , thanks for the link. I'll try to contact the shop to see what they offer.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 09:18 PM
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He could also buy a Dutch Vodafone SIM on eBay and set it up ahead of time. (Unless he is leaving within a few weeks - it will take a few weeks for him to receive the SIM card. It took two weeks to receive mine in the US from the Netherlands.) This SIM works anywhere in the EU without roaming fees - and also in Switzerland (not part of the EU). Search eBay for "vodafone YOU SIM" - seller "davinciteam" is currently selling them for $11 USD shipped.

The SIM comes with no credit on it - you have to create a Vodafone account on the Vodafone NL website (use a browser like Chrome to translate the Dutch automatically - I don't read Dutch and haven't needed to). Then you can add credit to the SIM on the Vodafone NL website. Once credit is added to the SIM, activate a "bundle" of data - for three weeks, I'd add 20 euros and activate the bundle for 6GB of data good for a month. It needs to activated right before the trip begins. Then the phone with SIM should work as soon as he lands in Zurich.
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Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 09:22 PM
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Yes, but I don't know specifics about recharging, the shop should be able to help your son and DIL with that. Good luck!

Lavandula
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Old Apr 23rd, 2019, 11:04 PM
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Be aware that a Dutch SIM can be cancelled if it isn't used within the Netherlands for a part of the time, under the fair use policy, or if it isn't used/topped up within in certain time period.
hetismij2 is offline  
Old Apr 24th, 2019, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by hetismij2 View Post
Be aware that a Dutch SIM can be cancelled if it isn't used within the Netherlands for a part of the time, under the fair use policy, or if it isn't used/topped up within in certain time period.
Hasn't happened to me yet. My Dutch Vodafone SIM has NEVER been used in the Netherlands in the two years it has been active.

You do you have to use the SIM (or have activity on it e.g. adding funds) every six months or so or it may no longer be active. But the expiration date is very clear in your Vodafone account on their website - you don't have to wonder when it might expire.
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Old Apr 24th, 2019, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Les View Post
Thank you both for the information. My daughter-in-law has an iPhone, and my son has an Android phone (is that Google?), but I don't know whether they're unlocked. It sounds like a prepaid SIM is the way to go. I assume that you can recharge minutes when needed, is that correct?

Lavandula , thanks for the link. I'll try to contact the shop to see what they offer.
Since he already HAS a phone what calling plan is he on and does it allow things like data and unlimited texting in Europe. He may not even need a SIM card depending on

how he thinks he HAS to communicate

who is paying (you for example?)

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Old Apr 24th, 2019, 11:55 AM
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Les
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Dukey, I don't think he'll need data and unlimited texting (certainly not to communicate with me - I don't do texting or data). But that's up to him. He'll probably want to be able to communicate with the hotels he has booked, or to book other hotels should his plans change mid-trip. He may also want to be in communication with his wife in case they opt to do separate things on any given day. Or to get help if his car breaks down. All the normal reasons why one might want a phone while traveling. This is not a rigidly scripted trip. Aside from some must-see places where he's made reservations, I assume he'll wander where the spirit takes him.

Since his traveling has been limited to the U.S. since we returned from 5 years in Germany (1981), he's asked us to help him with details he might overlook.
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