Who has tried out the Orange eSim?

Old Mar 9th, 2023, 04:17 AM
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Who has tried out the Orange eSim?

We will be doing a trip to England and Ireland this coming June. We used Orange Holiday SIMs with success on one or both of our last two trips in the same general area, but with our new Samsung Galaxy phones with eSim capabilities, we'd like to avoid having to open the darn SIM tray, fumble with insertion, and chance losing our US SIM somewhere along our journeys.

Hence I'm open to trying out the Orange Holiday eSim as long as someone here has gotten it to work! Anyone?
AZ
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Old Mar 9th, 2023, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by AlessandraZoe View Post
We will be doing a trip to England and Ireland this coming June. We used Orange Holiday SIMs with success on one or both of our last two trips in the same general area, but with our new Samsung Galaxy phones with eSim capabilities, we'd like to avoid having to open the darn SIM tray, fumble with insertion, and chance losing our US SIM somewhere along our journeys.

Hence I'm open to trying out the Orange Holiday eSim as long as someone here has gotten it to work! Anyone?
AZ
I used an Orange e-sim last August, bought online before travel, though I was too busy to actually install it till we landed in Paris. Donít remember what kind it was, it had free calls and texts, plus data. Worked perfectly, we went on to board a Norway fjords cruise from Amsterdam and it worked everywhere, till we boarded our flight back to the US at Schiphol.

We took the Thalys train from Gare du Nord and I remember there wasnít any network from the sim once we crossed into Belgium. But restarting the phone took care of the issue, I did the same when we got to Amsterdam and later in Norway. That apart no problems at all, have decided to go with e-sims wherever possible on future travels too.
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Old Mar 9th, 2023, 09:56 AM
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Thanks for responding, Geetika. I had almost private messaged you because when I scoured this forum for info, it was bare bones except for you and perhaps one other who were going to give it a test drive. Again, we have great luck with our physical Orange SIMS but if there's an easier way to do something, I'm all for it.

Two questions: Did you need to be connected to WiFi to install it once you landed? And did you need to top off at any point? If so, how difficult was that?

Again, many thanks for chiming in.
AZ
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Old Mar 9th, 2023, 01:14 PM
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I used an Orange Holiday e-SIM in France last year on my iPhone 12pro. I'm a Sprint/T-Mobile customer with the magenta plan, so I had international roaming and 2G data, but wanted reliable data for navigation and web surfing. The e-SIM, which I downloaded and installed before the trip, allowed me to operate the phone in dual SIM mode, meaning that both my US phone number and the Orange phone number were active, so I didn't have to give anyone back home my number in France. Worked great. The only observation that I would make is that with my normal phone plan, I might have saved some money by opting for a data only plan for my 2nd (French) SIM.

At any rate, the process was simple. You order online, they send you a welcome pack by email with a PDF that has a QR code to download your e-SIM. You follow the instructions to download it, then wait until your plane lands in Europe to go to Settings, hit the toggle switch, and turn on your e-SIM, which begins your active period.
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Old Mar 9th, 2023, 01:18 PM
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I forgot to mention that, since we were there 16 days, and the card's initial period is only 14, I did have to top up. Can't remember the details on that, but I did it online and it was easy.
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Old Mar 9th, 2023, 04:20 PM
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twk,did you add the two extra days at the start of your trip or wait until the days had run out? We also will be traveling 16 days, all in France.

Last edited by HappyTrvlr; Mar 9th, 2023 at 04:30 PM.
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Old Mar 10th, 2023, 04:27 AM
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Originally Posted by HappyTrvlr View Post
twk,did you add the two extra days at the start of your trip or wait until the days had run out? We also will be traveling 16 days, all in France.
I added a few days before my time was up. I don't think you can top up before you start the clock on your 14 days, but I could be wrong about that.
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Old Mar 10th, 2023, 04:50 AM
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HappyTrvlr--When I used the physical SIM, I topped off on around Day 14, I think. One thing that I did was register my number, sending the passport copy, etc, and I just don't quite know if I had to do that. And I have no clue how to do that with the eSim (hence this post!) but I'm inclined to go for it.

Twk--Thank you for posting! You and Geetika have pushed me into going for it.

I'll be interested in seeing how "automatic" the eSim install is on an Android.

Before using the physical Orange SIM last time, I had downloaded EVERYTHING on the internet I found about what could go wrong. Therefore, I knew to keep copies of the PUK, knew to update the APN settings and so on. If I recall, we had a momentary worry that it wasn't working, but within minutes, both of our phones were functioning.

I suspect the iphone eSim install will be easier than my Android. We'll see.
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Old Mar 10th, 2023, 11:58 PM
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AZ, Fodorites have given me so much travel info and advice, Iím happy to help in any small way.

No, you donít need wifi to download the e-sim, just scan the QR code you receive by email. You can actually do it prior to travel so that you hit the ground running on arrival. The data is way more than you need.

They initially give you 14 days, then you top up the card. Our stay in Europe was for 17 days, so I waited a few days before activating my sim, that way it was available on the last day to call our transfer from the cruise port to Schiphol.
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Old Mar 11th, 2023, 04:53 AM
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geetika, Thanks for explaining. Now I understand how you managed. I'm now thinking that as a "braces and belt" approach about activating my phone right away and activating my husband's phone a few days later. We're rarely separated. Of course, with my luck at our ages, one of us will fall and break a hip coming back from a coffee run.

And yes, agreed that this board has been vital to our family travels. I was registered under a different name in 2002, so I've spent quite some time here. Like you, I feel we all must pay forward.
AZ
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Old Mar 11th, 2023, 05:50 AM
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Thanks to all here! Fodorites can be such a fantastic resource. I didn't even know there was such a thing as an eSim. I was preparing to purchase that little chip and worry about losing my original through my vacation, maybe even a pocket wifi. I've got a trip to Japan coming up, and it looks like airalo.com might be an option. Also need to compare to my Verizon Travel Pass, but at Verizon's $10/day vs. a $26 esim, the choice seems fairly clear.
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Old Mar 12th, 2023, 03:22 AM
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ChgoGal--I've looked at using Airalo because so many of the global travelers on other sites have had good experiences, and it's certainly cheap. However, because it's data only, I'd have to get up to speed on using WhatsApp, Skype and Facebook Messenger for voice and text. Part of me says that I SHOULD push the envelope; another part of me says to leave well enough alone.
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Old Mar 12th, 2023, 07:12 AM
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Very true, @AlessandraZoe. As we're half-Japanese, we use the LINE app for our Japanese relatives. It's been wonderful to stay connected with them for free (or the price of our wifi). I thought I heard WhatsApp is better for Europe.
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Old Mar 16th, 2023, 09:24 PM
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I added it a few days before my deadline. I don't think you can top up before you start the clock for two weeks, but I could be wrong.
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Old Mar 17th, 2023, 07:13 AM
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So now, guys, I'm moving from researching my Orange eSim (still might get one for my phone) and have started to fret about 2-factor authentication. I'm worried that if I don't keep my Verizon line active in some way while we're gone, I won't be able to authenticate a card that isn't working OR I won't be able to see if someone has done a SIM swap, a really scary fraud. Saw that I've earned 12 free TravelPass days on my Verizon account and should perhaps put that into effect in some way.

Yes, I am wondering if I should just start a new thread on this.
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Old Mar 18th, 2023, 06:19 AM
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AlessandraZoe I never considered the potential for fraud--thank you! I have more research to do. Normally, I rely on verizon travel pass in Europe and a pocketwifi in Japan. Makes you think how unwired we were before smartphones.
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Old Mar 18th, 2023, 09:57 AM
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We always have two phones, one with SIM card and the other on Verizon International plan. I had never thought of the need to have the Verizon to be alerted to fraud. glad we do it this way.
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Old Mar 19th, 2023, 08:20 AM
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Thank you to everyone who has responded because your input has led me into the right research. In fact, I spent all day yesterday scouring the internet on how to best make using the Dual SIM/eSIM capabilities after reading up on all the types of fraud that scared the daylights out of me.

There are a ton of how-to threads and videos on incorporating dual SIM/eSim use for iphones; unfortunately, we have Samsung phones (Galaxy s22+ and Fold4) so my first-person tutorials for dual use are slim pickings. Nevertheless, I'm plugging away, and I have compiled pages of notes to study. I'll share some info I found and my current inclinations below and will keep you posted on how I progress further.

Here is where I'm at now based on my reading:
  1. I have to remind myself not to be "pennywise and pound foolish." We will have paid thousands of dollars for our 20/21 days overseas and our phone charges will be a fraction of overall costs. Yes, I'm going to avoid handing over everything to Verizon's bottom line but having some capability to respond to 2-factor authentication over the course of our trip makes overall financial sense. Note: None of my banks and most of my cards will NOT allow authentication by an MFA app. Darn.
  2. I could get Google Fi as my eSim and list that number for all authentication, but...
  3. My husband needs data more than anything. If we just put a TravelPass capability on his phone, use that sparingly only when needed, and get him a data eSim like airolo that he could use as a hot spot for his iPad, he'd probably be a pig in mud. He doesn't want to talk to anyone anyway when we travel, and he never makes the travel arrangements that necessitate local calls. Most onsite purchases will be with my cards, not his.
  4. I really should take advantage of my 12 earned TravelPass days on my Verizon account. That should cover any 2-factor authentication problems that would typically occur at the start in each country, and those days expire one-by-one each month anyway. I earned them, I should use them. Verizon raised their game with TravelPass data capabilities in Jan 2023. Now you get 2GB of relatively fast data per day; after that you get unlimited 3G speed. I would just have to be careful to shut down several settings within the 24-hr time limit to avoid getting zinged for another 24 hrs unless that was my intention.
  5. It would make no sense for either of us to use the 30-day Verizon International plan for one or both lines. Yes, Verizon raised THAT game too Jan 23. The $100 International Monthly Plan now includes 250 minutes, unlimited texts and unlimited data for 30 days. But I would not be taking advantage of my free TravelPass days by using this plan, and to avoid getting dinged by Verizon, I'd have to make sure my plan payment dates were rearranged to coincide with our departure date and then automatically turned off on our return.
  6. FYI, there are still very few international mobile eSim plans for tourists with calls even though there are lots of eSims for data and there are lots of physical SIMs for mobile voice available once we land. That's one of the reasons a pre-installed (but not activated) Orange eSim is so attractive. I had success with the Orange SIM so I'm inclined to think I would have a good experience with the Orange eSIM, like some of you have also indicated, and I would not have to stop anywhere to get something going once we land. We have to get to a train station right away once we land, and timing is key.
  7. As an alternative arrangement, I COULD switch my Verizon plan to eSim before I leave, which would allow me to pick up a local SIM once I arrive. I don't think I'm inclined that way because I recall that the Verizon guy who put my physical SIM in my phone had a hard time with installation, even though he does that every day. I mean I've DONE it before, but...
So that's where I am! Thanks again,
AZ
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