How to Save Money on Your Smartphone Bill When Traveling


Everyone has experienced a dreaded post-vacation bill. It has a sobering effect that lasts until the next vacation, making travelers fear their phones on trips. However, you can save money on your smartphone bill while traveling if you utilize these tips.

Pay-as-You-Go Plans

So you booked your cheap flight to India or maybe your dream cruise to Alaska and you even saved money on the hotel, too. The last thing to organize is your savings for long-distance calls. Here are a few of the smartest options:

Wi-Fi Options

A pay-as-you-go Wi-Fi hotspot will serve many purposes as you travel abroad, as long as you get one meant for international travel. These devices will provide you unlimited data and cellular service through companies like Skype or Google Voice Chat.

SIM Cards

Make sure you have a GSM-capable phone. Then, get a pay-as-you-go SIM card in your country of travel. This only works if your phone is unlocked for multiple carriers. Learn the specifics of this option before you commit to it.

Longer Vacation Options

When you plan to stay for more than a few days, there are other options. Here are some cool ways to save on your month-long trip to Spain or India.

Get a Local Line

People who travel for longer periods of time often choose to stay in vacation rentals or houses. If you are in this situation, you can often hookup a local phone line. Local lines are incredibly cheap in foreign countries, and they can save you hundreds of dollars. For example, a phone line in the capital of Ukraine costs about seven dollars a month. However, in many cases you will need a local sponsor to get a phone line.

Get a Disposable Local Phone

Many countries have disposable cell phones. They are much more popular outside of the USA than they are in the USA. You can get a disposable cell phone to make international calls for very little money while you travel. However, these phones often do not work outside of their country of purchase.

Other Calling Choices

If all else fails, there are a few last-ditch choices for travelers to save money on calls.

Use Hotel Lines

While hotel phones are much more expensive than cell calls in your own country, they are often cheaper than roaming charges. Compare your hotel costs to call to your cellular international roaming policies to determine which is cheaper. Similarly, pay phones are cheaper than roaming charges in most countries, too.

Get Cozy with Email

While it’s not as intimate as a call, email can often get the job done. If you really want to save money on long-distance calls, consider merely emailing your contacts, instead.

Ask Your Carrier for a Deal

Some carriers will give you a long-distance deal for international travel. Ask politely, and be willing to hear no. However, you might just be lucky enough to be given a 40% discount on your bill if you ask in advance.

Don’t lose your post-vacation glow when the cell phone bill comes due. You can save money as you go with all of these great options.


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