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Old 10-23-2022, 12:13 PM   #21
Weitz
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How much data did you buy?
I did 3 GB. Mostly because it was good for 30 days. The 1 GB was only for 7 days.
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Old 10-29-2022, 11:17 AM   #22
Jimmy Stang
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I'm back from my quick trip to Ireland and Scotland, and I was pleased with how Airalo performed. Because I was spending a little bit of time in both countries, I opted for a regional plan for Europe. It cost $20 USD (about $27 CAD) for 5 gigs for 30 days. Plenty.

I installed the eSim before I left (they recommend doing it when you have a good internet connection, wifi or cellular), knowing that it wouldn't actually activate until I connected to the foreign cell network. I kept my Canadian sim as the primary for voice and texts (knowing that if I answered a call or sent a text I would dinged roaming, so i didn't). I also kept my Canadian number for iMessage and FaceTime. And then Airalo was set as the default for mobile data ONLY.

Two big keys: keep data roaming off on your Canadian sim, and don't allow "data switching" between sims. That feature would allow your phone to pick the best data network between the two, which from a roaming perspective, would be very expensive.

Once I landed in Dublin, I flipped off airplane mode. It seemed to take a little while (over 5 minutes) to pick up the Irish cell network, which surprised me, but then everything seemed to work just fine. In Scotland, I was in some pretty remote places, so there were times when I had no coverage, but I think that would've been true for anyone in those regions. It would flip between different Scottish and Irish providers as well (Vodafone, E3, etc.), so there must have been roaming agreements in place and it seemed to latch on to a few different networks depending on the area.

I didn't put it through its paces in terms of speed, but it seemed to work well enough. I even watched a good portion of a soccer game because the wifi at my accommodation was crap, and it did the trick. Personal Hotspot also works, so I was able to tether my travel mates when wifi let them down.

The easiest, cheapest roaming I have done. I have gone the foreign physical sim route before, and I have even used the now defunct Roam Mobility in the US.

The odd person that sent me a SMS message (free to receive on my Canadian line) I would just reply via WhatsApp. And I did notice once small oddity: SMS messages came through on my Canadian line while I was overseas, but SMS group messages didn't come through at all until I landed back in Calgary, even though they were sent days earlier. So maybe there is a data element to SMS group messages? Either way - not terribly important. I was iMessaging, Google Mapping, FaceTiming, watching soccer, looking up all sorts of things, etc. and it was great.
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Old 11-29-2022, 05:10 PM   #23
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Any recommendations for just a regular Sim card? Android device so iMessage not a factor. Need for 30 days and Europe wide (not UK however). Data only is an option as messaging would be done via WhatsApp rather than text anyway so a local number is not critical to have.
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Old 11-29-2022, 07:24 PM   #24
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Any recommendations for just a regular Sim card? Android device so iMessage not a factor. Need for 30 days and Europe wide (not UK however). Data only is an option as messaging would be done via WhatsApp rather than text anyway so a local number is not critical to have.
What countries? I bought a Lyca Sim in the UK and it worked flawlessly in France (not Monaco, mind you). They have a presence in every country and you can usually buy a sim for the 99 cent equivalent.

You can buy them at essentially every corner store, or have it shipped in advance to your hotel (what I did). It was stupid cheap - like 5 for 10 GB all roaming included.
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Old 11-29-2022, 07:51 PM   #25
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What countries? I bought a Lyca Sim in the UK and it worked flawlessly in France (not Monaco, mind you). They have a presence in every country and you can usually buy a sim for the 99 cent equivalent.

You can buy them at essentially every corner store, or have it shipped in advance to your hotel (what I did). It was stupid cheap - like 5 for 10 GB all roaming included.
France, Spain, and Cyprus.
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Old 11-29-2022, 09:18 PM   #26
cmyden
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Any recommendations for just a regular Sim card? Android device so iMessage not a factor. Need for 30 days and Europe wide (not UK however). Data only is an option as messaging would be done via WhatsApp rather than text anyway so a local number is not critical to have.
Vodafone and Orange are two that work well across most of the EU. Roaming is free within EU countries.

Not in the EU: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Iceland, Kosovo, Liechtenstein, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Norway, Serbia, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom
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Old 12-01-2022, 10:56 AM   #27
Flaming Choy
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I've used Orange travel sim in the past as well. Ordered from Amazon before trip so it was ready to go right when i arrived. I think I was limited to 14 days though, might be a 30 day option though.
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Old 12-01-2022, 11:50 AM   #28
billybob123
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France, Spain, and Cyprus.
Lyca is everywhere in France and Spain - every small ethnic market store sells cards. The plans in France do have a limit on roaming data in the EU (e.g. their 40 GB plan has a limit of 5.5 GB in remaining countries) while it looks like in Spain, there is no limit. Their "sales" happen all the time (ie wait for the right price to pop up) and they can send a sim to your hotel for free. It used Orange's 5G network in France when I was there in July.

Their website has more info (in French and Spanish, obviously - if you don't speak French or Spanish just Google translate the page as needed). I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Far cheaper than the mainline carriers.


https://www.lycamobile.fr/fr/
https://lycamobile.es/
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