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Old 17-03-2013, 21:51   #16
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

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Originally Posted by lhsmith View Post
We are USA citizens starting a cruise in June. We are a bit confused about cell phone options. Do we bring our unlocked phones with us and pay roaming charges? Do we purchase country-specific SIMs that shift the charges to family members calling us? Do we just throw the cell phones away and use a SAT phone? What have others done to keep in touch with family at home?
Hi Larry.... bring your own cells then buy a sim.
No good in Turkey, the Gov't have banned all foreign cell phones.
To turn them on in Turkey you have to visit the Tax office pay 50 euros then go to phone shop to be connected..... daylight robbery
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Old 17-03-2013, 22:09   #17
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

A lot of good info here and very timely for us as well
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Old 18-03-2013, 02:24   #18
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

Larry try this, got this from yachting people currently in Europe on the Med

gymsim.com

The Gymsim service comes as an international Pay-As-You-Go sim card that has the unique ability to bypass expensive network roaming costs.
Custom made for the needs of Captains, Crew, Owners or Guests. Gymsim is ideal for anyone wishing to use their mobile phone affordably when traveling in foreign countries. Click here for more information about our service
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Old 18-03-2013, 04:56   #19
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

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Originally Posted by sy_gilana View Post
Gymsim works well.
Go to Telefonia movil sin ataduras | moviles libres | Simyo and look at their offers.
You can do Portugal/Spain/Italy on Simyo.
In EU you do not pay for incoming calls.
Bring an unlocked phone, or buy an unlocked one through simyo.
Suggest you open a bank account in the EU, just deposit your cruising funds in there.
This way you can have a phone on contract. You can draw cash at atms, without fees, you can shop online, etc etc. Far from being a problem, having a EU credit card linked to your cruising kitty bank account will open doors for you. Make it a NON resident bank account and there are no tax implications. just my 2c...
GYM SYM is very cheap to use internationally go for it. All details available on Google.
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Old 18-03-2013, 04:56   #20
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

As has been mentioned, there are many cafes and restaurants that have free wifi through europe so Skype will work for the price of a few coffees/beers. If you buy a high gain usb wifi antenna for your PC you can often continue using the wifi from your boat, its for you to decide if that's ethical. If most of your calls will be to outside Europe e.g. back home, then Skype will work out cheapest.

You can pay as you go and sign up to wifi adhoc and if you want to do some intensive data/skyping that can work out fairly cheap. If you get an app for your PC/phone/tablet that does wireless tethering, then several users can share the connection as most adhoc services only allow 1 user. Again, a high gain usb wifi antenna will help get you the most reliable and fastest connection

There are also internet cafes as in most countries.

The EU has capped the price of mobile phone calls and data roaming, so an EU sim with data roaming will give predictable costs but only in EU. Calls made to outside the EU will still be expensive unless you Skype.

If you stay in one country for longish periods, then a local sim will probably work out cheaper if you need lots of data. Again calls made to outside the country/EU will be expensive except Skype.
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Old 18-03-2013, 10:53   #21
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Re: Newbies to Med trying to figure out phone plans

WOW! Reading all of these entries is like trying to sip from a fire hose! Thanks to everyone for all of the interesting ideas to explore. I will post our conclusion from perusing your suggestions.
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