The last couple of years have brought an immense boost to the industry of smart gadgets of all types and now there are very few people who don’t carry with them a smart phone everywhere they go. Let’s face it, everything is easier and more accessible when having a smart phone at hand. You have maps, dictionaries, information from the Internet and many other helpful apps that you can use wherever you go. Well, but what about when you are travelling abroad? Things can change a bit, because the prices of traffic data are a lot bigger out of your home country and many of the apps need the Internet to work properly. You can wind up with a huge phone bill without even realizing, so it’s really important to think about how you can use your smart phone abroad without harming your wallet. Here are some tips on useful planning that worked for us.
Our tip – Unlock your phone
If your phone is locked to a certain mobile company, try going to a GSM service to unlock your device or do it online in just few minutes by using websites like SafeUnlockCode.com. After you do this you can buy a prepaid SIM card with a fix value and spend it as you wish without worrying to be overcharged.
- Get traffic statistics
It’s very important for you to know how much data you are using on average, so before you leave somewhere take a few days to monitor your normal daily need of data. You can reset your phone’s stats usually from your Settings and then get an app such as Net Counter to show exactly how much you use every day. You should continue using the tracking app after you are gone, of course.
- Activate your international roaming service and know about it
Check with your mobile company provider what the exact fees for international use are and make sure you choose and activate the best option for your needs. If you discard this aspect you might end up having no international access or having huge fees for your traffic.
- Look for Wi-Fi hotspots in the cities you are visiting
You can save your traffic data by finding free Wi-Fi locations in the city you are visiting. You can check for some prior to your departure on jiwire.com, or by looking for local info in the city you are going to.
- Turn off the Data Roaming setting
It’s very useful to keep your data roaming off and make it available only when you really need it. This way you will prevent unwanted traffic.
- Turn off all notifications
Explore your settings menu and be careful to turn off any kind of notifications and updates for your current apps. You don’t need to spend extra data on those while you are travelling.
- Turn off the auto checking email option
Go to your email settings and switch them to manual, so that you don’t get undesired Internet usage.
On the road:
- Take advantage of the Wi-Fi spots
If you need to download anything, watch videos or upload images, do it when you have a Wi-Fi Internet connection. Anywhere you will go you will find such hotspots, the Internet is no longer a rarity nowadays.
- Activate Airplane Mode
If you are not expecting any calls and you just want to enjoy your time there, turn your phone to the “airplane mode” so that you don’t risk being charged for calls or voice mail that you don’t really want.
- Use the Internet to make calls
It’s way cheaper to communicate with your friends and family using apps than using your mobile service. Skype is a must have whenever you are out of the country, it will save you good money.
- If you’re out of traffic, call customer support
If it happens that you finish all your roaming options and cannot use your phone anymore, call customer support and your mobile company might extend your limit or offer some credit in advance.
When you get back:
- Don’t deactivate your roaming package
Keep your roaming package until your current billing month ends because come companies might charge extra for deactivating before term.
- Think about your battery lifetime
If it happened more than once that your phone battery died during using your smart phone, then you should think about getting an external battery or a smart charger. You can check out mophie.com and Duracell.com for some ideas.
Having all these aspects checked out, you will certainly benefit in a healthier and more economical way of your mobile smart gadget. Go and spread the news!