The Dangers of International Roaming Charges
There really is nothing quite like traveling the world. The experiences that you’ll have abroad can be life-changing. However, if you’re not careful, travel can come at a big cost. Between purchasing flights, a place to stay, and all the activities you’ll be taking part in, there are a lot of costs associated with a jet-set lifestyle.
Spending money on your mobile devices shouldn’t be something you need to worry about. With so many things to keep track of and exciting adventures around every corner, people are often surprised by how fast their mobile bill climbs while overseas. By making yourself aware of the ways you can accumulate roaming charges and your options to avoid them you can rest easy knowing that you won’t find any unfortunate surprises when you get home.
If you’re not paying attention, roaming charges can quickly sneak up on you, causing astronomical increases to your monthly cell phone bill. Travelers often find themselves caught off-guard by roaming charges because they don’t know how they apply to them. People often make the mistake of thinking that when their mobile devices continue to work as normal they won’t be charged for roaming. They’ll spend a few days using their devices to look up directions, local activities and making phone calls thinking their usage will be billed the same way it always is.
Think again. When you use your cellphone overseas, you’re typically using towers that belong to a mobile carrier other than the one you signed your contract with. These network providers have a commercial agreement with your regular service provider that allows you to connect to their towers. This agreement works out great for your home provider because they get to keep you as a customer and make a little extra money in the process. For you, it doesn’t work out so nicely. While it does offer the convenience of being able to use your devices in a way that appears hassle-free, this convenience comes at a price.
It’s not uncommon for travelers to be caught by surprise by roaming charges even when they knew they were coming. In fact, roughly 85% of travelers have no idea how much they’ll be charged to use their phones while they travel. People often make the mistake of thinking that as long as they don’t make any outgoing calls they won’t be charged extra money for using their phones.
Don’t feel bad if you’re among the people who were shocked by your phone bill after a vacation. When asked, about half of the travelers said that they’d found an unpleasant surprise in their bill when they returned home. The truth is, when it comes to roaming charges, making phone calls is the least of your worries. Most people carrying around a cellphone these days threw their flip-phones in the trash years ago.
The smartphone technology available to us brings so many conveniences right to our fingertips. Unfortunately, they also make us much more susceptible to surprise charges when traveling. The thing that makes smartphones so useful is that they’re almost constantly connected to the Internet. They immediately alert us when we have an e-mail. They allow us to stay connected through social media and they allow us to see what’s around us using GPS. It’s all of those conveniences, however, that can add alarming charges to your bill.
Those convenient features are constantly using data. When you’re outside of your local coverage area and using a foreign network, those features can get extremely expensive very quickly. Even something as simple as checking your voicemail can tack on hidden fees. When you check your voicemail, you’re actually connecting to a voicemail service. This service requires your phone to make an outgoing call which costs you money just like any other phone call.
How to Avoid Roaming Charges
WiFi can be incredibly beneficial when traveling. Most developed areas in the world have embraced the idea of offering WiFi hotspots for you to use. After all, it’s a great way for a business to attract customers. The convenience of being able to browse the Internet while you enjoy a nice lunch or relax in your hotel room is hard for a lot of travelers to resist. However, public WiFi hotspots should be used sparingly and with great caution. When connecting to a public WiFi hotspot, you’re putting yourself at risk of being taken advantage of by the less honest people of the world. When a business offers wireless Internet to their customers, the password is given to anyone who asks for it, often for free. Even worse, public hotspots usually don’t have a password at all, making them easy to access by anyone within their coverage range.
A lot of travelers make the mistake of thinking that they can make free phone calls while connected to WiFi. Well, they’re partially right. Most carriers offer free WiFi calling to their customers, but only within the country you signed your contract in. WiFi calls made outside your home country can still be subject to international calling rates. Text messages sent over WiFi are another source of confusion for many travelers. While a lot of network providers support WiFi text messaging for Android devices, many still require a network connection when using the iOS. Considering about 50% of people worldwide use iPhones, this could lead to major problems for a lot of travelers.
How to Protect Yourself
Luckily for you there’s a solution to all of your international roaming woes. Prepaid international data solutions like the ones offered by Keepgo are the perfect way for any traveler to stay connected while on the go.The Lifetime Data Sim Card allows you to stay connected almost anywhere in the world. Simply replace the sim card in your phone with the Keepgo lifetime sim and you’re good to go. You can start using your device as soon as you arrive at your destination. If you run out of data on your card, all you have to do is go online and recharge it. This option is hassle-free and will save you tons of money.
If for whatever reason you wish to keep your current sim card, you can still protect yourself from unnecessary roaming charges. You can have your very own WiFi hotspot with the Keepgo Lifetime mobile WiFi hotspot. This palm-sized device allows you to connect up to 16 devices just about anywhere without having to replace your current sim card and without the security risks of a public hotspot. Equipped with Keepgo SIM card, the lifetime wireless hotspot allows you to access the Internet without having to track down a local sim, which is incredibly handy when you don’t speak the language. This easy-to-use pay as you go option works with any tablet or cell phone whether it’s unlocked or not. Both of these options come with a money-back guarantee so there’s absolutely no risk in giving them a try.
When you’re free-spirited and adventurous you should allow nothing to get in your way of your need to explore the world around you. Next time you’re searching for your new adventure, roaming fees should be the last thing on your mind. As long as you’re informed about the possible expenses and you’re prepared with resources like those available at Keepgo, nothing can stand in your way of experiencing the world and everything in it.