Let’s face it….not many of us want to completely unplug when we go overseas.  So with the high cost of international plans…at least here in Canada…what are your options?

You may want to have more than one option available to you.  For instance I use options 2, 3, and 4!

Option 1:  If you are from the US then you may be able to get a reasonable international plan for data and phone added to your phone for overseas.  Check with your carrier.  I have not been able to find a good international  plan in Canada.   This option requires a GSM phone. It is the standard system for Europe and many parts of the world.

Option 2:  If you have a smartphone you can download Viber and call or text any other party that has Viber installed on their phone.  WiFi or 3G

Option: 3 Skype can be downloaded and used to call other Skype users.  Also, I have a $30.00 yearly plan that let’s me call any land line or cell number in North America from anywhere around the world.  It is unlimited minutes.  Requires WiFi.

Option 4:  Unlock your phone and buy sim cards in the countries you visit.  I did this in Italy last time and it worked great. I got unlimited data for $2.00 a day.  It only activated the $2.00 charge if I used the Internet during that specific day.  Calls were charged  per minute in Italy.  I only used it for calls made in Italy…such as to the owner of the B&B we were staying in that night, etc.  I used my Skype plan with wifi at hotel and other establishments to call free to North America.   In most countries you can buy a sim card easily at one of their many phone shops.  Investigate which carrier has the best coverage before you leave.

Option 5:  For text messaging of course it is free to text anyone with iMessage if you have WiFi.  Make sure that the greyed out iMessage is in your text box before you send.  If not, switch to viber or text plus or some other free text messaging.

Option 6:  If you only want wifi a lot of establishments like hotels and B&B’s provide it now free of charge.

Do you have any tips for communication you have discovered?  Please share!