Cell Phone Question

Discussion in 'Computers & Website Forum' started by mnw, Aug 22, 2006.

  1. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am going to be spending two months on the road in the USA very soon. For most of that time it looks like I will be away from my wife and daughter and would like a cell phone in order to be able to stay in touch.

    While it may be possible to borrow one I am wondering what other options are out there.

    Here in the UK I can pick up a cheap mobile phone for $30 and a SIM card for $10. The call rates would not be the best, but it would be usable and mine and with no binding contract. It would be pay as you go.

    Are such options open to users in the USA? I don't believe they used to be but wondered if there had been any change.

    Now, I know of special services that will give very cheap long distance calls so it will probably also allow me to stay in touch with people in my church here.

    Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.
     
  2. El_Guero

    El_Guero
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,714
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am using virgin mobile right now for similar reasons . . . gets pricey at times, but beats the old price I was paying . . .

    Wayne
    www.virginmobile.com
     
  3. James_Newman

    James_Newman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Messages:
    5,013
    Likes Received:
    0
    There are plenty of pre-paid mobile services available. Walmart has had some tmobile prepaid phones for around $30.
     
  4. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's great news! Thanks guys.

    When did they start using pre-paid/pay-as-you-go in the US? Last I checked... 3 years ago, that was not an option.

    Anyway, that really is a weight off my mind. Thanks.

    I just looked at the Virgin site and it has some good offers. I'll check the Wal-Mart site as well. Most likely I'll wait until I get there and pick one out in a store. But at least I'll have an idea what to expect.
     
  5. James_Newman

    James_Newman
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Messages:
    5,013
    Likes Received:
    0
    The cheap phones were in store, I didn't see them on their site. They are probably a discontinued model. But I did have a prepaid AT&T phone about four years ago I think. I'm not sure when they appeared but it seems like they have been around for a long time.
     
  6. El_Guero

    El_Guero
    Expand Collapse
    Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    7,714
    Likes Received:
    0
    You might be able to pick up the phones that can be used there as well as here.

    But, at the price for two phones and $20 on each phone - $100 even if ya' gotta give them away when you leave is not terribly bad.

    PS - prepaid with virgin mobile is USA wide - no long distance, no roaming charges.

    I don't know about competitors.
     
  7. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    You can get tracfones now at Family Dollar Stores, and Dollar General Stores for $20. and can get 60 minutes for around $18. Of course the more time you buy, the cheaper the rates become.
    The phone comes with 10 minutes, but if you activate it online, tracfone doubles it to 20 minutes... Thats a little known secret.

    I own 2 tracfones, and my older one, (4 yrs old) gets a better signal than my cingular... I can use my tracfone when there is no service at all from the cingular Phone... and my tracfone would show full bars!!!

    I keep it for just that reason....
     
  8. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    BTW, if you are in WV, look me up!
     
  9. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    Around here, Walmart was selling Tracfones (prepay) back in 2001.
    I started to get one, but where I lived there was no signal.
     
  10. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    Okay, I was wondering what kind of coverage in the US cell phones get and what they are like for calling state to state.

    Most of those questions have been answered. Virgin is looking like the company to go with. But I guess I can drop into a few stores when I get there and see what the options are.

    If I can get a SIM card for my existing phone then I may just be able to take that. It is capable of being used in the US -Triband I think is the term.

    It is a Nokia 6630.
     
  11. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tim, is Tracfone a brand like Nokia? I think I saw some on a Wal-Mart site a few minutes ago. I'll check that out.

    And if I am in your neck of the woods I'll give you a call and drop by for a pizza!
     
  12. Bible Believing Bill

    Bible Believing Bill
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/bbb.jpg>

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2001
    Messages:
    3,761
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you are going to be calling home make sure you check the internation rates. With Virgin Mobile I know they charge an additional .10 per min. for Canada and Mexico, I have no Idea what the extra charge is for calling Ireland.

    As far as I know in the US you must have purchased a phone that is made for a specific carrier. Therefore I don't think you will be able to simply get a sim card for your current phone. I know for a fact that Virgin Mobile phones do not use SIM cards. As a matter of fact the only pre-paid that I know of that uses a SIM card is Boost Mobile. Boost is Nextel's pre-paid service.

    Unlike Tim I am not a big fan of Tracfones. I am not familiar with their current rates and terms, but in the past their rates have been significantly higher than their competators.

    Bill
     
  13. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    I wouldn't call me a big fan of tracfone... the minutes are expensive. But I get coverage where others can't. So I use mine as an emergency phone... my main one is from cingular.

    My dad has a virgin mobile, and he cannot pick up a signal as good as I can..... But it just may be a WV thing... lot of mountains and a lot of dead areas...
     
  14. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    Come on by brother! What do you want on your pizza?

    seriously, how long will you be in the US?
     
  15. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks Tim.

    We leave for the US August 31 and will be there for two months. At the moment it looks like a packed schedule. I have been helped by a group called HELP Ministries. They seem to arrange the meetings, transport and accommodation for national pastors/missionaries in my position.

    The only downside I have at the minute is not having a detailed itinirary.

    The first week in September looks to be in Georgia, but after that I do not know.

    I'll post the details on my site once I know more. We'll possibly be up WV direction.

    As for the pizza, just put everything on except anchovies! Apart from those its all good!
     
  16. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    Just found out I am going to be in Valdosta Georgia for the first week!
     
  17. LeBuick

    LeBuick
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2006
    Messages:
    11,537
    Likes Received:
    0
    Prepaid phone will be good for emergency contact but I suggest a pre paid phone card for the late night I miss you calls. Some are very economical. Just make sure the hotel doesn't charge to dial an 800 number...
     
  18. tinytim

    tinytim
    Expand Collapse
    <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Messages:
    11,250
    Likes Received:
    0
    And watch out for those crazy surcharges.. Walmart's phone card is pretty decent..
     
  19. mnw

    mnw
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    1,221
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'll see what I can find. I used to have a number I could dial form here in the UK and call the USA for about $0.02 a minute. If I could find something like that it would be good.

    I'll make sure to read the small print with everything though. :)
     

Share This Page

Loading...