When traveling internationally many people find themselves faced with the decision to either shut off their smartphone’s data usage or face often times outrageous data charges.
Luckily there are several ways to help reduce your data and roaming rates while traveling outside the country.
Onavo is an iPhone app that passes all your mobile data through it’s servers, compresses it, then re-routes the data back to your phone. The result is up to an 80% reduction in mobile data usage, saving you a significant amount of money when traveling abroad.
Abroadband is another service that provides mobile Internet access around the world. It costs a flat rate of €0.59/MB, no matter which country you’re in. Even the wi-fi in your hotel probably isn’t as cheap, and it most likely comes at a hefty daily rate. Not very economical if you only need to check your email a couple times a day. The service can be connected to your laptop, smartphone or even a tablet all for the same low rate.
Similar to Abroadband, Droam, allows you to rent a MiFi device that will connect up to five wireless devices (smartphones, laptops, or tablets). Unlike Abroadband however, you do not need to swap out a SIM card, so you can still be reached on your own number while online. The downside to this is that you will need to place your order for renting the device for each trip you take. After the rental period is over you return the device in the provided return envelope. This might be more cumbersome than it’s worth for frequent international travelers. However for the one off trip, this might be well worth the effort.
Finally, MobileGlobe is an app that allows cheap and easy international calling and SMS from your mobile phone. Simply download the app and place a phone call from within the app. There are no contracts or commitments, so you can use the app to save money only when you need it. The app is available on iPhone, BlackBerry, and Nokia devices.
What successes (or failures) have you had with these products/services? Are there others not on this list that have helped you cut costs while abroad?
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