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Data surfing overseas can leave you with a sky-high bill upon your return. Whether your plans are for two days or two months, make sure your phone is prepared for your next jet-setting global excursion with these tips and tricks.
Unlock your phone
If your phone is more than one year old and technologically compatible with the network in your destination, you can have it unlocked in order to purchase and use a SIM card from a local provider when you arrive at your destination.
Manage your usage
Does your international plan charge for texting? There’s an app for that! WhatsApp or Line allows you to message over the Internet or Wi-Fi. My Data Manager, available for iOS and Android, provides alarms to notify you about your data consumption and lets you limit mobile data usage via the device settings.
Eliminate unnecessary apps
Many apps use data in the background, unbeknownst to you. Disable any apps that aren’t critical to eliminate the risk. In iOS, go to Settings > Cellular and scroll down to your list of apps. In Android, go to Settings > Data Usage and scroll down.
Reduce background usage
Speaking of background data, deactivate automatic syncing to services such as iCloud, Google, and Dropbox. Only download and sync when you have access to Wi-Fi when traveling abroad and turn off automatic email syncing to save data access.
When in doubt-Wi-Fi only
If an international plan is not available to you through your provider, Wi-Fi is the answer. Simply turn off data roaming in your settings, allowing phone calls and text messages to still come through your phone. Data will only send when your phone is connected to a Wi-Fi signal.
There you have it! Go ahead and switch your phone from airplane mode and start talking. Happy Traveling!