It used to be that if you wanted to make a call from abroad, you had to use a pay phone and spend upwards of $1 per minute. People didn’t even bother taking their phones on vacation because the service charges were way too high. That is no longer the case. Now, smartphone owners have lots of options to stay connected while abroad.
Many wireless service providers offer international phone plans that make it affordable to call while you’re out of the network. Often you can purchase these plans for the duration of your trip, especially if you are not locked into a contract. Unlocked phones are also an option. For instance, an unlocked Galaxy Note 4 can accept a prepaid SIM card for use anywhere in the world. All you have to do is ask your wireless carrier to unlock your phone and then get the prepaid SIM card once you get to your destination.
Besides international phone plans and unlocked devices, some people opt to use free Wi-Fi to stay connected while abroad. Wi-Fi hotspots are found all over the world. When you’re connected to Wi-Fi, you can make calls through Skype or send messages through email and social media without racking up high bills. You just have to make sure that your Wi-Fi is turned on so that you are not using data.
There are so many reasons to take your smartphone with you when you’re traveling abroad. The huge number of travel apps available make it such a useful tool in so many situations. Imagine using the Google Translate app to communicate with locals or checking prices with a currency converter tool to make sure you’re not spending too much. Check out this infographic to find other useful travel apps and to learn how to stay connected when you’re traveling abroad without spending a fortune.