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6th Jan 2014

Disney CRP Phones and SIM Cards – 2013/14 Edition

Cell Phone

Back in the ancient history of 2011 I wrote a blog post about sorting out phones and SIM Cards for your Disney program. Back then Blackberry was still a thing and 3G was brand new and shiny. I thought it was about time I did an update!

I am going to assume that most people these days have some kind of shiny smartphone (iPhone, Blackberry, Android etc). To use that in Florida you will need it to be unlocked, you can arrange that through your network as long as your contract is over or you can jailbreak it and unlock it yourself or take it to a shop to get it done. Once you have this you are good to go!

Smartphones

If you already own a smartphone you can buy a SIM card before you even leave the UK and have it ready for when you arrive. I personally like USASIMS – they sell a few different brands and ship to the UK at very reasonable prices. The different networks offer different prices on monthly contracts which you just pay each month to top up. I personally have always used H2O wireless without any problems, they offer a few different packages:

Plan 1
1,000 Minutes Talk or Text and 80 MB Internet Plus $5 of International Calling $25 a Month
Plan 2
Unlimited Nationwide Talk, Text, MMS, International Text and 500 MB Internet Plus $5 of International Calling $30 a Month
Plan 3
Unlimited Nationwide Talk, Text, MMS, International Text and 1GB Internet Plus $20 of International Calling $40 a Month
Plan 4
Unlimited Nationwide Talk, Text, MMS, International Text, Unlimited Calling to the 25 countries below, and 2 GB Internet Plus $40 of International Calling to all other countries

Unlimited calling is to all numbers in Canada, Hong Kong, and Israel. Unlimited calling to landlines in Argentina, Brazil, China, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, and Venezuela

$50 a Month
Plan 5
Unlimited Nationwide Talk, Text, MMS, International Text and UNLIMITED INTERNET Plus $20 of International Calling $60 a Month

The only thing to remember is that once you choose one, you can’t change to another one without changing your phone number. If you buy the top-ups through CallingMart¬†you can also get a discount by using the discount codes on their Facebook Page. Basically for $50 a month you can have all your calls (including those home) or for $30 or $40 a month you can have almost everything included (It would be 2.5c a minute to call a UK landline out of your $20 or $5 allowance).

Lyca Mobile and Simple Mobile are also good choices for Blackberries or Androids with similar monthly plans but they work on a frequency that most iPhones cannot use. If you do have an iPhone remember to order the right size SIM card as well as cutting them down is a real pain.

The advantage of having the SIM before you arrive is that you can start using it straight away, otherwise it will be several days before you can get to a phone shop (there is a T-mobile shop quite near housing) but it usually works out more expensive and you don’t get time to work out if you are getting the best deal.

Basic Phone

The alternative is to buy a basic phone in the USA, you can pick one up at WalMart for less than $30. They are the old brick phones which call and text and not much else. This used to be my recommendation but these days most people want Facebook, Twitter and everything else on their phone but if you really want to save the pennies this is an option for you as well. Bear in mind you cannot take the SIM out of these phones so if you later decide to change to a smartphone you would have to get a new number.

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