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Travel Tip: Using a Smartphone While You’re Traveling Internationally

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Image Credit: Kārlis Dambrāns

Image Credit: Kārlis Dambrāns

Here’s a little news bulletin.

Just because you have a smartphone, it doesn’t make you smart—especially when you travel outside the U.S.

International calling charges on cell phones remain the most confusing and costly aspects of the travel experience.

Which plan do you have? Which do you need?

It all depends, of course, on where you’re traveling, your phone call patterns, and how much you plan to use your phone overseas.

This not only takes into account your calls but also your data and texting.

As a general rule—since so few of us change our habits when we change our locations—sticker shock is often the case when we return home from a trip and get our cell phone bills.

So, I turn data and roaming off on my phone the minute I leave the country.

When you begin to count the number of text messages you receive during a regular day and calculate how much some companies charge, it’s outrageous.

My suggestion? Patience.

Text your friends before you leave home and tell them to email you during your trip.

Then use the free WiFi in your hotel lobby, or if the hotel provides it, free WiFi in your hotel room.

Then text your family and friends all your cell phone photos when you return.

In many cases, you’ll save between $100 and $300 per international trip.

For more information about using technology while you travel, check out:

Keep reading for more travel tips.

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