There is officially less than one month until my trip to Sydney, and I’m getting very very excited about all of this. Coincidentally my BF is headed to England next month as well, and since both of us are proud iPhone owners I thought I’d do a bit of research on what we should do with our device once we’re overseas.
We’ve all heard the horror stories of the people who didn’t realize that checking their email or the daily sports scores meant they were being charged for data, or the people who forgot to turn off data roaming feature on the phone, or the traumatic $5,000 phone bills… Racking up those charges is easy to do especially if you’re unfamiliar with how a new technology works. Once consumer complaints began pouring in after the phone’s 2007 launch, Apple started to change small things to make the consumers more aware of the mythical beast that is data roaming. They made changes to the iPhone software so that when one ventures into the “settings” portion of the phone, there is a warning about data roaming and the troublesome feature is by default switched to “off.”
Still… it’s not always enough. I found a good article on BudgetTravel.com that was written last year by Sean O’Neill. O’Neill makes 8 solid points about how to use your iPhone while abroad, and I agree with several. Everything from the data roaming features, to switching your email retrieval method to, “manual,” mode, to being careful how you phrase your Google searches (so you only have to search once) will all save you unnecessary data charges.
One of the best tips comes from my good buddy Jon who recently completed a 2 week stay in Italy earlier this summer. I asked him how he used his iPhone abroad and he revealed that the best way to use your phone is as a WiFi device only. What this means is that you put your iPhone into airplane mode (which will turn off all WiFi & Data Network capabilities), but then you go back into the settings and turn WiFi back on (the Data Network will remain off). With the help of a free WiFi hot spot you can now check your email, check the weather, play Words With Friends, and find the scoop on the restaurant down the street via Yelp without having to pay for a dime of it!
Loveeeeeeeee it. And this is EXACTLY how I’ll be using my iPhone in Australia. ❤
PS) All of the aforementioned configurations can be managed through the “Settings” app on your iPhone.