Tips for using the net while traveling abroad

The last thing you want to come home to after a once-in-a lifetime family vacation abroad is a $2,000 phone bill.

We’ve all heard the nightmare stories of people who travel internationally and then get a ridiculous cell phone bill upon their return. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here’s some advice on using your smartphone while traveling abroad without breaking the bank.

Dear Maggie,

Our family is traveling to Europe this summer for a two-week vacation. What’s the best option for using our phones? We won’t really need it to make calls (Unless there is an emergency, of course.) But we would like to be able to use Google Maps, Uber and look up restaurants or information about local tourist attractions. Do you have any tips so we don’t come home to a bill that is a gazillion dollars?

Thanks,

Travellin’ Band

Dear Travellin’,

I hear you. Who uses a phone to call people anymore? Today’s smartphones offer the internet in our pockets. And once you come to depend on that always-on access, it’s hard not to have it — even if you are on vacation and trying to relax. But if you think about it, apps like Google Maps are even more valuable when you’re someplace you’ve never been.

Here’s a look at different options for getting data service while traveling abroad. And I also throw in a few tips to help you conserve data while you’re gallivanting through Europe.

Google Project Fi

If you’re already a Google Project Fi customer, you’re in luck. Google‘s wireless service, which uses both Wi-Fi and cellular networks to offer phone and mobile internet service, offers one of the the easiest and most cost-effective solutions for international travelers.

The plan is structured so you only pay for what you need….

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