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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Melbourne, Australia

    Default A mobile / cell phone for use in the US.

    With a little help from my friend, I have obtained my mobile phone number. And yes, I just got a number. You see, I still had my old (unlocked) T Mobile phone. Nothing fancy, just a phone which makes phone calls (and texts). The guy at AT&T store (not an agent/dealer) told me that their sim card should work in any 3G or 4G phone. So we tried, and sure enough, it works. The sim card was free. (I believe the sim normally costs $6.95.) $25 credit, and I am up and running.

    So if you are coming to the States, and you have an unclocked mobile phone (3G or 4G), bring it along, as chances are you will be able to get a go-phone sim card at an AT&T store. Credit of less than $25 expires in 30 days. $25-$75 you have for in 90 days. $100 expires in one year. There are several plans available. You may choose to pay for minutes as you go, or a fixed amount of $2 per day - only on the days you use the phone.

    A US address and phone number will be required, but it seemed they were not too fussy as to whose. Even the hotel address and phone could be acceptable. Your choice of number, with your choice of area code.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Green County, Wisconsin


    Glad you found something that worked. The prepaid cell route is the way to go it seems.

    I'll say that I'd still recommend Tracfone for basic service, which is what I have.

    A cheap phone will cost $10-20 (just make sure it has double minutes, which most do), and for $30 you can get 300 minutes of service (texts cost .3 minutes) that's good for 90 days. There are other prices for less or more minutes, and the minutes carry over as long as you buy more minutes before your 90 days are up. The service area has also been excellent, as they contract with several different providers, and seem to be less likely to hit a dead zone.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Joplin MO


    One selling point for AT&T is they are GSM and use sim cards - so you can bring your own (unlocked) phone in from overseas that you are familiar with its operation. T-Mobile is the only other GSM carrier here.

  4. #4


    We tried AT&T yesterday to get our iPad connected to a network. The first store said no. The second store tried to sell us a hot spot device for $120 plus $50 per month connection. The third store inserted the sim card and told us it was $25!!! And that the only way to activate it was to pay a $500 deposit that would be refunded in 12 months time!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Their only other option was to direct us to the apple store (!). We knew this was wrong but just happened across an apple store later in the day. Went in, of course they looked at us like we were mad tourists!! They provided us an AT&T sim ( for FREE) and said we had to go to a store to activate it!! We wandered into T-Mobile and practically begged for help. Paid $30 for one month prepaid usage and we top up by phone!!! Can't believe the run around just to get some Internet for a couple of months!! She offered to sort our phone but it was all getting too hard by then!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Default Sheesh, that's terrible news

    It's no wonder that the USA is ranked 12th in Internet Service.

    Thanks so much for the field report -- and I'm sorry this was such a hassle for you.


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