Posted by: Steve Marr on Jun 08, 2012
Tagged in: Untagged
When most of us travel out of the country, we take our cell phones and tablets on the trip. Unless we are careful, we can unknowingly run up hundreds, even thousands, of dollars in charges.
International roaming rates of $5.00 per minute are common. That means you can end up paying hundreds of dollars for a few calls to home and business.
While voice calls are costly, data transfers can be deadly. My current Verizon overseas roaming plan costs $20 per megabyte of data. A few photos or data downloads and you easily have a $400 bill. Checking your favorite internet sites will also cost money. For example, three minutes on YouTube can run as much as $100.
In addition to these charges, many of us set our Smart phones or Ipads to automatically check data, receive e-mail with attachments, get program updates, or use apps that generate automatic data traffic. Unless you turn these off, these automatic activities can cost thousands. I have seen stories about travelers billed for $5,000 or more, even though they did very little deliberate voice, e-mail or other internet activities. When traveling overseas, take some important steps to prevent these charges. First, turn off every automatic update feature. If you aren’t sure how to do this, get assistance. Second, check into changing your plan to meet your traveling needs. You may be able to get a temporary plan that will lower overseas charges before you go. Wireless companies are without mercy and don’t adjust bills when you return.
Third, consider buying or renting a phone when you arrive at your overseas destination. Local options with prepaid time are far less costly.
Fourth, use Skype to call home. Just be sure that you have a free or low cost data connection. You don’t want to incur data charges for making a Skype call on your phone or Ipad. Also, have family or business associates call your room. Most hotels don’t charge for incoming calls, just outgoing calls.
Prior to departing the country, plan ahead and check out your equipment. King Solomon wrote that “the complacency of fools will destroy them.” (Proverbs 1:32, NASB) Don’t let international charges destroy your budget. Get the facts about international roaming charges and how to prevent them.
Steve Marr, Your Christian Business Coach
Subscribe to the free Business Proverbs e-mail here: http://bit.ly/ncixc1