how to get 3g in france

Discussion in 'Europe' started by eurowolf, May 27, 2010.

  1. LMF1212

    LMF1212
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    3G in France

    Linda
    I think the 3 days for 9 euros may be the only option you have. SFR has a 250MB plan for 1 month but you may also need a French bank account for that one. I was there in July and purchased the 29.99 euro unlimited plan for 1 month (I have a French bank account and address) and it worked beautifully other than problems with the purchase itself. None of the staff had seen an iPad before but had the proper micro sim for it available. They had not idea how to do the sale and gave the wrong instructions for the setup. I assume these problems will go away with time plus I was in the southwest. I have read that the problems were similar in Paris, though.

    They require the French bank account because they will draw the payments from your account rather than from the credit card. Which means you need to bring a RIB form ([FONT=Helvetica,Arial]RELEVÉ D'IDENTITÉ BANCAIRE)[/FONT] and identity card with you so they can process the payment. They told me that canceling after the first month would be just an easy phone call. Far from it. We called, a friend there called and visited two SFR branches, we sent a registered letter, then called again, and finally it was canceled but not before they had collected a second payment. They just told me they would be refunding most of it.

    We were also in Spain but did not use the French SFR card there as the charges were exorbitant. We were not able to find an Orange or Vodafone branch in the Valencia/Alicante area that had the sim for the iPad available.

    Trust me that opening a French bank account from the US is almost impossible. In most cases, they require utility bills from your French address, copy of your passport, tax forms from your US taxes, utility bills from your US address, etc. It is less about terrorism and more about money laundering and tax avoidance.

    Luis
     
  2. mattbert

    mattbert
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    iPad2 3G Europe Travel

    Hi All-

    I will be taking a trip in September to Spain and France, and have an iPad2 w/AT&T 3G service.

    I am interested in using the iPad for GPS if possible, which has lead to a number of questions.

    Any help people could provide would be much appreciated.

    My questions are:

    Does the AT&T 3G service work in Europe, and, what is the best/cheapest way to handle the billing for it? I am on the $25/month plan presently.

    I assume I will need the 3G service if I'm going to use the iPad for GPS navigation. (I have a Garmin GPS as an alternative, but, would rather not have to drag that along if I don't have to, plus, it needs updated maps so will cost some $$.)

    I am assuming US car chargers will work on rental cars in Europe?

    It sounds as if the wall charger that came with the iPad2 will work in Europe based on other threads, it is just a matter of having the correct plug, is that correct? Is there a name for the type of plug found most commonly through Spain and France?

    Thank you for your help.

    Mattbert
     
  3. Tom March

    Tom March
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    The wall plug will work with European voltage.

    As for the plug, you will see that it is in two parts. You can pull off the prong part and replace it with the European prongs. (I bought mine on Amazon.
     
  4. JHAC

    JHAC
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    Problems hooking up abroad

    Recently went to Honduras with a similar iPad2. Despite purchasing the AT&T international plan ahead of time, I couldn't get it to connect via a local carrier despite good signals from at least 3. I was able to use the resort's wifi however to connect for free. AT&T refunded my charge when I complained upon arrival home.

    Next time I go abroad with my iPad2, I will first call AT&T's international support #. They have one for use in the states and another for use outside our borders, both supposedly free. Good luck and have fun!
     
  5. Tim SPRACKLEN

    Tim SPRACKLEN
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    You don't need the 3G service for navigation if you've already downloaded the maps to your navigation app. If you're using the native iPad Maps app then, yes, you do need 3G but most Members would recommend using another app that downloads the maps in advance - so you can do this before leaving on your trip. Then you'll save on (terrible) roaming charges. It's better to purchase local SIM cards for the iPad when you get to the countries you'll be visiting. Roaming charges are not good and you'll soon end up with a significant cost. It's wise to check in advance because obtaining SIM cards locally varies very much from country to country. In the UK, where I am, getting a pre-paid SIM card is exceptionally easy - walk into any of the mobile phone shops, pick your pre-pay option, pay - cash or credit - walk out, you're done. In some countries, though, the process is much more complex - France being a case in point. So you might want to check this out in advance. You'll find several threads here on Members' experiences on purchasing SIM cards in France, Spain and other European countries as well as comments on the cost and coverage.

    Tim
     
  6. mattbert

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    Hi Everyone-

    Thank you for taking the time to respond.

    Tim, that is really encouraging, I'm glad I wound up gettin the 3G model!

    Does anyone have any navigation packages they recommend for this application that have the maps downloaded to the iPad device? I have the 64GB model and don't have a ton of things on it, so, I'm glad I spent the extra money at this point I think!

    We would be travelling to Barcelona, then up towards Toulousse, FR through Andorra, so would love to get turn-by-turn directions if possible.

    I am assuming that the accessory jacks would be the same in cars over there, so, I should be able to bring those adapters along, shouldn't I?

    Thanks for all your help. Sorry for some of the noob questions!

    Mattbert
     
  7. Tim SPRACKLEN

    Tim SPRACKLEN
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    One question answered - for sure - the accessory jacks in cars are exactly the same!!

    Navigon is recommended by quite a few Members - so take a look - for turn-by-turn navigation.

    Your trip sounds fantastic - I hope you have a really great time!!

    Tim
     
  8. mattbert

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    Hi Tim-

    Thanks very much! Do you know if Navigon loads the maps on the device, so, it works in disconnected mode?

    It appears to be the case, I just wanted to confirm.

    For the ~$90 it is in the app store, it's probably a lot cheaper than buying new maps for my existing GPS.

    We're definitely looking forward to the trip.

    thank you!

    Mattbert
     
  9. DefBref

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    Navigon maps are preloaded, don't need an Internet connection.
     
  10. sas8888

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    I have used Tom Tom western Europe in England, Ireland, France, Germany,Italy, and Spain. It has worked very well and gotten me to places I would have never found otherwise.
     

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