Using iPAd on holiday in UK and France

Discussion in 'Australian Dedicated iPad Forum' started by RoyBurton, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    Hi, In 3 weeks I will be going on holiday to the UK and France and want to be able to buy a connection with a local server, so as to avoid the expensive Telstra international roaming charges. I am sure that someone will have experienced this problem and can help me. Any advice will be welcome. Roy
  2. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    The UK is easy. Walk into any mobile phone shop, select your PAYG (Pay As You Go) plan, pay - cash or credit, it's all the same, 3 minutes later you're outside and good to go. No credit checks, no wanting to see your passport, no wanting your telephone number or a UK address, no wanting to know what you ate for breakfast. In the UK, mobile 'phone competition is stiff and there are lots of great deals. You'll have no problem at all. All they're interested in is your money!! It's completely deregulated.

    In France, Members report it's a different matter altogether and very time consuming and problematic. Most have decided to abandon it and go for WiFi hotspots.

    Tim
  3. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    Thanks Tim. I'm not familiar with WiFi hotspots. Can you explain please. Roy
  4. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    In the UK and France (and most other countries) most hotels, malls, coffee shops, restaurants, trains, buses etc have free WiFi available. For example, in the UK, Starbucks, McDonalds offer free WiFi. Most hotels it's either free (get a code from reception) or you can pay a nominal fee. This obviates the need for 3G entirely. Of course, if you need connectivity when you're 'out and about' this doesn't help.

    If you're going to sign up for PAYG in the UK, I'd recommend the provider '3'. They have an all 3G network - so it's high speed everywhere. Most of the other providers have hybrid 2G/3G systems - with 3G only in urban areas. This discrepancy is due to a quirk of the licensing conditions - '3' were a late entrant and missed the original 2G round of licence approvals. You'll find cellular coverage is excellent in the UK, with very few blackspots. This, again, is a quirk of the original licensing provision. In 'the olden days' the UK had a nationalised phone system with a 'public service' provision requirement. So, when the original cellular licences were awarded the bidders were mandated to provide a specified coverage - including remote rural areas.

    Although the UK system is now fully private and entirely deregulated, that 'public service provision' mindset is still around.

    I'm not sure why it's so difficult to casually get a PAYG SIM card in France. Perhaps some French members can enlighten us but you'll find posts from several Members who, when touring in France with their iPads, gave up trying to get one there.

    Tim
  5. Rockbottom
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    Rockbottom iPad Fan

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    I was in France a few weeks ago (I am from Canada). I meant to buy a monthly subscription but we did not have good wireless connection where we were (Gite in the country side). So we used wifi at bistro and then at hotels later in the trip. I even used free wifi in parcs in Paris.

    Sent from my iPad2 3G 32 gig / using iPF
  6. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    Thanks for that information on WiFi. I suspect it may be the best choice for the OP in France.

    Tim
  7. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    Hi Rockbottom
    Thanks for your advice. We will be staying in two hotels and I have written to them both regarding the availability of WiFi.
    Best wishes, Roy
  8. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    Thanks for the explanation Tim. I had a vague idea that it was as you have explained. The trouble with all these modern terms is that you are expected to know what is being talked about, without ever having it explained.
    Best wishes, Roy
  9. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    I hope you have a great vacation and let us know how you get on...

    Tim
  10. ellahenry
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    ellahenry iPF Noob

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    Can someone advise me if I need a special plug to charge my ipad1 bought in NZ, while I am in the UK?
  11. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    A regular travel adaptor will do just fine - the sort that you can purchase at any airport. The charger itself will work with no problems - it just needs the physical adaptor to make it compatible with the UK socket outlet.

    Tim
  12. ellahenry
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    ellahenry iPF Noob

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    Thank you very much Tim, cheers, Ella
  13. maydel
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    maydel iPF Noob

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    Hi, am new to this so hoping i am on the right page. Am going overseas to london spain and then back to wales. Can i buy a pre paid ipad sim card for 2months that will work in bot h UK and Spain or do I need to buy a seoarate one for Spain. Is pre paid advisable? Available? thanks
  14. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    Charging IPad in UK

    All you will need is a plug converter to the UK standard, exactly the same as for any other electrical appliances.
  15. Ianhilton
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    Ianhilton iPF Noob

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    Roy iwas in France recently , I bought a prepaid sim from orange for 8euros which was for data only for my ipad2 then you can load it with a recharge from any tobbaconist i think they were10,25&50 euros or you can do it by phone on your credit card. We had hardly any trouble with it anywhere in France you do get a few black spots but you get them in every country.The weird thing is orange don't do a prepaid sim for phone and data for iPhone. If you are going to Paris I got mine from 9boulevard st Michel. They are harder to find in regional France hope this helps
  16. RoyBurton
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    RoyBurton iPF Noob

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    iPad in France and England

    Thanks for your advice. We have just returned from holiday. We spent two weeks in England, where we bought a sim card for iPad on Paddington Station for 5 pounds for a month. This worked fine wherever we went except in the hills in Wales. We hoped that it would work in France but it didn't.
    In France, because we were staying in hotels, we relied on the hotel's wi-fi systems. This worked reasonably well but there were times when I had to walk around the corridors to get a connection.
    What surprised me, and this may be because I am only a recent iPad user, is that our emails came direct to the ipad. I thought that we would have to get them from the server's web site, as we have done in the past, when we used to go to an internet café. Also, even though the iPad was switched off, we would sometimes hear a "ping" of emails arriving, or the swish sound of an email being sent, when because of a poor connection it didn't go immediately but somehow the connection improved and it went later.
    Altogether a good experience and I would recommend anyone planning to travel to take an iPad.
    Roy
  17. K1W1
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    K1W1 iPad Fan

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    If you have an email account set up on the iPad it will poll the mail server constantly to look for new mail.

    Was it turned off or just asleep?
    If all you did was blank the screen then it was asleep and will still pole the servers are regular intervals. If you actually turned it off (held the button down then swiped the screen) it no longer poles the servers.
  18. RocketIII
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    RocketIII iPF Noob

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    You can set up how often the iPad checks your email account in settings. Anywhere from every 5 minutes to only when you open the email app. This also saves battery power. Another Kiwi in Auckland NZ

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