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how to get 3g in france

eurowolf

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going to france in june and july
where do I get the correct microsim and a dataplan?
 

longshadows

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Micro SIM in France

I am interested in the same thing. I'm going to France in August and would like to buy a micro-SIM and data plan through a French telecom provider. Has anyone had experience with this and which provider offers the best (really) short-term data plan.
 

Sutheri

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3G service in France for ipad

I was just in Barcelona and was able to buy a 1gb plan for 4 days with Orange for 20 euros.

According to the sales rep for Orange in Paris, I needed to have a French bank account before I could purchase access. Perhaps the reason was that France does not have prepaid 3G??

PS. In order to activate the micro sim card, you must connect the iPad to a pc or laptop via iTunes or else it won't work
 

GailLA

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I was just in Barcelona and was able to buy a 1gb plan for 4 days with Orange for 20 euros.

According to the sales rep for Orange in Paris, I needed to have a French bank account before I could purchase access. Perhaps the reason was that France does not have prepaid 3G??

PS. In order to activate the micro sim card, you must connect the iPad to a pc or laptop via iTunes or else it won't work

Boy they sure don't make it easy for you to give them your money. Hopefully this will improve in time.
 

wooglin

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Just to be sure, you were able to get your ipad running on Orange's network in Spain without a Spanish-based (or European-based) credit card?

Secondly, do you think that micro-sim card would have worked if you traveled into France with it?

Thx
 

Sutheri

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I used a north american credit card in Spain. I gave the address of my friend who I stayed with in Barcelona as the address on the application.

The sim card did not work in France.
 

Linda B.

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3G not so easy in France

I've been here in France for 10 days with my new iPad. I had researched it before I left the USA and it appeared it would be easy to get prepaid 3G service over here, since I didn't want to depend on WiFi. I have been in probably 15 Orange and SFR stores (and one Bouyg store) and gotten about 15 versions. First of all, most of them don't even have the microsim chip or don't offer prepaid. I was able to buy a three-day card at SFR in Paris for 9.9 €' but they gave me the wrong code and it quit working after a day, requiring another trip to the SFR store and hour wait. The Orange store is SUPPOSED to have a three-day deal, but in the store they'll offer a one-day for 8€, which is pretty pricey. The web site shows a month plan, but you need a French account, no exceptions. (Had I known, I would have tried to open an account in the States with a French bank.)

I'm open to suggestions for an easier way to get 3G for the remainder of our vacation. I'm new to these forums, (and new to Apple and the iPad.) though, so please be kind. I know I'm an ignorant tourist.

Linda B.

PS. My technophobe husband had no use for the iPad until I got him on the ESPN app, and now he's a convert.
 

MarkK

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It used to be easier, but since these Terrorist threats, they wanted to make it difficult to get anonymous data-access. Therfore, they require you to have a french bank account as a means of identification.
It's the same in most other countries as wll actually. No more anonymous wireless access.
 

Linda B.

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Thanks, Mark K.

Thanks for the logic behind the rule. Much easier to go with the flow when you understand why. And it does make sense.

I talked with a couple from the USA who are moving here to France and they spent hours trying to open a French bank account and deposit money. The bank required proof of income, for a DEPOSIT! But it's a beautiful country, the food is great, and the people have been so nice and oh so polite.

However, if anyone has any tips on prepaid 3G service, I'm open for suggestions. Until then it's wee-fee for me. (or wifi as we say in the US)

À bientôt,
Linda B.
 

MarkK

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Bonjour Linda.
I curretly live in Germany. It's just as difficult here. No SIM-cards without proof of identity.
I have some prepaid cards available for friends who come to visit from abroad. That way, they can use their equipment here without any hassle.
 

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
 

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
 

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.
 

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!
 

Tim SPRACKLEN

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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

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
 

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