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Verizon TravelPass

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Verizon TravelPass allows users to access their plan's voice, text and data capabilities with the only restriction being a ~500MB per day data limit. For those with the new unlimited plan, use of TravelPass in Canada and Mexico is free. In Europe, where we are, it's $10/24 hour period. 

We're using our Galaxy S7s and they've worked well, particularly considering that I'm currently inside the Arctic Circle in far northern Norway. Most of the time the phones automatically lock onto the network, sometimes they need a bit of "assistance".

Since we're traveling with several couples, having had phones for texting and calling has been very useful. All calls to US numbers are free as are all calls within the country in which you are roaming. 

As for the $10/day, IMHO it is worth it to hh67be able to retain connectivity. Furthermore, you are only charged the fee if you choose to use the phone. Keep it in airplane mode and you incur no costs. 

I recognize that this is not specifically an RV issue, but this group does travel quite a bit and I thought it would be helpful. 

Joel (aka docj) 

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As mentioned earlier, the $5 for Canada fee is a 24 hour period.  Take your phone out of airplane mode in afternoon and use it till the next afternoon.  Put it back in airplane mode until you have a need to use it again.  If traveling to Alaska there are large areas w/o cell coverage.  However we got good Verizon signal coverage in every decent sized town on the Alaska Hwy, but only in town.  We lost the signal just a few miles outside of town.

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Instead of using Verizon's expensive plans, find out if your phone is unlocked.  If it is, you can go into any cell phone provider store and purchase a SIM card with minutes and/or data preloaded.  Then switch it out with the one in your phone, and it becomes a local phone and very cheap.  Just need to choose provider carefully to make sure it has good coverage in the area where you plan to travel.  I did that in Canada three years ago with my Iphone 5 and am planning to do the same thing next spring in the UK. 

About 8 years ago when I went to Scotland, I went to CarPhone Warehouse and bought a cheap "unsmart" phone for $15 and then put $20 worth of prepaid nternational and local minutes on it.  International calls were only something like 4 cents a minutes back then!  I ended up not being able to use all my time, unfortunately. 

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Having spent 3 weeks in Europe this summer, I can report that the Verizon TravelPass works well.  Our phones were our primary internet access during the period and not once were we limited by the daily data cap.  In northern Norway we sometimes had to manually select the network we wanted to use, but in the UK they didn't even require that assistance.

With all due respect to Solo18, using a European SIM in your phone doesn't provide the capabilities afforded by TravelPass.  Most of our calls were to and from the US and they were all free.  Furthermore, by using our Verizon phones our phone number stayed the same for state-side callers.  It would have been very inconvenient for people not to have known how to contact us.  Lastly, a  pay-as-you-go SIM wouldn't have provided anywhere near the ~1GB/24 hour data allowance we had between the two phones.  We were able to surf the web and conduct all our daily activities pretty much as if we had been in the US.  I was even able to upload numerous photos to our Facebook travel blog.

Sure, we ended up spending >$350 on the two phones for the three weeks using TravelPass, but, relative to the other costs of the trip, it was, quite honestly, a relatively small incremental cost.  By comparison, it was a lot more cost effective than the ~$125 I spent to buy ~200 minutes of internet access on our cruise ship on the days we weren't close enough to land to get a cellular connection!

I realize that to some folks this may seem like an extravagant expenditure on internet access, but my wife and I use the internet more like Millennials than septuagenarians.  It is an essential piece of our social and business lives and the way we stay in touch with the world.  Just like RVers who decry the lack of internet access at campgrounds, we would have felt totally cut off if we hadn't had this link.  For us TravelPass was a great tool.

And I think it's worth saying again that TravelPass in Canada is totally free if you have an unlimited Verizon plan.

Joel (AKA docj)

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