Photo (cc) by MPD01605
No one wants to return home from an exotic vacation to be slammed by exorbitantly high roaming fees on their cellphone bill.
But you can avoid most of those pesky (and expensive) roaming fees with a small sticker from KnowRoaming that goes directly onto your SIM card.
According to KnowRoaming.com, here’s how the sticker, which contains a small microchip, works:
When applied to your home SIM card, the KnowRoaming sticker can detect when you are at home or abroad. When abroad, the KnowRoaming Sticker takes over and switches you onto the KnowRoaming network, enabling you to connect to our local partner networks worldwide. After returning home, the KnowRoaming sticker switches you back to your home mobile network and remains dormant.
The sticker costs $29.99. You can then add money to your account, check rates and see your usage. Sample rates for local partner price plans are $7.99 per day for unlimited data in nearly all of Europe, and call rates of 12 cents a minute to cellphones in France, OZY reports. KnowRoaming covers 200 countries.
“It isn’t as cheap as local SIM cards, but the company argues that the convenience of the sticker is a big factor,” OZY said.
What many people do now is buy a local SIM card for cheaper calling rates when traveling. But it can be a pain. “We have to download numbers, keep track of our old SIM, and deal with foreign currencies,” OZY said.
Still, some people argue that other cheaper solutions exist. Mobile tech expert and ChipChick editor Helena Stone told OZY that more affordable options are available.
“The issue with KnowRoaming is that incoming calls aren’t free,” she says. “Their data pricing is good, but extra costs when people call you is a big negative.” Stone thinks that travel SIM cards such as Toggle — a replacement SIM that gives you free incoming calls and a local number in the country you’re in — are a much better deal.
You need an unlocked device to use KnowRoaming. It supports GSM phones and tablets, including iPhones, iPads, Windows phones, Android 4.0+ devices and tablets.
What do you do about roaming fees when you travel? Share your comments below or on our Facebook page.