When you are international, you absolutely need a way to stay connected with friends and family back home - and gain access to important information away from home - that will not see you returning home to an unreasonable cell phone bill. However, international travel will always be one of the most significant causes of unexpectedly expensive bills, so it’s important to make sure you research before you decide to head to the airport.
We've compared the great carriers below to see exactly what their normal rates are for the best 3 destinations for American travelers, in addition to what each company offers in the way of worldwide roaming packages. More details and rates can be found at each wireless carrier's website.
U.S Cellular International Phone Plans
U.S. Cellular lets customers on contract phone plans to access voice roaming at a few destinations (though text messaging and data are not available). Phone calls from Canada and Mexico are charged at $0.99 per minute, along with a $3 per day surcharge for using your device.
Virgin Mobile International RatesVirgin Mobile offers two international phone plans:
$10/Month Plan - International plus offers 1000 minutes talk to call mobiles in mexico and unlimited calls to over 70 countries, plus discounted calling rates to over 200 countries (Landlines only select cities).
Ultra Mobile Unlimited Global Phone PlansUltra Mobile offers unlimited international phone plans. All Plans includes unlimited International Talk & Text
- For $19/month - Unlimited Talk, text to the USA and 11 International Destinations plus 100MB of High Speed 4G LTE.
- For $29/month - Unlimited Talk, text to the USA and 11 International Destinations plus 1,000 Free Minutes to Over 15 More Destinations with 1GB of High Speed 4G LTE.
- For $34/month - Unlimited Talk, text to the USA and 11 International Destinations plus 2GB of High Speed 4G LTE.
- For $39/month - Unlimited Talk, text to the USA and 60 International Destinations plus 1,000 Free Minutes to Over 15 More Destinations with 2GB of High Speed 4G LTE.
- For $49/month - Unlimited Talk, text to the USA and 60 International Destinations plus 1,000 Free Minutes to Over 15 More Destinations with 1GB of High Speed 4G LTE.
Project Fi International Roaming
You’ll have only 3 phone options: the Nexus 6P, 5X and Nexus 6. Project Fi runs a combination of network between Sprint, T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular, plus public Wi-Fi when available.
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Boost Mobile International Cell Phone PlansBoost Mobile refers their prepaid users to Sprint when they require international phone calls.
MetroPCS International Plans
MetroPCS has recently included a $10 international Calling plan add-on to its prepaid cell phone plan. The plan provides you with 200 minutes of 200 text messages and voice calls in chosen countries. Also available for $10 per month is the Mexico Calling add-on, that has 200 minutes of voice calls and 200 text messages from Mexico.
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T-Mobile Simple Choice International Roaming
You will have the possibility to get the 4G LTE in Canada and mexico, but it’s not assured everywhere. Wi-Fi calls back to the U.S.
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Sprint International Value Roaming
Cricket Wireless International PlansCricket Wireless provides an international phone plans to Mexico add-on for $10 per month which gives you 100 minutes of phone calls and 100 texts. Web data roaming, and also roaming in almost any country, is not currently available.
Cricket Wireless offers two different international plans:
$5/Month Plan - Cricket international includes unlimited calling to landline phones in these 36 countries.
$15/Month Plan - Cricket international extra includes unlimited calling to landline phones in these 36 countries, unlimited MMS messages to these 36 countries and 1000 mobile-to-mobile minutes to these 32 countries.
- International features are only available with plans starting at $50/month.
- All Cricket plans starting at $50/month
- Unlimited calling and unlimited text, picture, and video messaging (SMS & MMS) to and from landlines and mobile phones in Mexico, Canada, and the U.S.
- Unlimited international text messaging (SMS) to 38 countries