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International Coverage

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Last updated by Christian Robinette

There are a several ways that you can get mobile phone service while traveling internationally.

Click the links below for more information about some other options:

  1. International SIM Unlock
  2. Prepaid Phones
  3. Wi-Fi Calling Services
  4. International Roaming


1. International SIM Unlock

This is our recommendation if you're traveling internationally. It takes the guesswork out of rates so you can avoid unexpected charges at the end of the trip.

Coverage

Your coverage will be based on the provider of the foreign SIM card that you're using. Whether you're checking ahead of time or doing so upon arrival, you'll want to find out:

  • Which areas they cover
  • How they handle domestic and/or international roaming (i.e. you're traveling to several countries in Europe in one trip)

Rates

Again, this will depend on the provider of the local SIM card. If you're able to look into this ahead of time, you can shop around for the best price that fits your travel needs.

Before (and After) You Travel

For a detailed explanation of what to do before and after you travel when you're using using a local SIM card, click here.

2. Prepaid Phones

If you have a phone that can't be SIM unlocked or you're going to a country that doesn't have a GSM network provider, a prepaid phone is another great option. You know exactly what you're getting in terms of rates and it's easy to get up and running.

Coverage

Your coverage will be based on the provider of the prepaid phone that you're using. Whether you're checking ahead of time or doing so upon arrival, you'll want to find out:

  • which areas they cover
  • how they handle domestic and/or international roaming (i.e. you're traveling to several countries in Europe in one trip)

Rates

Again, this will depend on the provider of the prepaid phone. If you're able to look into this ahead of time, you can shop around for the best price that fits your travel needs.

Before You Travel

You don't have to do anything with your Ting device if you're going to use a foreign prepaid phone while you're traveling, except perhaps turn it off so the battery still has charge when you return.

3. Wi-Fi Calling Services

Wi-Fi calling services such as Skype, Viber, or HangOuts are all a great way to keep in touch while you're traveling. Apps like Facebook Messenger also have Wi-Fi calling built into them which, for many people, will eliminate the need to set up another service.

These apps all have a free option and some have paid extras if you want them.

4. International Roaming

We do not recommend roaming internationally.

It's hard to keep track of the cost so it can often end up being significantly more expensive than you expect.

If your phone can be SIM unlocked for international travel (that's any GSM device you can bring to Ting and many CDMA devices), then we recommend you do that. You can buy a local SIM card, know exactly what you're paying and generally get service at a much lower rate than if you roam internationally.

 

Coverage

That depends on where your travels take you. To see where Ting has service internationally, check out this list.

If the country you're traveling to doesn't appear on this list, then we don't have an international roaming partner there and you'll need to either use your device unlocked, use a prepaid phone or a Wi-Fi based service like Skype.

Rates

There will be extra charges, or surcharges, for usage while you're away from the US. For example, if you are in Mexico and you receive a call that lasts 10 minutes, your usage will fall into the Small ($3) bucket and you'll be billed an additional $0.30/minute for the call.

To see rates for the places where you can use Ting service internationally, click here.

Before You Travel

CDMA Devices

International roaming is not available for CDMA devices.

GSM Devices

  1. Log into your Ting account online
  2. Go to Device settings
  3. Click on the GSM device(s) that you'll be traveling with
  4. Enable Can use international roaming

If you want to use data, make sure data roaming is enabled on your device (see below for Android and iOS). Voice roaming will happen automatically.

Before You Travel
Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • Avatar
    David Lee

    Will Ting be adding more countries to the list (ie, European countries)? Or is this not possible due to the different mobile networks there? 

  • Avatar
    Isabel M

    Hi David,

    You guessed right; the restrictions around international service are because of the different types of networks. We can't offer service in countries that run on GSM networks rather than CDMA networks.

  • Avatar
    David Lee

    Thanks for the quick reply. I guess it's a good thing I have the HTC One. I believe it supports GSM networks as well and I can probably just use a SIM card from one of those countries!

  • Avatar
    Paraic O

    Hi David!

    Ting is still testing the waters with that feature so there is no guarantee of it working 100%. That being said if you are planning on going to a GSM supported country please send us the ICC ID of the phone (found in the About Phone section of your phone's Settings, or on the box itself) and we will look into getting the SIM slot unlocked for international use.

    All the best.

  • Avatar
    Timothy Eilbes

    Hi, I BYOD'd my HTC Evo Design to Ting. Since it is/was Sprint's World Phone and has the SIM that is already unlocked by Sprint for international SIM card usage, will that still work the same way now on Ting? Anything else I need to know/do?

  • Avatar
    Samantha C

    Hey there Timothy, we would love to verify this for you so I will be sending you an email to confirm some details.

  • Avatar
    Rob Borucki

    I didn't see an answer to this elsewhere but I am planning to use the new Zing hotspot with a local SIM so that my normal CDMA Ting phone can make IP calls.  But I am unclear on whether Ting charges $6 for that hot spot?  I am thinking no, Ting only charges $6 per device assigned a dedicated phone number.  True?

  • Avatar
    Renny M

    Hi Rob,

    There is still the $6/month device charge for data devices. They are still assigned a phone number when they are activated on Ting.

  • Avatar
    Rob Borucki

    That is disappointing.

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    I have requested an unlock for my iPhone 4s. I hope to use the phone in Germany. Do I need to do anything else so I can use this phone overseas? Do I have to use Sprint's international phone service or can I pick a local service in Germany?

     

    Thank! Sue D

  • Avatar
    Marty M

    Hi Susan - it looks like you submitted a help request and Keith helped you resolve your problem.  Glad we could help!

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    Hi Martin! I do not need help with unlocking the iPhone. I have already submitted that request. My question is once the phone is unlocked, can I use any cellular company in Germany that I choose?

  • Avatar
    Paraic O

    Hey Susan,

    When the unlock is complete you'll need to update the phone (connect to WiFi, open the dialer and enter # # 873283 # and call. This needs to be done while under Sprint coverage). From there you can pop in a SIM from whatever carrier supports the phone.

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    Thank you very much Paraic! Have a great day!

  • Avatar
    Madeline Brockish

    Reading through these message I'm now confused. If I am going to Peru, do I need to do anything with the SIM card of my refurbished LS670.

    Also I can not figure out how to turn on the international roaming on this phone. None of the pathways suggested apply. Thanks!

  • Avatar
    Paraic O

    Hey Madeline,

    You just need to change the Network mode in the phone to Automatic (which is the default typically) and that's it. You'll be all set. There's no SIM, no further pathways. Just get up and go :)

  • Avatar
    Rod Arakaki

    Samsung Victory. We're in Canada right now. Allowed Int'l Calling through the Ting website, then on the phone's options. It automatically updated the PRL itself (we're connected Wifi, so I assume through that), then it worked. Charges seem higher than those listed on the Ting site, but I'll know for sure when they show up on my account.

    Question:  We received a call that went to voicemail. When we try to retrieve Voicemail, it says it can only be done via a Sprint network. Any way to retrieve voicemail while in Canada like this?

  • Avatar
    Paraic O

    Hey Rod!

    Try calling your cell phone number, but don't answer (preferably a landline). When it connects to your Voicemail message press * on the phone's keypad.  Enter your passcode and you're all good!

    Enjoy your stay in Canada :)

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    Hello to Ting! I made a request on Jan 22 to have my iPhone 4s unlocked for international use. It is still unlocked. I called Sprint International Desk, and they cannot help me because they do not have me as a customer. What else can I do? Has anyone else been able to get their "Ting iPhone" unlocked for international use?

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    Sorry, I meant to state that my iPhone is still locked for international use.

  • Avatar
    Marty M

    Hi Susan.  I see you have a support request open with Keith about the problem.  You're in good hands.

  • Avatar
    Rick DeMiglio

    Thanks, Martin, that's good to know. My support request has been open for over a month. I have no issue with Keith or Ting but I would like this matter resolved. If this cannot be done, I need to know.

    Has anyone else been able to unlock their iPhone for international use while under Ting service?

  • Avatar
    Elaine Sims

    Hi! I'm a potential new customer, referred by my brother. I'm tired of the crap from our current carrier, but have some questions about international.

    I don't travel often, but I will be going to Canada next month. Assuming that I take a Ting phone (looking at the Nexus 5), I see that phone calls are .15/minute (a quarter of what my current carrier charges!!). but how does the data get charged? Is it the same rates as in the US? I don't see that clarified anywhere on the International rates page. Thanks!

  • Avatar
    Marty M

    Hi Elaine.  When travelling in Canada, data is charged at $0.50 per megabyte.   Check out this page:  https://ting.com/outside_usa - under the heading 'Canada' the rate is shown beside "Using the Internet".

  • Avatar
    Elaine Sims

    Ugh, I cannot tell you how many times I read that page and never saw that line. Embarrassed now!!

  • Avatar
    Bruce Osborne

    Elaine,

    I have traveled to Canada (Toronto area) several times as a Ting customer.

    My most recent trip was early last January. Shortly after crossing the border, I received 2 text messages from Sprint detailing their rates and offering help, if needed. Their rates at that time were $0.20 per text sent or received (Ting is free), $0.59 per minute for voice (Ting is $0.15) and $0.002/KB (Ting is $.050 per MB). You can safely ignore those texts. I tend to rely on voice & text, using Wi-Fi for data when necessary.

  • Avatar
    Elaine Sims

    Thank you, Bruce. And I'm going to Toronto, so that is great to know. 

  • Avatar
    Bruce Osborne

    Just be sure you have International Roaming enabled on your dashboard & phone.

    If you change any dashboard device settings, update the profile on your phone. This needs to be done while you have a Sprint signal.

  • Avatar
    Joe Oz

    My wife & I I will soon be purchasing used phones from either Ting or Glyde and becoming Ting customers. As we travel a each year to Canada, for up to a month at a time, we want to make sure we purchase the correct phones. Making the decisions more confusing for us technological newbies is the information I read saying that some carriers use GSM and some use CDMA and then something about HSPA. Rogers is the biggest carrier in N.B & N.S, where we travel the most, and so could you add some clarity to my purchase decision?  

  • Avatar
    Bruce Osborne

    Joe,

    It probably would be best to call or email Ting to open a support request on this. Their support people in downtown Toronto would be much more familiar with the Canadian carriers than most of Ting customers.

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