10 Million ways to get data while traveling
Want interwebs? Data? The good old 4G? How do I get data whilst traveling full-time is a question I get a lot. How the hell do I do it? As a digital nomad having a working phone whilst traveling is a big deal. It means you can pretend to be working on Slack when you're really chilling by the beach getting your tan on.
Unlike when I first went traveling where you had to change SIM card every trip, the world is becoming that much more civilized with its data roaming when abroad. So here are some handy tips, products, solutions and hack ways of getting yourself some data.
The EU data regulations
If you're from the EU, with an EU mobile carrier SIM card you now get the exact same data plan you do at home in any EU country. No additional costs, no lame speeds, you just get to continue roaming like you do at home. Pretty cool huh?! If you're not from the EU, I'm afraid this one isn't much help to you!
Project Fi by Google
Project Fi is a nice concept. They provide you with a plan that allows you to pay for what you use and take it abroad without any additional fees. The only downside here is it is quite expensive if you're like me and use all the data in the world. Here is a direct quote:
When you travel abroad, you’ll enjoy high-speed data at the same $10/GB rate you pay at home. Plus, you get affordable voice calls and free texting — all with no extra fees.
Skyroam seems to of finding its way into a lot of digital nomad pockets over the past year. It is basically a MiFi device that you walk around with and connect your devices to. Apparently, the speed is pretty good and it works basically anywhere on the planet, but again, the cost is pretty high, at $8 a day and the cost of the device.
T-Mobile One, at least, for you Americans is a pretty great plan that gives you unlimited data at home and abroad. It covers pretty much every country you're going to end up visiting, you don't have to change SIM cards all the time and you keep a consistent number. Compared with a lot of the other alternatives here, it is pretty cheap at around $70 US a month.
For $200 dollars for the device and $10 for daily access, this one is a bit of a laugh really. They say you'll save money, but unless you're planning on heading off on a travel adventure for a year and leaving your data-roaming on with your current provider I don't see how this is possible. Total for the device and a years use is $4000 US. Yeah... No!
A SIM card in every country
Yeah, this is still an option. Most countries are great and you can get a SIM card at the Airport and just have a simple 30-day plan or pay-as-you-go. However, depending on the country this can get expensive fast, the data options can be limited and to be honest, after a long flight I can think of things I'd rather be doing!
Which do I use?
I use the T-Mobile One Plan from America. I may not be American, but I have some pretty epic American friends who hooked me up. To be honest, this is by far the best option, it may not be the fastest in certain countries, but it gives me access to everything I need on the go with zero hassle. I love it!
Why do I use it?
Unlimited data is a huge must for me. To have that and it only costs $70 a month, that is a killer deal. With Skyroam costing $8 a day, that is basically $3k a year, it's just completely insane! T-Mobile One costs me $850 a year and saves me ass on a daily basis.
Which is the best?
Each have their ups and downs and there is no clear winner. I think it is a matter of priorities. T-Mobile isn't going to win any speed awards, but it is cheap, consistent and reliable and I like that! If you want speed, you'll pay dearly for it, but for some speed will outway the cost.
I hope this helps! Enjoy your roaming! 📱✌️