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Old 11-02-2009, 08:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Blackberry in Europe/GPS/Cheapest options?

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Hey there,

I am currently a verizon customer and am eligible for a new phone. I'm heading out to Europe next week for six months to do some travelling. I've done some research on my options, but i'm still unsure as to the best plan of action. I know that purchasing a foreign SIM card is the cheapest way to go in terms of calls/SMS, but being able to use a GPS client is really important to me, as I feel that a GPS would be an invaluable asset to my travels (I plan on backpacking)

I spoke with a Verizon representative and she told me that I would have to get the regular blackberry plan in addition to an international plan, and even then, call rates are pretty exorbitant. I assume that a 3rd party SIM card won't enable GPS.

What should I do? I am happy to use my current phone and just use another SIM card/Calling card, but what is the most efficient way for me to use a navigational system while over there?
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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GPS isn't enabled by the SIM.
GPS should work, but you need data to use GPS with a map application.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Okay, so am I correct in thinking that the smartest thing for me to do is get a blackberry, enable their globalGPS (Which I was told was about $10 monthly) and then purchase a SIM card for calls/sms in Europe?

I understand that data transfers cost money, so what it the cheapest way to check e-mail and use GPS? Is it possible to upgrade to global data and not calls?

Apologies for the wide-eyed confusion, but I am not currently a smartphone owner.
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Old 11-03-2009, 08:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Ideally you'd want a SIM that has a Blackberry data plan associated with it. That could prove tricky, however.

What's GlobalGPS and who would you activate it with? If it's a GPS solution from Verizon then you'd need to use their international BB roaming. I'd start with figuring out who is going to provide you with BB data and then worry about the GPS app that you're going to use.

I've seen others suggest Call In Europe but I've never used them and can't vouch for them either way.

Last edited by takeshi : 11-03-2009 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:31 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I would also add that on Sprint, with the 8830 as opposed to the Tour, and with a legitimate Sprint International voice and data plan, the GPS never worked while abroad. It was almost as if it was not installed. As soon as I was back in the States everything was fine. Would the same be true of Verizon? I do not know, but I would ask.
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Old 11-24-2009, 09:46 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have the Storm (9530) on VzW and I spent 5 months traveling through about 14 countries in Europe this spring. Verizon charged me ~$30 extra per month (on top of my normal data plan) for unlimited data use worldwide. With Google Maps, the thing was a Godsend, as I was able to go to every single city (all the way down to Sofia, Bulgaria) and have a map of it on my phone, and pinpoint GPS directions throughout. I was even able to load it up on train rides to track how far I was from my stop. Absolute lifesafer. Now...I'm not sure Verizon is the cheapest way to go about this (calls are outrageous), but I'm sure it's nowhere near the most expensive either, especially if you do what I did and only use it for the data plan. Hope that helps!
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