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Old 09-02-09, 04:39 PM   #1
Canadiense
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USA sim card for non resident

I will be travelling down the west coast in a few days passing through Washington, Oregon and California. I have just completed a tour in Asia where getting a sim card is easy and inexpensive, allowing free incoming calls. My wife has grown accustomed to speaking to me every day, even in remote areas of Laos and China, so she wants to be able to continue this while I am in the USA.

My research is not bearing fruit so I want to ask this community for guidance. I need a sim card for two months only. Ideally it will have free incoming calls and will allow long distance to Canada but that is not essential. This question may best be answered by non-residents of the USA but all input is gratefully received.
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Old 09-02-09, 04:56 PM   #2
kaliayev
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At&T and T-Mobile use SIM cards. Best bet might be to pick up a cheap phone and use their pay as you go plans.
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Old 09-02-09, 07:57 PM   #3
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Free incoming calls? This is the US, not the rest of the world You pay minutes both ways here...
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Old 09-04-09, 12:08 AM   #4
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If you have a GSM phone with the right frequencies you can buy a pay-as-you go SIM card from ATT. Or get their pay-as-you-go Go Phone.

To do long distance, pay Skype US$3/month or $24/year to get a USA-based Skype-Out number with the North American plan and dial out from the cell phone through Skype-Out to Canada/Mexico for free and ROW (rest of world) for cheap.
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Old 09-04-09, 12:31 AM   #5
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You can buy pre-paid USA SIM cards at http://www.myworldphone.com. No such thing as free incoming minutes in the USA unfortunately.

However, if you have a European tri-band phone, it won't work on many (most?) of the antennas here since they are mainly 850 MHz. European tri-band is 900/1800/1900 MHz. T-Mobile USA has the most 1900 MHz antennas here because their native network uses that frequency, but their roaming partners and subcontracted antennas for much of CA is 850 MHz. So I would suggest (if you do not have a quad-band phone w/ 850 MHz) to buy a cheap pre-paid T-Mobile phone, and put that SIM card in your phone, and if you are in a non-1900 MHz area you can switch to the T-Mobile phone.

Last edited by turbo2L; 09-04-09 at 12:44 AM.
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Old 09-04-09, 12:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadiense View Post
I will be travelling down the west coast in a few days passing through Washington, Oregon and California. I have just completed a tour in Asia where getting a sim card is easy and inexpensive, allowing free incoming calls. My wife has grown accustomed to speaking to me every day, even in remote areas of Laos and China, so she wants to be able to continue this while I am in the USA.

My research is not bearing fruit so I want to ask this community for guidance. I need a sim card for two months only. Ideally it will have free incoming calls and will allow long distance to Canada but that is not essential. This question may best be answered by non-residents of the USA but all input is gratefully received.
On a recent trip to the States I picked up a Nokia handset and 300 minutes of talk time for $20 at a national chain called Big Lots. Refill cards were also available at Big Lots. Many shops will have these pay as you go phones.
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