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calling cards
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Calling Cards (pre-paid)

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Cell Phones

General:   When you travel with your cell phone, don't forget the wall-charger and car-charger, especially if you have a GPS-enabled phone and Communication by Cell Phone is indispensible now / Venetian Girl on Cell Phone(c) 2007 Ted Grellner

 If your recreation will take you away from civilization, a solar charger could be very handy.

For international use:  Keep in mind that not all phones are equipped for use outside of the U.S. and even if yours will work in the country you will be visiting, you may need to enable your wireless account for international calling (some companies put a block on your account for international calls as a default, so you have to make a special request to have that block removed). While making this call, be sure to ask if your phone will work in the country/countries you will be visiting.

Check out this excellent article by the Travel Insider on International cell phone service.

If you one of the few who have not yet purchased a cell phone and need one, here are handy features to consider:

  • BlueTooth - to communicate through your cell phone via wireless earset, headphone, handsfree speech with BlueTooth-equipped cars, and to use with your BlueTooth-enabled PDA when WiFi is not available for internet access. 

For those trips when you won't have laptop with you and don't have a phone with mobile web access, another way to access the internet would be with a PDA that is both BlueTooth and Wi-Fi enabled. You could either connect through Wi-Fi (if available) or through your cell phone by it's BlueTooth connectivity (will only work if your PDA's BlueTooth is compatible with your cell phone)

Cell phones with...

  • mobile web work well and anywhere 3G is available (especially helpful in a car) and may be less expensive than paying for Wi-Fi access in a hotel. 

As mentioned elsewhere, don't forget the usefulness of a... 

  • GPS-enabled cell phone equipped to offer Navigation while you are driving (or even walking in a large U.S. metropolitan area!). Saves you from having to bring a seperate GPS navigation unit for your rental car. 
  • Smart phones, like the Blackberry, may also be equipped with Broadband access for online access and email as well as... 
  • broadband connectivity which allows you to use your smart phone as a modem to your computer for broadband access to the internet. This is the ultimate in versatility of a phone.  (be aware of additional access charges for both of these features; also, you may not be able to receive calls while using your smart phone as a modem)

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Cell Phones and Accessories

Extra Car Charger:  If you are a frequent traveler, buy an extra car charger for your phone that you can leave packed in your carry-on.

If you use the navigator in your phone for a long trip, it will probably run out of charge before you get to your destination. Though I leave my phone plugged into it's car charger while navigating, I understand this is very hard on the phone's battery.

next page: Cell Phone Software & Accessories


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