Author Topic: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone  (Read 11015 times)

hamildub

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Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« on: March 09, 2015, 04:17:20 PM »
What can anyone recommend for SIM cards to use while we are in Hawaii - we'll be on oahu and kauai. We don't intend on using the phone a ton, but the phone companies in canada make it such that a 5 minute phone call would likely be far more than just buying a prepaid SIM.

Any other mustachian tips for those islands are greatly appreciated.

Daley

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2015, 04:30:00 PM »
AT&T MVNOs should have better overall coverage on the islands than T-Mobile MVNOs, especially on Kauai, though it is about even on the inhabited parts of Oahu between the two going by coverage maps. From a purely practical GSM network data compatibility standpoint with your carrier unlocked Canadian GSM handsets, you'd probably do well going AT&T over T-Mobile as well.

As such, any AT&T MVNO that fits your needs and budget from the guide should be plenty, such as Airvoice, Puretalk USA or H2O Wireless. As for actual SIM purchasing, check Ebay first.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2015, 04:33:05 PM by I.P. Daley »

SaintM

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2015, 05:55:05 PM »
I'd just tell people you can't reach me and shut the phone off.


jennaw

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2015, 07:12:22 PM »
If you have an unlocked GSM phone you can use roam mobility. I believe they also sell a phone now as well. Roam is specifically for Canadians visiting the U.S. Cell reception can be iffy on some parts of Kauai.

If you have a Costco membership, it is a great place to shop on the islands.

couponsqueeker

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2015, 07:25:54 PM »
I'll second the Roam Mobility option for Canadians if you have an unlocked phone. You can buy a sim card at Real Canadian Superstore or through the website. I used in Oahu and Kauai in November and it worked well. No problems at all in Oahu and reception was okay in Kauai with a few spots that didn't work very well.

Cecil

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2015, 01:34:57 AM »
+1 to Roam. We went in December and it worked on Kauai. Reception is very spotty and many places had none, but it worked in the major towns and along the highway.

Daley

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2015, 08:31:28 AM »
Canadians, I know you think Roam Mobility is a good deal... I would too if I wasn't familiar with the US options and the only prepaid mobile pricing I knew was the pricing structures of Canadian MVNOs like SpeakOut, Petro Canada, etc. Well, it's not, especially for a T-Mobile based MVNO - which is going to giver far spottier reception in Hawaii. If Hamildub wants to go with a T-Mobile MVNO, P'tel would be far cheaper, even with the extra penny charge for Canadian calling on their PAYGO plans.

I'll readily admit, I spaced a bit on the whole calling/texting Canada bit, but H2O has the best PAYGO rates to Canada, and H2O and Airvoice both include international calling credits on their unlimited plans. No matter who you go with and how long you're in the states, there's no sane reason why you should need to spend more than $30 for the entire stay for up to a month of service, just like the rest of us, and you could probably get out for a lot cheaper.

Speaking of T-Mobile MVNOs, Hamildub? Do yourself a favor and keep a healthy distance between you and SIMple Mobile, no matter how tempting the offer on the surface.

hamildub

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2015, 07:20:54 PM »
I ended up with h2o wireless, it was cheaper than the roaming packages through virgin even though I didn't use it a ton.

choppingwood

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Re: Canadians vacationing in Hawaii - SIM cards for phone
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2015, 09:07:02 PM »
I'd just tell people you can't reach me and shut the phone off.

+1

I researched this before going to Hawaii this year, and Rogers seemed to have the best package and coverage for no contract.

However, I spent two weeks on Maui in March, no cell, no land line, and very, very slow internet. Because that is sort of the point.

Other trips to Kauai, the rental place had a land line and a free calling card. In different trips, I've used it to arrange late checkout with the owner and to respond to the owner's concerns if I was OK when there was a tsunami warning. Most rentals have something like this.

Forget about the cell phone.