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  1. #1
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    Need Help: Cell Phone Usage & Rates + E-Mail Wireless

    Will be arriving in mid-August for 10 days. I have a Blackberry World Edition. Service as of today is with Verizon because Alltel has been acquired. I have gotten a different answer every time I call for the past 4-5 weeks. I was told initially I could purchase a SIM card and x number of minutes for my phone at the airport (fast phones kiosk) and could make calls back to the U.S., as well as receive them on my cell number, with no roaming fees, etc. The only charge will be for the SIM card and number of minutes purchases. Latest thing I hear is it doesn't matter - SIM card of not - I will need to pay a $1.99 per minute fee for roaming. Does anyone out there know what the real deal is?

    Will be staying in a Marriott's Vacation Club Villa. I'm told they have free internet access - not sure if it's wireless or not - and that part really doesn't matter. I am accustomed to using my wireless air card when traveling in the U.S., but once again, have received numerous answers on how this works out of the U.S. Was told this morning I will have to pay 5 cents per 20 mb for all e-mails received or sent.

    I am a small business owner and it's important that I'm able to stay in touch with the office as much as needed while away - I just don't want to pay more for roaming fees and internet usage than our vacation is costing us!

    Any ideas anyone? Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Sgroi135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hpe2008 View Post
    Will be arriving in mid-August for 10 days. I have a Blackberry World Edition. Service as of today is with Verizon because Alltel has been acquired. I have gotten a different answer every time I call for the past 4-5 weeks. I was told initially I could purchase a SIM card and x number of minutes for my phone at the airport (fast phones kiosk) and could make calls back to the U.S., as well as receive them on my cell number, with no roaming fees, etc. The only charge will be for the SIM card and number of minutes purchases. Latest thing I hear is it doesn't matter - SIM card of not - I will need to pay a $1.99 per minute fee for roaming. Does anyone out there know what the real deal is?

    Will be staying in a Marriott's Vacation Club Villa. I'm told they have free internet access - not sure if it's wireless or not - and that part really doesn't matter. I am accustomed to using my wireless air card when traveling in the U.S., but once again, have received numerous answers on how this works out of the U.S. Was told this morning I will have to pay 5 cents per 20 mb for all e-mails received or sent.

    I am a small business owner and it's important that I'm able to stay in touch with the office as much as needed while away - I just don't want to pay more for roaming fees and internet usage than our vacation is costing us!

    Any ideas anyone? Thanks so much!
    If the hotel has internet access you should be fine. If your phone is unlocked, most BB World Editions are. Then you can get a SIM card, but you will pay a lot to call the US. The SIM card would be good for Local Calls inside Aruba.

    I would not use your wireless card in Aruba, you are going to get slammed with huge roaming fees. If you can use email to stay in touch, then you should be fine with your Internet that the Hotel Offers. The only problem that I had was when I tried to send an email (At the Radisson) using Outlook. It would not go through, i had to use my Webmail for Verizon to send the email. This probably has to do with the actual access that you are given, and the mail (port 25) might be blocked. You should be able to receive email with an email client but you may NOT be able to send with the same client. If you have webmail you will be fine!
    Decided to take down my timer!

  3. #3
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    Thank you so very, very much! One other question....if I rent a phone from fast phones, is that for local use only or can I make calls back to the U.S.?

  4. #4
    Senior Member Sgroi135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hpe2008 View Post
    Thank you so very, very much! One other question....if I rent a phone from fast phones, is that for local use only or can I make calls back to the U.S.?

    You should be able to make calls back to the US, but you will suck the phone dry really quick.

    If you need to have a phone to call home. Look into "magic jack". Google it.

    $40 bucks a year gets you a phone number that you can travel with. Unlimited use. Need a laptop and high speed internet to use it. I have 2 of them. The call quality is not bad.

    I personally use Vonage for my home service and I have a program called Vonage Companion that I have on my laptop. With a headset, I was able to make calls from Aruba to the US with no problem. You would never know that I was calling from ARUBA. No charge for the calls, and when someone called me at home, the computer in Aruba rang.

    It was not like I was using the phone alot, But it was nice to check in (especially since we had HORRIBLE weather home while we were gone!)
    Decided to take down my timer!

  5. #5
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    it costs less to make USA calls on the FASTphones than one would think.
    i use my aruba cell to call back to the USA when on island.
    i think it is in the range of .20 a minute in the evening.

    if you do not get a phone from fastphones, then try skype or one of the other internet voip gizmos.
    andrea

    Quote Originally Posted by hpe2008 View Post
    Thank you so very, very much! One other question....if I rent a phone from fast phones, is that for local use only or can I make calls back to the U.S.?

  6. #6
    Senior Member Sgroi135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea J. View Post
    it costs less to make USA calls on the FASTphones than one would think.
    i use my aruba cell to call back to the USA when on island.
    i think it is in the range of .20 a minute in the evening.

    if you do not get a phone from fastphones, then try skype or one of the other internet voip gizmos.
    andrea

    But even at .20 a minute if he gets stuck on a business call for 30 mins, it starts to add up. the VOIP GIZMOS as you call them are great. I have 2 magic jacks. They are OK, and my Vonage is Awesome!
    Decided to take down my timer!

  7. #7
    Senior Member BALTIMOREBILLY's Avatar
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    For the past 2 years I have never received a phone bill for my calls from Aruba to Baltimore. I have heard it is suppose to be $1.99 per minute but I have been there both in Sept of last year for 2 weeks and again this past March for a week and never received any kind of charges. My service is through Verizon.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Sgroi135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BALTIMORE BILLY View Post
    For the past 2 years I have never received a phone bill for my calls from Aruba to Baltimore. I have heard it is suppose to be $1.99 per minute but I have been there both in Sept of last year for 2 weeks and again this past March for a week and never received any kind of charges. My service is through Verizon.

    Hmm that is a shock! I would keep it quiet. There may be a Verizon Employee on here and find out who you are!!
    Decided to take down my timer!

  9. #9
    Senior Member BALTIMOREBILLY's Avatar
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    Yes that is true. But at the same time I have done nothing wrong.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Sgroi135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BALTIMORE BILLY View Post
    Yes that is true. But at the same time I have done nothing wrong.
    Right, but that don't mean that they won't try to bill you!!LOL
    Decided to take down my timer!

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