Click here to close now.


News Feed Item

Tech Tips for Summer Travel Abroad

MISSION, KS -- (Marketwired) -- 06/16/14 -- (Family Features) Whether you're seeking the view from the London Eye, the thrill of zip-lining in Belize or the taste of an icy cold gelato in the streets of Rome -- summer adventure is calling.

World Travel on the Rise
According to the airline industry association A4A, air travel is expected to rise to its highest level in six years this summer, with a record number of people travelling internationally. However, if you count yourself among those travelers -- perhaps one of the estimated hundreds of thousands of Americans headed to Brazil for the World Cup -- are you prepared to stay connected with friends and family back home and easily share your adventures with them?

Many travelers hit the road expecting to use their smartphones abroad in the same way they use them at home, relying on them for navigation, using their favorite apps for travel tips and freely posting pictures to social media. But many are unclear about international roaming costs and coverage.

"For those who do travel or call overseas, it's hugely expensive or requires all kinds of workarounds to avoid the huge fees," said Ovum analyst Jan Dawson. "So this is a real pain point for some customers, at least."

A recent Kelton survey confirmed a high level of exasperation that international travelers feel when journeying abroad. Here are some of the results:

  • Nearly everyone surveyed (88 percent) reported being frustrated by the expenses and challenges of staying connected while abroad.
  • Among customers of the big three carriers, nearly 20 percent leave their devices at home or never turn them on while travelling outside the U.S.
  • Another 40 percent turn off data roaming to avoid high costs, and 20 percent say they would turn off data roaming if they knew how.

Make Sure You're Prepared
So, before you head off on your summer journey, T-Mobile wants to make sure you're armed with the best mobile tech tips for staying connected internationally. These ideas can save you from unnecessary headaches and a ton of money along the way.

  • Check your coverage: Before you travel, make sure you know the network specifications and international data rates for your carrier in the places where you're travelling. Be sure to make adjustments if necessary to avoid costly surprises in your bill when you return.
  • Find the best international plan: Look for carriers, such as T-Mobile for example, that provide unlimited data and texting in 120-plus countries and destinations worldwide with their Simple Choice plan, freeing you from the worry of coming home to bill shock from outrageous roaming fees. Because most carriers tack 90 percent margins into their global roaming plans, many consumers see their costs total more than $1,000 a day when they use their phones abroad the way they normally do at home. Last Fall, T-Mobile launched international data roaming and texting at no extra charge -- plus slashed calls to a low flat rate of 20 cents a minute -- in more than 120 countries and destinations worldwide.
  • Explore the extras: Prepaid international calling cards may also be available through your wireless provider. Also, special day or week passes can get you access to high speed data or additional services.
  • Don't forget insurance: In case your device gets lost, stolen or damaged along the way, be sure to secure an insurance plan to protect it.

Travel blogger Summer Hull of Boarding Area's Mommy Points column notes her own personal experience with trying to stay connected while abroad.

"I am honestly sick of having to jump through so many hoops and keep such close tabs on usage internationally with other providers," said Hull. "I'm also sick of the big bills that come with having international add-ons. This T-Mobile approach sounds so much, well, simpler."

Vacation-worthy Devices and Accessories
Here is a list of the smartphones, tablets and accessories to take with you to keep up with your summer travel needs:

  • Samsung Galaxy S5: This water-resistant phone is perfect for all your outdoor activities and includes a story album to journal your travels with pictures and notes that can be published as actual books.
  • HTC One M8: The highlights for this device include Boomsound for listening to music outside, HTC Duo Camera for taking brilliant day or night shots and Zoe for creating mini-movies in seconds.
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition: A lightweight and durable tablet that allows you to take your games, music, movies and social network virtually anywhere you go. For affordable data, the T-Mobile Tablet Freedom program allows you to get more than a gig of free data every month through 2014 and 200 MB of free data for life every month after that.
  • Samsung LTE Mobile HotSpot PRO: This half-inch-thick device expands your mobile freedom, allowing you to take the Internet with you on your qualifying service. Plus, you can share your connection with up to 10 other Internet devices.
  • TYLT Zumo Portable Battery Pack: Did you finish up a long day of sightseeing? Don't get caught with a dead device. This portable pack provides up to four hours of extra battery life.

With these tips in mind, summer travel can go back to being a carefree experience. For more information, visit

Worry-free Wireless Travel Abroad
Following are a few simple tips from T-Mobile to help keep your travels on track and free of complications:

  • Pack the essentials: This includes portable chargers, an international power converter and MicroSD cards to give you added storage space for photos and more.
  • Travel safe: Use features such as Bluetooth for hands-free driving while navigating the twists and turns of unfamiliar roads, or applications like T-Mobile's DriveSmart Plus, which silences incoming notifications, sending callers to voicemail and auto-responds to incoming text messages.
  • Make packing light: Use a multi-function smartphone that allows you to access entertainment with videos and games, mobile music player, GPS navigator, high quality digital camera, and in some cases, even a mobile hotspot.

Best Apps for Travel
Check out these leading apps to help you navigate a successful journey:

  • GateGuru (Android, iOS, Windows Phone): Especially helpful when traveling with children, GateGuru can locate kid-friendly restaurants, clean public restrooms and more. View your TripIt and Kayak itineraries, as well as view or post airport security wait times and see a structured list of airport food, shops and services.
  • Viator (Android, iOS): Helps you find and book countless tours, day trips, shows and activities for the best travel experiences worldwide.
  • Unit Conversion Free, Currency (iOS, but others are available for most platforms): Converts temperature, distance, weight, volume, speed and more, including currency in real time.

Best Bets for Brazil
Are you heading to the World Cup? Here are some tips to make your travel a little easier:

  • The World Cup is spread over 12 host cities, so it's probably best to decide which games are must-watch and plot out an itinerary around a convenient home base in one of the cities.
  • With hotel rooms likely already booked or at a premium price, consider alternate, more affordable forms of housing. In addition to couchsurfing and Airbnb, Fodor's recommends AlexRioFlats, or family-run guesthouses or pousadas, which are an authentic way to experience the different regions of Brazil and can be booked via online travel sites like
  • To get around Brazil -- which is just slightly smaller than the U.S. in area -- it's easiest to travel by bus or domestic flights. If you choose to travel by bus, you can purchase tickets in the bus stations, or online from or Domestic airlines include TAM and GOL, as well as TRIP Azul Linhas Aereas, Brazil's newest airline, with service to about 100 domestic destinations.
  • Can't make it to the match? Then join fellow futbol fans and be part of "El Gran Pase," a website in which viewers submit a video showcasing their best kick of the soccer ball. You could be included in the longest pass in the world, alongside soccer fanatics like Jorge "Soccer Machine" Perez and Shakira.

About Family Features Editorial Syndicate
This and other food and lifestyle content can be found at Family Features is a leading provider of free food and lifestyle content for use in print and online publications. Register with no obligation to access a variety of formatted and unformatted features, accompanying photos, and automatically updating Web content solutions.

Image Available:

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
Achim Weiss is Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of ProfitBricks. In 1995, he broke off his studies to co-found the web hosting company "Schlund+Partner." The company "Schlund+Partner" later became the 1&1 web hosting product line. From 1995 to 2008, he was the technical director for several important projects: the largest web hosting platform in the world, the second largest DSL platform, a video on-demand delivery network, the largest eMail backend in Europe, and a universal billing syste...
WebRTC: together these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Cary Bran, VP of Innovation and New Ventures at Plantronics and PLT Labs, will provide an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it may enable, complement or entirely transform.
Containers are changing the security landscape for software development and deployment. As with any security solutions, security approaches that work for developers, operations personnel and security professionals is a requirement. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, Kevin Gilpin, CTO and Co-Founder of Conjur, will discuss various security considerations for container-based infrastructure and related DevOps workflows.
As operational failure becomes more acceptable to discuss within the software industry, the necessity for holding constructive, actionable postmortems increases. But most of what we know about postmortems from "pop culture" isn't actually relevant for the software systems we work on and within. In his session at DevOps Summit, J. Paul Reed will look at postmortem pitfalls, techniques, and tools you'll be able to take back to your own environment so they will be able to lay the foundations for h...
Containers are revolutionizing the way we deploy and maintain our infrastructures, but monitoring and troubleshooting in a containerized environment can still be painful and impractical. Understanding even basic resource usage is difficult - let alone tracking network connections or malicious activity. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gianluca Borello, Sr. Software Engineer at Sysdig, will cover the current state of the art for container monitoring and visibility, including pros / cons and li...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in high-performance, high-efficiency server, storage technology and green computing, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data ...
Containers are all the rage among developers and web companies, but they also represent two very substantial benefits to larger organizations. First, they have the potential to dramatically accelerate the application lifecycle from software builds and testing to deployment and upgrades. Second they represent the first truly hybrid-approach to consuming infrastructure, allowing organizations to run the same workloads on any cloud, virtual machine or physical server. Together, they represent a ver...
SYS-CON Events announced today the Containers & Microservices Bootcamp, being held November 3-4, 2015, in conjunction with 17th Cloud Expo, @ThingsExpo, and @DevOpsSummit at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. This is your chance to get started with the latest technology in the industry. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Containers and Microservices Bootcamp, led by Janakiram MSV, a Microsoft Regional Director, will include presentations as well as hands-on...
As more intelligent IoT applications shift into gear, they’re merging into the ever-increasing traffic flow of the Internet. It won’t be long before we experience bottlenecks, as IoT traffic peaks during rush hours. Organizations that are unprepared will find themselves by the side of the road unable to cross back into the fast lane. As billions of new devices begin to communicate and exchange data – will your infrastructure be scalable enough to handle this new interconnected world?
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, will discuss the impact of technology on identity....
This week, the team assembled in NYC for @Cloud Expo 2015 and @ThingsExpo 2015. For the past four years, this has been a must-attend event for MetraTech. We were happy to once again join industry visionaries, colleagues, customers and even competitors to share and explore the ways in which the Internet of Things (IoT) will impact our industry. Over the course of the show, we discussed the types of challenges we will collectively need to solve to capitalize on the opportunity IoT presents.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Spirent Communications, the leader in testing navigation and positioning systems, will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Spirent Communications enables innovations in communications technologies that help connect people. Whether it is service provider, data centers, enterprise IT networks, mobile communications, connected vehicles or the Inte...
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, al...
WebRTC converts the entire network into a ubiquitous communications cloud thereby connecting anytime, anywhere through any point. In his session at WebRTC Summit,, Mark Castleman, EIR at Bell Labs and Head of Future X Labs, will discuss how the transformational nature of communications is achieved through the democratizing force of WebRTC. WebRTC is doing for voice what HTML did for web content.
Through WebRTC, audio and video communications are being embedded more easily than ever into applications, helping carriers, enterprises and independent software vendors deliver greater functionality to their end users. With today’s business world increasingly focused on outcomes, users’ growing calls for ease of use, and businesses craving smarter, tighter integration, what’s the next step in delivering a richer, more immersive experience? That richer, more fully integrated experience comes ab...