Hi Everyone, I'm new to Ricksteves.com but I browsed through some posts on this topic already. My situation is slightly different. I have an unlocked iphone4 and will be in France for 1 week in September. During that time, I'm hoping to have constant access to a 3G network (I'm waiting for a few very important emails). I've been doing some research online and there's a couple of websites that offer 2GB data plans (for example: http://www.cellhire.com/products/international/sim-card/france). I'm not sure how reliable those websites are, it seems too good to be true to pay $89 a month for a SIM card with 2GB data included where as I've read in other posts that data costs $2 USD for 1 mb. Will these SIM cards really work in France? Thanks so much! S
Sophie, your best bet is to go to France and set it up. These online services where someone else 'sets you up' gets kind of strange. They usually want a copy of your passport so they can set you up. You can set this up at an Orange store quickly and for a fraction of the price. The sim cards usually run about 8EUR (if you look on Orange's website they are 1 EUR online only...but only shipped in France...so you can see that these other site are screwing you out of hard-earned money.)
Thanks for the quick reply Alex. Do you know if Orange offers SIM cards that have 3G data packages on them?
Dear Sophie. Indeed they do. You can see a pic here:
Hi Sophie, I was in Paris the last 2 yrs and am going back again next week. After jumping through hoops too many times, I've come to the conclusion that I will go to an Orange store when I arrive to buy a sim card knowing that I will be serviced by someone who knows what they're doing and where I be comforted knowing I'll receive reliable service all across France. Yes, you might get cheaper service somewhere else, but if you are waiting on important calls, the sightly more expensive Orange service offsets the anxiety of encountering the kind of dead zones I ran into 2 yrs ago. Have a great trip.
The post office is not a desirable place to select a sim card. You have lines of people waiting to buy stamps and pick up packages behind you. The clerks are not sim card specialists. It's better to go to the FNAC or a phone stre.
We've had SFR phones and service for the last seven years and not had any reception problems in either Paris or the boonies. So here are two recommended brands.