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Nobody goes anywhere without a cell phone in this day and age. Globe-trotting is no exception, the right travel phone can serve you in so many scenarios: lost in a new city, catching a ride or capturing an unforgettable moment. But there are a couple things to consider before making a purchase and setting out on your next adventure.
Always a factor, personally I err on the thrifty side for travel technology especially cell phones. Being on the move means being susceptible to misplacing something. Additionally, a brand new iphone6 (as an example) can be a target for robbery in places where they’re not so common. Will you be traveling for a few weeks? Months? Or is this a year-long sabbatical? While you may not want to travel with a small fortune in your pocket you also don’t want a phone that isn’t going to survive the trip. Check out these models:
Unlocked vs. locked
Very important to consider: are you buying a phone that is tied to a service-provider or can you swap SIM cards as you pop into different countries? For residents of the US, it’s more common to buy locked phones as part of a plan whereas in Europe and Asia, paying full price for an unlocked phone is the norm. So look closely, doling out a bit more for an unlocked phone may be better in the long run; you need not worry about roaming fees or attempting to unlock it in a foreign country. Check out these models:
Your phone is probably much more than just a device for making calls; it’s a map, tour guide, entertainer and… a camera! Who has room to lug around a ton of equipment these days? Many phones now come with built-in high-quality lenses (taking better pictures than a typical digital camera) which saves you the hassle of packing and worrying about one more piece of technology. Think about what you want to use your cell phone for, if taking high-quality photos is in there, the Google Pixel and Sony Xperia XZ are highly-recommended.
This really depends on what kind of cellphone user you are: do you only make calls and send texts? Or are you the savvy traveler snapping photos and recording videos at every turn? Well, the good news is if you do run out of space a simple SD card usually helps. With so many great travel apps out there these days, you’re bound to download a few like TripIt, Maps.me and XE Currency.
What advice would you give to someone shopping around for a good travel cell phone? Comment below!