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What's the cheapest way to purchase data access for my verizon smartphone while traveling in Spain? Voice minutes would be useful too, although data only would be ideal. Specifically, I'll be traveling in southern Spain for about two weeks' time.

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What phone do you have? Verizon is usually on CDMA, a different standard than Spain uses, which is GSM, so unless you have some kind of world phone from Verizon it may not work there at all. –  Joel Spolsky Jun 22 '11 at 2:54
    
Ah, my phone is a Droid X, so that sounds like it won't work with my phone. –  mteng Jun 23 '11 at 13:38
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7 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

I'd suggest you get a cheap GSM phone (assuming you're not lucky enough to have a GSM phone already), and then pick up a pre-pay (PAYG) sim card when you get to spain.

This will also have the bonus of giving you a Spanish number for the duration of your trip, so people in Spain can call you for a sensible amount of money.

If you only want data, you may wish to get an unlocked 3g usb dongle, and then pick up a PAYG sim card for it, that could potentially be cheaper than doing it via a phone.

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You can find a list of possible pay as you go plans here : http://paygsimwithdata.wikia.com/wiki/Spain .

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Great list, for many countries! Just one thing: make sure your current phone is not SIM-locked. –  nic Jun 22 '11 at 5:37
    
I am a happy user of Más Móvil. Prices are competitive, English support is easy to reach, and connectivity is very good (Orange network). I just updated the Wiki page with current data packages. Interestingly, the founders of Más Móvil are from Austria and Norway. –  feklee May 23 '13 at 14:55
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Another option is the 3G Amazon Kindle, which lets you use an 'experimental' browser without any charges anywhere in the world. AFAIK this policy is not a limited offer.

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Wikipedia claims Telefónica de España has a CDMA2000 network, like Verizon. If that's the case then your cheapest route is almost certainly to unlock your device and register it with Telefónica while you're there. I assume they have prepaid data plans, I'm not sure of the specifics.

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You have to be careful about CDMA details. I've found some lists are based on a CDMA industrial body and loose with the truth. I saw one list saying Ireland had a CDMA network, but it doesn't. –  Rory Aug 17 '11 at 16:11
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If you are travelling with a laptop (and want data for that), you may be able to get a cheap pre-paid USB 3G dongle.

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yoigo gives you prepaid data at a good price.

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Verizon wireless will send you a free global loaner phone (for just the $10 cost of roundtrip shipping which they add to your bill.) You can keep it for a month and continue to use your old phone number. They have several dual mode phones available, many of them are smart phones from Moto, Samsung, HTC, etc. Not sure if your current data plan applies however but you can ask when you call: 1-800-711-8300.

Check out their website first: http://b2b.vzw.com/international/Global_Travel/index.html

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