AT&T has no shortage of international roaming plans. But for its subscribers who frequently travel to other countries, they have plenty of reason to want a little more than what the major US wireless carrier is currently offering. Indeed, the Passport international rate plans that the company had announced more than a couple of years ago do offer some data, but unfortunately for travelers, it is not very much, even at the highest tier option. Some are even saying that it is cheaper to just unlock one’s device and make full use of a SIM card (with travel happy inclusions) instead.
But starting this Friday, the second biggest wireless carrier in the United States will be officially launching a new International Day Pass that basically allows its subscribers to take full advantage of their domestic plan (including the full data inclusions) in more than a hundred countries for $10 per day.
On top of that, the new International Day Pass from AT&T will also let mobile users make unlimited voice calls to both the US and any country covered by the day pass. Moreover, those who avail of the day pass will also get to enjoy unlimited text messaging wherever they might be traveling. As mentioned earlier, the International Day Pass will go live this coming January 27th.
But wait -- there are certain terms and conditions that interested parties might want to know about first. For one, AT&T will be selling the new International Day Pass by the device -- which could mean bad news for families traveling abroad, especially those with lots of family members. Furthermore, it is possible that the wireless carrier may discontinue a customer’s access to his International Day Pass if his data usage outside America exceeds 50 percent of his plan for two straight months. Based on that last sentence, one can argue that perhaps AT&T is intending its day pass offering for business trips and the usual vacations, and not really for extended stays in other countries.
Now, comparing this new offering from AT&T to other similar deals from rival networks is inevitable. But looking at what is made available from the competition offers interesting results. For instance at T-Mobile, customers are not charged for using international data, but users only get to enjoy LTE speeds in two countries outside the US -- Mexico and Canada. For all other destinations, they get connection speeds of 128 kbps. Sprint has something akin to what AT&T has, but customers are required to pay for full speed data, depending on which country they will be traveling, and how much data they will be consuming. Perhaps Google’s Project Fi has the most generous offer -- assigning a flat $10 for every gigabyte consumed, but when the customer is not connected to Wi-Fi, he may find himself paying by the minute for every phone call. And remember that not every device works on Project Fi. As for Verizon Wireless’ TravelPass, it also charges $10 a day, that is unless the customer goes to Mexico or Canada, where it becomes $2.
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