Yes, if you have the right set-up on your world phone, you can use it while on vacation in Jamaica. But be prepared to spend a small fortune! Trust me, I know!! International roaming is expensive because you are piggybacking onto a partner GSM network such as Digicel's in Jamaica. I finally decided to bite the bullet and get a Digicel SIM card with a Jamaican number to simply swap into my unlocked quad-band phone when I'm there. I can even top it up from home.
I don't own an iPhone (yet!), but here's some good advice for those of you who do. With regard to maps, you may be able to use the fabulous JAMNAV if your phone can use Garmin Mobile XT. Check it out!
4 Great iPhone Apps to Take on Vacation
January 13, 2011
I recently returned from spending several days vacationing in Jamaica. While it was nice to take a trip outside of the United States, I also enjoy staying in touch with family and friends. However, it can be expensive to make international phone calls or even to send and receive text messages.
Fortunately, I was able to use a few simple technology tools (and free Wi-Fi in the hotel) to communicate across borders and also make it easier to get around the island.
When I’m in the United States, I have an unlimited text message plan. However, while in Jamaica, I had to pay an international roaming charge ($0.50) for every text message I sent. By using the Google Voice app on my iPhone over the hotel’s Wi-Fi connection, I could send and receive text messages for no cost. I simply had to tell my family and friends to use my Google voice number instead of my regular AT&T number.
The latest version of the Skype iPhone App provides the ability to make a video call to any Skype client (Mac, PC, or iPhone) over Wi-Fi or 3G. By using this app, I was able to have a video conference with friends in various locations in the United States while sitting in my hotel room in Jamaica. I was amazed that while making a regular cell phone call would cost me almost $2.00 per minute, I could make a video call for free! I didn’t have a chance to test the Skype app over 3G, but the picture and voice quality was amazing over Wi-Fi.
I keep up with a large number of technology related RSS feeds using Google Reader. While I normally use Google Reader on my iPhone using Safari, I didn’t want to incur roaming charges if I decided to catch up on the news while taking a bus to one of my day trips around the island. Fortunately, there is a great iPhone app called MobileRSS that lets users login to their Google Reader account and download their RSS subscriptions to the device. So, I would connect MobileRSS to my Google Reader account in the morning over Wi-Fi and then read my feeds throughout the day while I was offline.
The Google Maps app on the iPhone is simply called Maps, and its usefulness is often overlooked since it is pre-installed on the iPhone. However, I used the Google Maps app quite often Jamaica to find routes from my hotel to various parts of the island. I made screen prints of the maps on my iPhone which let me access them when I didn’t have an internet connection. Having these maps available on my iPhone gave me peace of mind while I was being driven around Jamaica since I was able to have a frame of reference for where I was going.
From Black Web 2.0.