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Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

Central NY
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114 posts
4 reviews
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Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

Can someone explain the process of using an unlocked phone w/ SIM card? We use our iphones for wireless only, and this year have the need to provide an emergency number to family at home. Trying to decide between renting a phone (which we have done before), or trying this unlocked phone/SIM route. Am I correct in understanding that we can buy a cheap (i.e., $20-25 @ Walmart) unlocked GSM phone, go to Digicel at the airport and purchase a SIM card for around $20? If that's the case, assume they will show how to insert and will also provide us with an Aruban phone number? I understand we can add a few minutes every 5-6 months to keep it active and use annually going forward.

For those of you that have done this, is it this simple? Any caveats I need to consider? We arrive on Sunday 3:30 (yup - this weekend - 5 days!), will Digicel be open? Appreciate your feedback.

Vancouver BC
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1. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

I am here in Aruba now and have done this with my unlocked Sony Xperia Z1 smartphone. I got my Sim card from Setar and I think that it had 5 Aruban Florins on it. They have top up cards available at Gas Stattions, Super Markets, or Setar locations. Top up cards come in denominations of 5 - 10 - 15 - 25 - 30 or 50 Aruban Florins. To recharge your sim card Dial *136* card pin # To check your Balance dial *138#

Sim will expire in six months if not used.

Sorry I havn't used Digicel but I assume that they operate similarily.

Connecticut
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1,290 posts
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2. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

We bought a cheap, unlocked phone years ago and do exactly as you stated. We bought a Digicel sim card and top it off online every three or four months, to keep the number active. They installed it at the airport kiosk. The phone should be a GSM quadband, unlocked.

Cape Cod...
Destination Expert
for Aruba, Provincetown
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4,456 posts
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3. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

The cheap phones at Walmart are not unlocked. You can by cheap unlocked ones on eBay or Amazon. Just make sure it has the frequencies needed for Aruba.

Central NY
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114 posts
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4. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

Wish I would have looked into this earlier, as I now do not have enough time to order from eBay or Amazon. Has anyone found a phone that will work in a store vs. online? Appreciate all your advice, as always.

LaGrangeville, New...
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1,519 posts
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5. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

We too got an unlocked quadband GSM phone on ebay.. $20 dollars. Got to the airport and bought a $20 dollar sims card.. they install it and give you the phone number. Then just go to digicel aruba online to top off the minutes you need. Very simple.

6. Re: Unlocked Phone/SIM Card Question

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