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Cell phone

Portland, Maine
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109 posts
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Cell phone

When in Israel what is the least expensive way to call the USA. I would like to have a cell phone just for the week in Israel to call and receive calls from USA.

Maryland
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144 posts
42 reviews
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1. Re: Cell phone

The first thing to do is check whether the phone you have is the type that can be "unlocked" to use a SIM card abroad. Your carrier may know.

I didn't realize I had one of these. If you have one, you can get a pre-paid SIM card in any number of places in Israel and use it in your phone.

Otherwise, there are several vendors that rent phones to tourists. Many will mail them to you before your trip or deliver them to the airport.

We used Amigo. It was fine.

Cincinnati, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Israel
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14,898 posts
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2. Re: Cell phone

I use Amigo as well, and have already booked one for my eleventh trip in May. Check out www.amigo-us.com.

Douglas Duckett

new york
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247 posts
74 reviews
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3. Re: Cell phone

I have to agree with Doug. I have used amigo and they are honest reliable and dependable!

Boston...
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16 posts
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4. Re: Cell phone

I don't know much about Amigo, but I used Israel Phones when I was there, and I was also very pleased with them. They also have calling cards to the US- which is the cheapest way (I found) to call. They're at www.israelphones.com

Edited: 29 January 2012, 19:38
Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
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17,954 posts
95 reviews
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5. Re: Cell phone

FYI - you do not pay for incoming calls on Israeli cell phones - so you would only be comparing the costs of making calls - receiving calls is always free.

Los Angeles
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3 posts
4 reviews
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6. Re: Cell phone

Is the number they give you a US number, or an Israeli number? If it is not a US number, then incoming calls from the US would be at international rates.

Cincinnati, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Israel
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14,898 posts
215 reviews
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7. Re: Cell phone

It is generally an Israeli number, so you are right--international toll charges would apply to someone calling it from the US or Canada, for example. For an extra fee, Amigo will give you a US access number, and you then pay 15 cents a minute for incoming calls (as opposed to the usual free incoming calls). I'm doing that on this trip because clients need to call me.

But you can also buy a $10 block of time from One Suite (www.onesuite.com), and give the info to your friends/family. Then can then call you using that lock for something like 8.5 cents per minute, and no cost to them. That's a very good alternative, and not an expensive one.

Douglas Duckett

Israel
Destination Expert
for Israel
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17,954 posts
95 reviews
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8. Re: Cell phone

To clarify one more point - you do not pay for incoming calls on Israeli cell phones - only outgoing - so if you get an Israeli number it only affects those calling you in terms of cost - all the calls you get will not cost you anything.

Ottawa, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jerusalem, Galilee, Tel Aviv
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5,936 posts
149 reviews
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9. Re: Cell phone

I have used israelphones in the past and have been very satisfied.

One note about using 'unlocked' phones. This doesn't always work in Israel. Some SIM cards will not work even in unlocked phones. I don't know how to check this in advance but it seems to be a common problem.

High Point, North...
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61 posts
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10. Re: Cell phone

Are there any shops/kiosks at Ben Gurion airport that sell Israeli SIM cards?

Thanks!

Edited: 27 April 2012, 04:20