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Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

New York City, New...
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Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

Hello,

I'm traveling from USA and would really like to know the best way to use a cell phone while in Israel. I currently use an iPhone and also need to communicate daily via email for business purposes. Looking to use most efficient and least expensive option. Thanks.

Pinetop-Lakeside...
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1. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

I always recommend the Orange Big Talk SIM card available from Israel Post office. You can buy it before you leave so you will know your number, it is not a rental so the number is yours to keep and it is really inexpensive.

israelpost.co.il/mall.nsf/prodsbycode/175…

The only concern is that it is a regular size SIM card, and your iPhone might take one of the smaller cards. But you dial *111 once you're in country to set it up and then *4555 to set up data.

Haifa, Israel
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2. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

The best option for mail is to use wifi. There is free wifi across various areas of Jerusalem and also in many cafes. People frequently take laptops into cafes to work.

To use your iPhone with a local SIM it needs to be unlocked, as well as getting a small/tiny SIM card. Otherwise it may be easier to rent a phone (renting also will likely be cheaper if you are going to call a lot, or call the USA).

New York City, New...
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3. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

Thanks for the great advice. I am very excited for my trip!

Gippsland, Australia
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4. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

I also use an iphone. I bought a big talk orange SIM card twice when visiting Israel and had a very positive result. However, the first time I went I tried to buy one at the Post Office (in Eilat) and they weren't able to organise the data pack - I had to go to the Orange store for that. The Post Office website also doesn't appear to sell anything other than the SIM card.

So I do recommend the Orange SIM card - but just not through the Post Office. :)

I found that having a data pack on the SIM card much better than relying on wifi. Free wifi is usually fairly slow, and wifi at hotels can work out very expensive. A decent size data pack with the SIM card was a really good, economic option.

New York City, New...
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5. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

Thank you. I do think a sim card with data plan is the way to go. Thanks to all who replied to my post for the advice.

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6. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

Did the post office have Sim cards that fit an iPhone? Or only one size. I don't see those options online.

Did the orange store just load a data pack on your Sim card? Or would they be able to swap out for free the SamCard if it's the wrong size?

Pinetop-Lakeside...
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7. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

The post office only sells the one size online.

Gippsland, Australia
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8. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

I just thought I would mention that unless you read Hebrew you will need to have someone set it up once you have bought your SIM card packet as you need to respond to text messages in Hebrew. We started our second trip in Tel Aviv where there is a good kiosk at the Dizengoff Centre which sells the Orange SIM card. The guy serving us offered to do all the set up for us so that we walked away with working phones.

We later has to top up the data pack on one phone and that time the very helpful young man in the hotel shop we were staying at offered to do it for me.

Ed, different iphone models take different SIM cards so you need to know which SIM your own iPhone takes. Different members of our family have iPhones and between us all we use three different sizes of SIM card.

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9. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

Thanks. iPhone 5 uses a nano sim.

Post office price is the best. Wonder if it could be swapped out at a local orange kiosk or store?

Edited: 21 November 2013, 02:49
Gippsland, Australia
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for Jerusalem
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10. Re: Cell Phone Usage in Jerusalem

The post office SIM available online is a Standard SIm and not a nano SIM.

If you let us know where you will be staying when you arrive in Israel I am sure someone here can point you to the closest place you can get a suitable sim with a data package - whether it is an Orange Store or a kiosk of some kind.