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Mobile phone advice

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Liverpool, United...
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Mobile phone advice

Advice needed!

We are travelling from the UK and will be staying in Rossnowlagh (Co Donegal) for 4 weeks soon and wonder what to do about a mobile phone. I have an O2 contract (very basic) herein the UK. Is it best to buy a pay as you go sim card once we get to Ireland?

We will be traveliing to and fro a bit including a weekend in Dublin so want to go for the most economical but workable option.

Also want to take my laptop and have aoccasional internet access. Is a dongle the best option - if so which network does anyone advise, and am I best waiting till we get to Ireland before buying one?


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1. Re: Mobile phone advice

We also have UK 'pay as you go' mobile phones from O2 and they work fine in most areas, just make sure that you top them up with credit before you leave home as they use a different top up system here. You may not get good mobile coverage in some of the remote areas of Donegal but otherwise they work fine. The same goes for internet as some areas are out of broadband coverage even with a dongler. You will need to ask about local O2 coverage conditions when you arrive but I expect that Rosssnowlagh is okay being close to the NI border You will anyway find an O2 shop in Donegal town or across the border in Enniskillen..

Western Ireland...
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2. Re: Mobile phone advice

O2 uk used to do an Ireland bundle as an add on so check that. I use Tesco uk with a £2 Ireland bundle for my daughters who live in the UK as for the Intet Dongle then If you can do without then you will be better off most hotels and many B&B/Guesthouses have wireless access and trust me as an expat Irish rates swamp UK ones

Manchester, United...
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3. Re: Mobile phone advice

What exactly do you want to use the phone for? If it's just a case of phoning around to places in Ireland (ie. to book a meal, check opening times etc) then we'd suggest that rather than get an 'all singing, all dancing' expensive phone you should go for a locally bought Pay As You Go 'cheapie' mobile and/or SIM card such as from Tesco* or even find a phone kiosk (yes, they still exist, just) to sort you out. If it's for calling back to the UK can you cope with just texting every now and then and then once every couple of days take a drive over the border to, say, Enniskillen or Belleek to use your own phones as normal once you have a O2UK signal? Some of the towns and villages of Co. Fermanagh are charming and this plan could take you into areas that you hadn't originally considered for your trip - distances are quite short and the roads around the immediate area you are in are actually quite good so from Rossnowlagh to Belleek is actually no longer than a 20-30 minute drive ;-)

If it's an 'all singing, all dancing' option that you are looking for then Tony's suggestion of an Ireland 'add on' to your own phone is probably the best - one of us has just upgraded our iPhone (with O2) and received the Ireland 'add on' for free but that is for a contract set-up...

If your laptop usage is only going to be occasional then do a bit of advance research on free wi-fi zones on your planned trips out and tap into them rather than pay for a dongle - there are plenty of free wi-fi cafes and public spaces (ie. libraries, pubs) in Sligo town, for example, that you could sit down at and use your laptop quite easily. We do this often :-)

*we got rid of our landline in Ireland several years ago as we were only using it for the meal booking / opening times type of light usage for dialling out and for builders and delivery folk for calling in and instead got ourselves a basic model PAYG Tesco mobile - it cost us a few cents short of €15 and included €10 of credit which we have never actually topped up since as our usage is so light! We bought ours from the Tesco store in Sligo town which is about 30-45 minutes drive down the N15 from Rossknowlagh :-)

4. Re: Mobile phone advice

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