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Jac747 Feb 18, 05 5:55 pm

Phones for 1 week in Paris
We need to get two phones to use mainly for within Paris but also for a few long calls back to the U.S. What would be most economical for us since we cannot use the phones we have there? Thanks

cordelli Feb 18, 05 7:36 pm

Unless you need to be able to make those long calls on a seconds notice, I would get a calling card from, it's six point nine cents a minute.

steve100 Feb 19, 05 1:11 pm

I too have used Nobelcom many times in the past, it is a great service.

Just read the fineprint. Cordelli correctly stated that the rate from France to the USA is $0.069/minute, but he did leave out the fact that this rate is ONLY good if you call dial one of the local access numbers in France. If you want to use a toll-free number from France, then you need to add an additional $0.04/minute, for a total cost of $0.109/minute.

Heck, ten cents per minute is still cheap though!

(The card itself costs $20 and it does have a $0.69/week maintenance fee on it and it is billed in two minute increments)

Jac747 Feb 19, 05 1:39 pm

I also need two phones though that will work in France. Should I just rent them through Verizon, our service here in CA?

vachataboon Feb 19, 05 1:56 pm

We used a cell phone from while in Spain for 2 weeks. Pretty reasonable rates too.

If your cell provider can get you a phone or access card, that's probably the best way.

roberto99 Feb 19, 05 2:40 pm

Originally Posted by Jac747
I also need two phones though that will work in France. Should I just rent them through Verizon, our service here in CA?

Verizon uses CDMA technology in the US.

You will need GSM 900/1800 for Europe.

Unlocked 900/1800 mHz GSM phones can be acquired from as well as other sources. My personal favorite is the Nokia 3200 (NOT the 3200b that US carriers sell). Then you can buy a prepaid SIM in Paris for instant use of your new phone.

Beware that MOST of the unlocked GSM phones on ebay are NOT 900/1800 mHz. 850 and 1900 mHz will NOT work in Europe.

Enjoy Paris. My fam and I will be there at the end of March once again. I can't wait!!!

GadgetFreak Feb 20, 05 7:28 pm

Find out how much Verizon would charge, including making some reasonable number of calls. I suspect it is more than the cost of just buying a couple phones either here or in Paris.

Jac747 Feb 20, 05 11:05 pm

Verizon charges $2.99/day plus $22 shipping and $1.49/min. for all calls. Maybe purchasing two phones on Ebay would be cheaper but maybe not as easy.

SYDguy Feb 21, 05 10:05 am

Why not just buy two pre-pay gsm phones locally on arrival. You will have the convenience of local nos. and have the use of them once unlocked on your travels everywhere in the world (except USA + Japan).

You can get them from about €89 each perhaps less for a twin pack. (You could even get about 15% back on departure if you do enough collective détaxe). Available at the numerous boutiques of the providors Orange or SFR, or at such places as fnac or Darty. Do not buy Bouygues they are not gsm.

For your long distance calling use a pre-paid card from the numerous offers available at tabacs or presse agencies. You will enjoy a call rate better than those quoted above, select one that has the best rate for the destinations you are calling and without minimum 2min increments etc.

JBLUA320 Feb 22, 05 5:58 am

Roberto99, A fellow phone knowledgable user :).
If you grab prepaid phones in Paris, you can later get them unlocked and use them in future trips beyond the States, probably the best idea so you have GSM 900/1800 phones.
Also, Sony Ericsson T68, T610, T630 Motorola: V60g, V300, V400, V500, V600, just some phones on eBay that are GSM 900/1800 compliant.
-Mr. X
PS: Why isn't Bouyugues GSM? It seems like it is.

GadgetFreak Feb 22, 05 9:02 am

It really depends on your use. Like if you planned on making like 10 minutes of calls and not going back to a GSM country soon I would just rent the Verizon phones. Less hassle. If you go frequently, I would get a couple GSM phones. You really have to try to estimate the cost each way and see if it is worth it to you to buy the phones given your near to medium term use of them.

Jac747 Feb 22, 05 9:20 am

We are lucky to make one int'l trip per year at this point and will be making a few inter-Paris calls and just a few(possibly long) calls to the U.S. Thanks

MrFurious Feb 22, 05 10:01 am

Here are some prepaid GSM operators in France.

If you do go this route and just need to borrow a phone I can send one to you.

polkacat Feb 22, 05 11:51 am

Originally Posted by Jac747
Verizon charges $2.99/day plus $22 shipping and $1.49/min. for all calls.

I was considering renting a GSM phone from Verizon for an upcoming trip, but was appalled at the shipping costs. I called customer service and they agreed to refund the shipping if I rented from Verizon, and noted it in my record. Others may be able to get the same deal.

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