10 Replies Latest reply: Nov 14, 2012 5:44 AM by foxcub 6
MariaGDavid Level 1 (0 points)

we just got an iPad, I part because we are going to France and Italy. Now we finding it a little bit confusing, do we need to get sims card? will th AT&T international plan work? In both France and Italy? If we do get a sims card which is the best carrier? which carrier works in both countries? can we order the card here in the US, and have them ship it to us so we will be ready to go when we arrive? any advice is welcome.  thanks

iPad, iOS 5.1.1
  • deggie Level 9 (52,682 points)

    I would avoid the AT&T international plan, it will be quite expensive. Use pay as you go plans in France and Italy, there will be many stores that will have iPad compatible microSIMS and plans. And use WiFi as much as possible.

  • Skydiver119 Level 7 (25,967 points)

    In addition to your SIM card issue, you'll need a plug adapter. If you don't know, US plugins don't fit in UK plugs (actually they are different voltages, but it doesn't matter for the iPad since its power brick can handle world wide voltage)


    You will just need a plug adapter to make your iPad fit in UK plugs. You can find them in the travel/luggage section of your local store.

  • MariaGDavid Level 1 (0 points)

    I guess I need to make myself cear. Our iPad has 4G, will it except and wok with 3G sim card? And can I purchase this sim card from here I.e. the US?

  • deggie Level 9 (52,682 points)

    Yes, it will work with a 3G card but using 4G may be an issue due to frequency differences. You will not be able to purchase "a" card, you will need one for Italy and one for France. It will not be hard to find shops that have them.

  • appleuser1322 Level 3 (675 points)

    In the USA, 4g lte networks are not so widespread yet. When there is no 4g, your ipad will kick into the 3g network.


    As far as I know from what I've read on the subject, deggie is right when he says to avoid ATT international plan. It's expensive!


    He's also suggested you use pay as you go plans that are hooked up to where you are going. Most countries have their own carriers, so you should research ahead of time online and at bookstores (Frommer's usually has updated info on these subjects - 4g to 3g, and would 3g sim card suffice, and local plans in each area of each country.) When you get to France and then Italy, go to stores you have researched that can give you a more local plan where your rates will be cheaper. Avoid buying at airports or hotels. They usually charge more for everthing. In bigger cities, they're probably all over the place like Verizon, ATT, etc. I have no idea if you can have the cards shipped to you before you go.


    Peter Greenberg (sometimes seen on Today show and the View) is a travel expert and has many books out regarding travel. Petergreenberg.com. I'd check him out, too. Google, google, google and that could be a great help!


    Though you did not ask, I assume you know about outlet adaptors (if not check out travel smart by Conair -  in Best Buys, tech stores, and even drug stores. Travel Smart has a lightweight (about 2.5" cube) all in one - US/Aust, Europe, and UK. Ours also has a usb so ipods can be charged!


    I'm sure someone very knowledgeable on the subject might see your question and possibly know exactly what you should buy.


    Au Revoir and Ciao!

  • lucyandhobbes Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm still confused. We will be staying at a hotel that provides WiFi to its guest. If we take our iPad along will we be able to use the internet and send and check our e-mails?

  • deggie Level 9 (52,682 points)


  • Phil0124 Level 7 (20,927 points)

    Yes. Wifi will be able to be used normally, but again, the sim cards will need to be purchased to get access to the 3G networks in France and Italy if you want Internet anywhere you are withut relying on a Wifi connection being available.


    It all comes down to wether or not you want to have Internet on your iPad while walking down the street, or if haivng it in the hotel or a coffee shop with Wifi is enough.


    Also as has been pointed out, the power plugs in Europe are different to those in America, so you'll need a special adapter.

  • lucyandhobbes Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for everyone's help

  • foxcub 6 Level 1 (70 points)

    HI you should try just using wifi, i used my i pad uk, in Spain and bought there moviestar net work sim{ Spannish network} and found it outrageously expensive to use about 30 euros would last a few hours.So my advise would be just to use wifi,a pain yes i agree it defeats the purpose of having a 3g ipad but i wont be robbed when there is a alternative wifi ,most cafes are wifi free to use