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Cell Phones & Cruises

Many people want to stay connected when they travel. Most modern ships now let you use your mobile phone while aboard. And when you are in port, you can access local networks.

Below is a list of U.S. mobile phone carriers. Follow the link to make sure your carrier has an agreement with your ship -- for example, at&t has particularly limited cruise ship agreements.

Don't forget to check out Cruise Packing Essentials!

A few tips to remember:

  • You must call your carrier to turn on international roaming. Normally this feature is not activated.
  • It's not cheap. Expect to pay at least $2.50 per minute to call the US from the ship. You will also be charged for incoming calls, and even the time it takes for people to leave you a voicemail if your phone is on, so you may want to turn it off when you're not making a call.
  • Dial "+" and then the country code and number. When calling the U.S., the country code is "1." For example, calling the US from overseas, dial +1-(XXX)-XXX-XXXX, to call a Jamaica number from your you mobile, dial +876-XXX-XXXX because +867 is the country code (e.g., +867-702-6000 is the number for the US Embassy in Jamaica; dial the whole number on your cell phone, or 702-6000 from a Jamaican pay phone).

 

Mobile Phone Carriers

Alltel

  • Check which ships have Alltell
  • Call 1-800-255-8351 to activate international services
  • Onboard rates: $2.49 plus normal call charges
  • Data plans are not available

 

at&t

  • Check which ships have at&t
  • Onboard rates: $2.49/minute
  • Call 1-866-246-4852 to activate international services
  • For the best international coverage, choose a quad band world phone that operates on 850/1900 (North America) and 900/1800 (most other countries) MHz frequencies. For travel to Japan or South Korea, your phone must operate on 2100 MHz.

 

MetroPCS

  • No international roaming

 

Sprint / Nextel

  • Check which ships have Sprint / Nextel
  • Onboard rates :$2.49/minute
  • Call 1-800-974-2221 to activate international services
  • Most phones will be voice only. Data requires GSM coverage, such as the Blackberry Worldphone

T-Mobile

 

Verizon

  • Check which ships have Verizon
  • Onboard rates: $2.50 / minute, 50c per SMS out, 5c per SMS in
  • Requires digital or tri-mode phone with current roaming software as well as international roaming
  • Call 1 (800) 922-0204 to activate international services

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