Do you loathe paying international roaming charges to Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, or any other major wireless carrier when you travel outside the United States? You know, that sickening feeling that you get when you open your monthly cell phone bill after traveling internationally and are hit with roaming charges for a call or text you got while you were abroad.
Well, thanks to Google Project Fi, you can now eliminate those nasty roaming charges when you travel internationally. Project Fi is a totally new wireless service from Google that starts at $20 per line (phone number) for monthly access, plus data charges. But unlike traditional carriers, Project Fi only charges you for the data ($10/GB) that you use with no roaming fees. Project Fi piggy backs on T-Mobile, Sprint, and US Cellular network in the US, but also has agreements with over 140+ carriers internationally so you can use your phone almost anywhere in the world at the same $10 per gigabyte. Any data that your don’t use is refunded to you on your next bill.
Another great feature of Project Fi is each line is allowed to order up to 9 data-only SIMs, which allows you to have data access on other devices without having to add another line of service. This works great when you are traveling in a group (i.e. – family and friends), and want everyone to have data access on their mobile devices.
The best feature Project Fi has to offer is your monthly service can be paused and resumed whenever you need it and you are billed down to the hour for the time your service is active. So it’s a great option to activate a line, pause service, and resume service when you know you will be traveling internationally. I have a cell phone number with Project Fi that is currently paused since I am on a family plan with Verizon. When I travel abroad, I simply resume my Project Fi service, pop out my Verizon SIM, and pop in my Project Fi SIM. On a recent trip to Taiwan, I saved literally thousands of dollars because I also used data-only SIMs for my wife, parents, and kids while we were traveling. Altogether, we used 3 GB of data and paid $30 for data for 6 smartphones. If we all used our Verizon phones, the roaming charges alone would have been over $6,150.
The one caveat with Project Fi is in order to activate service, you will need to own or borrow a Google phone (Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X and Nexus 6, and Pixel). Once activated, the Project Fi will work with an iPhone with a few tweaks. Project Fi is currently offering $20 credit (after 30 days of activate service) if you use my Project Fi referral link.
Have you tried Google Fi? If so, leave me a comment below and let me know what you think!