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Thread: Bringing my Tracfone to Europe?

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    Bringing my Tracfone to Europe?

    I know I'm not allowed to use my US Tracfone overseas, but is it possible to? Not that I want to, it's just that I don't want to accidentally access a foreign network and get penalized by Tracfone for it. Will it be ok for me to turn on my Tracfone overseas without any penalty? It will be ok for me to use it anywhere in the US still, won't it?

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    Your Tracfone won't work outside the US. Years ago it would work in Canada and Trac would kick off customers that used the phone there -- but they finally cut off the unwanted Canadian roaming a couple of years ago.

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    U.S. cellphones use different radio frequencies than European cellphones. So you can turn on the phone over there but it won't be able to connect. You won't cause a problem because you won't be connecting. The problem is when the phone is able to connect but the connection is not Tracfone-approved. Then your phone will soon be in the past tense.

    I think most people either rent a phone while traveling or else they own a quad-band phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisme
    U.S. cellphones use different radio frequencies than European cellphones. So you can turn on the phone over there but it won't be able to connect. You won't cause a problem because you won't be connecting. The problem is when the phone is able to connect but the connection is not Tracfone-approved. Then your phone will soon be in the past tense.

    I think most people either rent a phone while traveling or else they own a quad-band phone.
    Some TracFones like the W376 are triband so technically they do have the capability but my guess is TracFone prevents usage there by preventing the SIM from ever registering on the foreign network.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IsLand_BoY
    Some TracFones like the W376 are triband so technically they do have the capability but my guess is TracFone prevents usage there by preventing the SIM from ever registering on the foreign network.

    Tracfones don't have a roaming agreement overseas, so the phone will register as SOS only.

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    I looked at various options for a cellular handset to use on a European trip. The AT&T and Tracfone LG225 are quad band handsets that can be used in Europe. An unlocked AT&T version can be used by simply replacing the SIM Card. The Tracfone version uses proprietary firmware which must be replaced to use on any other GSM Network. The cost of a Tracfone LG225 and the fee a dealer charges to make it compatible can make using the LG225 impractical. If you can get an unlocked AT&T LG225 at a reasonable price on ebay or craigslist might be a low cost solution. On the other hand there are very reasonably priced basic GSM handsets available at dealers in Europe.

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    I've bought 2 quadband T-Mobile branded phone off Craiglist for $20 each. A Moto W490 and a Sam T-739. T-Mobile sent me the unlock codes for free (about 6 months apart) because I am a T-Mo customer.
    Both phones are in excellent to near perfect condition.
    Shopping for quadbands on CL requires some effort and patients. Sellers have little knowledge of what they're selling, some don't even know the model number and you have to tell them where to find it.
    If I find a GSM phone in my price range ($30 or less) I do a search for it. CNET reviews lists the number of bands a phone has.



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    In some of the menus of the tracfone you will see a list of free calls 911 is one of them 112 is another that is common for emergencies in other countries. So if the phone had an available compatible band it might be possible to make an emergency call.
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