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Old 12-12-2005, 11:40 PM   #1
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Default FAQ's FOR CELLPHONE SERVICE IN CANCUN

Will my phone work in Cancun?

This depends on your carrier. The frequencies are 1900mhz, the same as US, so Most US phones will work in Mexico, while visitors from Europe will need a Tri-band phone.

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Technical note: CDMA and GSM are rival and incompatible technologies. GSM is the world standard and you can roam worldwide with a multi-band GSM phone.
CDMA has more advanced features but doesnt roam much outside North America and Japan
Most European carriers will have a roaming agreement with either of the GSM carriers in Mexico, which are

TELCEL owned by America Movil, a Mexican company with networks around South America
MOVISTAR owned by Telefonica, a Spanish company with networks in Europe and South America


US CDMA Carriers Verizon and Sprint roam with IUSACELL, the CDMA network in Mexico, which I believe is the same network Cancunvalet subscribes to.
I hear the coverage is OK around the hotel zone but patchy elsewhere.

US GSM carriers ATT (formerly Cingular) and T-Mobile roam with TELCEL OR MOVISTAR.
coverage on this network is good all down the coast to Playa del Carmen and beyond.


IMPORTANT NOTE: You do need to setup INTERNATIONAL ROAMING on your phone BEFORE leaving home.In fact, it can take 3-4 days to get your account established on international networks so don't leave it to the last minute

Beware of the difference between INTERNATIONAL ROAMING and INTERNATIONAL DIALLING

Some carriers offer special plans for Mexico where you pay a small monthly fee for low cost calls. This in INTERNATIONAL DIALLING from your home netowrk, not INTERNATIONAL ROAMING on a foreign network.

How much does it cost?
It is free to enable International roaming on your phone, they just ding you for the airtime used when roaming.

The actual rates depend on both your home carrier and the agreement they have with the Mexican carrier.Currently I believe the US carriers will charge you

ATT
www.wireless.att.com
To simplify their terminology, it is based on Plans and Features (add-ons to Plans)

International Roaming is included in your Plan and has no monthly charge but has to be activated at least 72 hrs before travel. Once activated it should remain activated but be sure to check if you change your rate plan, as it can sometimes get disabled.
International Roaming costs $0.99/min whenever you are using air time in Mexico, including forwarding your incoming calls to you there.

There is an add-on Feature to the plan called Discount International Roaming, Discounted Roaming Feature costs $4.99/month for Mexico/Canada, or $5.99/month worldwide.

Cost per minute is reduced to $0.49/minute with either of the above, which is as cheap as using a local prepaid phone/SIM card



T-MOBILE
www.t-mobile.com
$1.49/minute (or $0.99 if you opt for their "World Class roaming*"

These rates apply to calls back to US from Mexico AND INCOMING CALLS. Local calls are cheaper, and calls to countries other than US from a US phone roaming in Mexico can be outrageous.For example, I once used my T-Mobile phone in Mexico to call Europe and got dinged $7/min!!!

*The "World Class roaming" is not such a good deal, as they also charge you the Mexico rate according to your International Dialling plan for forwarding incoming calls to you on the Mexican network :evil:

How do I dial home?

International access code from Mexico is 00 (not 011 as in US), so to call US/Canada numbers is 00-1-xxx-xxx-xxxx

Heres a tip, works with any GSM phone, (Cingular or T-Mobile).

Just edit your stored numbers and in front of the "1" insert the + sign, usually by holding down the 0 key. Any numbers you store like that, can be dialled from your phone book, from any country,just like from home

i.e. numbers in US and Canada need to be stored as +1 xxx xxx xxxx.
You can also save any Cancun numbers you may need as +52 998 xxx xxxx. (+52 1998 xxx xxxx for mobile numbers)


This does not affect making or receiving calls when you are back home, I store all my numbers that way and the caller ID works just fine.

Can I send text messages?

The GSM system is quite seamless and SMS text messages can be sent and received as normal. However, while roaming there is a cost per message which is not included in whatever bundle you pay while at home. I think it's around $0.10 or $0.15 per message.

Now here's the rub. What makes the SMS system so interoperable, is that all messages go through a Service Center, which is a phone number programmed into your SIM card by the carrier. This is toll free while in US, but depending on the carrier policy, you may get charged for the call to deliver your text message in addition to the message cost.
Currently, I believe T-Mobile charges for these calls, ATT does not. [ note to self- find out and update after I get my roaming charges from UK trip]
Note: Some 3G phones may be set up to send text messages via IP or GPRS rather than service center. You will need to find how to set it back to use the service center or it may not work in roaming

Can I send photo messages?
Multi-Media messages (Photos etc) work differently, via IP or GPRS which is stored in the phone rather than the SIM card. It uses a carrier specific internet gateway and may not work at all.I have had no problem in using GPRS on Telcel for sending/receiving e-mail, but for some reason have never been able to send/receive photos.

Currently, Caller ID between US and Mexico does not work at all. I have occasionally seen Caller ID come up here in US on my cellphone from cellphone numbers in Mexico but US numbers dont come through down there while roaming.
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Old 12-16-2005, 06:01 PM   #2
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Default Nextel

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shezza



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Posted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 1:24 pm Post subject: Nextel

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Just got back from Cancun and found out that Nextel 2 way works from Cancun to the US ..
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Old 12-18-2005, 03:28 PM   #3
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Default T-Mobile Roaming

Thanks for the info, Johnc. Pretty much says what the T-Mobile people said as well.

So basically, I cannot use my cell in Mexico unless I want to pay $1.49 /min (taking into account that you say the World Class thing is a bad idea).

Do you have any info on text messaging? Do roaming charges apply in that case as well?

Thanks again for the tips...but it looks like I'll be using my old friend Ladatel.

Melissa
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Old 12-28-2005, 11:24 AM   #4
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what about nextel? i know they work in acapulco
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Old 12-28-2005, 01:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ant95
what about nextel? i know they work in acapulco
just got back from cancun and my nextel 2way worked but not the phone service. I think it depends on your service plan.

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Old 12-28-2005, 02:59 PM   #6
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2 waying back to the states or 2waying someone in cancun?
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Old 12-28-2005, 04:22 PM   #7
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how much did it cost to 2 way down there on your bill .. and where you able to 2way home ?
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Old 12-29-2005, 01:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ant95
2 waying back to the states or 2waying someone in cancun?
2 waying to the states

Dogtrainer as far as i know it doesnt cost extra to 2way home from cancun

you may want to check with nextel to be sure
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Old 12-29-2005, 05:05 PM   #9
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Shezza

Thanks a buch .. man .. wish you guys where coming down the same week LOL *wink
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Old 12-30-2005, 05:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogtrainer
Shezza

Thanks a buch .. man .. wish you guys where coming down the same week LOL *wink
yeah me too .. :lol:
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Old 01-04-2006, 03:15 PM   #11
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i braught my phone down with me, but im from canada and my company told me it would work,
i got down there and nothing.
not even text messaging.
it sucked
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Old 01-05-2006, 03:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cancungirl
i braught my phone down with me, but im from canada and my company told me it would work,
i got down there and nothing.
not even text messaging.
it sucked
Mind if I ask what service your on .. or who your with .. Maybe even where your from .. because we thought we may be able to 2way and text down there .. I'm not bring it with me if I can't do either..

Jay
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Old 01-07-2006, 01:45 PM   #13
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I have US cellular as a carrier. I called them last night and they are setting up my service to work for me in Cancun. They have to contact the carrier down there and set things up, idk......

It is costing me a $3.00 a day fee for any call made (in or out) and 99cents a minute while down there.
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Old 01-07-2006, 02:11 PM   #14
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There is still no guarantee that it will work. Your chances are about 50/50. If it doesn't, don't forget to call and get your 3 bucks PD back.
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Old 01-25-2006, 05:45 PM   #15
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well Good news for 2 wayers .. We could 2 way from Cancun to Toronto Canada No problem .. And Text messaging was ok aswell .. But we used the 2 way most of the time ..

Telus is the company we use in Toronto Ontario Canada.
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Old 01-27-2006, 04:40 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr. indecisive
I have US cellular as a carrier. I called them last night and they are setting up my service to work for me in Cancun. They have to contact the carrier down there and set things up, idk......

It is costing me a $3.00 a day fee for any call made (in or out) and 99cents a minute while down there.
Let us know how it worked. US Cellular told me that using my phone in Cancun was NOT an option. AB & I both use US Cellular, and could work our businesses even better with that service. Even easier than cancunvalet.
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:58 AM   #17
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If you wish to rent a cell phone in Cancun just go to:

www.cancunvalet.com

I rent one every time and have not been disappointed once!

Karan
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:15 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogtrainer
well Good news for 2 wayers .. We could 2 way from Cancun to Toronto Canada No problem .. And Text messaging was ok aswell .. But we used the 2 way most of the time ..

Telus is the company we use in Toronto Ontario Canada.
thats great to hear. I'm with Telus as well. I'll give them a call this week to make sure that im set up to make/receive calls while im there.
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Old 02-23-2006, 07:38 AM   #19
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Leave your cells HOME its too expensive, dial down the center call 1-800-collect from the OASIS !
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Old 03-13-2006, 12:39 PM   #20
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well Nextel work in cancun?
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Old 03-22-2006, 09:54 AM   #21
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We have cellular one and they told me that if we could get a signal we could use our phones at $3.80 per minute. So I rented one from vic from there. Used it once before and once we figured out where we could use them at, had no problems.
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Old 04-03-2006, 10:27 AM   #22
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I was reading all the past conversations, but no one mentioned Verizon service in Mexico does that work? Please let me know
Thanks
Leaving in 6 days
Can't wait
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Old 04-04-2006, 04:26 AM   #23
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I have Verizon and have heard it works and it doesn't work so I will just try it out. Give them a call and see what they say. I called and was told it would be .69 a minute but then someone else said more. I just wanted it to check in with neighbors about our dog while we are gone.

Leave in 4 days. :P
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Old 04-22-2006, 09:36 PM   #24
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My cell service is Verizon. Contacted my local rep today to ask what to do. He set me up on international calling plan for $20 for the month. My phone plan is structured the same within my national calling area...otherwise I would pay a roaming fee of .69 per minute. Cancun is considered part of my national calling plan. He pulled up a map and showed me. So for what I can tell I'll have my standard minutes with free evenings and weekends while in Cancun. When I get back then I will just cancel....or as he put it restructure. Said two towers in Cancun...so not sure about reception. Also the literature he gave me seems to support this.
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Old 04-22-2006, 09:50 PM   #25
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Not sure if I posted this before, but it won't hurt...

I have Cingular. The Cingular website said that I needed to have the International Service activated. The next day I stopped by my Cingular store and they gave me the International service number. I called and told the woman that I wanted to use my phone in Mexico, she put me on hold for a minute or so, and then said it was all done. You can either pay a monthly fee plus a per minute charge for Int'l calls, or pay by the minute. My calls were US$0.49/minute.

Upon arriving in Cancun I wanted to call home to let people know I arrived safely. All I needed to do was put a plus sign (+) in front of the phone number (ex. +12223334444) and it worked perfectly, clear as day.

I did this for the 5-10 phone numbers in my phone book that I used. I changed it back when I returned to the U.S.
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Old 04-28-2006, 02:23 AM   #26
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For Verizon users... I found this on a condo rental and hope its true because it will help me lots!

Verizon wireless is now in Cancun. Switch your Verizon cell phone service to the "North America" plan for the time you visit here and you can call home at no additional charge. Simply dial 001-Area Code-Number to complete your call. Can you hear me now? Check with your cell phone provider PRIOR to arriving in Cancun.
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Old 05-05-2006, 12:35 AM   #27
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I second the Cancunvalet rental. EXCELLENT service, no dropped calls, and not too expensive as long as you dont abuse it :wink: Done that twice when in cancun already and plan to do again for 07
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Old 05-12-2006, 04:26 PM   #28
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does text messaging work in cancun if youre a sprint customer?
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Old 05-24-2006, 11:45 AM   #29
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Default text message with Sprint

Not sure if texting works, but I can confirm that Sprint works there.. I loved sitting on the beach talking to my loved ones at home.. RUBBING IT IN!!!

I had great connections every time and never once dropped a call.. I just got back this past Sunday night...

So check with Sprint about text emssaging,, but make sure you add International Roaming to your plan so you can use your phone to call our while you are there.. it takes about 72 hours to add it....
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Old 05-24-2006, 02:51 PM   #30
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T-Mobile...

I activated world class roaming since it didn't cost me anything to do so. About 2 days in I finally could obtain a signal, GSM MEXICO or something like that (I forget) but even with the 00-1 code, I could dial out but then the calls would simply terminate. So, down there, I got a signal but couldn't do much with it.

I just bought the over priced phone cards with the Tucan on them, in the end probably cheaper than using the cell anyway
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