Phone and data plans in Italy
When visiting a city with ancient origins such as Rome, one might wonder how advanced technology is over there. If you’re thinking about travelling to Italy and staying for longer than a week, we highly suggest you consider getting one of the Italian phone and data plans available. There are many companies that operate in Italy, hence prices are very competitive and the services are very reliable. On top of plenty of minutes and messages the providers offer very competitive data plans, usually 5 to 20 GB per month. All phone and data plans are also valid throughout Europe, so it might be a good option to get one and use it in multiple countries to stay on budget.
Italian phone plans
In Italy, there are many companies that offer convenient phone plans, some of them especially designated for foreigners. The main providers that offer their services in the country are a few: Tim, Vodafone, Wind, Tre and, just recently, Iliad. Tim and Vodafone are currently the largest providers in Italy, so their signal tends to be a bit stronger than others. Wind and Tre are working on merging the two companies together (resulting in the new largest Italian provider), but all their companies’ deals are still valid for their past customers. While all of these providers’ rates were around €15/month, a new French provider called Iliad started offering competitive rates for as low as €5/month, bringing the phone plans market down. As a result, providers are now all offering very convenient rates for all old and new clients.
How to activate phone plans in Italy
Activating phone plans abroad might sound intimidating, especially in Italy if Italian is not your first language. However, it is pretty a pretty easy and quick procedure, thanks to the fact that most workers speak English (particularly if you go to a store downtown). All you have to do is bring your ID and go to the nearest official phone store. Normally, you need a “Codice Fiscale” as well, but if you’re not a EU citizen or have a Permit to Stay you can’t have one. In that case, just explain that you are traveling and someone at the store will be able to help you out. Check the best deals online as well before going in to a store, just so you’re already informed.
Phone plans’ tips
Sometimes, when traveling, we’re so busy packing that we don’t worry about phone plans until we land at our destination. So, we have a few tips you might find useful when abroad. First of all, make sure your phone is on airplane mode at all times during your trip. There are enough areas in Italy that offer free Wi-Fi, so you don’t have to worry about pricey roaming fees. Secondly, if you’re thinking about activating a plan in Italy, you should bring an unlocked phone with you. It’s fairly easy to do, and most providers only require a phone call before you leave.
As soon as you arrive, activate your phone install WhatsApp messenger, you can chat, voice and video-call using WhatsApp. All hotels, B&B’s, tour operators and restaurants in Italy use it, so you can communicate with them easily without spending the valuable minutes. Lastly, when refilling your prepaid phone plan, try and do it online, because sometimes providers give you freebies such as free Gb.
While you decide if you should get a phone plan in Italy, check out the tours of Rome we offer! Make sure to leave a comment if you have had any previous experience with phone plans in Italy!
Bye for now,