Home Community General Travel Travel Tips Cheapest option to use NZ Vodafone mobile in Vietnam, Cambodia

This topic contains 14 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Kiwiwings 7 months ago.

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  • #2953

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    I’m heading to Vietnam and Cambodia in mid August.

    Sadly, neither country is on VF’s $5 roaming (which is odd given some of the places that are!) so I am faced with finding an alternative option (200Mb of data from VF is $50…!)

    Obviously I can (and will) use wifi where I can do so, but what is the most cost effective solution for using my phone for calls etc? Since it’s work, I’d like to be able to access voice mail and so on as well if I can.

    The phone is a Samsung Galaxy S8+ if that is important.

    #2957

    Kiwiwings
    Participant

    Do you have a 2nd phone? Even an old one?

     

    You can buy a Sim at the airport in Vietnam after you collect bags etc and step outside, the guy inserted it for us on the spot and got it working, I think lasted us a week. Then the place we were staying at (can’t remember) just sent the bell boy? out down the road to get top ups for us! We gave them the money – it was so easy. Can’t remember what it cost but not much. Googling a bit seems Mobifone is the go to carrier.

    https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Travel-g293921-c187446/Vietnam:Sim.Cards.html

     

    Haven’t been to Cambodia for a while but all I remember is being surprised at such a poor country but everyone had cell phones rather than landlines so am confident they’ll have something. I must have used something there.

     

    Alternatively can work pick up the bill given it’s work related??

     

    #2972

    Adam Jobbins
    Keymaster

    A local SIM is probably your best option. There are a number of ‘Travel SIMs” on the market, but they are generally pretty poor value. You’ll probably need a local SIM in each country, which could be a pain – but probably worth it.

    How long are you away for?

    Pays to bare in mind that if someone calls your phone while you are roaming, and you don’t answer – you’ll likley pay a charge for them to hit your voicemail, as it’s effectively routed the call to the country you’re in and back. Voicemail may not even work at all (unless your phone is off), as not all carriers have a ‘return path’ to your own network to route back to voicemail.

    Pays to also note that Cambodia is on vodafone’s ‘Rest of world’ rates, so while $50 buys you 200mb in Vietnam, it will only buy you a tiny 10mb in Cambodia!

    If you trip is short – a travel SIM might be a good middle ground option – easier than a local SIM and cheaper than roaming.

    #3082

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    Thanks Adam.

     

    Yes, I think you are right. I have no idea how the antediluvian world of roaming charges arises or is calculated. The EU have just informed all the operators in the EU that they are no longer allowed to charge roaming within the EU, so clearly doing without such charges is possible!

    VF’s charges for areas outside the $5/day are eyewatering. Viettel would sell me about 5Gb for the same cost as 200mb.

    I’m away for 27 days in total, about 14 in Vietnam and 11 in Cambodia with 2 days flying.

    #3083

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    It would almost be cheaper to use a satellite phone..! :-0

    #3896

    Kiwiwings
    Participant

    Kiwimac how did you go with Cambodia mobile? Did you just pick up a local sim or find anything else?

     

    #3898

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    Hi

     

    I just used my phone and paid the $300+ bill on my return to be honest.

    #3900

    Kiwiwings
    Participant

    Sounds pricey!

    Had a quick look on Tripadvisor again. Looks like cellcard and metphone receive good reviews. Aiming for a week there later in the year.

    #3903

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    My problem was that I needed clients to be able to call me and so putting in a foreign card with a different number complicated that.

    I do wish NZ networks sold the dual SIM versions of popular handsets.

    #3914

    KiwiTraveller
    Participant

    Local prepay SIM cards in Vietnam and Cambodia offer cheap calling and data, but it’s not so tidy if you need to receive business calls and SMS messages.

    #3915

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    Agreed. VF just need to get their s**t together and include the SE Asian region more fully in their $5/day roaming.

    #3917

    KiwiTraveller
    Participant

    Agreed. VF just need to get their s**t together and include the SE Asian region more fully in their $5/day roaming.

    Yes, would be much easier if they cut deals in more countries, but I think it’s fair to say in general Vodafone’s roaming is better than what 2degrees or Spark offer.

    #3918

    Kiwimac
    Participant

    Oh, miles better – it’s one of the best things about them. I just find it odd the countries that you cannot roam in on the program, like Vietnam, versus some of the places you can – like India!

    #3920

    nzregs
    Participant

    I just bought local SIM in each of vietnam and cambodia at airport.  Both had good cheap options with loads of data.

    #3925

    Kiwiwings
    Participant

    I have an old iPhone 4 which is still good for calls, viber, surfing the net so use it as a travel phone keeping my regular numbers free. When I took it to the Cooks they said they didn’t have a sim for that model though so fingers crossed it works in Cambodia.

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