Choosing your choices for a Spanish cell
There are a few options for cell phone carriers here in Spain and being that I like lots of information about all the options I have for everything, I went to a few different companies to ask about what options they had for a SIM for an iPhone 5.
In the U.S., we all like to have UNLIMITED everything. So then you can just be on your phone constantly and social interactions are unnecessary. Who needs social interaction when you can browse Pinterest all hours of the day via their mobile app? NOBODY, that’s who!
So, being that my mom isn’t paying for my cell phone, I don’t want to spend 39€ + IVA each month for unlimited Spanish everything.
I chose to get a SIM prepago.
I can cancel whenever
Not over 20€ a month (hey, 20€ is ALOT of American dollars)
An amount of calls/data/texting that I will not exceed (plus I am not allowed to)
Basics of Prepago
No signing a contract (great if you don’t know how long you are living in Spain)
Can be very cheap (especially if you don’t want a data plan)
You can create realistic expectations for cell phone usage for yourself
You cannot go over because you have to have “suelto” to pay for things that aren’t in your plan
Basics of Contracts
First things first, if you sign a contract, it is like giving up rights to your first born child, haha.
Most are 24 months, some are 18 (Expect to have to keep the contract for its entire duration)
Most require that you have at least 6 months with a Spanish bank account
Can potentially be the cheapest option if you do it right and if you don’t cancel in the middle of the plan
If you go over, they will let you (no “suelta”…it just adds up on your bill)
I may be a little off on some of my facts because I only know the basics. But think of it this way. Give yourself realistic expectations as to how much you will use your phone.
1 gigabite is sufficient
1,000 + SMS should be more than enough
100 minutes should also be more than enough (all incoming calls are free)
Personally, my SIM doesn’t have calls included. I have the Orange Ballena plan. I have 1,000 SMS and 1 gigabite of data. I cannot make calls unless I add suelto, and I am not going to add suelto because…It’s not like I can understand Spanish over the phone! hahaha…but seriously…everyone uses Whatsapp (which uses data) and in the states I really only talk on the phone when I am driving. Here I don’t drive. So I haven’t even thought of needing to make a call. Anyone I would need to call, I can just text or whatsapp.
KEEP IN MIND: THE FINE PRINT
There are many plans with “international calls” included BUT look at the fine print. There is a plan that has international calling included BUT the calls are only to landlines…I can’t think of anyone I would call in the states who still has a landline.
ALSO, if your calls aren’t included and you DO want to make calls. There is a CONNECTION fee + IVA + however much per minute. So if it says ,01 cent per minute. It really probably means 1,20 to “connect” then ,01 + IVA per minute which would end up being like ,20 cents a minute. So that can add up REALLY fast!
Again. If you are paying ,10 cents per text…send 50 texts and all the sudden you just added 5 euro to your bill when you could probably get a plan for 5 euro more that includes unlimited texts or something.
LASTLY. All plans will say…9 euro/mes + IVA or 15 euro/mes + IVA. So basically add 3 or 4 euro for IVA and THAT is what your bill really be.
My bill is 12 euro/mes + IVA= 15 euro/mes!