Traveling with your iPad

Adventure 1

I have traveled from Canada to the USA several times in the last few months. Wanting to be connected via 3G in a cost effective manner, I ordered an AT&T sim card for my iPad with the understanding that I could activate the sim once I was in the USA with a wifi connection.

  • Attempt 1 – I was unable to activate the card due to lack of wifi in the location I was at.
  • Attempt 2 – I was unable to activate the card since the sim account activation process would not validate a Canadian credit card  & address against the USA based template using a local hotel address.
  • Attempt 3 – I was unable to activate the card since the sim account activation process would not validate a plain vanilla no address credit/cash card as the name field cannot be left blank.

Adventure 2 –  excursion to Austria to perform with the KWCO orchestra.

Our hotel was located in downtown Saltzburg Austria conveniently next to a small shopping mall which contained a T-Mobile store.  They had iPad compatible sims for Austria in 1GB or 3GB packages ($15 and $22 respectively) which are active for 30 days. There are options to top up the data if required and/or reuse the chip again on a future trip.

I popped in the sim card, entered the sim card password and the T-mobile network was detected in about 5 seconds. All as it should be – easy, convenient, affordable and hastle free for the end user.

Kudos to T-Mobile. I think the North American TelCo.’s could take a few pointers from the European approach re service levels and customer satisfaction.

Now to research a better travel to USA from Canada solution — starting with T-Mobile.

~Mark

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