Communication Planning

ArmyAV8tor

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On my recent trip to Namibia the PH and his family busted my chops pretty hard about my Orbic flip phone because they can't send me What's App messages / photos and email is not their preferred method of communications. I am a current Verizon customer but want to have the flexibility of using my phone while traveling for phone - text - data to do airline, banking and map work mostly. I am not a gamer and do ever see myself doing that. I also thought that it might be a good idea to be able to call the travel insurance provider if God forbid, I need to activate that.

Looking for methods to compare from those with experience using their phones outside the USA. Thanks!
 

JimP

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Verizon offers a travel plan for outside of the US and I believe that there are a number of African countries that are included in the plan.

I glanced at it since I am looking at it for my safari in 2022 but really didn't investigate it.
 

mdwest

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I used the Verizon international plan on my recent hunt in the NW Province in South Africa.

It’s affordable ($10 a day) and roaming coverage was much better than I expected. I never lost signal in Joberg or anywhere enroute to the lodge, and had at least 1-2 bars of signal probably 80-90% of the time we were out in the middle of nowhere on one of the properties.

I and the other hunters in the group used WhatsApp daily to communicate while we were hunting, to either share the location of a great trophy animal spotted that we knew someone might be after or to share pics when one of us was successful on a hunt, etc..
 

Red Leg

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Most everyone on the planet outside the US uses WhatsApp for messaging. I have no clue what the business case for the app could possibly be, but it works great. I stay in constant comms with friends and outfitters in Europe, Africa, and South America.

I would suggest donating that flip phone to a local museum and getting yourself an I-phone. They are an in-pocket computer that also acts as a phone. Get Verizon as your carrier and use their international plan. It will work almost anywhere in SA and in the towns and cities of other sub-Saharan countries like Zim, Moz and Zam. Go to the AppStore and download WhatsApp.
 

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+1 on WhatsApp. It is the primary mode of communication of every PH I know.

I also take a sat phone for emergencies. There is no cell or WIFI coverage where we typically go.
 

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+1 on WhatsApp. It is the primary mode of communication of every PH I know.

I also take a sat phone for emergencies. There is no cell or WIFI coverage where we typically go.
+1 on the Sat Phone. Where I have hunted in Moz and my coming hunt in Zambia, a cell phone is not an option.
 

Happy Myles

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I always take a sat phone
 

Doug3006

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There are a couple of outfits that rent satphones. I rented one for a trip to Zambia. Fees were reasonable and the shipping to and from was a snap.
 

autofire

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my cell phone didnt work in Namibia because network too weak. local service phones worked better, PH let me use his for phonecalls but no whats app because only 2g coverage. my sat phone worked best, Namibia, RSA and Bots.
 

Randy F

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Is your flip phone still a coal burner or did you convert it to wood fuel for the trip?
:giggle: Just kidding…my Dad still has one and I give him the same treatment.

I used Verizon in RSA with good enough service there for what I needed and more reasonably priced than I expected.
 

BRICKBURN

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..…..

I would suggest donating that flip phone to a local museum and getting yourself an I-phone.…….
LoL. Pick your platform, but get a real phone. I’m with Joe on grabbing an IPhone.
I grab local SIMS. Often the Canadian carriers do not offer any packages of value, so it makes the small hassle is worth it.
 

YancyW

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Most everyone on the planet outside the US uses WhatsApp for messaging. I have no clue what the business case for the app could possibly be, but it works great. I stay in constant comms with friends and outfitters in Europe, Africa, and South America.

I would suggest donating that flip phone to a local museum and getting yourself an I-phone. They are an in-pocket computer that also acts as a phone. Get Verizon as your carrier and use their international plan. It will work almost anywhere in SA and in the towns and cities of other sub-Saharan countries like Zim, Moz and Zam. Go to the AppStore and download WhatsApp.

When you don't want things to show up in discovery or be responsive to a subpoena.
 

DGGardner

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A couple things to consider.
As @mdwest said the Verizon option at 10$ a day works great. Not all plans have an international expansion option.
The newest generation iPhone offers a dual SIMs card so you can buy a prepaid SIMs card at most international airports and skip the international plan. Plus the new camera is better then my four year old DSLR Nikon and a hell of lot smaller and lighter.
What’s App is a third party encrypted application that uses a wireless internet connection so no cellular connection is needed and in return no expensive international data charges. Just know it’s owned by Facebook or google or some other data collection outfit and they track your location, of course so does everyone else.
 

GuttormG

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Hi, PH. Give me 2 sec to switch of ny phone.

Seriously, I do not travel to Africa to play with my phone.
I bring it along, I make sure it is charged, switch it on to contact my wife or others if so is agreed. For emergecies the other way I make sure my wife knows all contact info for my outfitter. And equally sure no one at work know how to get hold og me..
 

Bob Nelson 35Whelen

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I always take a sat phone
@Happy Myles
In Australia one provider we have you just use a standard 4G phone and if you need a sat phone the have a cover that turns your 4G into a sat phone. I don't know how it we orks it above my pay grade.
Bob
 

mark-hunter

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There are some good and great apps, beside whatsapp and viber messaging.

Compass installation.
Ballistic calculator app.
Balance - bubble (when installing a scope on rifle, and you need the rifle to be on zero bubble level)
Photos.
Net bankings and payments
emailing
internet googleing
screenshots
etc.
So, smartphones are great tool!!!

The only thing is NEVER THRUST MOBILE PHONE.
It can crack when falling to the ground
It can loose battery
It can drop to the water.
It can easily be stolen.

So, use all the apps you want, and enjoy the apps - but never trust your life with mobile phone.
 

Firebird

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Not a phone but here in the states I carry a gps that uses satellites to send texts. So from the mtn where a phone is just a camera or heavy pocket lint-I can always text my family or friends and when I do, it shows my location. It also has an emergency operation in case something ugly happens. My wife appreciates it more than I do. . . Never took the gps to africa-my phone worked great there-NOT a flip phone!
 
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Troubleshooter

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Well I'm glad to see that I'm not the last person on Earth to prefer a flip-phone. Mine is ruggedized so I don't have to baby it, and it does everything that I need it to do (i.e., make phone calls). I don't understand the need for constant texting or social media apps, but then again, I am not a teenage girl.

OP, you might want to check into whether your phone provider will rent you a different type of phone (Iphone or whatever) on a temporary basis only for the period of your travel. That way, you still have your flip for when you return home. It is also my understanding that there is now a "smart"phone which is configured as a flip-phone. ATT is offering them.

Or you can do what I plan to do -- bring a youngster who owns a smart phone and let HIM handle all the texting and app'ing. My nephew tells me that Whatsapp is unsecure and vulnerable to hacking, but would be willing to install it on his phone for the short period needed for an overseas safari.
 

Troubleshooter

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Is your flip phone still a coal burner or did you convert it to wood fuel for the trip?
:giggle:
Not the OP, but my flip runs on electricity. It does need to be run up on a kite string during a thunderstorm in order to recharge the battery, but we must all make some sacrifices. :cool:
 

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