Starting over in a new country entails buying a lot of big ticket items in a short amount of time if you want to function fairly normally in that country. This one happens to double as a blogging tool. We had been working off our old UK phones that we hadn’t replaced in quite a while due to knowing we were moving. I had a Samsung Galaxy 3S mini and Chris had his dad’s old iPhone 3 after having to give his work phone back when he left his job.
Getting phones in the US was a minefield. It is completely different from the UK, so we both had to learn from scratch since I got my first smartphone in the UK and therefore had never had to deal with US data before.
Although the US is generally cheaper than the UK, this is not so for data. Data in the UK is practically free in comparison. My last phone deal was with a company called Three. They aren’t the very best, but nor are they too bad in terms of coverage and quality in the UK. My contract was a rolling monthly one that charged £20 for unlimited data, which counted as 25GB abroad per month for 90 days a year (which is why we had still been able to use them here for the last three weeks). We had bought our last few phones outright. I believe my little Samsung was about £350 3 years ago.
In the US, it looks like there is little reason to buy a phone outright because although it is part of your monthly bill, you can pay it off at any time if you want another one. That is a good thing I think, but the data costs much much more, plus there is some kind of connect fee of 15 USD per phone on our contract. We needed a fair amount of data since we will be a bit on the homeless side on the road and this will be our only internet other than wi fi. We are getting 15GB, which costs 100 USD from our provider of choice, but even if we had had much less, it seemed like the starting prices were still quite a lot higher for a gig or two.
That said, despite the high price tag, our news phones are pretty fab! Chris went with what he had at his old job, an iPhone 6, and I went with a shiny blue Samsung Galaxy S6. The staff at Best Buy were also very helpful and coped well with our lack of knowledge about their system. Have a look at the video:
PS – Due to a technical problem with my laptop, our ‘big news’ video has been swapped to tomorrow.