1. MrMars's Avatar
    Does anyone have any experience with this? I've discovered that AT&T charges lofty fees for making/receiving calls, texting, data and Wifi access. I've heard its possible to purchase a SIM card in Mexico from the local wireless provider (Telcel) which you can temporarily insert into your AT&T iPhone while on vacation and have access to their 4G Network. Has anyone done this and can provide any details?
    Last edited by MrMars; 03-11-2014 at 05:15 PM.
    03-11-2014 05:01 PM
  2. avmsam's Avatar
    people do it all the time. couple things:

    you need to make sure your att iphone is "carrier unlocked". att can do that for you if it isn't. not sure if they charge for it, since im Canadian.

    you need to verify if the carriers in mexico use bands/frequencie supported by your model of iphone. you can google the model of your iphone to see what it supports and google the carriers in mexico to see they support. generally, most gsm carriers worldwide use same/similar frequencies for 2g and 3g, it's 4g (lte) where you run into a lot of incompatibility. that's a very general statement though.

    also, i don't think att can charge you for wifi access. so if you think you'll be in a place with lots of wifi coverage and thats all you need you could turn off cellular and just use free wifi.
    03-11-2014 06:07 PM
  3. MrMars's Avatar
    people do it all the time. couple things:

    you need to make sure your att iphone is "carrier unlocked". att can do that for you if it isn't. not sure if they charge for it, since im Canadian.

    you need to verify if the carriers in mexico use bands/frequencie supported by your model of iphone. you can google the model of your iphone to see what it supports and google the carriers in mexico to see they support. generally, most gsm carriers worldwide use same/similar frequencies for 2g and 3g, it's 4g (lte) where you run into a lot of incompatibility. that's a very general statement though.

    also, i don't think att can charge you for wifi access. so if you think you'll be in a place with lots of wifi coverage and thats all you need you could turn off cellular and just use free wifi.

    Thanks for the info...

    I have since completed an unlock request from AT&T. I'm hopeful there wouldn't be any band/frequency issues. Part of the problem is the resort were staying at also charges lofty fees for WiFi access. Quite ridiculous as you can pretty much got to any corner diner these days and access free WiFi.
    03-11-2014 06:24 PM
  4. avmsam's Avatar
    i think att might be using some sly marketing tricks here. i don't believe they actually have control over your wifi and can charge you for it since that's a hardware feature. att has this wifi portal system with partners. so they have partners across america and different countries where if you are an att customer and have this feature/service enabled then you can use that partner's wifi for free whereas regular people would have to pay. i don't think its the same as controlling your access to regular free wifi. you may want to double check with them. also, do they even have wifi partners in mexico where this service may be useful for you ?
    03-11-2014 06:43 PM
  5. EmceeGeek's Avatar
    AT&T still charges roaming even if unlocked so be careful! T-Mobile is the only company that I know of that can be used outside of the USA without charging.


    Sent from my [Gold] iPhone 5S
    03-11-2014 09:57 PM
  6. avmsam's Avatar
    AT&T still charges roaming even if unlocked so be careful! T-Mobile is the only company that I know of that can be used outside of the USA without charging.


    Sent from my [Gold] iPhone 5S
    That's if you use your att sim while abroad. I believe he's going to pop in a local Mexico sim while abroad.

    Btw, it's cool that tmobile does offer some free roaming. It's still not perfect since there's some restrictions but it's better than the insane roaming chargers most other carriers charge.
    EmceeGeek likes this.
    03-11-2014 10:04 PM
  7. MrMars's Avatar
    Yes, I was hoping to pop in a SIM from a wireless provider in Mexico. I believe my phone has to be unlocked though. I've submitted an unlock request to AT&T.


    Sent from my iPhone using iMore Forums
    03-11-2014 10:13 PM
  8. EmceeGeek's Avatar
    Yes, I was hoping to pop in a SIM from a wireless provider in Mexico. I believe my phone has to be unlocked though. I've submitted an unlock request to AT&T.


    Sent from my iPhone using iMore Forums
    Oh well in that case no worries


    Sent from my [Gold] iPhone 5S
    03-13-2014 03:13 PM
  9. MrMars's Avatar
    Just an FYI I was able to successfully unlock my phone. Now I hope I have no issues when I insert a pre-paid SIM while vacationing in Mexico. Phone calls isn't my biggest concern, I mainly want the ability to check email and social media.
    03-16-2014 03:01 PM
  10. MrMars's Avatar
    FYI - a pre-paid SIM from TelCel with 1gb of data for 7 days cost about $23 U.S. and worked like a charm. Just popped my AT&T SIM back in when I returned to the states and I was back to normal.
    04-16-2014 06:27 PM
  11. Jessica Ortiz1's Avatar
    Does anyone know what is the process of using anATT phone in mexico with prepaid telcel sim card?
    10-11-2014 06:11 PM
  12. MrMars's Avatar
    Does anyone know what is the process of using anATT phone in mexico with prepaid telcel sim card?
    Yep, just did it earlier this year. You just have to go into a TelCel store with your unlocked iPhone and purchase a sim and they will hook you up. Worked great. Your assigned a phone # then you can make/receive calls, text and use pre purchased data.
    10-11-2014 06:16 PM
  13. Diana Barragan's Avatar
    Thank you so much! I am going to try it.. I go every year so I'll see what they say. Did they charge you for unlocking it?
    12-05-2014 07:06 PM
  14. MrMars's Avatar
    Thank you so much! I am going to try it.. I go every year so I'll see what they say. Did they charge you for unlocking it?
    Unlocking your phone is done by your current carrier and, if your on contract, depends how far into your contract you are. Contact your carrier for details.


    Sent via Tapatalk on my i6...
    12-05-2014 07:24 PM

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