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Holafly - phone data service

jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
Hi! I'm checking out my options for cell phone service. Since I can use What's App for calls & texts back to the US I think all I need is cellular data. I was looking at Holafly just for data. I am not sure how it works so I thought there may be others on the forum who have traveled on the Camino Frances with this service and could offer some insight. Thanks! I'll be starting my first Camino in Pamplona on September 22 if all goes as planned! So excited!
 
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jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
I have Verizon in the US. They don't offer much data with the travel plan (10 gb / month) and I figure I will be using a lot of data while I am walking.
 

Tincatinker

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2012
Wi-fi (wee-fee) is widely available. You may not need much data. 10gb, with a little care, should keep you covered. Depending, of course, on what you’re planning to use data for. Most of the navigation apps will only use GPS and can run in airplane mode. If you’re planning on surfing local restaurants, museums, galleries etc it’s worth doing that as part of the happy planning exercise
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
It seems to me a better idea to buy a local sim with data and calls when you arrive. You may need to call local businesses that aren't on WhatsApp.

Or switch to T-Mobile or Google Fi before leaving home and you will have data to use for no extra cost in Spain.
 
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jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
Good point regarding calls. I have read that Google maps does not use data while navigating. I guess I should try that out here to see how well it works. I'll also be using a translation app as my Spanish is very basic. Can you recommend a local carrier in Pamplona that I could communicate with? Thanks!
 

Tincatinker

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2012
Google maps uses data. Apps like maps.me where you pre-download relevant maps and store them on your ‘phone don’t.
The basic Spanish for “do you have a bed”, “what is there to eat” and “a big beer please” won’t take long to learn 😉
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
They don't offer much data with the travel plan (10 gb / month) and I figure I will be using a lot of data while I am walking.
Why do you think you will be using a lot of data while walking? GPS programs do not use a lot of data, provided that you have already downloaded the relevant maps.

10 GB should be plenty, if you are not streaming/downloading movies, videos, large numbers of photos or updating your apps. Here is a recent thread where the huge amount of 100 GB/month was discussed.

At home, today, for the first time ever, my phone informed me that I had reached 4 GB after a month of usage. (My plan has 5 GB, and this is the closest I've ever got to it.) Usually I use about 3 GB - with that, I can browse the internet extensively on my phone and download attachments from emails, but I simply avoid viewing videos or updating my apps without wifi.
 
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C clearly

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012
There are many threads discussing the phone service providers in Spain - for example, click on this link. All you need to do is walk into a store that displays the logo of one of Vodafone, Movistar or Orange, and you can likely find a plan that is adequate and inexpensive.

Also, I think that the translation apps usually involve pre-downloading of dictionaries.
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese

Gerin

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2018 (SJPDP-Santiago)
I have Verizon in the US. They don't offer much data with the travel plan (10 gb / month) and I figure I will be using a lot of data while I am walking.
Hi there. I will also be starting my (second) Camino in Pamplona on the morning of September 22nd!

On your question, you will likely find that you will not need to use your phone / data much at all while you walk. The Camino is very clearly marked with big yellow arrows and stone markers.

Also, pretty much every café and albergue along the way has free wifi. On my first Camino in 2018 from SJPDP to SdeC, I did not bring a phone or even a guidebook / maps and finding my way was very easy. I did have a small Ipod touch to connect to the wifi network in the evening which was very handy to plan my next day and connect with my wife in Canada via FaceTime😊.

Hope you enjoy your pilgrimage!
 

Rita Flower

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 Via del la Plata
Ok. Lots of good info and opinions here and in other threads.
@jillianbausch I have chosen to use an e-sim (data only) for various reasons that I won't go in to - they have been gone into in detail in other posts.
I searched the internet for one that included Latvia and Spain and got 10 GB data for a month for $AUS49 or thereabouts. I like the freedom and that I get to keep my number. I know this will not suit everyone but I am extremely happy with my choice and cost. I did not go with H... as they were more expensive. An internet search will get you the best deal if that is what you finally choose. Setting up is easy. They send link to a YouTube tutorial and it takes only a few minutes to install.
 
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jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
Hi there. I will also be starting my (second) Camino in Pamplona on the morning of September 22nd!

On your question, you will likely find that you will not need to use your phone / data much at all while you walk. The Camino is very clearly marked with big yellow arrows and stone markers.

Also, pretty much every café and albergue along the way has free wifi. On my first Camino in 2018 from SJPDP to SdeC, I did not bring a phone or even a guidebook / maps and finding my way was very easy. I did have a small Ipod touch to connect to the wifi network in the evening which was very handy to plan my next day and connect with my wife in Canada via FaceTime.

Hope you enjoy your pilgrimage!
Thank you so much! Maybe we will cross paths. 😊
 

jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
T
Ok. Lots of good info and opinions here and in other threads.
@jillianbausch I have chosen to use an e-sim (data only) for various reasons that I won't go in to - they have been gone into in detail in other posts.
I searched the internet for one that included Latvia and Spain and got 10 GB data for a month for $AUS49 or thereabouts. I like the freedom and that I get to keep my number. I know this will not suit everyone but I am extremely happy with my choice and cost. I did not go with H... as they were more expensive. An internet search will get you the best deal if that is what you finally choose. Setting up is easy. They send link to a YouTube tutorial and it takes only a few minutes to install.
Thanks for the info. I have been bouncing all over the internet trying to figure it out. I'm sure if something is not working for me, I can switch to something else. It's just my last minute thoughts and I am excited!!
 

jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
You can download Google Maps for the region where you will be for offline use
I was concerned about my whereabouts on the Camino in case I take a wrong turn. But it sounds like it is very well marked. My worries aren't as much in the countryside as walking through the cities. With so many distractions, I may make a wrong turn. I will guess that using Google maps with position locator does use data but now I am not sure.
 

jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
Why do you think you will be using a lot of data while walking? GPS programs do not use a lot of data, provided that you have already downloaded the relevant maps.

10 GB should be plenty, if you are not streaming/downloading movies, videos, large numbers of photos or updating your apps. Here is a recent thread where the huge amount of 100 GB/month was discussed.

At home, today, for the first time ever, my phone informed me that I had reached 4 GB after a month of usage. (My plan has 5 GB, and this is the closest I've ever got to it.) Usually I use about 3 GB - with that, I can browse the internet extensively on my phone and download attachments from emails, but I simply avoid viewing videos or updating my apps without wifi.
I don't plan on watching any tv or movies on the Camino. I just wanted to use data for location and translation mostly. I will most likely just get a SIM card in Pamplona with a little data and if I find I am burning through it, I will buy more. Thanks for the info. :)
 
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Rita Flower

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2022 Via del la Plata
I was concerned about my whereabouts on the Camino in case I take a wrong turn. But it sounds like it is very well marked. My worries aren't as much in the countryside as walking through the cities. With so many distractions, I may make a wrong turn. I will guess that using Google maps with position locator does use data but now I am not sure.
@jillianbausch I used the 'Ride with GPS, app for the Portuguese a few years ago. You can save/pin any/all the Camino routes. Just follow the red line. So easy to use in conjunction with Way markers and guide book I have pinned all of Via del la Plata for next week. It's my Camino 'security blanket'. 🤗
PS You can use it off line once you open the map.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Also, I think that the translation apps usually involve pre-downloading of dictionaries.
My experience is with Google Translate. You can download language files, when it will work without an internet connexion. You will, however, need an internet connexion for any languages you haven't downloaded.
 

jillianbausch

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Future
@jillianbausch I used the 'Ride with GPS, app for the Portuguese a few years ago. You can save/pin any/all the Camino routes. Just follow the red line. So easy to use in conjunction with Way markers and guide book I have pinned all of Via del la Plata for next week. It's my Camino 'security blanket'. 🤗
PS You can use it off line once you open the map.
I'll have to check that app out. Thank you!
 
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USMC-Pilgrim

I learned, the hard way!
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (SJPDP to Santiago) May-Jun 2022
Good point regarding calls. I have read that Google maps does not use data while navigating. I guess I should try that out here to see how well it works. I'll also be using a translation app as my Spanish is very basic. Can you recommend a local carrier in Pamplona that I could communicate with? Thanks!

Google translate allows you to download languages to your phone for use offline. I used it many times during my camino May-June 2022 and it worked great.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2018 Camino Frances, The Way SJ
next trip 2023/24
Hi! I'm checking out my options for cell phone service. Since I can use What's App for calls & texts back to the US I think all I need is cellular data. I was looking at Holafly just for data. I am not sure how it works so I thought there may be others on the forum who have traveled on the Camino Frances with this service and could offer some insight. Thanks! I'll be starting my first Camino in Pamplona on September 22 if all goes as planned! So excited!
I agree with the moderators. we purchased Orange sim cards, to contact each other when we were walking apart, and on odd occasions when booking ahead, we used the sim to book ahead. All other times we used Wi-Fi on arriving to our destinations.
 

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