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Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
#2
You're not helping us out much with your lack of detail. I'm going to say though that you will need an unlocked phone. This means one that your plan allows you to use temporarily on another's plan and card. You also need a phone that uses the call protocol used in Spain. There are ways around this though if you use apps that make calls through wifi instead of the cell network.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2012, 2015 & 2018) San Salvador (2018)
#3
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#4
What you would recommend me?
I have an "old" iPhone 5 that is unlocked. I have the cell phone store put in a SIM chip. I bought my last one at the Madrid airport, and it was the same price as my previous one at a Vodafone store (they expire if you do not top them off). It was under 10E. Vodafone and Orange both have good reputations, and they do work throughout the EU now by statute. SIM chips are available over the internet, but you will need to install them and won't know if they really work until you get to Spain. The savings is not worth the uncertainty, at least to me.:)
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF: (2001, 2002, 2004, 2014). Hospitalera: 2002, Ponferrada. 2004, Rabanal del Camino.
#5
If you have an iPhone and friends and family do as well you can use FaceTime. It runs over WiFi. There is no way extra charge.

I did so winter camino 2014, worked beautifully.

You can also put phone on airplane mode and text all you wish.
 

robproct

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Lisbon
#6
My best deal was on the Portuguese. I bought a sim at Lisbon airport with three gig of data which included 30 min of international calls or sms. It was for 30 days but I had run out of data or calls in three days. So it was a bad deal, at least for me. Then I bought just a data card with unlimited data: €15 for 15 days. Perfect I could make endless calls on WhatsApp, web browsing,email, etc anywhere. But no direct calls. Now I’m in Spain and nearly at the end of the Portuguese Camino and looking for something similar here. It’s been a great deal for me.
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
#7
You're not helping us out much with your lack of detail. I'm going to say though that you will need an unlocked phone. This means one that your plan allows you to use temporarily on another's plan and card. You also need a phone that uses the call protocol used in Spain. There are ways around this though if you use apps that make calls through wifi instead of the cell network.
Thanks,
I am sorry for newbie question.
Is it also in Pamplona there free wifi in many places like Central Bus station, cafes?
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
#8
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
Thanks a lot,
good to know. Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#9
Is it also in Pamplona there free wifi in many places like Central Bus station, cafes?
Wifi is in many places, but in most bars and restaurants you must ask for the password. Often it is the original sixteen place hexidecimal password!!:)
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
#10
I have an "old" iPhone 5 that is unlocked. I have the cell phone store put in a SIM chip. I bought my last one at the Madrid airport, and it was the same price as my previous one at a Vodafone store (they expire if you do not top them off). It was under 10E. Vodafone and Orange both have good reputations, and they do work throughout the EU now by statute. SIM chips are available over the internet, but you will need to install them and won't know if they really work until you get to Spain. The savings is not worth the uncertainty, at least to me.:)
Thanks,
Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
#12
If you have an iPhone and friends and family do as well you can use FaceTime. It runs over WiFi. There is no way extra charge.

I did so winter camino 2014, worked beautifully.

You can also put phone on airplane mode and text all you wish.
Thanks,
I have Android.
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
#13
My best deal was on the Portuguese. I bought a sim at Lisbon airport with three gig of data which included 30 min of international calls or sms. It was for 30 days but I had run out of data or calls in three days. So it was a bad deal, at least for me. Then I bought just a data card with unlimited data: €15 for 15 days. Perfect I could make endless calls on WhatsApp, web browsing,email, etc anywhere. But no direct calls. Now I’m in Spain and nearly at the end of the Portuguese Camino and looking for something similar here. It’s been a great deal for me.
Thanks,
Can you provide more details please, what it was the company?
 

Bonnie M

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2018)
#14
Be sure your phone is unlocked, is GSM compatible (note that some phone brands e.g. iphone are either GSM or CDMA depending on where you purchased it -- for example, my iphone 5 is CDMA which could not be used in Europe). Also be sure to know how to take out your sim card - although if you go to Vodaphone or Orange they should be able to do/help you. And be seure to KEEP your old SIM card for when you return Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
#15
@Valery, check with your phone carrier to see if it is working on a GSM network or a CDMA network. GSM is what you need. If currently using CDMA ask if the phone would work if the card were replaced with a GSM one. If not it looks like you will not be able to use the phone the regular way in Spain using the cell network. You can still make calls over WiFi (once connected) using various apps.

If you do have a GSM card or can use one the next thing to ask is if your carrier will allow you to put in a different SIM card for a vacation. Your carrier may or may not let you. Sometimes you have had to use their service for a certain length of time before they will allow this. When you can switch compatible cards in your phone at will your phone is deemed unlocked. Your provider can also unlock it for a bit.

So, as mentioned earlier, if your phone is able to run on a GSM cellular network and is unlocked you can put in a Spanish SIM card. Otherwise you need a plan B, C or D. We can help with that too.

By the way, if you are using T-mobile or Google Fi in the US I think you are good to go without having to get a new SIM card at all.
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
#16
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
@Valery, it might help members, and you, if you told us a little more about yourself and where you are from. For instance if you are an EC resident with a current EC telecoms provider then you will not be subject to roaming charges and can simply use your current 'phone and provider. If your current 'phone is not internet capable then be prepared to spend significant €'s obtaining one; and one that you may not be able to use in your home country.

I note that you were originally flying into Barcelona but now are flying into Bilbao. Both are large cities with a variety of retailers of technology and services. That said it is perfectly possible to walk the Camino Frances without any technology at all. Just follow the yellow arrows and ask your host for the night where the next accommodation is available.
 

robproct

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Lisbon
#18
It was NEO. I can’t find such a good deal in Spain and ended up with an Orange SIM which I bought tonight in Pontevedra.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#20
Vodafone:
10E gets 1.5 g, four weeks, 15 minutes of phone calls
15E gets 2.0g, four weeks, 30 minutes of phone calls

They are the Yuser rates and include the SIM chip.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
#21
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
If you have a European plan like Vodafone, you can use it in any country, we have free roaming in the EU. I live in Greece and my call and data plans work perfectly wherever I go. But as the other members have noted, if you come from abroad, make sure your phone is unlocked and pop into a Vodafone or Orange shop for a sim card. Also, load a call or data plan that suits you. Normally €10 is enough.
 
#22
I have used Vodaphone and Orange in the past. Last two years the Vodaphone coverage was not very good on the Norte last year and Madrid this year. Check the coverage for the areas you will be in to make sure you will be likely to have the best signal.
 

Jeff Mayor

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French route (04,05,06) Portugues (07) VDLP (09,10,11) Aragon (0413) Levante (16) French (18)
#23
Orange worked great in Spain for me: only national calls. Does anyone know of a SIM card/plan that will work in an unlocked iPhone throughout the E.U.?
 

C & W

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP to Santiago (2015)
Lourdes to Jaca (2016)
Pamplona to Santiago (2018)
#24
Does anyone know how often these SIM cards must be charged? I live in the United States but make approximately three trips to Italy or Spain each year. Can I buy a SIM and recharge it each visit, or must I buy a new SIM each time?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis, SJPDP-Santiago (May 2016) Via de la Plata, Sevilla-Santiago (Sept 2016), CM/CF 2018
#25
I am surprised that no one has mentioned Lebara. On my last Camino in May/June, Camino de Madrid/Camino Francis, I used Lebara for the second time on a Camino. I had used it on a previous Camino and loved it, and when I got to Madrid I just signed up with a sales vendor that was actually outside the Orange store at the Plaza. It took five minutes for her to pop in the Lebara sims card, and I was good to go. Make sure you save your old card, and just pop it back in when your done. It’s simple.

Lebara has numerous different plans, and the one I had was €20, which gave me 20gb of data and 1,000 minutes international calling time for one month. Yes, that’s right! That includes calling time in Spain. It’s 4G, but works well in almost all the places from Madrid to Sahagun, to Santiago. If you use up the data or talk time, which I did because I was there more than a month, you can just add on more directly from the app, or even at a store, gas station, etc. But, once to add more time for €5 or so, you keep all your unused data and call time from the previous month. You do have to install their sims card, but you still have all your data, contacts, etc., on your cell phone, so you can still use your phone like normal.

Having the large amount of data was great for me because I used the live Camino Madrid map app and it kept me from getting lost in those unmarked and remote places.

Seriously, I don’t know why anyone would use any other service that is so much more expensive, and with less data and call time. It makes life on the Camino easier and more pleasurable. Just take a look at their website.

Buen Camino!
 

Thundrla

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2014)
Muxia (2014)
Frances (2017)
Finisterre (2017 - 2x)
Portuguese (2018)
#26
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
When I was there in Sept and Oct, Vodaphone had a sim card for 15€ which included 4 GB of data, and a HUGE 800 minutes of international calling - including US and Canada!
 

rappahannock_rev

Anglican Catholic Priest
Camino(s) past & future
Lourdes, Burgos & SdeC 77 (by train); Frances 12, 15 & 17; Finisterre 17; Lourdes & Aragones 18
#28
Bought a LlamaYa Movil 5GB in Sanguesa earlier this year that served me very nicely.
 
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
**CAMINO FRANCES: LEON-SANTIAGO sept. (2015)
**CAMINO FRANCES SJPP-SANTIAGO 2017
#29
Hi !!!! I am from Mexico, do you know if I can buy just an internet plan ? I will be arriving to Paris and from there to SJPDP
 

C & W

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP to Santiago (2015)
Lourdes to Jaca (2016)
Pamplona to Santiago (2018)
#31
I have read that it is somewhat difficult to recharge a French SIM card in Spain and that it is better to wait until you arrive in Spain to purchase one. I do not know if this is true.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#33
I am surprised that no one has mentioned Lebara. On my last Camino in May/June, Camino de Madrid/Camino Francis, I used Lebara for the second time on a Camino. I had used it on a previous Camino and loved it, and when I got to Madrid I just signed up with a sales vendor that was actually outside the Orange store at the Plaza. It took five minutes for her to pop in the Lebara sims card, and I was good to go. Make sure you save your old card, and just pop it back in when your done. It’s simple.

Lebara has numerous different plans, and the one I had was €20, which gave me 20gb of data and 1,000 minutes international calling time for one month. Yes, that’s right! That includes calling time in Spain. It’s 4G, but works well in almost all the places from Madrid to Sahagun, to Santiago. If you use up the data or talk time, which I did because I was there more than a month, you can just add on more directly from the app, or even at a store, gas station, etc. But, once to add more time for €5 or so, you keep all your unused data and call time from the previous month. You do have to install their sims card, but you still have all your data, contacts, etc., on your cell phone, so you can still use your phone like normal.

Having the large amount of data was great for me because I used the live Camino Madrid map app and it kept me from getting lost in those unmarked and remote places.

Seriously, I don’t know why anyone would use any other service that is so much more expensive, and with less data and call time. It makes life on the Camino easier and more pleasurable. Just take a look at their website.

Buen Camino!
@Ted Stek
I bought a Lebara service for my iphone last fall, and it was a disaster. I paid 30 euros for phone/data service. I can't remember how much I was supposedly buying, but the data ran out in six days, although I tried to keep it turned off and never used it except for what the phone was using. I was an innocent, having just bought the phone second-hand, and the salesman at Madrid airport was very brusque, refusing to explain anything. I gave up on that service, as I couldn't afford five euros a day for the phone. I bought a cheap flip phone in Burgos, with a ten euro service from Vodaphone, and just used wifi on the iphone. There is no way I would use Lebara ever again. Of course, as with every other service, it is "buyer beware" and I was not informed enough to be able to avoid what happened.
 

nathanael

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Via de la Plata
#34
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
thanks for that info, I have done ten Caminos and never had a phone this year had problems with my debit card and those kiosks that allow you to use internet and phones could not accommodate me so the owner let me use his phone to call the Bank. never again will leave home without a cell. your info has resolved an issue for me for next Camino, thanks.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#36
Thanks a lot...any recommendations ?
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
 

nathanael

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Via de la Plata
#38
Thanks a lot,
good to know. Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
would you need to purchase a phone in spain for this deal or bring an old phone and have a sim card installed
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
 

Tony Bobcat

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017
#39
For the past two Camino I have bought orange SIM cards, they have work great. The only problem I found was that all messages are in Spanish, when our calls ran out we topped them up paying 10 euros each, only to find out later that the internet was topped up not our calls.
Next time I will make sure to buy a SIM card in Australia making sure all messages are in English. I just wish I could speak Spanish, life would be so much easier.
 

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