Last September we headed over to Lisbon for a week and spent most of the week out in Estoril but had 2 nights in Lisbon itself first. We managed to track down some live music at OndaJazz one of those nights. Junior Meirelles played a chilled out solo set which made for a very enjoyable evening. Most of the rest of week was spent surfing so this was a great start to the holiday. Lisbon and the coast is one place we’re definitely going to head back to.
Before I went off on my honeymoon recently, I purchased a MAXroam SIM card with €15 credit. Having done my masters a few years ago on price transparency of mobile roaming I didn’t want to be caught out by ridiculous roaming charges.
I have been watching the evolution of the MAXroam product from Roam4Free to the current offering from Maxroam which recently announced a joint venture with Qik to stream videos online while roaming. I was only interested in the bog standard talk and text version so I went for the entry level SIM card with a bit of credit for €25.
After getting the SIM card, I tried to activate it online but it didn’t work straight away. To cut a slightly long story short, there was a bad batch of SIM cards but I was promised another SIM which duly arrived just in time before my honeymoon. However, I didn’t read the new instructions correctly as I was a little bit busy before my wedding so I didn’t re-activate the SIM properly. Never fear, a quick correspondence with Pat on Twitter and an entry onto their online support site sorted things out pretty sharpish.
Just as well that I got the MAXroam SIM because I had assumed that my Meteor SIM would work over in Thailand and New Zealand but unfortunately you have to ring Meteor and give credit card details before they’ll let you roam on their uber-expensive roaming partners’ networks. A quick check of the rates on the MAXroam site will show you how much you can save. If you do any bit of travelling, it’s certainly worth your while.
When you make a call there is a slight delay of a few seconds before your own phone rings and when you answer your own phone you can hear the destination phone ringing. The first time you do this is slightly disconcerting as it flies in the face of normal telephone operation but you soon get used to it. The sound quality was perfect at all times.
Another feature to mention, which I didn’t bother with as I didn’t want to be too contactable on honeymoon, is that you can set up a local number for people to ring which will be transferred directly to your MAXroam number. You can put up to 50 numbers on your SIM in different countries which makes it easier, and cheaper, for people in those countries to contact you.
It’s great to see the rip-off roaming charges being challenged by companies such as MAXroam, and it’s even better to see that such a company originated in little old Cork!