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What is Mobile Data Roaming?
To put it simply, Mobile Data Roaming refers to the use of mobile data services through your mobile phone while travelling overseas.
What are some services that require Data Roaming?
Common mobile services which require data connections are:
Mobile applications that will auto sync or update
(e.g. WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, App Store, Play Store, etc)
What can I do to avoid unintended data roaming charges?
You have two options:
- Deactivate Data Roaming through your mobile operator You may contact your mobile operator (StarHub, SingTel or M1) and ask them to turn off your data roaming service.
- Manually set the Data Roaming feature on your mobile phone to OFF You may turn off the data roaming feature on your mobile phone. Most mobile phones, especially smartphones, will have this feature in their settings. You may contact your mobile operator for more details on this.
Are there ways I can use Data Roaming without being charged excessively?
You have four options:
- Purchase a Data Roaming package from your mobile operator before your tripConsult your mobile operator on the different Mobile Data Service packages available. Find out more about the available package and its terms and conditions to better understand the service features. For example, you have to check whether your overseas destination is in the list of designated countries covered in the package. You also have to check whether the package requires you to be logged on to the designated partner's network of your mobile operator at all times. You may wish to also find out how you can ensure that you will always be logged on to the partner's network from your mobile operator.
- Activate a bill cap through your mobile operatorThis one does exactly what it says; you just have to contact your mobile operator and ask for a limit on data roaming charges. Beyond that limit, you won't be able to use data roaming services anymore.
- Use WiFi insteadSome hotels, cafes and restaurants offer free WiFi services which you can use for applications that require data. But do be mindful that when Wi-Fi signals are weak or there is no Wi-Fi coverage, your handset may switch over to mobile network automatically. To avoid this you must ensure that the mobile data roaming feature on your mobile phone is switch to OFF.
- Local Pre-paid SIM cardYou may also consider purchasing a local pre-paid SIM card in the country you visit.
If you don't need data roaming services
- Turn off the data roaming feature on your phone
- Contact your mobile operator to deactivate data roaming
If you need data roaming services
- Contact your mobile operator to find out the available mobile data roaming packages
- Activate bill cap through your mobile operator
- Use WiFi if available
- Purchase a local pre-paid SIM card at your destination