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Best carrier while traveling the country

olim

Oct 10, 2011, 3:27 PM
We are going to start RV traveling and currently are with US Cell. We have had only voice service used locally and it has been great. Now we need internet, GPS and voice while on the highway, not necessarily in the parks. We will be going all over the country. Truthfully our choices are to stay with US Cell or switch to Verizon. I need some honest input here. Thanks
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wrightN

Oct 10, 2011, 4:42 PM
sprint or verizon
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Jellz

Oct 10, 2011, 8:14 PM
If you're going to be traveling a lot, don't stick with US Cellular. They only have coverage in about half the states, and beyond that you'd just be roaming and might be charged for it (I don't know how they handle it). For instance, all of Florida is roaming for them. I know this from experience because I checked (living in Florida and all).

Who you choose is up to you, but for extensive traveling, one of the 'big four' would be the best route to go, since they have more national coverage and less roaming. Though I also know AT&T has almost zero coverage in Nebraska, it's all roaming coverage, so you can keep that in mind too. As far as extensive coverage goes, Verizon would probably be the best bet.
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olim

Oct 11, 2011, 8:21 AM
Thank you for your thoughts Jellz. I checked with US Cell and they said that there are no roaming charges. I have read about the 50% rule but don't quite understand it. Is that what you are talking about with roaming? Could someone explain this rule to me? Thanks
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Jellz

Oct 11, 2011, 8:27 AM
If it's the same as with other carriers (I really don't know much about US Cellular, sorry!), then that means if 50% or more of your usage in a billing cycle for a consecutive number of billing cycles is on roaming coverage (normally 3), your service may be cancelled. When they cancel service like that, you are charged for the termination fee.
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Jellz

Oct 11, 2011, 8:29 AM
They're paying the other network for your roaming, but they're not charging a fee to you, so eventually they go "Well screw this, we're spending more than we're making, GTFO" Razz
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olim

Oct 11, 2011, 8:48 AM
Well crud, if we are traveling most of the time... what can we do? I assume roaming is when you are in US cell non-licensed markets?
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Jellz

Oct 11, 2011, 8:57 AM
Right, I don't know exactly who they roam off of, but my guess is either Sprint or Verizon. I would suggest looking at the carrier's websites to see what national coverage is like since they all have a coverage viewer. Since I have it open and bookmarked, here's AT&T's (I work for them, d'oh).

http://www.wireless.att.com/coverageviewer/?wtSlotCl ... »

If you know where you're going to be traveling, you can check each one out to see what coverage is like.
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olim

Oct 11, 2011, 9:12 AM
Once again, thanks for your great info. We know we will be all over the US and that is about as specific as it gets at this point. Sadly there are no At&T stores here or near. Rolling Eyes Looking at US Cells coverage map, things look great. However, it does not say whether the coverage is from their towers or others. Yikes!
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hobble

Oct 14, 2011, 12:38 PM
Verizon is probably your best bet.
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Prince Albert

Oct 14, 2011, 1:15 PM
I would concur.
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olim

Oct 14, 2011, 2:15 PM
I appreciate all of the suggestions!
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Tomdg07

Oct 11, 2011, 9:21 AM
go with one a the major carrieres than possibly pick up a prepaid from 1 or 2 of the other main providers, no company has service everywhere never hurts to have a backup for emergancys
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olim

Oct 11, 2011, 11:20 AM
Good thoughts, thank you.
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Android Ace

Oct 13, 2011, 8:51 PM
Choose Sprint. Like it or not, Verizon and ATT will limit how much data (mobile internet, GPS navigation, etc.) you can use. This means that unless you purchase a hefty data package, you'll have to pick and choose what services you can use so as to stay within your limits. As a traveler, I imagine that you'll use GPS and other location-finding apps like Google Maps and Poynt to help you on your trips. Services like these guzzle data, so why not go with a carrier that won't restrict you? Plus, Sprint typically has coverage on nearly every major highway and interstate. Many of my customers are long-haul truckers who remark how solid Sprint's coverage is across the US. Plus, we're getting the iPhone in addition to a bunch of great Android phone...
(continues)
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Sisyphus

Oct 15, 2011, 2:59 PM
how many MB of data do you get when you're not on Sprints network?

True unlimited package, indeed (unless you read the fine print)
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Android Ace

Oct 16, 2011, 1:20 PM
You get 300 MB of off-network roaming.
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Darth_Stuticus

Oct 16, 2011, 1:29 PM
All carriers limit a lot of thing to their own network. It saves them from having to pay royalties to someone else. This is true of any carrier.
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Android Ace

Oct 17, 2011, 11:00 AM
Exactly. My point is that Sprint's coverage is sufficient enough that the original poster wouldn't really need to take advantage of their roaming benefits. AND it's truly unlimited.
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Sisyphus

Oct 17, 2011, 1:26 PM
Thats true.

I don't believe that Verizon has anything like that going on, but i do know that they will throttle superusers on 3g with unlimited data in conjested areas..
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