Moving out of my parents’ home meant moving off of their cell phone bill as well. I couldn’t afford a $150 cell phone bill, but I also couldn’t live without my Google Maps (I can live without 24/7 access to Facebook, Twitter, etc. but Google Maps?! It’s my lifeline!). What was I going to do to complete this essential first step into adulthood?
I scoured the internet and came across Republic Wireless, a start-up company that offered unlimited calls, texts and date for $19 a month. You read correctly – $19 a month. Holy God that’s cheaper than even the lowest price for AT&T! I researched the company, the plan, and the catch.
Oh hey, there IS no catch.
Republic Wireless works on the condition that carriers will use wifi to make their calls, texts, and data usage. Wifi is available pretty much everywhere now, so there is no reason not to connect. When you’re in the middle of nowhere sans wifi, or like, your grandmother’s house, the Spring Network takes care of your communication.
Why Republic Wireless is the Phone for Travelers
- 1) It’s inexpensive as helllllll. That means you save more money for souvenirs, drinking your self to sleep with the locals, skydiving over the Great Barrier Reef…
- 2) It’s waterproof! Check out these photos I took while swimming in Iceland’s Blue Lagoon.
- 3) You can make calls to the US over wifi from anywhere in the world.
- 4) No nasty $500-on-your-cell-phone-bill-because-your-phone-was-on-international-roaming-for-five-minutes. If you can’t connect to wifi, the phone simply doesn’t work abroad.
- 5) No contracts! You can cancel anytime with no penalties.
- 6) There’s also a 30-day money back guarantee, so you can test it out, see if you like it, and return it scott-free if it’s not your style.
- 7) In most cases, your phone number and contacts will transfer easily.
(Sort of, but not really) Downsides:
- 1) Currently, only one phone is available (the Motorola Defy XT). So if you are a die-hard Iphone user, you might be disappointed, but A) it’s actually quite a decent phone and B) when you’re paying $19 a month vs upwards of almost $200, can you really be THAT disappointed?
- 2) The network has not figured out how to make in-country calls ie: when you’re in Germany and need to call a German number, but you can always use Skype, Vox or Google Voice over wifi.
- 3) No upgrades. Well, not entirely true. Republic does their best to offer discounts on new models of phones that are released, but you won’t be getting free upgrades anytime you want. However, the Defy XT is a tough little cookie and really the only thing you’d have to worry about is it getting lost, or stolen, or run over by a tro-tro.
- 4) The Sprint Network doesn’t go EVERYWHERE. There is a handy map showing network connection, but unfortunately, you won’t be able to make calls on top of, say, the Rocky Mountains.
- 5) The features, like the camera, and some apps, are not the latest on the market. But seriously WHO CARES WHEN YOU ARE PAYING $19 A MONTH?! No one gives a crap about the quality of your Instagrams anyway.
I am in love with my Republic Wireless phone and I will never go back to overpriced contract deals again. I have used it while traveling around the world and I love the peace of mind that comes with not having to worry about outrageous roaming fees, or that it will be destroyed if it falls in the toilet. I can’t wait to see what other features they come up with, especially for the international crowd.
Thinking of making the switch? Click here to get started!
*I bought and paid for my Republic Wireless phone, without solicitation from Republic Wireless. I just really like this company and want to spread the news to other travelers! I disclose in all posts if I receive items for promotional purposes. REPUBLIC WIRELESS ROCKS!
Have you ever wanted to see Iceland for yourself? Now’s your chance! Type up your CRAZIEST, WILDEST travel story and submit it to SADcars’ newest competition to win a free trip to Iceland! You’ll get to drive around in a fantastic SADcar rental, get some awesome excursions, a tent to sleep under the stars in, and a whole lot more.
Get as many people as you can to “like” your crazy story, and the top five most popular stories will be in the running to win the big trip!
Don’t feel like traveling to Iceland this time around? You can still vote for your favorite story on Facebook and help someone else win! Need inspiration? Vote for my story here!
This is an awesome opportunity for travelers looking to head to Iceland for a first, second, third time…You will be given a video camera to film your experience and make a little movie! I rented a SADcar for my trip to Iceland in September and I cannot recommend this company enough. The best decision I ever made was to rent a car and drive around Iceland – the freedom to make your own itinerary, combined with the price of an inexpensive vehicle, is enough to make your trip to this chilly island fantastic.
So what are you waiting for? Head over to the website and write your wildest travel story yet!
I’ve been super busy lately, in all sorts of ways!
New job! I have recently become a Contributing Editor at Matador Network. This is awesome, because A) I love that site to pieces B) my responsibilities have grown, including become the Web Submissions Manager (so if you send a piece to us via our website, I’ll be checking it over!), and C) I get business cards! It’s been an incredible learning process so far and I am so excited to be a part of this wonderful company. We are growing more and more every day and I can’t wait to see where it takes me.
Blogging A to Z Challenge. I’ve been participating in this cool bloggers collective for the past month, and while I haven’t published on time every day, I’ve done my best to keep up the pace. My focus is on travel and the places I’ve been, save for Japan, which is a place I’d very much like to go! It’s been a fun and creative way to participate with blogs around the world and gain more exposure for my site.
TBEX update. I was schedule to arrive Friday night after work, and stay until Sunday night, but that’s no fun! My site is getting bigger and bigger and my work at Matador is expanding as well, so I said “screw it, let’s do TBEX right!” and I changed my flight to arrive a full day and a half earlier. Now I’ll be there from May 30th to June 2nd, tearing Toronto UP! I’m super excited and happy that I was able to seamlessly make these changes.
eBooks. I’m writing a couple of eBooks, crazy! One of them is about my travel experiences but the other is a slight deviation on a theme I’ve written about before – relationships. I’m not sure when they will be published but when they are I’ll put up a special offer on this site!
Lots of exciting things happening, and more to come I’m sure! What developments have happened in your life lately?
Apologies for the lack of Friday content, dear readers. The site was doing some unscheduled maintenance and I wasn’t able to post anything during that time. You’ll get two posts from me today though, for AtoZ challenges K and L. So keep your eyes peeled and get ready!
Love ya lots,
These are some lilies that my mom planted in the yard of her house. She planted them while I was living there. Lilies are very interesting in that they only bloom once a year, and not for very long. You get to enjoy each bud for maybe a week or so before it crumbles and dies. But the cool thing is, that once you’ve planted them, they will always grow back, every year. Kind of a Zen thing really, when you think about it – something might be regular in your life, but you only get to enjoy it for a little while.
So cherish it while you can.
Dachau is a former concentration camp located outside of Munich, Germany.
In Krakow, I’d opted out of visiting Auschwitz based on the recommendation of a friend. “It’s become more of a tourist attraction than a substantial historic site,” she told me. “They sort of rush you through the grounds, don’t let you process the feel of the place. You’re welcome to go of course, but I know places like Terezín, or Dachau, might provide what you’re looking for.
What I was looking for, was to feel something. Sympathy. Distress. I wanted to be affected by where I was. We were in Krakow for such a short amount of time, I decided to leave Auschwitz for another time – Krakow is a wonderful city, and I know I’ll be back soon enough. But when we headed to Munich, and passed by German road signs indicating to the place, I took a leap.
“Do you ever bring groups to Dachau?” I asked Peter. “You know, as a side trip?”
He thought a moment. “Generally, no. It’s too depressing, really. You have to have the right group really, and there’s never enough time.”
I nodded. I don’t really know what I expected – for Peter to take the entire coach and go to this “put stop” just for me. I guess I figured other people would be interested too. But he was right, it was getting late and we had the Hofbräuhaus to look forward to. I went back to my seat, and closed my eyes.
When I woke up, we were definitely not in Munich. Peter made an announcement – we were taking a short break to see a historic site of significance. He talked a little about the Holocaust, what happened, and where we were going. And then, the bus dropped us off at Dachau Concentration Camp.
The site is sobering, for sure. We were the last visitors of the day, so we had the entire grounds to ourselves. There isn’t much – a smattering of original barracks, a museum, the open courtyard, a park dedicated to the dead – but it’s enough to send chills down your spine. In the museum, I learned about prisoners from all across Central Europe. It was nightfall by the time we left, and the grounds were eerily quiet.
The ghosts of those people who suffered terrible crimes were slowly floating about; I could feel them.