Overland Query Satellite Phone

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Suggest you check with the cell phone operators to see what coverage they are showing in the countries your planning to visit. It's not 100% accurate but it gives you an idea.
Some third world counties have good coverage. We traversed Afghanistan west to east last year and had cell phone coverage nearly all the way - (not too surprising as all the land lines have been destroyed in conflict), whereas when we got into Pakistan there was little coverage outside the maian ciries (in the northern areas). Into northern China and hey presto - signal again.
Whilst keeping in touch is useful, I find that there is an upside to not having cell contact. What did we all do until about 20 years ago ? Cell phones can breed insecurity - IMHO
----- Original Message -----
From: [Email address removed]
To: [Email address removed]
Sent: Wednesday, October 10, 2007 8:17 AM
Subject: [ELCO] Overland Query: Satellite Phone
Hi y'all
Most overland preparation companies recommend taking a satellite phone as a 'just in case/emergency/feel good' item and normally on a short term hire basis. As I expect to be on and off (piste etc!) the road for over a year, hiring is not a sensible option and the cost of buying looks very, very painful. I am not traversing the Sahara, so it may be that can do without and rely on hit and miss cell phone coverage.
Any views on this as an option, or any way of reducing the outlay on a satellite phone?
Regards
Peter
'94 1HD-T(auto), 2.5"OME, oil cooler
 
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Peter,
Please remind me when and for how long you'll be away? Perhaps I could help.
--
Rgds,
Roman (London, UK)
'92 HDJ80 (auto)
On 10/10/07, [Email address removed] <[Email address removed]> wrote:
 
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Peter,
Who's offering this deal?
As I have an Iridium handset, I usually buy a 75min prepaid airtime
with an option for additional postpaid 75 min.
That's more than enough for emergency calls (if required).
For other types of comms, internet cafes, which can be easily found
everywhere, are OK for keeping in touch with home by email or VOIP.
--
Rgds,
Roman (London, UK)
'92 HDJ80 (auto)
On 10/10/07, [Email address removed] <[Email address removed]> wrote:
 
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Guest

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Peter,
AFAIK about Iridium, a sim card is valid for 12 months from the date
of purchase, and the airtime starts running from the date of
activation.
I suppose there's no pattern for the operation of internet cafes
across the continent, but there are some common rules how to avoid
being scammed. One of them says not to type any passwords on other
people's computers. So, I think it's not about using your own skype
handset, but rather your own pc connected to their network. And for a
few euros nothing is impossible out there.
--
Rgds,
Roman (London, UK)
'92 HDJ80 (auto)
 
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Guest

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Hi Peter
I think this is your mail address ?
Once again, many thanks for the lift back, and an enjoyable chat. Got me all enthusiastic about further travels !
I am away from my desk most of today. Will endeavour to dig out the West Africa info tonight and get it to you tomorrow.
Best wishes
Ken
----- Original Message -----
From: [Email address removed]
To: [Email address removed]
Sent: Wednesday, October 10, 2007 9:02 PM
Subject: [ELCO] Overland Query: Satellite Phone
Roman,
If I understand you right, the time allocated for the use of the prepaid sim card starts to run down only when you first use it not when you first buy it? The start of the run down is presumably linked to registering the sim card, thus only do so when you need the air time?
I see that on ebay the 75 minute cards on offer from the States are going for about =A367; add 30% customs duty, etc that gives a price of about =A388. Is that a good deal?
We may be taking a Skype hand set with us, have you encountered any problems with using something similar in an internet cafe? I was concerned that the cafes would only allow their desk tops to be used and would certainly not provide a USB for me to use my own VOIP hand set; in addition I was concerned that the cafes would not have the speakers/mike set-up needed to use Skype. Are these concerns valid?
Regards
Peter
'94 1HD-T(auto), 2.5"OME, oil cooler
 
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