Spending Too Much to Stay Connected?

Walking in the Sahara was like nothing we had ever experienced. The only way I can describe the feeling is like seeing the ocean for the first time. Expansive, almost too big for this world.

My first impulse was the same as most travelers. I flipped out my phone and took a picture. As that was almost seven years ago, the technology was, uhmm…primitive. Still, I wanted to remember the image, no matter how grainy.

Imagine the surprise when I spotted bars. “We have cell coverage out here,” I told my husband with glee. That night from a caravan tent, we sent photo greetings from Morocco to select friends via text message. And, why not? We had asked for international coverage, after all.

Arriving home to a cell bill in the four digits, glee quickly dissapted. We had never thought to ask if Morocco was covered or about data usage or something called “roaming.” Traveling with cellular gadgets was new frontier for us.

Thankfully, we’ve learned a lot since that amazing trip!

This week in my TRAVEL SECRETS column for Paste magazine, we talk with experts about best practices for travelers to stay connected, sensibly.

If you have more tips and/or advice – or just funny stories about connections gone wrong – we’d love to hear them! 

Travel Secrets: Stay Connected
By Jess Simpson | January 9, 2017 | 9:00am
Photo courtesy of Paste Travel.
Photo courtesy of Paste Travel.


No topic animates pro travelers quite like this one. Sure, we love to share tales of hidden beaches and breathtaking hiking trails. But if you want to engage an adventurer in deep conversation, ask this question: What cellular and data plan do you use?


Most globetrotters have tried it all in an effort to stay connected while not spending a small fortune. I know a guy who has three different cell phones for countries he visits frequently. He’s not a gangster or politician, just a dude trying to save a few bucks. Keep reading…

Related stories:

Trip Planning to Make Every Dollar Count (for Paste magazine)

Make Your Money Go Further on the Road (for Paste magazine)

Nomadic Life: 18 Months on the Loose


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s