Whether you’re traveling for pleasure, work, or business, doing your usual tasks and staying in touch with your loved ones, colleagues, or employees all the time is a cinch as long as you’re connected to the internet. But this huge perk often comes at a big cost, which you will see once you receive your monthly phone bill.
Internet package providers in Saudi Arabia offer some tips below on how to avoid spending a fortune on your data roaming charges while still staying connected to the internet while you’re abroad:
1. Download everything you need and want before your flight
Before going abroad, download all the tunes, videos, e-books and apps you need so that you won’t have to do this overseas. This will help you avoid using your data allowance for downloading. You will also be able your data allowance for more important things.
2. Turn off updates while you’re abroad
Software updates are important, but don’t update your apps until you are back home or connected to free, secure Wi-Fi. Updating your apps requires a fast internet connection. If you use your data allowance to do this, you will go beyond your allowance and pay expensive charges.
Prior to traveling, switch off the automatic update feature on your phone as well so that you won’t have to worry about this part.
3. Save web pages you need or have to read frequently
You can save offline copies of web pages, videos, and articles which you can refer to later without having to use your data. Use an offline reader app such as Pocket, Instapaper, and Readability. You can also add the web page to your reading list or download it as a PDF and save it on your phone so that you can read them later even without an internet connection.
4. Navigate offline
If it is your first to time to visit a particular place, you do not always have to use data to avoid getting lost. All you have to do is to save an offline Google map of the area you are traveling to. You can then refer to it later when you need to. However, Google maps can only be saved for 30 days so it is important that you keep this in mind.
You can also use Apple Maps to navigate offline as well.
5. Avoid using apps that are loaded with ads
Although many apps are free, they come with numerous ads that are not only annoying, but will eat your data. As much as possible, don’t use these apps. But if you really need or use them regularly, consider getting the paid versions of these apps to avoid the costly consequences of paying data roaming charges.
6. Use data-reducing or compressing browser and apps
If you really have to read or do something online, use Chrome. This particular browser can reduce the size of web pages, thereby decreasing your data use by up to 50%. Certain apps such Opera Mini, Opera Max, Onavo Extend, and Data Compress work in different ways, but using them will help you reduce your data consumption.
7. Monitor your data usage
Even if you don’t always surf the Web or use a data-compressing app on your device, you still need to keep a close eye on the amount of data you use while you’re overseas. This will help you avoid burning through your data allowance and getting a huge phone bill.
You can view your data usage stats on your mobile network account page. All smartphones and tablets also have a built-in data traffic log which you can check regularly to monitor your usage. Although these tools are sometimes not updated in real time, you can still use the numbers as a rough guide.
8. Use Wi-Fi whenever possible
Lastly, the simplest and most effective tip to help you avoid getting a frightening phone bill because of data over-use is to use the internet or your apps via Wi-Fi connection.
Use the Wi-Fi at your hotel, the café, or restaurant. There are also many public Wi-Fi hotspots which can give you decent connection but be careful in using them.
This means you have to avoid making online banking or financial transactions and changing your passwords using these hotspots. Make sure you disable your device’s data roaming setting as well to be sure they won’t be used accidentally, especially if the Wi-Fi connection is unstable.
Once you’re home, make sure you know how to check your postpaid bill carefully so that you can avoid making the same costly mistakes on your data roaming usage the next time you travel.