I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now to review cell phone providers that I’ve personally used since I’ve been in France.
Because let’s face it, we are in the world of social media, easy access to everything and I can’t imagine myself in a new city without my iPhone and it’s google maps and RATP app! (app for metro, bus, RER in Paris!! download it!)
Note: Most providers in France can provide Sim cards for travelers if your phone is unlocked.
Reminder: This is my personal experience with these three providers.
As my family and friends know, I’ve gone through a few phone numbers since I’ve landed in October.
First number was my temporary number from Orange.
I unlocked my Canadian phone prior to arriving (call your provider and they will unlock it for a fee), arrived in France and tried getting a contract but without your resident card, it’s pretty much impossible.
Hence the monthly activation sim card through Orange offering 300 mo (mega octa=mega byte) for 39.99€ which I blew within a week!!! Not good enough for me so on to the next…
To Free Mobile since I had heard that they were fairly cheap, offered 20Gb/month for 19.99€ and you weren’t locked into a contract.
So I walked to the only office in Paris that they have and signed up, received my sim card 5 business days later, activated my card which was fairly easy and off I went.
Finally!!! Mobile internet to know where the heck I was going in this brand new city….
Not for long…
Houston, we have a problem!
The internet is SO SLOW!!!! Barely any reception in my studio, it would never load up documents (small PDF’s for work) and would take forever to re-fresh which I found weird so I called and they advised me to do a few things (turn off phone, take sim out, etc) which I had already done and no such luck. They advised me that FreeMobile uses Orange towers but I would compare my service with my co-worker who had Orange and his service was MUCH quicker than mine loading up the same page.
I put up with it for over a month and a half but once I got my resident card, I walked straight into SFR and signed up for a 2 year contract , got a new iPhone 5S and added internet/tv for my apartment.
They did all the work of transferring (called Portability/Portabilité in french) my Free Mobile number to SFR, took three days without interruption and in the end, I didn’t have to update all my personal information (banking, accounts, etc).
My Internet & TV boxes arrived 5 business days later and I started setting it up.
Low and behold, I had issues with my WIFI at home so I called and SFR sent a technician to come check it out the next day.
The line still had issues so SFR took care of getting a France Telecom representative to come check my phone line to ensure everything was connected properly in the building.
They provided me with a 2 hour block and the rep arrived early.
This was all done free of charge and it, all in all, took only a few days for me to be able to use my WIFI.
I now have unlimited WIFI at home & TV (
I don’t have a TV yet though) and 8Gg/month for my iPhone (All on 4G).
It’s a tad more expensive but I rather pay a bit more for good service.
So that, folks, is my personal experience with mobile phone providers since I’ve moved here. ☺
Have a fantastic Monday!