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cell phones

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Intercasa
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Post by Fig Fri Jan 14, 2011 10:39 pm

we're in Joco for the month of Feb. We have locked cell phones with Rogers and Fido with sims. Do we unlock them and get sims when we arrive ? or do we buy cheap phones with minutes when we arrive. We need 2 phones to keep 2 couples in touch.

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Post by 57Chevy Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:28 am

I don't know if you can or cannot buy sims to fit your fons from the states/canada. I kind of doubt it, but I may be wrong. Call you U.S. cell phone provider and ask about service in Mexico. I have Verizon service on my U.S. cell phone and I called customer service to arrange to add Mexican service to my phone. I did not have to change SIM card at all. However, this is expensive due to international roaming charges. I use my U.S. cell only when I must, like when a Mexican phone is not working. ALso, to call the U.S. I find my U.S. cell phone is VERY reliable. Sometimes Mexican cell service and signals aren't the best... Also, I buy a phone when I get to Mexico and fill it with minutes as I need them. Walmart sells them, and there is a Telcel store on the highway in Ajijic, I think it is in Plaza Bugambillas...but you can ask where it is. There is a guy there that speaks some English. Joco has stores too, if you don't speak spanish ask around for a store where the clerk speaks english. WIth Telcel service, you can go to any OXXO store or Guadalajara pharmacy - and many other stores - and tell them how much money you want to put into your phone. Joco has a Guadalajara Pharmacy on the south side of town, plus OXXO. The clerk will ask for the phone number and key it into their register. (Know your phone number, and confirm that the clerk keyed in the correct phone number before you pay her). Then, you get a printed receipt, and also, you should receive a text message confirming your purchase. The text will tell you that you have X number of pesos in the phone. Some days you will be gifted extra credit, like 1/3 or 1/2 of the amount of credit your purchased, and on bonus days, you will receive double, example if you buy $500 pesos, the service will GIVE you another $500 pesos credit. (that's around $100). If you will use the phone for general use for folks living lakeside, it's best to RECEIVE calls, this is free/cheaper than making the calls yourself. Having a cell phone where you purchase minutes/credit for the phone is relatively expensive as compared to having a monthly cell service plan (which you don't do because you're there for a short time). My experience was with Telcel. There are 2 other services I know of : Unifon and Moviestar. I was told Telcel has the best reception/signal, but have also heard that it is the most expensive per minute. Ask around when you get there. I purchased a Telcel phone at the Walmart on the east end of Ajijic for around $330 pesos. The cheapest one they had. WIth today's exchange rate at around 11, that is around $30 U.S. Having cell phones with you at all times and to keep in touch with eachother is a super idea. I hope you have a wonderful stay in Joco. Best wishes.
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Post by 57Chevy Sat Jan 15, 2011 12:48 am

I don't know if you've been lakeside before, but in case you have not, I'm giving you some phone numbers to put into your contacts lists: Don't know the number for Joco police, look for that when you get there. Ajijic & Chapala Police, emergency dial 066. Red Cross/Ambulence and Paramedics emergency dial 065. Clinics open 24 hours: Clinica Ajijic 766-0662. Clinica Maskaras 765-4805.

If you need a reliable taxi driver, here are some people I have used. When you are in Jalisco, you must dial the prefix 045 before the 10-digit cell number. For house/land lines, just dial the 7 digit number. Taxistas: Ricardo Rigazzo cell 045-331-217-8725. He understands English, but doesn't speak much. Also, Cruz Moreda, who speaks excellent English: cell 045-331-429-3051 , home (376)766-0769.

If you don't have a ride from the airport, either guy will come pick you up. To call from the U.S. --- for home numbers dial prefix 01152-the number, for cell phones dial prefix 011521-the number.
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Post by Intercasa Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:29 am

For Joco use Telcel as it has the best reception. You can inquire about unlocking your phone but really if it is more than 200 pesos you might want to weight the alternative of buying a cheap cell phone with a chip and then charge up 300 pesos and get bonus credit which, unless you plan on calling alot, will last you the month.
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Post by Fig Sat Jan 15, 2011 5:45 pm

Chevy, thank you for the a detailed response. We've stayed in both Ajijic and Chapala and thought we'd try Joco this time. We had mechanical problems with a rental van last year and really kicked ourselves for not having a phone. I think Spencer's plan will probably be our best bet. Thanks.

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Post by 57Chevy Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:34 pm

Like I said, that's what I do as well lakeside. Have a cheap cell and add credit as needed. (But, the U.S. cell is nice to have as a back-up). Sorry if I was too detailed.... I thought this was your first trip! I guess because you didn't know about phones. I was trying to be helpful...I remember when I first arrived lakeside, and it was really hard not to have someone hold my hand and help me with the phone thing. Especially nowadays, you really do need a phone with you at all times. Have a great time on your trip. Joco is so beautiful.
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Post by cagneykitty Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:58 pm

I love this website so much. When I have some kind of question, I can usually find the answer here. Much better than the other website....lol
thank you very much Thumbs up
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Post by viajero Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:07 pm

Funny avatar cagneykitty. Thumbs up

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Post by borderreiver Sun Jul 29, 2012 5:48 pm

I brought an old pone with me, had telcel unlock, then just paid for the minutes. However, the phone had to be sent to Guad to be unlocked. 5 days. 220 pesos including 50 pesos of air time.
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Post by Jim W Sun Jul 29, 2012 7:12 pm

Buy an unlocked cell phone on ebay.......
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