Most good cell contracts now include some kind of roaming coverage for when you travel. But it’s rarely as simple as you’d like, and coverage can vary wildly depending on what part of the world you’re in. With roaming fees still going as high as $15/MB for some areas, it’s good to check before you travel, which is where this spreadsheet comes in.
Made by a Redditor, it shows the roaming coverage offered by different carriers in different countries on one single document.
As someone who’s dug through carrier roaming policies to try and work out who offers what before, it’s almost singularly challenging to know exactly where you’re covered, and for what. Some carriers will offer full-speed roaming in certain countries, slow roaming in others, and per-megabyte charges in the last category of countries.
If you travel to one specific country a lot to visit family or for work, trying to understand the roaming coverage is difficult, which is why it’s useful to see everything compared in one place. The big thing that’s missing, though, is the differences in the type of roaming coverage you get: different speeds apply depending on the carrier and the country. Sprint, for example, includes roaming, but only free texts and 2G data in most countries. You do, however, get free unlimited calling and texting in Mexico, Canada and Latin America, and 1GB of data to use in those countries.
T-Mobile offers unlimited texting and 2G data in 140 countries, including most of the ones you’d want to visit. You can upgrade that to actually usable data by buying the extra $25 plan, which also gets unlimited HD video streaming and mobile hotspot.
Project Fi is an interesting inclusion: it roams overseas at the same rate that you usually pay in the US, namely $10/GB.
For now, the chart is still missing full data for AT&T, but the creator has promised to keep updating, so it’s a good thing to keep bookmarked for next time you’re going overseas.