Do Cell Phones Work in England & Other Countries?


When traveling overseas it is important to know if you can use your cell phone. Yes, there are cell phones in the other countries, but the question is whether your U.S. phone will work in other in countries.

Do Cell Phones Work in England?

  • The short answer to this question is, yes, cell phones do work in England and other countries. However, cell phones from different companies and countries use different frequencies and signals, so your phone will have to use the signal used in England or whatever country you visit.

GSM Cell Phone

  • GSM is the most-widely used cell phone service in the world. Chances are, if you use a GSM phone it will be usable in the country you are visiting, including England. However, AT&T is the only major American wireless company that provides GSM cell phones. Verizon and Sprint use the CDMA frequency. So, if you are an AT&T customer, you'll be able to use your phone overseas. If you use Verizon or Sprint, you will have to purchase a special overseas phone.

CDMA Phones

  • The United States is one of the few countries whose population uses mostly CDMA frequency phones. This is due to Verizon and Sprint using this frequency, which is bad news for individuals of the two companies who want to use their phones overseas. However, there are a few countries that use CDMA, and Verizon has an agreement with about 40 countries so that its phones will work in those countries. (This may sound like a lot, but AT&T has the same agreement with more than 180 countries.) These countries include China, Thailand, Israel, Indonesia and South Korea.

Talk to Your Wireless Provider

  • Your wireless provider most likely will have International phones you can purchase, as well as plans with international rates. Although this will give you the freedom to use a cell phone, it will be very expensive.

Travel Phone

  • If all else fails, purchase a travel phone. These phones will be usable in almost any country and will be far less expensive than your wireless carrier's international rates.

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