How Do I Get My Phone Out of Roam?


A cell phone that goes into roaming is not only a nuisance but a potential money sink. Don't let this happen to you: Adam Savage, co-host of the popular cable series "Mythbusters," made a few calls with his iPhone while traveling internationally only to find a charge for $11,000 upon his return to the United States. Get your phone out of roaming, or prevent it from roaming altogether, with these simple tips.

Get Back In Range

  • Move yourself to a non-roaming area in network to switch your phone back to the home network. Unless your service is part of a small regional network, there should be a network tower within a few miles of travel. Otherwise, shut off your phone until you're back in network.

Change Your Phone Setup

  • Restrict your phone to network-only calling. Many cell phones have a function that allows the user to switch off all roaming access, shutting off the phone when it's out of network. Look under your phone's "system" or "settings" menu for such network options.

Replace the SIM Card

  • Replace your international roaming SIM card with a domestic SIM that doesn't allow roaming. Some phones are sold with a SIM that lets people call out of network. Switch the card for one that restricts out-of-network calls instead.

Restrict Your Account

  • Call your cell company, and request that it restricts your service to the home network only. Once it does, your phone should come out of roaming. By taking roaming off of your contact, your phone will have no service in those areas, or service may transfer from digital to analog.

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