Roaming in the US

Roaming in the US

Some mobile providers in the US have retired their 3G networks which may impact some Vodafone NZ customers while roaming. Below is some info and common FAQs to help while roaming in the US.

Important things to know

While you’re roaming in the US, Vodafone NZ will automatically connect you to the US mobile provider T-Mobile in order to provide the best connection experience.

If there is no T-Mobile coverage, your network will switch to the US mobile provider AT&T if your phone is 4G capable. While connected to AT&T, you won’t be able to make/ receive any calls or send/ receive TXTs because this functionality works on 2G network while roaming. This means if your phone is 3G/2G capable only, you may lose connectivity where only AT&T is available.

We recommend you check your phone before you travel to make sure you’re prepared while roaming in the US. Here is a handy table to figure out what your coverage will be like while travelling there.

I have a 3G/2G phoneI have a 4G phone
What can I do while connected to T-Mobile's network? **

I can make/ receive calls,

I can send/ receive TXTs, and

I can’t use data

when I am in an area with T-Mobile 2G coverage. **

I can make/ receive calls,

I can send/ receive TXTs, and

I can use data

when I am in an area with T-Mobile coverage. **

What can I do while connected to AT&T’s network?

I can’t make/ receive calls,

I can’t send/ receive TXTs, and

I can’t use data

when I am in an area with only AT&T coverage.

I can use data, but

I can’t make/receive calls, and

I can’t send/receive TXTs

when I am in an area with only AT&T coverage.

**T-Mobile's 4G and 2G coverage are not like for like, which could result in not being able to make/ receive calls or send/ receive TXTs if 2G is unavailable.

Most smartphones released in the past decade work on 4G however to check whether your phone is 3G or 4G capable, head to the IMEI Info website. By following the on-screen instructions there, you’ll find and type in your phone’s 15-digit IMEI number. After typing in this unique identifier, you will see a webpage listing your phone’s specifications on the right-hand of the webpage. If it has a green tick mark in the ‘LTE’ box (LTE or Long-Term Evolution is another term for 4G), then your phone can use 4G mobile data. Alternatively, you can also check our mobile phone user guides.

FAQs

I can’t make a phone call, what do I do?

If you can’t make a phone call, try calling via an app (e.g. WhatsApp, Facetime, Facebook Messenger) or enable Wifi Calling in your settings which will allow you to make a call using Wifi. You may be charged additional costs for using Wifi Calling depending on your home mobile plan entitlements.

For example, if you’re on a Prepay or Pay Monthly plan and call a NZ number using Wifi Calling while roaming overseas, this will come out of your plan allowance. If you call a local number in the country you’re travelling in, you may be charged the standard cost of calling an international number, like you would at home.

My data has stopped working after making a call or sending a TXT, what do I do?

When you’re making a call or sending a TXT, your mobile connects to a 2G network. Once you’ve finished making this call or TXT, your mobile switches to a 4G network to use data.

While you’re roaming in the US, your phone might be a bit slow when switching back to a 4G network. This means there may be a delay in using data straight after making a call or sending a TXT.

Running multiple apps on your phone might impact the switch between 2G and 4G networks so we recommend that you close all your apps that you’re not using to help with this.

How can I get help with roaming while in the US?

You can free call the Vodafone team on +64 9 355 2007 or for Business customers +64 9 962 9888.

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