At last year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona a UK company called Truphone gave out SIMs to journalists for review. The claim is that rates are better for travellers than using roaming rates on typical contracts. The company also offers extras including the ability to assign multiple international numbers to a single SIM.
It is not my only SIM, but I have been trying it out with reasonable results. The best thing about it from my point of view is that calls home from the USA are a reasonable £0.10 per minute, which means I don’t need Skype and a decent wifi connection in order to call without worrying too much about the cost.
Bizarrely, it is actually more expensive to call a UK number from within the UK, at £0.15 per minute, even though I have a UK number:
It is more expensive for both calls and data in Spain, at at £0.21 per minute for calls and at £0.36 per MB for data:
Data is a problem and I carelessly racked up a rather large bill in the US; £0.20 per MB does not sound too bad but a single MB does not go far with normal use.
Still, I can say in Truphone’s favour that signal quality is generally good and the rates better than most roaming deals. If you want to avoid the hassles of a local SIM in each country you visit Truphone is worth a look.