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Road Warrior: Cables and connectors but no socks


Author: Michael Evans

As a seasoned road warrior I was relatively unfazed by my forced stop in Switzerland. My case was stuffed with cables, connectors, adaptors, MiFi and all the other paraphernalia of a seasoned traveller. I just forgot spare socks, toothpaste and brush. You can't have everything.

We rely so much on our devices, particularly our last resort the iPhone, these days that it's essential to Be Prepared. Inevitably, though, something gets missed. Such as a USB car charger that I didn't expect to need for a flight from Greece to England. I had to buy another one. I also stocked up with yet another of those 3G data modem dongles to add to my ever-growing collection. Why is it obligatory to take yet another Huawei every time you want a SIM to put in your MiFi? 

Anyway, this little beauty cost me 99 francs ($83, £60). But that includes the cost of the SIM and a 20 franc credit. Yet another charging structure though and it is becoming very difficult to remember them all. This time, SwissCom charges 1 franc per MB ($0.94 or 61p) with a maximum daily rate of 7 Fr ($6.50, £4.28). This isn't a bad deal, since you can effectively take unlimited data for a relatively small daily charge. It's ok for occasional use which is all I'm going to give it on my visits to the country.

If you travel around the globe and spend more than a day or so in a country it's worth grabbing a SIM and yet another modem, because data roaming charges are still prohibitive. I imagine the day will come soon when we can buy a SIM without being saddled with another free Hyundai or however you pronounce it.


  1. I know exactly what you mean about traveling with all our electronics – I do the same, and always forget something.

    Like you I have an ever growing collection of Huawei 3G modems,as cover here in the Philippines is very variable I have two of them here, one for each of the main Telecom companies. Also one for Australia, one for France and one for Holland. Unlike in Europe though, there is no limit on up or download, you simply pay for the time you are on line, which is neat.

    They cost about 22 USD (16 Euros) here to buy, which includes about 300 minutes online) After that I simply buy reload cards at 500 Pesos, about 12 USD (8 Euros) which represent 1000 minutes online. Not a bad deal at all, when they work, that is.

    Further, there is no requirement to use them every day, or anything like that, and the credit is valid for 120 days, so all in all, a very good deal really.

    Also, like you, I don’t understand why I have to keep on buying the actual modem, and not simply the Sim card. It is silly, but I suppose it may be Huawei who are behind this, and insist that the telecom companies only sell the Sim with a modem.

    However, the 3G USB modem is a fantastic device, one of the best internet related things to come along… I love being able to go online absolutely anywhere that has 3G cover (the whole country), and am often to be found on the beach, working away on the internet happily.


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