Get a free travel phone number before your next trip

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By Heather

Travel & Tech Writer

Get a free travel phone number from Hushed and aloSIM

If you’ve never used a travel phone number on vacation before, then you probably … oh wait, let me guess …

A) You used your regular phone number (super expensive!)

B) You kept your phone on Airplane Mode (no calls, no texts, so sad)

C) You yanked out your SIM card before you left home (bit aggressive, nah?)

Honestly, those are terrible options

If you call and text on your regular phone number when you’re in another country, your next phone bill is going to have a ton of extra charges. Even if you’re using an eSIM for data, like all the cool kids, your phone carrier can still charge you A LOT OF MONEY for every single call and text. No, thank you.

If you keep your phone on Airplane Mode when you’re travelling, you’re limited to Wi-Fi only. No calling. No texting. No data (and you can’t even use an eSIM if you’re stuck on Airplane Mode). You’re basically just a toddler with their parent’s old phone, at the mercy of the nearest free (and maybe sketchy) Wi-Fi network. Yuck.

If you remove your SIM card before you travel, you’re certainly safe from any charges on your next phone bill. But you might lose it or break it, and you won’t have the option to toggle your real number back on if you need it for an emergency (like getting a two-factor authentication text from your bank if your account gets frozen because you’re in another country).

Sometimes, you really need a phone number

« But I don’t need a phone number when I’m on vacation, » you might be insisting. « I don’t need to call and text anyone on vacation, anyway. I mostly just use iMessage, FaceTime, WhatsApp, and social media DMs, and those all run over the internet so all I need is data. »

Fair enough.

Except, what about those times when you actually need to make a phone call … and you’re halfway around the world?

• Calling hotels and restaurants about reservations

• Calling your airline to argue about your cancelled flight

• Calling a business to confirm they’re open (before you waste time going)

• Calling pharmacies and doctors about illness, injury, or prescriptions

• Calling your landlord back home because your unit’s flooding

And, wait, what about those times when you’re travelling and someone really, really needs to call you?

• Answering a call from the airline about a flight delay

• Answering a call from a site-seeing excursion that there’s been a cancellation

• Answering a call that you’ve lost your job unexpectedly

• Answering a call (finally) from someone you’ve left many desperate voicemails

• Answering a call with important news from back home

Get a travel phone number instead

When you’re on vacation, using your regular phone number from home is expensive. But do you know what’s the opposite of expensive? FREE STUFF!

Here are two different ways to get a totally and completely FREE travel phone number for your next trip …

Get a free travel number (international calling and texting): If you’re going to be using an eSIM (downloadable SIM card) for data on your trip, buy your data package from aloSIM and you’ll get a free phone number from our sister app, Hushed. Choose any number from the available Canada and United States area codes, and it will be a fully international phone plan that can call or text anywhere in the world. The phone package will last as long as your data package.

Get a free travel number (Canada and U.S. calling and texting): If you only need a phone number for three days, you can take advantage of Hushed’s free three-day trial. Just download the free Hushed app, create an account, and use a trial subscription. If you cancel before the three days are up, you won’t be charged anything.

What about my real phone number?

All phone-related decisions need to be made before you leave your ‘regular coverage area,’ which is typically your entire home country (if you have nationwide phone service). So before you leave on your trip, you’ve got a decision to make …

OPTION 1: Use a free travel phone number from Hushed + keep your regular phone number available (for emergencies)

What this means: You can call and text on your Hushed phone number, and you can call and text on your regular phone number.

Cost: Depends on your carrier. However, most phone carriers will charge you (through the nose) for every phone call you make or accept, as well as every text message sent or received. (iMessage ‘blue bubble’ messages are fine, since iMessages run over the internet.)

Is this option for me? If you’re nervous about the idea of not being 100% reachable on vacation, you might want to go with this option. Just make sure Data Roaming is toggled off for your primary SIM, and be prepared to potentially have a higher phone bill when you’re back from your trip.

Advice from our team: Tell friends and family your Hushed number and encourage them to contact you there. Then hopefully you won’t have as many charges on your regular phone number.

OPTION 2: Use a free travel phone number from Hushed + disable your regular SIM/phone number completely

What this means: You can call and text on your Hushed phone number, but not on your regular phone number. (You regular cell phone number won’t work until it’s toggled back on after you return home from vacation.)

Cost: FREE! All calling and texting with Hushed will be free. And if you have an iPhone or iPad, iMessage ‘blue bubble’ messages and FaceTime calls are also free, since they both run over the internet.)

Is this option for me? If you’re dreading an expensive phone bill, this is the best option. Disable your primary SIM right before you leave on your trip, and your carrier won’t be able to charge you a penny extra on your next bill. (They won’t even know you’re travelling!)

Advice from our team: Before you leave home and disable your primary SIM, record an outgoing voicemail explaining that you’ll be travelling and that you can be reached on your Hushed number instead. Then anyone who calls and gets your voicemail will know how to reach you on vacation, if needed.

Get your free travel number

If you’re planning an international trip, now’s the time to make sure you know how you’ll be using your phone.

1. What are you using for travel data?

Pssst! Download aloSIM for downloadable eSIMs for 175+ countries.

2. What are you using for a travel phone number?

Hi! Me, again. Make sure you download Hushed and claim that free travel phone number.