Leaked: New T-Mobile Plan With Unlimited International High Speed Data & Calling

made the switch from AT&T to T-Mobile a couple of years ago, and I can’t believe it took me so long.

Up until recently I couldn’t have been happier with T-Mobile. My bill was half of what I paid with AT&T, and T-Mobile offers an excellent international data plan. Prior to that, having international data was a foreign concept to me (no pun intended), so I’m sure you can imagine how exciting that was for me, given how much time I spent abroad.

Unfortunately my feelings have slowly changed about T-Mobile. This is partly because the competition has caught up, and partly because I think T-Mobile has executed a few things pretty poorly.

The company made some changes that seem like they should be positive on the surface (at least on balance):

  • T-Mobile expanded their international plan from 154 countries and destinations to 210+; at the same time they increased the cost of international calls from 20 cents per minute to 25 cents per minute
  • T-Mobile introduced a new $5 Global Pass plan, where for $5 per day you can get high speed data and calling abroad

My recent frustration with T-Mobile has stemmed from just how damn difficult it has been to sign up for the Global Pass plan. Based on the feedback I got from readers, I wasn’t alone in feeling that way. So that’s why I’m very excited about what T-Mobile is apparently announcing very shortly.

As reported by Phone Arena, a leaked internal memo suggests that T-Mobile will introduce a new Global Plus international data plan tomorrow, which looks incredible (though comes at a cost). The plan will cost an additional $50 per month, but will be the most comprehensive international data plan offered by just about any carrier, as it will include unlimited calling and high speed data in all Simple Global countries.

This plan would include:

  • Unlimited high-speed data while roaming in a Simple Global country
  • 5GB monthly high-speed, international tethering in a Simple Global country
  • Unlimited free Simple Global to Simple Global calling
  • Unlimited messaging
  • Unlimited Stateside International Talk and Text
  • All the features of the ONE Plus International add-on

While $50 is a lot of money to spend every month as an add-on, this would truly mean that your phone would work equally well just about everywhere in the world.

Now, this won’t be for everyone. If you just travel a few times per year, you’re much better off buying the day passes.

However, for those of us who travel internationally every month, paying the $50 monthly upfront and literally having a phone that works perfectly everywhere in the world (even with tethering) is a fantastic option that I’d take advantage of in a heartbeat.

I should mention that some people (including Tiffany) love Google Fi, though that’s not really iPhone compatible (unless something changed recently, so it’s not a practical option for many of us.

What do you make of T-Mobile’s rumored new Global Plus offering? Would you sign up for it?

(Tip of the hat to CF Frost)

Comments

  1. Could you not change the plan for 1 billing cycle then change it back next billing cycle? Assuming you are back in a month.

  2. Luckily my work phone has a grandfathered old AT&T unlimited global data plan. There’s some threshold beyond which they throttle but for vacations I’ve never had issues and I had unlimited LTE in any country which is great. Travel will definitely be a bit more painful if I ever leave my company

  3. You should really consider switching to Project Fi. 60$/month and you get high speed data all over the world. It’s a pain to use sometimes on the iPhone but very doable and it also saves you a boatload of money.

  4. I bet you would be able to add it on for a month, then remove it. To make that worth it vs the $5 day passes, you’d of course have to be traveling internationally for 10+ days, within a single billing cycle. But even for slightly less than 10 days, it might be more convenient than the day passes, which I agree (having just been in China and using them every day for about 10 days) really suck to have to add-on every 24 hours.

  5. project fi works with iphone.

    Only step you have to do is to active the sim card by using a google phone, then you are ready to go!

  6. Flip side in the UK market most providers allow usage “Like home” outside the EU i.e whatever your mins/texts/data is in the UK for a flat daily fee – in my case £6/day on Vodafone – which is added automatically to your bill when you use your phone whilst roaming. (Three have more inclusive plans that allow free roaming outside the EU in select counties but their coverage and customer service sucks).

    Anyway my point is – the downside of automatic billing is it’s £6 per day whatever you use. I sent a very expensive text when I landed at 23:43 on one trip. £6.

    Next day though I called home, sent texts, used Facebook, Google maps, Instagram etc. £6.

    Most expensive text ever!

    At least by having to register you won’t be sending any $5 texts!

  7. Agree with @Thomas and @Jim. The limited drawbacks of using an iPhone on Project Fi are more than made up for with $60/month service in all parts of the world most sane people would want/have to go. For every issue you’d encounter with an iPhone on Fi, there’s an immediate workaround that is familiar to the vast, vast majority of the smartphone-using public.

  8. @Brendan Lazarus: I’ve had Fi since 2015 and I’ve never had less than 3G speeds in over 20 different countries. Though the definition of “high speed”, specifically for 3G, is all over the map. For the most part, though, I’ve LTE in nearly every country I’ve visited/worked – so much so that I can’t actually remember the place(s) where I only had 3G. I want to say Greece…but can’t be sure.

  9. Make the switch to Fi already. It’s better. In every way. It works with an iPhone and even if it didn’t, its good enough to justify switching phones given how much travel internationally.

  10. To all those jumping onto Google Project Fi: READ THE PRIVACY POLICY!!

    Project-Fi uses Google’s standard privacy policy which means they fully intend to monitor absolutely EVERYTHING you do while using the Project-Fi network.

  11. @Brendan Lazarus that’s like asking since when does Google allow searches. It’s literally the premise of Project Fi that it works everywhere.

  12. People keep saying Fi is $60/month but it’s actually $80/month once you add the required unlimited calling package…

  13. Traveled all over Europe and my internet was great. Never paid for a phone call because I made all phone calls including video calls for zero cost with WhatsApp. I’m not going to be signing up for this plan!

  14. Fi is $20/month + $10/gb. Why are people saying $60 or $80? Simply not true. Add additional users for $15/month.

  15. Too expensive.
    I used to be a HUGE fan of T-Mobile and couldn’t believe how long it took for you to switch but as you said they have changed. Their slow data used to be great, but on a recent trips to Ireland it has been completely unworkable. Texts work but forget using the data. It’s as if they’ve slowed it all down to force you into buying a pass or a new package.
    I really liked the company but recently they just feel like everyone else. So much for being the uncarrier…

  16. @Kyle Fi is $10/gb up to $60 at which point they cap your costs. New feature introduced this year.

    Interestingly the main reason I’d prefer T-Mobile over Fi after this is the domestic flight Gogo wifi and texting, available even without the new Global Plus plan. With Fi you’d have to pay the standard ~$5/flight or $50/month, so if you fly two or three times a month with T-Mobile and value wifi you may come out ahead.

  17. As a frequent international business traveler (ie multiple time a month) this is a game changer. The 256Kbps speeds are awful and the recent changes have meant signing up every day which is also a pain for all the reasons the article describes. The old option of $20 for 1 GB was better, and this option is pretty good too.

  18. One minor annoyance about google and it’s a big one.

    If your phone dies, you cannot activate a new one outside the US. Basically screwed, I had to cancel it.

    Luckily in the UK for now my sim is free to use in any country in the EU and I pay $25 a month for 3x the data I had with google FI.

  19. I’m in with this! Spending on average 95-105 days per year overseas on business it seems reasonable. Reflecting back just two years ago, I was paying $110 per month to AT&T with NO international access. Even with this add on I’d be under my old AT&T plan at $100 per month.

  20. Spending the next two months at a Hyatt in Indonesia. Data speeds suck. Will call to add this to my plan once it is announced! Sweet!

  21. This is now live when you log into your account:

    Consumer Global Plus ONE
    $50.00/mo
    Global Plus helps take the guesswork out of calling and data rates. You can easily keep in touch while traveling overseas and remain productive-accessing email, online documents, messages, maps, videos and voicemail-while relying on the steady stream of data that you’re accustomed to.
    You get the following while traveling in 210+ countries or destinations:

    • Unlimited high-speed data for your mobile device
    • Unlimited calling to and from your mobile device
    • Unlimited messaging to and from your mobile device
    • 5 GB of high-speed tethering.

    Speeds may vary by country. Visit t-mo.co/roamdetails to read important info about our roaming policy.

  22. So do we know if we can add or drop the plan month by month? I usually go overseas for 2 or three weeks at a time about twice a year. The daypass would cost more than the monthly fee if i can add/drop it as needed.

  23. @Alex, understood, but this new TMobile plan is pay $50 extra(!) for the 5gb regardless of whether you use that much data or not. Just gotta pay for what you use with Fi, so not exactly equivalent plans. Fi is still way cheaper. You weren’t making an argument, I know, but I wanted to state that… Not sure why anyone would see this as a good deal.

  24. Way too expensive. Also, how many of the countries have 5G service? Otherwise, consumers are paying for service they won’t receive.

  25. If this plan is like the current one but only faster, it is a non starter for travel nomads.
    Not for extended international use; you must reside in the U.S. and primary usage must occur on our U.S. network. Device must register on our U.S. network before international use. Service may be terminated or restricted for excessive roaming.
    I had considered Tmobile but do not want to risk being kicked off. I use surfroam.com’ SIM and for longer stays, buy a local sim card which gives the benefit of a local number.

  26. I know Fi uses T-mobile as one of its networks in the US. Does anybody know if international coverage and data speed would be different on T-mobile Global Plus ONE vs. Fi?

  27. I’ve been in Mexico for 3 months and they have already sent me the “love letter” notifiying that the cut off date is around the end of Nov if I continue to roam outside the USA. Once the plan is unveiled, I will call them to see what the deal is and let you know. But since I don’t have any international travel planned besides enjoying Mexico until the spring, might be easier just to switch as already planned to port my US # over to Telcel USA (us.telcel.com) which gives unlimited LTE for me here for only $60/mo (the only problem there is no tethering is allowed) otherwise it works fantastic since Telcel is the major carrier here.

  28. I just signed up for TMo Global One Plus. It’s an add on, so my existing One Plus was subtracted, so the net gain is just $40 per month. Best of all, I can subtract and add it as needed when I travel as long as I sign up now during the limited time offer period. Beyond the data benefits, voice is now free to just about anywhere in the world – no more 25 cents per minute charges back to the USA or calls within the countries that I visit and work.
    Thanks Lucky!

  29. @Sean If your mobile data charges are not expensed consider getting a local SIM in Indonesia. Data is very cheap, <$1/GB. You can get 10GB packages good for a month prepaid for ~$6-7.

  30. @Kyle:
    The $80/month is from Google’s own website. Go look for yourself. Click the “Plan” menu item, then scroll down part way and they list the $80/month. Granted, that’s *assuming* that you’re using 6 GB of data (or more). But, as you point out, Fi is charged for what you use. Also, the 5 GB you reference in your later post is for *tethering*. I believe anyone with Tmobile One right now already gets 5 GB tethering included in the plan.

    @SSSS:
    Where are you seeing that T-Mobile is advertising 5G? There’s 5 GB tethering limit that they list.

    For us iPhone users, we’re stuck to T-Mobiles network anyway on Fi (and tethering won’t work), in which case, I’d say just stick with T-Mobile or get a local SIM card (if you don’t mind having a new number). Although I don’t have an iPhoneX, I think it has dual-SIM capability.

  31. I personally use a Google voice number as my US number since it is not dependent upon the SIM card. When I get a local SIM, I then have both a local number and the same US number.

  32. A couple of things

    1. If you have a family plan with more than 3 lines, I think T-Mobile is much better than Project Fi.

    2. If you are grandfathered into Kickback and have elderly parents on your family plan then the saving is even better.

    3. Global Plus is NOT available if you have Amplified which kind of sucks.

  33. SO many good replies and information here. My one concern is anyone knows or is reading these updates.

    Ben states this is free calling between other Unlimited free Simple Global to Simple Global calling. Others state it is unlimited calling to almost anywhere and even in the country you are in. I have this with AT&T automatically for $10.00 a day. I am out of the country sometimes freqently 10 + days at a time. The AT&T plan has saved me a bunch but Tmobile may have better coverage. I had a Tmobile plan but the 256 speeds were too restrictive.,

  34. I have had 2 lines on Tmo and now on Fi, have been outside the US for 3 years on my line and the other line has been 2years outside the US. Come to US only 3-4weeks out of the year. Both heavy users across many countries and never got the warning letter from either provider.

    While Tmo got worse with its slow service, the frustrating thing about Fi is that it is for me on the Moto X4 very unreliable when it comes to data connectivity in the US and voice service abroad. In the US I have to constantly do the manual network selection to get data connectivity, and abroad I hardly get phone calls coming through on the handset and instead am always answering via hangouts on my other devices. Google still needs to work on its reliability, but the billing setup and data flexibility make it tolerable for now.

    @mjonis

    What do you mean that with Fi on iphone you cannot tether? I believe the limitation is that when using a data only sim outside the US then you cannot tether, but the primary sim is always able to tether. Will have to do some testing to figure out your comment.

  35. Lucky, how about an article on using the iphone with dual SIM. Typical questions:
    – Can main service, ie TMO be setup on the eSIM so one can just switch the physical SIM based on location?

    From what I understand this would allow TMO for most services internationally but you can setup one of the SIMs for data only which would be a way to get a physical data SIM in the location you travel to for handling the DATA at reasonable rates.

  36. BTW – Just finished a trip to Germany for two weeks and was advised by a number of cell phone providers that I could not get an account without and EU passport. I was able to buy a Starter Kit at Aldi for AldiTalk. If you do this and plan to use ANY data then buy the additonal data and add it immediately. Starter Kit is $12 and added another 5GB for $20. These are monthly plans. If you roam you will use the data on your Starter SIM and it will be gone in minutes…I used most of my account just running a speed test on the Starter Kit when I first got it.

    WARNING- You better speak German or have a tech savy German helper. Nothing is in English, it is poorly written (3 separate German helpers could not figure out most of what to do), and you will need to setup with a video conference call, with your passport which they will scan and then do a visual comparison with you holding the passport by your face! Then, a few hours later, your account will be activated. Adding money or data to your account requires purchasing an “AldiTalk Giftcard” at an Aldi store and then using the codes on the phone to add the card. If you phone has no money left you will not be able to add money…

    TMO plan seems like to is a good option even though it cost twice as much as AldiTalk but at the same time you heart will last longer!

  37. Project Fi is now Google Fi, it is going mainstream. In the past 18 months I’ve used it in Japan, Argentina, Uruguay Canada, and Spain. I pay an average of about $40 per month which is base of $20 + 2gb @$10 each. In each country it just works. I never worry about calls or data. It is good and cheap. You juat burn more data as y use it, and only pay for what you use I use Google maps when driving and navigating cities. They cap data at $60! I will never go back.

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