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Personal Capital – Track your investments, bank accounts, credit cards, and net worth. I use the website most days.
Republic Wireless: My wife spends about $15 a month on cell phone service. And calls on wifi are free worldwide (also works well in hospital basements where the wifi signal bests the cell phone signal).
Why? There are two main reasons.
First, Republic relies on one network (Sprint), and they don’t have the best service in some of the rural areas we travel through. Google Fi uses four different networks (Sprint, T-Mobile, and U.S. Cellular, and Three) and switches among them to offer the best service available where you are at any moment.
Both offer unlimited calling and text for a very low price ($15 to $20 a month). Republic offers data at $5 per GB, and Google Fi charges $10 per GB. Both preferentially use Wi-Fi for data, calls, and text when Wi-Fi service is available, so data charges tend to be low as long as you’re not away from home or work a lot.
That’s where the second reason comes in. Soon, we plan to be away from home and work a lot. Google Fi gives you data service at that same $10 per GB in over 170 countries (see list) without having to hunt down a sim card or purchase a new plan. The phone just works in most countries around the world. Note that outgoing calls on international wireless networks are not free — that will cost 20 cents per minute, but texts are included.
I haven’t used the service internationally yet, but I’ll have a chance to do so this spring, and I’ll let you know how that goes.
Google Fi recently opened up the service to bringing your own phone to the plan, including iPhones. You can check for phone compatibility here.
With their bill protection, you won’t pay more than $60 for data as an individual. Data will be slowed to 256kbps once you’ve used up 6 GB, but the data is free after that. As a couple, the max data charge is $85 per month. When we’re traveling extensively, I may test those limits when tethering my laptop to the phone as a mobile hotspot.
AirBNB: Stay in someone’s treehouse, Airstream, apartment, or house. $40 off your first stay via this link.