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GoPhone SIM

GoPhone SIM

I will be traveling to the US (Geez, I wish it was as easy as the UK for getting prepaid mobile data)


Is it possible to buy a VERY cheap goPhone, but use the SIM in my unlocked Samsung Galaxy Phone?


What other choice do I have, can I just buy a SIM and put prepaid mobile data on it???


I'm confused at why mobile companies in the US are so hesatant to make a buck off a tourist!  Beyond my logic.



Message 1 of 9
ACE - Professor

Re: GoPhone SIM

    Yes,you can buy a Very cheap gophone (appx. US$20+Tax) from Walmart,active the SIM yourself and use in your unlocked Samsung Galaxy Phone.Please check with VodafoneUK,O2, 3UK ,Orange,Virgin Media etc etc to see if your Samsung got Quad band GSM 850/900/1800/1900 Quad band UMTS 850/900/1900/2100.

 Sorry, the cheap gophone you got would not work in UK.


You can also buy a SIM at any AT&T store and get start from there.......just like back home in UK Smiley Wink Cheers.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 2 of 9
Accepted by topic author
Accepted by merrickville
‎09-30-2015 1:39 AM

[Solved] Re: GoPhone SIM

This posting is about my successful experience obtaining an AT&T SIM card for my unlocked Android Phone.

It's also about the AT&T serviced called "Prepaid" goPhones" and not the actual phones you can get from AT&T, nor is it about the other option called a "post paid" goPhone.

Here is how to get an AT&T SIM Card for your unlocked Android phone while visiting in the US.

Caveat: This "may" work with an iPhone, but (from what I've read) you may need to adjust some settings on your iPhone like the APN URL's for gateways or the like.  I have a "Samsung Galaxy S GT-I9000M" sporting the DarkyROM ( JW1 Base ROM, rooted & unlocked. Good luck iPhone users, I understand some have had success with this.

I was visiting Ithaca, NY (12 Feb 2012), and went to the main AT&T store there.  Explained to the guy working there, that I'm a visitor and would like to be able to use data on AT&T with my unlocked Android phone.

This is what transpired with awesome results LOL:

- Obtained an AT&T SIM from the main store there (free of charge);
- Assigned a local 607-295-xxxx Ithaca phone number to the SIM;
- Declined adding any money for Talk & SMS (text) (you can do this later);
- Purchased 500MB data for $25.00 (+ NY state tax) (30 day expiration).

My account credit when I left the store:

  $0 text
  $0 talk
  $25.00 data (500MB)

That weekend, I was able to surf and WiFi teather for my poor buddy who had a 'locked' iPhone, but we both were able to surf the internet and use email apps, What's APP etc..., while in Ithaca through my Android.  AWESOME.


I have no US credit, debit, nor bank accounts.

Side Note: when in the US, you can also just buy goPhone cards in many denominations from almost any store/drug mart, but if you know you will return again and you want to top-up from your home country before you travel (I.e., away from the US for more than 90 days, credits expired and such) this is a working method, proven to work from Canada.

Put simply, to top-up 'online', you need 'something' with a US ZIP code.  This must be some licensing thing in the US, but I don't know.

My solution:  a prepaid VISA Debit card (non refillable type).

There are refillable prepaid VISA Debit cards, but they require much personal information, us Postal Address and proof of that.  I've applied anyway, filling in the US address field my friends house address, but for proof of identity, I used my real name and Canadian Visa card (With a Canadian Address)  -- I'm still waiting to see if my application will be approved, a refillable VISA Debit card would be more handy for my purpose.  I'm not confident for this method to be approved, but what the heck, they can only so 'no', so why not try?

I got my VISA Debit card at Rite Aid drug store, with the logo on it, there were many others there, this just happens to be the one I blindly grabbed.

NB: Since these VISA DEBIT cards are NOT refillable, consider how much you'll need to put on it for your stay, or any future visits.  The cards have an 8 or 9 year expiry life span, so if you put $500.00 USD on there, you're probably set for a good amount of time!

Visa Debit Card in hand, I visited, read the 'dormancy' warnings, where your credit may be taxed now and then.

Registered it with a US ZIP code.  I used 14850 for Ithaca, since I was visiting there.

It was about 3 hours later when I decided to try and use my Visa DEBIT card outside of the US (from Canada actually).

Goto, use your new US Phone Number and PIN (last 4 digits of your phone number, then you'll be asked to change it)

From this point, you can add your DEBIT Visa to your account then buy data, airtime or texting credits/packages.

When adding the Visa Debit card, the form has *required fields for a US Postal address.  I put in the address of my friends house, but the important thing is, the ZIP code must match what you registered your Visa Debit with, this is their security feature I gather.

Once added.  It was a simple task of browsing the different packages and associated costs, adding them to your 'cart', then check out.

Since I had $0 for talk/text, put on $15.00 for talk/text from the Visa Debit card, and I was instantly approved and my goPhone account accredited.  Then from my Canadian home, with my US AT&T SIM card in my phone, send an SMS to my buddies in the US, charged $0.25 per text, and got a reply.

Each transaction on your non refillable Visa Debit card does cost, so be aware of that.


Hope this helps someone else.


Message 3 of 9
ACE - Professor

Re: [Solved] Re: GoPhone SIM

Hi merrickville,  Woops,I don't know you're Canadian like myself .Smiley Very Happy


 By the way, if you have a Canadian Paypal account,you don't need to go over that refill online with a US Visa/Mastercard debit card.Unless you are only using data in USA (eg.Ipad).

There are lots of online store selling AT&T topup credit with good discount and no tax. You can always paid with Paypal.

A member in here suggest " Callingmart". I do try them and top up my account a few times already.Smiley LOL




*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 4 of 9

Re: [Solved] Re: GoPhone SIM

That's correct, Air-Time and Text's are easy to refill.  I'm only concerned about data, so the US Prepaid Visa is still the best route to date.


PS: I failed at getting a refillable Visa Debit card.  They required proof that I am a US citizen (I'm not) and that "I" lived at said address.

Message 5 of 9

Re: [Solved] Re: GoPhone SIM

Hi merrickville, if i need internet for my ipad just for one or two months, it is possible ? I know i need to go to AT&T store and sign on a contract ok but AT&T isnt clear about the plans, can you help me?
Message 6 of 9
ACE - Professor

Re: [Solved] Re: GoPhone SIM

Hi giuse,

Let me help you out. It is possible.
Go here

DataConnect Pass, this is what you need.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 7 of 9

Re: GoPhone SIM

I remember there was an optioni under the prepaid plan option called "BYOD" bring your own device and it should allow you to decide any phone you like to use without much barriers. 

Message 8 of 9

Re: GoPhone SIM

just got a go phone sim, it locked my european unlocked phone. now i canno use my old sim. Don't put one in your unlocked phone!

Message 9 of 9
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AT&T GoPhone is changing its name to AT&T PREPAID. New name - same great service, network and value!

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