Monthly cell phone plans without a contract - Germany

Some recommendations

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Chris W
I finally had to dispose of my 2 year old phone which has been with me through several countries, unlocked. The ringer stopped working so I was hardly using the phone...

But I bought a brand new Sony Ericsson w550i with all the gadgets. Needless to say, I just started using my phone a lot more often. This T-Mobile Xtra bullcrap (prepaid) isn't getting me very far and I'm just dying to be able to use GPRS without paying so much for it right now as I do on T-Mobile Xtra. I'd like to use my phone as a phone for once without the endless text messaging.

Are there ANY service providers that will let me have a monthly plan WITHOUT a contract? I'm not staying in Germany forever and I know I'm heading back to Canada sometime.. I can't seem to find anything myself, but they just must exist! Plans without contracts! I've already got a phone, so why would they need me to sign a contract, not having the cover the cost of the phone.

Any ideas or suggestions! Please!
(btw. T-Mobile and E-Plus coverage is very good in Berlin.. the others can't be too far off).
BobTheBuilder
try this link for comments on O2's month-by-month plan.
Gen
I'm at http://simyo.de. Weil einfach einfach einfach ist. 16cent per minute in all networks. Might be what you need.
buddha
New question, and this seemed to be the best place to put it.

I'll be moving to Germany in about a month and I'm trying to figure out the best rates I can get.

A have a few questions to ask, I guess.

1. Can I use any unlocked GSM Tri-band phone in Germany on any network?

2. I'm used to the US style family plan with unlimited mobile to mobile and many free minutes a month. Just curious if I were to estimate my usage at 100 min/ month per phone (2 total phones) would pre-paid be the best way to go, or woudl something like the O2 3 month contract be a better deal?

3. Are there laws about cell phone usage in a car? On my short trips over there it seems everyone has a hands free kit in their car. I assumed this is a requirement, is that a correct assumption?

Any other advice you could provide for a newcomer would be greatly appreciated. I've never used SMS, but might have to get used to it based on the per minute charges I see for phones in general in DE.

Thanks
knusper_muesli
1. Can I use any unlocked GSM Tri-band phone in Germany on any network?

2. I'm used to the US style family plan with unlimited mobile to mobile and many free minutes a month. Just curious if I were to estimate my usage at 100 min/ month per phone (2 total phones) would pre-paid be the best way to go, or woudl something like the O2 3 month contract be a better deal?

3. Are there laws about cell phone usage in a car? On my short trips over there it seems everyone has a hands free kit in their car. I assumed this is a requirement, is that a correct assumption?

Any other advice you could provide for a newcomer would be greatly appreciated. I've never used SMS, but might have to get used to it based on the per minute charges I see for phones in general in DE.

Thanks
1. Yes

2. Forget that you ever had access to such a wealth of free minutes. Doesn't exist here. I'm assuming that you have 2 phones because one belongs to your partner, right? In that case the O2 Genion Duo gives you cheaper rates to the other phone. Could be worth it. Some players in the market are coming out with included minute plans, but they are pretty horrible and very expensive. One that you might want to check out is BASE, which supposedly gives you a "Handy Flatrate" for €25 a month. This is a flat-rate to landlines and to BASE, Simyo and E-Plus customers (BASE & Simyo are marketing schemes of E-Plus). I have never heard good things about E-Plus service though, but maybe someone can correct me who actually has E-Plus. Of course don't forget that if you want to call someone who isn't on the E-Plus network, you'll be paying the per-minute fees.
BASE info

3. As far as I know you are not allowed to talk on the phone without a handsfree while driving, meaning that there is a fine if they catch you.
YorkshireLad6
SMSing is false economy. Most SMS services costs 15-20 cents for 160 characters. With phone plans from 9cents a minute, you can say a lot more (in a duplex conversation) in a minute than any SMS message.

Actually using (i.e. handling) a mobile phone while driving (or even having the engine running) is considered dangerous driving and subject to a €40 fine and one point on your license. If your car does not have hands-free installed you can get Bluetooth headsets for many phones costing from around €50 which have auto-answer and voice-dial so you rarely need to touch your phone while underway.

Don't forget you don't pay for incoming calls to your cellphone while in you home country. The caller pays 100% cost of the call (and it's not cheap, either, in fact landline-cell usually costs more than cell-cell)...

YL6
BananaJoe
I am with simply. 18 c/min. thats it. all time . no start costs, nothing else.
knusper_muesli
I can beat that...

Simyo - 16c/minute and 11c/sms
YorkshireLad6
Ooh!, goody! a challenge!

Simply Prepaid - 14cents/minute, 11cents/SMS, free calls to other Simply users.
Spookyfella
Good one from T-Mobile, although it costs 39c / min, for €1.50 per month, you get the second minute onwards free per call (but they do cut the connection after 2 hours!!! ) in the T-mobile group of companies.

I think, and please check first, that this is a "special" deal until end of Jan 2006, ask at Genesis Systems (One of TT advertisers)
buddha
Ooh!, goody! a challenge!

Simply Prepaid - 14cents/minute, 11cents/SMS, free calls to other Simply users.
OK, I'm here and I've tried sigining up for the Simply prepaid plan but I ran into a problem.. It requires a german passport number to enter on the web page. Does anyone actually have this service right now, or know of a way to get around this? I manage to find an english speaker from simply and he gave me an equvalent product to the simply postpaid plan (called Sim4you or something) but the rates aren't as good as with the prepaid one.. I encountered the same problem when visiting the simyo page. seems they all require a German passport. Or am I missing something.. I'm still new at this, so I could easily be missing the obvious..

Thanks for your help.
Yeti
The passport number is required because they want to be able to trace the owner of the card, in case you start recording cats yowling with your phone and make a million without paying the cats any royalties or whatever.

If you buy the card in a shop you can present your own passport. You could also try entering your passport number on the website but I have no idea if that wiill work.
Darkknight
or you can look here

Link-1
Link-2
PES
It requires a german passport number to enter on the web page. Does anyone actually have this service right now, or know of a way to get around this?
I just purchased a prepaid card from Aldi (15 cents a minute/15 cents a SMS) and it required no ID. It was easy as pie.
kit
PES, did you have to sign up ahead of time? Where do you get the new SIM from? I ass-ume this works with any unlocked phone?

danke.
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