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Travel & Tourism

This is how SIM cards can ruin your travel

smartphone

The following are two real stories of travelers who had stressful ends to their trips when they return home because of some unfortunate incidents.

Story from Singapore Airline

singapore-airline

Airline pilots and crews have a reputation that is usually associated with being friendly and helpful. They are also known for smiling and being approachable.

But it is not every day that a member of an airline crew is actually willing to wreck an important part of an airplane, in active duty, to help a passenger in a stressful situation.

This is an actual story from Singapore Airline. A passenger dropped his SIM card, unintentionally, into a tiny gap in the seat of the plane he boarded.

The name of the passenger is Gary Leung who was on Flight SQ860 from London to Honk Kong. Leung was trying to switch his SIM card when he lost a grip of the Nano SIM and it fell off.

The passenger asked the cabin crew for assistance and he got an unexpected help from Chief Steward Foo Wen Huee. Apparently, Leung tried to reach for it but the gap was simply too small. Foo came along with a DIY device made in the pantry of the plane that was tapped together with what appears to be first aids plasters, literally. Foo, in full uniform – as Leung described, began what seems to look like a fishing expedition to get that little SIM out.

After several attempts, taking quite a bit of time, the SIM couldn’t be retrieved. Foo then contacted the ground engineers for some help. An engineer got on board and decided to dismantle the seat with Foo and continued to look for the SIM card.

Unfortunately, it was never found.

Leung talked about the incident on social media. He was thankful for the exceptional assistance and effort made by Foo and the engineer.

He wrote a long letter of appreciation for Foo and others who helped him.

This kind of exemplary effort gives us hope.

Wet SIM in Egypt       

Sharm el Shikh, Egypt
Sharm el Shikh, Egypt

This issue can happen to anyone of us, especially those of us who are frequent travelers. Some of us have several SIM cards. We have to change the cards every time we get to a different destination. Sometimes we will misplace one or two, other times a SIM card can break, and of course a SIM can get damaged.

A friend of ours, Rafid, traveled to the Middle East from Australia and spent some time on the beach in Egypt. His SIM card got wet and was unfortunately damaged. He was using an Egyptian SIM and when he left Egypt heading home, his home SIM was no good there. He needed to use the SIM, he liked his number and he didn’t want to get a new one. He also couldn’t get a replacement SIM with the same number in the airport at home.

Unfortunately, our friend didn’t have the kind of help the passenger on board Singapore Airline got. He had to get a new SIM temporarily just to contact his family and inform them that he landed safely and used it to get his ride sorted.

Eventually, Rafid got his number back but it took him some time and he had to go to his provider’s service center.

This doesn’t have to be the case for you

Image from Man of Many
Image from Man of Many

We usually get this response when we talk about Flexiroam: Why should I pay for this when I can just use a local SIM. We also get this response: What makes your service so special and why should I pay for it?

We do understand that travelers have many solutions out there to get their communications problems abroad sorted.

However, we continue to observe more of these tedious problems. Stories like the two above happen more often than you think, maybe not in this fashion. Additionally a unifying solution can be a complex technological feat that would be expensive due to development cost, for now.

Additionally, study after study show that many travelers don’t rely on direct phone calls as often because the internet gives them an excellent alternative. With the right package of data, they can get their communications done by:

  • Making VOIP calls,
  • Sending messages,
  • Going on their social media accounts,
  • Using Skype,
  • Using WhatsApp and similar app
  • Emails and many other options

Flexiroam X powers up your existing SIM card where you don’t have to take it out every time you are somewhere else, get your data at flat rates instead of expensive roaming and keep your number.


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