I have written extensively about my switch to T-Mobile from Sprint. I’ve mostly been a happy Sprint customer and may not have switched had it not been for the fact that Sprint no longer offers 2 year contracts. Meanwhile, T-Mobile kept upping its offerings and I finally switched with its 4 lines for $120 promotion. T-Mobile and Sprint are alike in many ways, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they end up merging down the line. They both offer unlimited plans. While T-Mobile excels at its marketing of its unlimited data and texting plan at over 140+ countries, people may not be aware that Sprint offers a similar plan.
Sprint Shines with its $5 add-on for Japan
I was still with Sprint when I visited Japan for the first time last summer. With a game plan for my data and calling needs, I purchased two 5GB 4G Japan Visitor Prepaid data SIM. However, I was really counting on trying out Sprint’s $5 Japan plan for unlimited data/text and talk.
Are You Eligible for the Add-On?
- Offer end date: The promotional material indicates an end date of 2015. It is still a valid offer.
- Eligible plan: I wasn’t sure if I was on an eligible plan (“corporate-liable” CL) when I had personal lines. Apparently, personal lines are eligible as well. This was easy enough to verify using Sprint’s chat option. I wasn’t able to add the Japan add-on myself in the account management area, though I saw the option after it’s been enabled by the representative for all lines in my family plan.
- Activation T&C: The offer states that the offer must remain active for a “full month after activating”. I was in Japan for about a week. When I tried to cancel 30 days later from time of activation (as the term indicated), the rep said she can’t cancel it — unless I want to retroactively cancel to include the past travel dates. Worried about getting a sky-high bill if this isn’t set up correctly, I asked her not to remove it and kept it for another billing cycle. I didn’t risk it to find out. Even with 2 billing cycle’s worth of add-on ($10), it was still the cheaper option.
- Connecting to Right Network: There is also a specific term that you need to set your device to GSM/UMT network. You’ll know you connected to the right carrier in Japan when you see “Softbank” as the carrier. I’ve consistently gotten reliable 3G coverage once I connected to Softbank in Japan.
Being the curious person that I am, I logged into my Sprint account to check on my data usage while I was in Japan. One thing that alarmed me was that there was a less than reassuring alert:
Fortunately, the bill worked out in the end. We were not charged extra. We were billed $5 per line for 2 billing cycles.
I am really glad I got to try out Sprint’s $5 Japan add-on. It was the best out of all of the options I was considering at the time. If you have Sprint as a phone carrier and you are planning to travel to Japan, you’re in luck. Sprint’s $5 Japan add-on might just be what you are looking for.