ATLANTA, Dec. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Many Americans will hit the roads, the waves and the sky this holiday season to spend time with loved ones or simply to enjoy a nice vacation break. For those travelers looking for an international holiday getaway, Cingular Wireless knows that the wireless phone is the top communication choice for Americans who need (or want) to stay connected when traveling abroad. More than one in four Americans use their cell phone service when traveling abroad and half said they are likely to use their cell phone when making their next international trip, according to a Cingular survey on international travel conducted by ICR (International Communications Research). Sixty-four percent of traveling respondents prefer traditional wireless service as their top choice of communication because of its ease and convenience, easy access for others and peace of mind in case of emergency. Although the majority of Cingular survey respondents preferred communicating via wireless phone over other choices in the survey such as stationary, postcards or using a laptop computer, many still did not know how to use their wireless service abroad. "More and more consumers want to stay connected when they are vacationing near home or abroad," said William Hague, executive vice president, International Roaming Operations for Cingular Wireless. "Many travelers don't realize just how easy it is to use their U.S. wireless service out of the country. Because Cingular operates on a GSM network, the most commonly used wireless platform worldwide, our customers benefit from the ease of use and seamless transition when traveling from one country to the next." Cingular Wireless' International Roaming features voice service in over 185 countries and data service in over 120 countries. Cingular customers can also keep in touch with folks back home by sending text and multimedia messages, which comes in handy with time zone differences. The Caribbean is a popular destination year round, but particularly during the chilly winter months. With Cingular World Traveler for only $5.99 a month, customers can enjoy great roaming rates in several Caribbean countries: - $1.69 per minute in Aruba, Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, St. Maarten and St. Lucia - $1.99 per minute in Antigua, Bahamas and British Virgin Islands In a separate survey conducted recently by American Express, whereby 402 of their travel agents were surveyed to identify patterns in travel plans for the upcoming holiday travel season, it was revealed that about two-thirds of those responding said the week between Christmas Day and New Year's Day will be the busiest for travel this year.* Cruise ship travel is also a holiday favorite for many consumers, especially families who take advantage of the time off. Cingular offers cruise ship roaming for only $2.49 per minute on Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruises, Regent Seven Seas, and Island Cruises among others. Cingular World packages allow customers to: - Receive phone calls around the world when someone dials their local wireless phone number - Stay connected to e-mail worldwide, using laptop or portable data devices, just like at home - Avoid unfamiliar pay phones or expensive hotel rates - Get unlimited e-mail at home and abroad with Blackberry device "In addition to competitive wireless calling packages, Cingular also offers the largest selection of quad-band devices -- more than any other U.S. wireless carrier, which allows our customers to roam virtually anywhere using their same phone and phone number," said David Christopher, vice president, Product Management, Cingular Wireless. "For business travelers, we also recently introduced the Cingular 8525 Pocket PC, the first UMTS/HSDPA-enabled PDA in North America. Now our customers can enjoy wireless broadband connectivity in North America as well as in dozens of countries abroad, including Japan and South Korea." Cingular offers consumers the following four travel tips for their cell phone abroad: 1. Make sure your cellular service provider has roaming available in the country you are visiting. This information is usually posted on their Web site. 2. Make sure your phone is a "world" phone that can operate outside North America. For the best international coverage, choose a "quad band" world phone that operates on 850/1900 (North American) and 900/1800 (most other countries) frequencies. 3. Check with your service provider to be sure international roaming service has been enabled on your account. Typically, an additional feature must be activated by your service provider. This can usually be done at no additional charge, unless you choose a discount package. 4. Learn how to make calls when using your cellular service in another country. Using GSM service, you can place calls from any country without knowing the international access code. Simply dial "+", followed by the country code, then the number (the U.S. country code is "1"). So, for example, to call home from France, dial: +1(area code)(number). In most GSM devices, holding down the 0 key will cause the + sign to appear. For more information on Cingular World, visit http://www.cingularworld.com . Cingular Survey Methodology: The survey was conducted during July 20-24, 2006 and surveyed 1,071 adults ages 18+ with wireless service. The margin of error for this sample is plus or minus three percentage points. *American Express Holiday Poll results were obtained from press release dated Nov. 17, 2006 and is posted on http://www.americanexpress.com . About Cingular Wireless Cingular Wireless is the largest wireless carrier in the United States, serving 58.7 million customers. Cingular, a joint venture between AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) and BellSouth Corporation (NYSE: BLS), has the largest digital voice and data network in the nation -- the ALLOVER(TM) network -- and the largest mobile-to-mobile community of any national wireless carrier. Cingular is a leader in third generation wireless technology. Its 3G network is the first widely available service in the world to use HSDPA (High Speed Downlink Packet Access) technology. Cingular is the only U.S. wireless carrier to offer Rollover(r), the wireless plan that lets customers keep their unused monthly minutes. Details of the company are available at http://www.cingular.com/. Get Cingular Wireless press releases emailed to you automatically. Sign up at http://cingular.mediaroom.com/.
SOURCE Cingular Wireless