Computers & Technology
You can bring a laptop with you to Prague. However, please be advised that Kolej Komenského does not offer wireless service. You will need to connect to the Internet via Ethernet cable. Please remember to bring one with you. You will only be abe to connect to the Internet in your room. A memory stick may also be helpful if you want to print out a document from an Internet café. Wi-fi spots run throughout the city, but none close to the residence hall.
Cell Phone Use In Europe
You can purchase an inexpensive phone in Europe from a local provider. Just make sure the phone works in all countries you plan to visit, not just in the country where you purchased the phone. Consider purchasing a phone for emergency use only and put $25 worth of minutes on it. Currently three mobile telephone network operators function in the Czech Republic: O2, T-Mobile, and Vodafone. For using a mobile telephone in the Czech Republic, it is advantageous to use prepaid cards, which are cheaper than in West European countries. You should also ensure the phone you buy is sim-lock free. Most new phones purchased in the United States include GSM technology, but still may not accept a SIM card, the chip that activates local service from other companies, and the roaming charges can be prohibitive.
Some European providers you may want to check out:
Will My Current Cell Phone Work in Europe?
Three conditions you need to check on:
- Your mobile phone must be GSM. If your mobile phone is not GSM, it isn’t going to work anywhere in Europe.
- Your mobile phone needs to be tri-band or quad band. If it isn’t tri-band or quad band, it won’t work anywhere in Europe.
- Make sure your phone accepts a European SIM card. Speak to your current phone company and see if they know which European SIM cards will work in your handset. You’ll need to swap your current SIM card (it&rsqup;s inside the phone, usually behind the battery) for the new one. Once you stop traveling, you can switch it back. Most new phones purchased in the United States include GSM technology, but still may not accept a SIM card, the chip that activates local service from other companies, and the roaming charges can be prohibitive.
Unless your home cell phone meets all three conditions, it won’t work in Europe. You and your family should discuss which option works best for you.
If you decide to bring your phone from home:
To reduce or eliminate expensive roaming charges you can suspend service while you are overseas and reactivate it when you return home. This disables all services except for emergency calls and calls to customer service. You will still be able to play music, games, use apps, etc. and when you are in a wireless hotspot you can use Skype, Facetime, check emails, etc. You will not be able to use your phone for calls (unless you decide to unlock your phone and purchase a SIM card in Europe). Please contact your mobile service provider for more details.
Important Telephone Numbers (toll-free)
- Emergency 112
- Ambulance 155
- Police 158
- Fire Department 150
- Metropolitan Police 156
- Information on telephone numbers within the Czech Republic 1180
- Information on international telephone numbers 1181
Participants will need an adapter for any dual voltage electrical equipment they bring. We don't recommend bringing electrical equipment without dual voltage because you will have trouble with a converter. Better to buy your small electrics in the Czech Republic.
- A small adapter with two round pins can be used everywhere in Europe, except England and Ireland.
- A larger, three-pronged adapter is necessary in Great Britain.
- For Mac users: There is an Apple World Traveler Adapter Kit that can be purchased at an Apple store. Other adapters do not work well with a Mac. The Wonpro Travel Adaptor is very good. The Kensington Travel Adaptor does not work, so do not purchase one from that company.
Read these facts about electricity in Europe.
Voltage Converters are not your friend. Best to buy your small electric items in Europe. If the only piece of equipment you plan on packing is a hair dryer, make sure it is dual voltage and has a built-in converter.