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  1. #1
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    I just placed an order for my Apple iPAD. Traveling to to Venice/ Lucca and the Lakes in early July. I asked about using the iPAD 3g service in Italy when I placed the order at the Apple store. They indicated the best approach would be to purchase a pre-aid Micro Sim card when we land in Italy. I guess you just slide it into the port where the ATT Micro Sim Card resides (need to keep that in a safe place). The clerk mentioned Vodaphone as a larger vendor in Italy.

    Question:

    Has anyone ever done this before with an iPAD? How does it work? I do not have an Italian phone no#. Can I still purchase this Micro Sim Card?

    Second, we are starting out in Venice so any help on a location that would sell these micro sim cards would be grateful. We're staying around the Piazza San Marco.

  2. #2
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    Bob, I am Interested in how this works for you. There has been a discussion about this in the technology section. You might want to check that out. If you are wanting to download pictures on your trip, be sure to order the camera connection ASAP. It is taking quite a while to get them. I ordered mine 3 weeks ago but it won't be delivered until June 17. If you use a Sony camera,you will need an additional gadget.

    I'm doing this right now on my iPad--love it!

  3. #3


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    I posted a link in a different thread to the Vodafone and the other provider [wind I guess. It's not TIM] IPAD plans.

    Other then picking your plan it should be no different then buying a normal Italian SIM.

  4. #4


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    If you consider that iPad went on sale in Italy only last week, it could be difficult to find some local experience.

    If a normal GSM SIM with a data plan is good, I suggest having a look to the WIND offer where you can find a couple of interesting data plans (50 hours/month for 9 euro, 100 hours/month for 15 euro, and the first three months often get a 50% discount).
    Luca Logi aka itarchivarius

  5. #5


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    Luca the problem is it doesn't use a normal SIM. They will need to find a shop with the microSIM. I wonder if they'll sell one without one of the IPAD plans.

    The normal plans all seem better to me then the IPAD plans but they'll need that MicroSIM first.

  6. #6


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    I understand not all providers will sell microSIMs and they could well sell them only with expensive plans.

    However, I have seen a web site on making a micro sim on your own by cutting a standard SIM:

    http://www.theapplelounge.com/...ai-da-te/#more-36185
    Luca Logi aka itarchivarius

  7. #7
    I noticed somewhere on the web that I may need to have a "codice fiscale". Not sure I understand what this is but I think it may be the US version of a Social Security No#.

    After reading so other posts, it sounds like TRE is offering a Micro Sim card. Here's a link in Italian.

    On this page on tre site you can check the store have a usim near to you:
    http://areaclienti.tre.it/ac3_pages/18455_ITA_HTML.htm

    I wonder if I can just buy a Micros SIM card without an Italian version of a SS# or Cell Phone #?

  8. #8


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    Usually if you show your passport they'll photocopy that and use it to generate a CF number for you.

  9. #9
    Just saw this post online about buying the Micro SIM Card for the iPAD 3G:

    "Go to a 3store (h3g, aka Tre Italia) and ask for a pre-paid microsim with Superinternet option (5 a month for 3gb, deactivable anytime)

    Not very good coverage in the countryside though. Good in the cities.

    Tim and Vodafone are more expensive (2 or 3 a week for 200mb or 500mb respectively).

    Does anyone know if there are these types of stores in Venice (h3g, aka Tre Italia)? We're flying into VCE. Is there a store in the airport??

  10. #10
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    3 definitely carries the micro sim for the iPad.

    But, I was under the impression that the American 3G model was locked and would not accept any other sim cards beside AT&T. Is this not the case? Or are you planning on jailbreaking your iPad?

    The Italian model is definitely not locked and any micro sim can be placed in it.
    Tony Polzer, Tour Operator
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  11. #11


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    Not locked. No contract either.

  12. #12
    It's definitely not locked. The guy at the Apple store actually used a paperclip to press the 3G SIM Card and it pops right out of the socket.

    I land in Venice (VCE) and will be spending 2 nights in the city. Does anyone know if there is a Tre kiosk at this airport? If not is there one in the city? Is there any sort of special requirement to purchase the SIM card??

  13. #13
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    It's only the iPhone that is locked, not the iPad.

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  14. #14


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    Originally posted by itarchivarius:
    If you consider that iPad went on sale in Italy only last week, it could be difficult to find some local experience.

    If a normal GSM SIM with a data plan is good, I suggest having a look to the WIND offer where you can find a couple of interesting data plans (50 hours/month for 9 euro, 100 hours/month for 15 euro, and the first three months often get a 50% discount).
    Yup, got this plan last month in Sestri Levante and used it in Liguria and Varenna.

    Basically, you pay 20 Euro and of that 5 Euro is for the SIM and 7.50 Euro is for their Mega 100 Ore plan, which gives you 100 hours of connection time per month.

    I used a USB 3G key though for a laptop, which requires using specialized software.

    Luckily found a mobile shop saleswoman who could speak some English.


    Oh and you can find coverage maps and a list of stores where the SIMs are sold at various sites for the providers.

    Here's a great overview of prepaid data in Italy, with links to coverage maps and where to buy. Also explains codice fiscale and has a link to where you can generate it. That's what I did a couple of years ago:

    http://www.prepaidgsm.net/en/italia/data_italy.html

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