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My son is stationed in Sasebo.  He has a Softbank phone.  We put his AT&T phone on military hold while he is overseas.  He will be coming home on leave in May.  He said his friend said he can use his Japan phone while home since it works off of Verizon or Sprint towers, (can't remember which one).  I think that's not right because it would still be a Japan phone number so any texts or calls he makes or we make to him would be going to an international number so would cost a lot.  Am I wrong?  I can reactivate his AT&T phone, which I think is what I should do, but if Softbank will work and not cost a fortune I wouldn't have to.  Any one have any experience with this?  Thanks

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I think it would be charged as international rates.  

No first hand experience yet but since this will come up for me as well, I did a bit of searching and found this:

There does seem to be an option for iphones (6 anyway) to have some free/reasonable priced option for using phone with Sprint networks within the US. If he has one of those, he may be correct. However, while it may not cost him any extra to get calls and use data  don't know what cost there is for anyone trying to reach him via his Japan mobile number.

There is also a warning on that page that says: "Any use of SoftBank service outside Japan, may result in Global Roaming fees being charged, creating an extremely high bill which you are required to pay. For more information concerning Global Roaming Service, click 'See more'."

Here is the "see more" link's page:

I would be happy to hear what you learn and if you reactivate his ATT line for his visit how easy it was to activate/resuspend.

Hello Momof2.  Your post just reminded me of all the challenges/nightmares we first faced when my Sailor arrived in Japan.  She arrived and called home several times, and that first bill was over $700!  I could not believe it.  She had Verizon wireless and each month the bill exceeded $400 and we weren’t even talking that much.  After much research, I found that T-mobile has the best plan for international calling.  We switched to T-mobile One family plan, with international for her and stateside for me.  We now have 3 lines, unlimited talk (FaceTime is free while calls cost a little)  and unlimited text and data...and we pay a total of 209.00 for everything.  Her phone is good in Japan and in the US with no surprise fees or costs.  We initially considered SoftBank but T-mobile is exactly what we need.

I often wondered what the other Sailors were using as I just could not believe the horrible options that Verizon offered.  Please check into T-mobile also get the free subscription to Netflix which my Sailor is also able to use while on base.

Hope this helps.  Best wishes to you and your Sailor!

Does anyone have a Sailor in Yokosuka? I would love to hear from you. My son is a Damage Controlman. 

Interesting story.  I sent him a package on April 4th to his FPO AP address.  It went to FPO AE which is Djibouti, which is on the Horn of Africa and then back to Chicago and then back to Japan. He finally received it. (I hope according ti the post office tracking site.)  Has this happened to anyone else?

Yes I do! My son is a CTR on the USS McCampbell. He just got there last week. Any tips for me for communicating with them from the US?

His phone from Japan will probably not work, and if it does I would guess it would be an international call. I am not sure how AT&T works, but I am sure with their military suspension it would be easy to reactivate, and then again suspend.

I know with Verizon my sons phone was put on military suspension and reactivated several times. It was as easy as a phone call or doing it on the website.


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