Planning to Travel to Europe this Holiday Season? Check Out the Top 5 Christmas Markets

Christmas market, Deutscher Dom and konzerthaus in Berlin, Germany

The holiday season is a favorite time of year to travel for many people around the world, and we are convinced there’s no better way to celebrate the holiday season than a visit to Christmas Markets in Europe.

Thanks to the many Christmas Markets, towns in Europe look like scenes straight out of your favorite movie during this festive season. The snow-capped cathedrals, the wooden chalets, the different twinkling lights, and other street decorations are quite a sight to see. You also can’t miss the seasonal cookies and cakes that are on display in stores all around the town.

People from Europe undoubtedly know how to do Christmas in style, and if you are there during this period, be sure to check out the markets. They often open at the end of November, so we thought it wise to give you a headstart of the best Christmas markets.

Are you heading to Europe this season? Don’t leave before you check out these top 5 Christmas markets.

1. Berlin, Germany

If you are looking for a place to buy some trendy gifts, the artsy Berlin scene should be your first stop. The city gives a modern approach to a long-standing tradition in over 80 Christmas markets. The markets are open from November 25th through December 31st this year.

Covering the 80 markets won’t be easy, so here are a few tips. Spandau is the biggest, so there are plenty of activities to occupy your time. Weihnachtszauber, in Gendarmenmarkt Square, is the prettiest with the Charlottenburg Palace in the background. With the decorative fences and lights in the market, you are sure to enjoy a warm festive glow. Your toddler could even try some arts and crafts in the Fairy Tale Tent at Gendarmenmarkt. That’d make a great souvenir of your adventure!

Are you bringing your kids along? The winter forest, Winterland at Potsdamer Platz, is an excellent place for them. They could get free lessons at the ice-skating rink, head over to the small railway, or the air swing, which are just a few of the activities there.

2. Vienna, Austria

Are you looking to have some magical Christmas time with your family or spouse? Then you should head over to the Vienna Christmas markets.

From 15th November to 26th December, the beautiful squares in Vienna will transform into delightful Christmas markets.

Belvedere Palace will leave you in awe, thanks to the handmade gifts and the traditional wooden toys in the stores around.

The City Hall is home to Vienna’s Christmas Dream and is the ideal market if you are bringing your family along. The kids could have some time in the Ferris wheel or on the ground floor where they learn how to make Christmas candles.

Be sure to visit the market at Vienna’s old general hospital for some lovely Christmas gifts. Try out the traditional Gluhwein while there. You’ll love it.

3. Strasbourg, France

Strasbourg is also known as France’s Capital of Christmas, and it is clear why once you visit. Dating back to 1570, Strasbourg is one of the oldest Christmas markets in Europe and is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site.

Christmas Markets began in Strasbourg, so the historic center gives a magical feel. You can get some wooden Christmas decorations in the 300 traditional chalets lining the city’s central square.

The Strasbourg Cathedral is a sight to behold. The Gothic towers and the famous astronomical clock will make your visit worthwhile.

If you want some uninterrupted Christmas shopping, avoid the markets in the evenings and during the weekends. Try out the gingerbread bakery and other delicious treats that are available all around the markets.

Christmas in Strasbourg is a magical event. If you are ever in France anytime between 22nd November and 30th December, visit the place. If you are lucky, you could be part of a street parade.

4. Prague, Czech Republic

Prague’s Christmas markets run into January, so they are ideal for some after-Christmas shopping when there aren’t as many people. Open-air concerts, dance performances, and beautiful Christmas decorations in the streets give the city an unforgettable atmosphere.

The live animal stable scene at the Old Town Square is quite a sight. If you are bringing your kids, this will undoubtedly capture their imagination. The gingerbread cookies will also be a great treat for them.

You can try out some of the renowned Czech Beer from the stalls in the streets. There’s also plenty of mulled wine to go around, but why not mingle with the locals over a glass of grog? The drink, which is made of rum, water, lemon, and sugar, is a favorite for many around here.

If you want to catch the lights at the city’s marvelous Christmas tree, head over to Wenceslas Square at 5 o’clock every evening.

5. Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen boasts of several Christmas markets, but the heart of all the buzz in the city lies in Tivoli gardens. From November 16th to January 5th, the gardens will be lined with Christmas trees and decorations that bring the city to life. The markets create a cozy atmosphere for travelers and locals to enjoy a special time with their loved ones.

The mouth-watering aroma of roasted almonds and mulled wine in the streets will bring you joy as you walk through the markets. Be sure to have some before heading over to the ice rink. For the ultimate spectacle during your visit to Copenhagen, be sure to visit Kronpinsensgade and see the floating ceiling of Christmas lights.

If you need a break from all the festivities, you can head over to the Meatpacking district and spend some time in the bars, clubs, and restaurants.

Vacationing in Europe during this period can be exciting. But keeping in touch with your loved ones may be difficult because of expensive international roaming rates. OneSimCard offers several international SIM cards to help you stay connected abroad included a dedicated Europe SIM card with very low rates. Get your OneSimCard and get up to 85% lower charges.

Whether you are in Europe for just a few days or the entire holiday season, the Christmas markets are a must-see. Bring back your loved ones some souvenirs from the magical cities and get to experience Christmas in the European style!

International eSIM coming soon to eSIM enabled iPhones

Recently, we have been getting many requests for international eSIMs for eSIM enabled iPhones.

If you aren’t aware of this technology, eSIM is a short for embedded SIM, where SIM is an acronym for Subscriber Identity Module. So, an eSIM is an Embedded Subscriber Identity Module.

How is eSIM different from a regular SIM?

We all know what a SIM card is — the little thing that allows your phone to connect to the network. When you buy our SIM card, you pop out your SIM card, drop ours into the phone, and voila!—cellular service is up and running. That’s going to change with eSIM, because as the “embedded” part of the name suggests, this is actually built into the phone’s mainboard.

The eSIM we provide is simply a QR code that will act as a second SIM on your phone. At launch, we will be supporting only data connectivity on eSIM. It will be compatible with the following iPhone eSIM capable models:  iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR.

We expect to have eSIM launched and available for purchase in the next few weeks. Look for a separate communication that announces the launch!

Get to Know About These 5 Hidden Treasures of Spain

Home to over 8,000 kilometers of beaches and diverse cuisines that will make your mouth water, Spain is a great place to visit on vacation.

The European country is best known for its sandy beaches, and almost any tourist headed there wants to enjoy an afternoon in one of these beaches.

However, there’s more to Spain than just beaches and cuisine. The country is home to several hidden treasures that are sure to whet any traveler’s appetite.

If you are an enthusiastic traveler, Spain is undoubtedly on your bucket list. With 44 UNESCO world heritage sites, choosing where to start off can be a daunting task.

Well, here are 5 hidden gems to give you a headstart. So, pack your bags and head over to the country that boasts of the oldest restaurant in the world.

  1. Squeeze through the second narrowest building in the world located in Valencia
the second narrowest building in the world record

 

Did you know about the narrowest house in Europe? You will be amazed by how beautiful a 107-centimeter wide building can look.

Although just a facade today, this was once an apartment building which lies in the middle of Valencia in the Plaza Lope de Vega, in the central neighborhood of Santa Catalina. The interesting building is a little wider than a normal-sized door…if you are claustrophobic, please stay away!

The locals insist that a girl who lived in the building had to put her communion dress on outside of the building since she could not have fit through the door in while wearing it!!.

Make a point to explore this tiny building if you ever take a visit to Valencia.

2. See amazing ship structures in the Basque Maritime Museum in Donostia, San Sebastian

Image courtesy Basque Maritime Museum

San Sebastian is maybe best known for its foodie culture these days, but maybe you’ve had your fill of pintxos and 3-star Michelin restaurants??  If you are a maritime lover, then this is just the place you should make some time for when you are in San Sebastian.

Located in the port of San Sebastian, the Basque Maritime Museum (formerly Museo Naval) deals with ship history. It was used as a warehouse by sailors and merchants in the eighteenth century. After a period of renovations the museum re-opened in April 2019 with a new name (Basque Maritime Museum) and 3 floors of exhibition space.

The first and second floors pay tribute to temporary fisheries and naval exhibitions. The third floor hosts educational workshops and a library open to everyone where people can learn more about the naval history of the country.

One of the best exhibitions includes the San Juan Basque whaling ship that sank near the Canadian coast in 1565. An exact replica of the ship is currently being build in Albaola.

While passing by the museum, check out the San Sebastian aquarium, peek inside and you will be amazed by the naval history of the area.

3. Go shopping in the Mercado de la Ribera market in Bilbao

Night view of the Ribera market in the spanish city Bilbao

The ultimate shopping experience is waiting for you in the largest indoor market in Europe! The Mercado de la Ribera is a 10,000 square meter market located on the right bank of the Nervion River, next to Casco Viejo.

It was recognized in 1990 as the most complete municipal food market by the Guinness Book of Records. You can be assured of finding everything you need in here.

Besides the wide array of products you can find in the market, you will be glad to discover the restaurants, bars, and gastro bars.

Looking for a food shopping experience? Visit the Mercado de la Ribera whenever in Bilbao and enjoy some shrimp over good jazz.

4. Enjoy a quiet walk on the sand in Aguas Blancas Beach, Ibiza

Tired of the hassle of Ibiza town and craving a quiet getaway without worries of noisy surroundings? Then Aguas Blancas is the best place to go and have a chill day.

After a long day in Ibiza, the beach situated in Santa Eularia will rejuvenate your spirits. The clay rocks of the area will give you the perfect spa experience when applied to the skin. You can expect your skin to be nicely purified and exfoliated after.

Do not limit yourself to the lively Ibiza center. Enjoy the quiet white sands of the lovely beach.

5. Go back in time and meet Don Quixote in Toledo

Toledo is known for its medieval look. But if you are a lover of ancient literature, this is where it comes to life.

Meet the madman who wrote and read about everything romantic, lost it and got on a mission to civilize people, speak for the weak and save the world.

You will find his pictures all over Toledo and experience his journey all around Spain.

3 useful tips for your stay in Spain

As much as you are ready to have a good time in Spain, keep in mind that safety is key. Here are some tips to ensure you have a fantastic visit.

  • Study some Spanish!

As much as you may have a travel guide, it is good if you know a word or ten in Spanish. You cannot always depend on people for translation. You may be in real need of a plate of good seafood. So go ahead and grab a Spanish-English dictionary to be on the safe side.

  • Have a OneSimCard for exemplary cellular connectivity

Stay in touch with family and friends during your visit to Spain at much lower costs. Save on making extremely expensive international calls by getting a OneSimCard for this exact purpose and have fun without wasting money.

  • Organize your accommodation beforehand

A last-minute hassle to get a place to rest your head for the night is unnecessary. Since you have an idea of where you are visiting, make sure you make accommodation arrangements while you are sorting out your travel. This will definitely save you a lot of time and money.

Wrapping Up

Spain is undoubtedly one of the most common tourist destinations, and it’s clear why. The European country is home to diverse cultures and geographical scenes. If you are looking for a great experience in Europe, be sure to include Spain in your itinerary.

Rather than head over to where the crowds are located, why not have a unique experience? Include these 5 hidden treasures in your bucket list to get the most out of your trip to Spain.

Credits:

Aguas Blancas Beach, Ibiza by Federico Capoano

 

China Data Plan is now Asiania Data Plan. 12 Countries Added.

OneSimCard Asiania Data Plan

If you travel to destinations in Asia, Oceania or both, we have great news for you. You can now save even more money on 4G data!

Effective August 8, 2019 Zone China Data Plan on the Universal and Plus SIM cards has been expanded and renamed to Zone Asiania.

The new data plan covers 13 countries in Asia and Oceania including Australia, China, India, Macau, New Zealand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and Hong Kong.

The plan offers 3000 MB of blazing-fast 4G LTE data for 30 Days and costs only $39.00 USD. If no 4G connection is available, the data will automatically fall back to the next available fastest option. It’s that convenient (and affordable).

How to Order

You can add Zone Asiania to your OneSimCard Universal or Plus SIM at any time from your OneSimCard web account. In addition to data, both international SIM cards offer calling and texting in all Asiania countries as well as hundreds of other destinations around the globe.

Who knows, we may have just invented a new geographic region?! Well, you decide. One thing is for sure. No matter where you travel, OneSimCard can help you stay connected and save money.

Welcome to Asiania! Enjoy your trip!

5 Unique and Refreshing Things to do While in France

5 Unique and Refreshing Things to do While in France

France is a travel destination for every traveler worth their salt. The country is known globally for its rich, unique culture, especially in the artsy areas. Be it the delicious foods, breathtaking sights, creative fashion, tasty wines, or the vibrant historical and modern art, France is home to every kind of traveler.

Even with a variety of destinations, some of the cities are more popular than others, and for good reason. However, going to the popular attractions may not be as satisfying. Unless you are willing to wait in long lines, why not switch things up a little?

Looking for a unique and refreshing experience while in France? Here are five unusual things you need to do while there.

1. Fish with the Locals in Les Goudes, Marseille

Le port des Goudes by Jeanne Menjoulet

The second-largest city in France hosts about 15 million visitors annually. However, very few of these tourists visit the sleepy village of Les Goudes.

Located about 40 minutes east of Le Vieux Port, the small village is ideal for some relaxing away from the hustle and bustle of the main port. Because it is quite far off the coast, it is advisable to take public transport.

Interact with the local fishermen and their families that go back for several generations. Take a rocky 20-minute walk to Baie des Singes and explore the little cove. Then head over to the Restaurant Baie des Singes for some fresh fish and local wine. Top your day off with by roaming in the public beach and watch the sunset from the lovely sandy shores.

2. Get Lost in the Secret Passageways of Croix-Rousse, Lyon

Longue Traboule by Groume

In the middle ages, silk merchants in Lyon had to find a way to transport the silk without it getting wet. Thus, the idea of secret underground passages came to be. These passages have withstood time and history, and while they are now privately owned, some are still open to the public.

The passages, known as Traboules, are located in Vieux Lyon and help connect the different streets in the city. Discover these secret tunnels and walk through the history of the silk merchants….just be sure to remain quiet since there are inhabitants in the buildings.

3. Explore Space in Cite de L’espace, Toulouse

Even with the vast population, Toulouse continues to be the most underrated French city in terms of tourism. However, this beautiful city is a lovely blend of old and new architectural designs.

While in Toulouse, make sure you visit Cite de L’espace. Now in its 22nd year of operation, this theme park is an ideal way to spend an afternoon in Toulouse. With life-sized models of spacecraft and learning exhibits, you are bound to learn a lot in a single visit.

If you are more inclined to aviation, head over to Aeroscopia Museum to learn a bit of the history of flying.

4. Sip on Some Wine in the Chateau de Bellet Vineyards, Nice

Known for its beachy ambiance, Nice presents the perfect location for some afternoon unwinding. And while doing so, make sure you get to the Chateau de Bellet Vineyards for some fine wine to cap off your day.

Located just 20 minutes from the airport, the vineyards are enriched with a splendid history of the Barons of Bellet. The wine is made from some rare grapes that are grown on sulfurous terrain, giving them a unique minerally taste. Get to sip on some of South Europe’s most exquisite wine while learning about a winemaking tradition that has been passed down the generations since circa 1777.

A visit to the Chateau includes a walk through the wine cellar and a visit to Bellet Chapel along with a leisurely stroll through the vineyards.

5. Experience the Nightlife with a Panorama View from atop Montparnasse Tower, Paris

Of course, a vacation to France is not complete without a visit to the City of Lights. And speaking of lights, be sure to enjoy the beautiful nighttime view from the Montparnasse Tower.

From the tower, you get to have a panorama view of Paris featuring the city’s most significant landmarks. A nighttime view of La Tour Eiffel from the tower is impressive. What’s more, getting into the tower is less of a hassle as compared to the Eiffel Tower. It is also a bit cheaper.

During the day, head over to the College des Bernadines. The little-known college is home to the precious secrets of Vieux Paris (old Paris), dating back to the 13th century.

Tips to help you Navigate through France

Well, now that you have a list of places to travel, you need a couple of tips. When going to any part of the world, it helps to have some suggestions. Here are some tips to help make your vacation to France an enjoyable stay.

  • Learn some common French phrases

With worldwide tourists arriving in their country, the French have chosen to keep their language alive. English is uncommon, so come prepared with a French guide.

  • Bring some extra cash with you

This tip is helpful when traveling anywhere, not just in France. Always have some extra cash to cover any emergencies while traveling.

  • Use public transport

Taxis in France are expensive and even more so for tourists. Blend in with the locals by using public transport and get to save some money as well. Trains are especially more reliable and can get you to just about any place. You can even use the trams that are located in most cities and follow the main road.

  • Understand the French culture beforehand

You must know as much as you can about the French culture. Doing so will allow you to blend in with the locals. By doing so, you are less likely to look like a tourist, making you a lesser target for pickpockets and thieves in the crowded streets. So, ensure that you dress and behave like the French.

You’ll undoubtedly want to stay in touch with your loved ones, and share lots of the wonderful things you are seeing while in France. Using your local provider’s sim card may incur enormous costs. Bring your prepaid OneSimCard (as your France SIM card) to stay connected at lower charges…up to 85% lower than traditional providers!!

France remains to be one of the most popular travel destinations for tourists worldwide. However, there are several undiscovered gems in this beautiful nation. So, get your suitcases out, start packing and head over to some of these unique tourist attractions for a memorable experience.

 

Never Miss a Sharable Moment at the XVIII Pan American Games!

Going to 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru? Bring OneSimCard to stay connected.

OneSimCard is gearing up for the Pan Am Games in Lima, Peru. The Games run from July 26th through August 11th and should be action-packed with a total of 419 events covering 39 sports…the most ever for the Games. Founded in 1951, the Games are run as a qualifier for 22 Disciplines for the Tokyo 2020 Summer Games. Lima is expecting 6,700 Athletes from the 41 member countries, so the field has grown since the last Games held in Toronto.

We know, this is a lot to digest. What events to attend, where, how, etc. The Lima Games have a great interactive calendar available online so you can plan ahead and not miss a beat (or lap, hurtle, shot, stroke, etc. … you get the point). This calendar is also available for download, but with your OneSimCard connection, you can have all this information available at your fingertips!

All of this excitement means lots of sharable moments! Don’t miss out on these moments…make sure you are prepared with your mobile data connection. OneSimCard has some of the least expensive rates in the world in Peru, with great discount data packages available. Check out our rates at on our Rates and Coverage Page. For data use, we recommend the Universal card. There is a 3000MB package available for only $55.00 which should work well for most attendees. Order international SIM card  today to make sure you get your SIM card in time for the games!

Traveling to the EU? Save BIG on mobile internet with new data plans from OneSimCard Universal!

Mobile Data plans for European travel

Traveling to the EU? Save BIG on mobile internet with new data plans from OneSimCard Universal!

EU Data Plan 5000 MB / Duration 14 Days / Price $29.00
EU Data Plan 10000 MB / Duration 14 Days / Price $59.00

New Europe plans include the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech.Rep., Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, St. Barthelemy / St. Martin Island, Sweden, the United Kingdom.

All current OneSimCard Universal users can add these plans at any time. No Universal SIM card? Order this international sim card on our website and save!

Enjoy 4G data in the United States and 35 other countries for less than a cent per MB!

OneSimCard Universal now offers a 10,000 MB (approx. 10GB) Data Plan valid for 30 days for only $86.90. This is less than a penny per MB in the United States!

At this price, it may sound like your local mobile provider’s type of offer. But there is a key difference. Your domestic data plan may have data throttling, 2G downgrades or other speed restrictions. OneSimCard has none of that.

OneSimCard’s plan simply comes with more 4G in more countries.

Since the 10,000MB plan is part of the Giga Data Zone, the coverage spans 36 countries. It includes Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, USA and United Kingdom

That’s right. You can continue using the same blazing fast 4G data plan while traveling in the US, UK, most of Europe and even Russia. Compare that to your domestic carrier’s offer!

You can save even more money by pairing this plan with the OneSim Voip smartphone app. The OneSim VoiP app allows calling and texting over the internet for as little as 1c/min and 5c/message respectively.

The choice is clear. Enjoy faster 4G data in more places and for less money with OneSimCard.

The 10,000 MB data plan can be added to any OneSimCard Universal or OneSimCard Plus at any time from your OneSimCard web account.

OneSimCard Expedition and Europe & More Rate Update

Please be advised that effective January 24, 2019 8AM ET the following rates will be in effect.

Data Rates Updates:

Country

Data Rate
(USD/MB)

Anguilla 0.25
Antigua and Barbuda 0.25
Bahamas 0.50
Barbados 0.25
Bosnia 0.25
British Virgin Islands 0.25
Brunei 0.25
Cayman Island 0.25
Dominica 0.25
Gambia 0.85
Grenada 0.25
Haiti 0.85
Jamaica 0.25
Montserrat 0.25
St.Kitts 0.25
St.Lucia 0.25
St.Vincent / Grenada 0.25
Tunisia 0.25
Turk & Caicos Isl. 0.25
United Kingdom Jersey 0.25

Zone A Data Plan newly included countries:  Jersey (United Kingdom), Armenia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan.

Zone B Data plan newly included countries: Brunei,  Jersey(United Kingdom), Bosnia, Tunisia, Anguilla, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Cayman Island, Dominica, Jamaica, St.Kitts, St.Lucia, Montserrat, Turk & Caicos Isl., St.Vincent / Grenada, British Virgin Islands.

To see all rates and coverage visit onesimcard.com/cell-phone-rates.