Mobile telephones are among the top five most popular travelling items taken overseas, and are a convenient way of staying in touch.
Using your phone overseas (roaming) can cost considerably more than it does at home, particularly if you want to surf the web a lot, upload photos to social networking sites or check or send lots of emails.
You can even run up a big bill without actively using your phone as smartphones and 3G/4G enabled tablets automatically seek out mobile connections and use them to update apps.
So unless you turn off data roaming before you go, these devices could be downloading data at standard rates throughout your stay without you realising it.
It may work out cheaper to buy an international sim card or if you are planning a long stay in any particular country, a local sim card at your destination. Some operators donít allow you to switch sim cards, and will lock your phone - your operator will be able to give you more information on this. Alternatively, some independent phone retailers will be able to unlock handsets for you.
Your mobile phone will pick up the strongest network while you are abroad. As this wonít necessarily be the cheapest network you may want to do some local research and look into changing your phoneís settings to pick up the cheapest network.
If you are using your own network provider's pre-paid mobile international roaming service, make sure you know how to use your credit card to top up your calling credit before you leave, or take extra vouchers, as they may be hard to obtain abroad.
Make a note of your mobile's serial number (also known as the IMEI number), your mobile telephone number and the telephone number of your operator's customer services (including dialling code). Keep them with you in a safe place, separate from your mobile. If your phone is stolen you will be able to contact the network operator and request that they block your phone and/or SIM card.
Take an electrical adaptor for the charger plug, to keep your mobile telephone fully charged while you are abroad.