AT&T has announced a new deal to give customers hassle-free, affordable roaming and calling when visiting Cuba.
The carrier has ended negotiations with Cuban company Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Cuba (ETECSA) to extend global coverage to the island nation.
What this means is that AT&T customers will finally be able to talk, text and use data when travelling through Cuba, free of excessive roaming charges. The bad news? AT&T hasn’t confirmed availability or pricing details just yet.
Currently, Cuba isn’t available as a destination on AT&T’s Passport global roaming package, so the deal is great news for the many Cuban-Americans looking for an easy way to visit or keep in touch with loved ones.
Cuba roaming: how the carriers compare
AT&T isn’t the first major US carrier to ink a roaming agreement with Cuba: that honor goes to Verizon. But despite being first, Verizon still charges comparatively higher rates. Voice calls will cost you $2.99 per minute, data $2.05 per megabyte, and text messaging from $0.50.
In May, T-Mobile announced that customers on postpaid Simple Choice plans would soon be able to use their plan’s talk, text and data allowance in Cuba, thanks to its own ETECSA agreement. As with the carrier's Mobile Without Borders feature, customers visiting Cuba can use their phone as normal, without incurring any additional roaming fees.
Like T-Mobile and now AT&T, Sprint also has a roaming agreement with ETECSA, and customers with the Open World package can access reduced data, call and text rates when in Cuba. You’ll pay $2.49 per minute for voice calls, with data priced at $1.99 per megabyte and texts $0.50 each.
Sprint also offers a $10 per month Cuba 20 Plus calling package, which gives customers 20 ‘anytime minutes’ to call Cuba from the US, with additional calls charged at $0.70 per minute.