Optional Cell Phone Program in Spain

Students admitted to Seville, Alicante and Barcelona programs have cell phones available to them for lease through Spanish Studies Abroad. This service improves the overall safety of travel and allows students to keep in touch with friends and family.

Do not expect to use your American cell phone while in Spain – many will not work with the European system, or can be very expensive if they do.

  1. Upon your arrival at orientation in Spain, a cell phone will be provided for your immediate use, ready to make and receive calls. It is a great way to send a quick message to let your family know that you have arrived safely in Spain.
  2. You will have 5G internet access, even when you travel, through your cell phone as part of your plan for a fee of 12.50€ per month. You will also have GPS, which is useful in learning your way around Spain and also when you travel!
  3. Homestay families do not permit students to use the home phone for personal calls (except in case of emergency), as landlines are very expensive in Spain. A cell phone offers better conversations than a public phone booth on a busy street corner. It also allows you to make plans with your friends in Spain more easily. Local calls between Spanish Studies cell phones are free, and local calls within Spain to other cell phone providers cost just 0.10€ per minute, plus 0.15€ connecting fee.
  4. All incoming calls, from anywhere, are free when you’re in Spain – you can stay in touch without spending all your money on phone cards! Rates for outgoing calls are competitive. Use text messaging for less expensive communication.
  5. You can use your cell phone throughout your European travels! All you have to do is activate the roaming service through MOVISTAR and anticipate roaming charges.
  6. Cell phones offer a sense of security should you ever get lost or need assistance.
  7. If you have any questions, there is always a place to go for help. Before you go on your program, please contact the U.S. office at 413-256-0011 or at info[at]spanishstudies.org with any questions. Once on the program, you may talk to onsite Spanish Studies Abroad staff.

Cell phones are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so please let us know right away if you would like to lease one!

Yes. Every student has the choice to opt out of leasing a cell phone through Spanish Studies Abroad. In this case, you will be responsible for obtaining a cell phone (if you wish to have one) through other means, and therefore Spanish Studies Abroad will not be able to provide cost information or terms of use of any other cellular phones.

You can call the U.S. with your cell phone, but it is expensive. You will be charged approximately 1.16 Euro (approximately $1.30) for the first minute and .71 Euro (approximately $.79) for each minute after. One possible way to help manage your costs is to buy a cell phone card when you get to Spain to use along with your cell phone.

Instead of trying to call the U.S. via your cell phone, you should connect to Wifi and use Facebook, FaceTime, Skype, WhatsApp, or other messaging apps to communicate.


No. Whether from the U.S. or from Spain, you will not be charged for incoming calls and text messages while you are in Spain. Many students call their homes in the United States and have their parents call them right back. To get the best rate for calling Spain, your parents should research international calling options.

You will be charged for the connection fee as soon as the connection is made to the other phone. This means that if you call someone and their answering machine picks up, you will still be charged the connection fee. The connection fee is charged only once per phone call.

To consult your current balance at any time, please contact the onsite staff (Usually either the Resident Director, Assistant Resident Director, or Housing Coordinator) to run a report for you.

If you do not pay your cell phone lease bill on time, your service will be cancelled.

If you decide to travel outside of Spain, you can use your cell phone. Please bear in mind that you will still be charged for outgoing calls when traveling within countries in the European Union, as if you were in Spain. If traveling outside of the European Union (to countries such as Morocco, Switzerland, or Norway, for example) please bear in mind that costs are more expensive, and you will also be charged for incoming as well as outgoing calls. 

For more information, please refer to your “Cell Phone and SIM Card Information and Lease Form” in your Pre-departure Materials section of your application.