I’m surprised this isn’t anywhere on the forum yet. But just a pro tip for Americans about to start a nomad adventure. T-mobile offers unlimited SMS & data in 120 countries for FREE with any of their (already pretty cheap) plans. It’s ideal if you plan to be back in the US for any part of the year, but I honestly would consider it even if you’re going to be entirely out of the country.
You get bumped down to much slower 3G speeds, but it’s free and works as soon as you land. Can be super helpful before you’ve sorted yourself out with a local SIM. I usually keep my T-mobile SIM in my iPhone all the time and then buy a local SIM and drop it in my pocket wifi for both laptop and iPhone when needed. I keep my local US number and just use it (it’s like $0.05/min in most places) for important clients calls so they don’t have to bother with Skype.
I’m not affiliated at all, just a happy customer. Anybody found a better deal worth mentioning?