GYMSIM - The mobile network for the yachting community

Phone Bands


To maximise the usefulness of the GYM worldwide mobile phone service, lets look into what types of phones will also work worldwide. It comes down to frequency.

There are actually four different GSM frequencies worldwide. There is a list below to show accurately which countries use which bands, but over 75% of the world uses both 900hz and 1800hz together, this includes all of Europe. The US uses two different frequencies both 850 and 1900 together. A phone can only pick up the frequencies it is designed for. Most countries establish two frequencies to give maximum coverage for their telecommunications.

Dual Band

As minimum, most modern phones are dual band (two frequencies) to make use of all the available frequencies, and thus give maximum coverage in the home country.

Europe: 900/1800
US: 850/1900

Tri Band

Designed to pick up two local frequencies and 1 other foreign frequency. Pay attention to the fact that you will have different frequencies depending on where you buy the phone.

Europe: 900/1800/900 (Excellent for Europe, very good for the US)
US: 850/1900/1800 (Excellent for the US Fair for Europe)

If you want to buy a tri band phone, and have the choice, it is better to get one from Europe. The 900/1800/900 option gives a slightly better coverage advantage over the 850/1900/1800 option.

Quad Band

Made so that it can pick up all GSM frequencies worldwide. A quad band phone is the best choice for international travellers who need maximum coverage. These phones are more expensive then dual and tri band phones and there are fewer models of them.

Here is a list of Quad band phones:

Geo GC688
HP i6315
Motorola A780, V3 Razr (but not V300), V180, V220, V330, V400, V500/ V501 / V505 / V525 / V551 / V555, V600 / V620
NEC 515 / 525
Palm Treo 600 / 650
Sharp GX32
Xda IIs

This is not a concise list as new phones are constantly being released.

There are some countries that utilise non GSM systems, for example CDMA in the Korea and Japan. The US also uses CDMA extensively. GSM has a smaller coverage area then CDMA at this stage in America. CDMA phones are not GSM compatible thus they can not use GSM SIM cards.

Here is a list of the Different Frequencies used by the different countries around the world.

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  • Y
  • Z
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Afghanistan        
Albania        
Algeria        
Angola        
Anguilla        
Antigua & Barbuda        
Argentina        
Armenia        
Aruba        
Australia        
Azerbaijan        
Austria        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Bahamas        
Bahrain        
Bangladesh        
Barbados        
Belarus        
Belgium        
Belize        
Benin        
Bermuda        
Bolivia        
Bosnia & Herzegovina        
Botswana        
Brazil        
British Virgin Islands        
Bulgaria        
Burma/Myanmar        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Cambodia        
Cameroon        
Canada        
Cayman Islands        
Chad        
Chile        
China        
Colombia        
Congo        
Congo, Democratic Rep of        
Costa Rica        
Côte d'Ivoire        
Croatia        
Cuba        
Cyprus        
Czech Republic        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Denmark        
Dominica        
Dominican Republic        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Ecuador        
Egypt        
El Salvador        
Eritrea        
Estonia        
Ethiopia        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Fiji        
Finland        
France        
French Polynesia        
French West Indies (incl St Barts)        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Georgia        
Germany        
Ghana        
Greece        
Greenland        
Grenada        
Guam        
Guatemala        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Haiti - no GSM networks        
Honduras        
Hong Kong        
Hungary        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Iceland        
India        
Indonesia        
Iran        
Iraq        
Ireland        
Israel        
Italy        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Jamaica        
Japan No GSM service in Japan
Jordan        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Kazakhstan        
Kenya        
Korea (South) - CDMA not GSM No GSM service in South Korea
Kosovo        
Kuwait        
Kyrgyzstan        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Laos        
Latvia        
Lebanon        
Liberia        
Libya        
Liechtenstein        
Lithuania        
Luxemburg        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Macedonia (former Yugoslav rep)        
Madagascar        
Malawi        
Malaysia        
Maldives        
Malta        
Mauritius        
Mexico        
Moldova        
Monaco        
Mongolia        
Morocco        
Mozambique        
Myanmar        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Namibia        
Nepal        
Netherlands        
Netherland Antilles        
New Zealand        
Nicaragua        
Nigeria        
Norway        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
No data
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Pakistan        
Panama        
Papua New Guinea        
Paraguay        
Peru        
Philippines        
Poland        
Portugal        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Qatar        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Romania        
Russia        
Rwanda        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Samoa - no service        
Saudi Arabia        
Senegal        
Serbia/Montenegro        
Seychelles        
Sierra Leone        
Singapore        
Slovakia        
Slovenia        
South Africa        
Spain        
Sri Lanka        
St Lucia        
St Kitts & Nevis        
St Martin/St Barts        
St Vincent / Grenadines        
Sweden        
Switzerland        
Syria        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Taiwan        
Tajikistan        
Tanzania        
Thailand        
Togo        
Tonga        
Trinidad & Tobago        
Tunisia        
Turkey        
Turkmenistan        
Turks & Caicos        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Uganda        
Ukraine        
United Arab Emirates        
United Kingdom        
USA        
Uruguay        
Uzbekistan        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Venezuela        
Vietnam        
Country 900 1800 1900 850
No data
No data
No data
Country 900 1800 1900 850
Zambia        
Zimbabwe        
Country 900 1800 1900 850

Note - this table contains data believed to be accurate and current as of July, 2005. You should verify any data that is essential to your choice of phone, rather than relying solely on this data. See: http://www.gsmworld.com/roaming/gsminfo/index.shtml