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Christmas Gift Guide
Phones

Like cheap calls? Then Lycamobile

Lycamobile's SIM lets you make cheap calls abroad without needing to scratch any silver bits off a calling card or enter ridiculously long numbers

If you're down in the dumps because you're stuck in the UK this Christmas while all your family and friends are warm and happy overseas, you may be interested in the Lycamobile SIM card. Available to buy from a variety of shops, the Lycamobile SIM allows you to call loved ones abroad at a reduced rate. The advantage of using a Lycamobile SIM is that once you put it in an unlocked mobile phone, you don't need to dial a preposterously long calling code. The SIM is free when you buy it with £5 credit, and it comes with £2 free.

Calls to Pakistan, for example, cost 7p per minute to mobile and landline numbers, calls to India are 7p per minute to mobiles and 5p per minute to landlines, and calls to Nigeria are 10p per minute to mobiles and 5p per minute to landlines. Those are some of the most popular call destinations, but Lycamobile provides reduced rates for many other international destinations too.

As a Christmas special, if you buy a Lycamobile SIM and top it up in December with £20, you'll get free texts to any international destination until 2 January 2009. Our only reservation about Lycamobile is that calls to the UK aren't as cheap as using certain pay as you go SIMs, so it's not ideal for using all the time, but for when you need to make a call abroad it is useful. Please keep in mind that it will only work in unlocked mobile phones, so if your handset is locked to a network you'll need to get it unlocked, which could cost around £10. -Andrew Lim