Mobile data without a monthly plan?

If I buy an iPad with AT&T 4G, does that mean I'm required to sign up for a data plan from AT&T, with a monthly fee, no matter how infrequently I will actually use any cellular data?

At least 98% of the time I'd be using it on WiFi at home or work, and would want to just turn the cellular connection off. But when I travel, I would like to have the option of using cellular data. I'm willing to buy prepaid data service of some kind, but I'm having a lot of trouble figuring out how that works. Would I have to swap out a SIM card? Is this the same as jailbreaking?

And just to further complicate things, I would be buying the iPad in the US, where I live, but one place I may travel and want to use it is western Europe (mainly the UK, Germany, and Italy). Would a solution that works in the US also work there?

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  • Best Answer:

    You can sign up for a data plan in your ipad settings under cellular. You buy however much data you think you will use for the month. The amount you buy is for 30 days and will automatically renew unless you cancel it at least 24 hours before it is set up to renew. Then you can use it or turn it off as needed. However, remember that even if you don't use it, once you purchase it, it expires in 30 days.

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