Saturday, March 20, 2010

Cell Phones on Ocracoke

Occasionally readers ask which cell phones work on Ocracoke. From personal experience I know that Verizon & Alltel phones work very well. A frequent visitor to Ocracoke shares the following information:

"Assuming you have a roaming plan with your carrier, all CDMA cell phones work on the island and GSM do not. In terms of carriers, this means that Verizon, Alltel, US Cellular, and Sprint work. ATT and T-Mobile, the GSM carriers do not.

"ATT does have GSM coverage out of Hatteras and if you REALLY need to make a call, you can usually get a signal at the ferry dock to Hatteras."

I hope this helps.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is an article by Pat Garber about "Ocracats" our village organization that helps care for, feed, and neuter the island's feral cats. You can read more here:


  1. My sister and I have traveled to Ocracoke together on numerous occasions. We drive from Richmond, VA. I lose service, except for a few random spots, almost as soon as we drive onto the Outer Banks, hours before we even get to the ferry to Wonderland, oops, I mean Ocracoke. That is with T-Mobile. My sister, on the other hand, still had 3 bars when we were out fishing in the Pamlico Sound. She has Verizon.

    Just typing this makes me want to buy a plane ticket.

  2. Anonymous11:54 PM

    I have coverage with AT&T, so when I go to Ocracoke, I have to buy minutes on a pay-to-use Verizon phone I bought for just such an occassion! I called AT&T and they said they had no plans to install a tower on Ocracoke. Seems strange that the carrier that bills itself as having the most coverage doesn't even care if they don't cover everyplace.

  3. I think it would be a good idea for the rental agencies to make this information available to all vacationers. Perhaps they could include it on their websites.

  4. Anonymous12:25 PM

    Yea found that out a couple of years back when we needed to make a911 call on an ATT phone and had to borrow one of the locals cordless phone. Poor lady laying in the middle of the road and no way to call.

  5. Anonymous8:55 AM

    I look at it as a blessing! I'm not on vacation to do business! Goodbye city life! Yaaa!!! And anybody else that i know can just wait. They won't be missed while i'm having uninterruped FUN! Anyone that has to stay hugged up to a cellphone 24/7 must have insecurity issues they need to deal with!