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I live in country A and work in country B. I have a mobile phone contract from country A. A and B are both in the EU so there are no roaming fees at all.

During the day I have no network problem, the phone uses the network of the country it's currently in and everything is fine.

Problems arises when I cross the border: it seems to me that the phone tries to stay connected to the network it was previously connected to. So for 10 minutes or so after I cross the border, the network signal is weaker and weaker until previous country is too far away.

How can I force the phone to connect to a country's mobile phone network as soon as it enters in said country?

NB: situation is exactly the same when traveling from A to B or from B to A.

What I tried: switching to plane mode just after crossing the border, waiting 5 seconds and switching back. It doesn't work.

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I have discovered a workaround that works in some cases when traveling from country A to B. Specifically, it works when the phone is connected to 2G/Edge from country A although 3G and 4G (LTE) is available from country B. Note, my phone doesn’t support 5G. The solution might be also applicable for 5G-capable phones. I tested it on Fairphone 3 with Android 13.

  1. When the phone is stuck in the 2G network of country A, go to: Android settings -> Network & internet -> SIMs

    SIM settings

  2. Switch the preferred network type to “3G only”. This will force the phone to disconnect from country A and connect to the 3G network from country B.

    Preferred network settings

  3. Once the phone is connected to the desired network, you can switch back to “Automatic (LTE/3G/2G)”.

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