Switching from iOS...Is the Nexus 4 good for travel?

My current phone is the iPhone 4 and I am looking to switch to Android. Now that the Nexus 4 is finally in stock, I will be picking one up. That being said, I have a few questions that I was hoping you would be able to help me with:

1. I am going to travel to Asia (Thailand, Laos, India) in the coming months and am planning to bring the N4. Since it's unlocked, can I just switch the SIM card and set up a plan/pay-as-you-go with a foreign carrier?

2. Since I am switching from iOS, what are some tips for transferring the data (contacts, calendars, etc.) that I heavily rely on?

Any help would be greatly appreciated as this will be my first Android device.