If you plan on traveling to a range of different countries and want to avoid the hassle of buying local SIMs or having to repeatedly change your number, then you might consider an international sim, which can help you avoid extortionate roaming rates. On this page I conduct an international SIM card comparison and advise you of the best choice for your particular situation.
A range of companies offer these travel SIM cards, which you can buy in advance from your home country. They offer assurance of connection on your travels, and are useful for a range of people:
- Business travellers on short international trips, or others who take a few short trips a year. Where time and convenience is more important than getting the lowest rates.
- Those who are visiting several countries and therefore do not have the language ability or desire to spend time on their travels in mobile phone shops buying local SIMs.
- Those with anxieties about travel or language limitations. An international SIM can act as a good stopgap, allowing you to keep a constantly working phone, regardless of your location. This can reduce travel-related stress, allowing you to get immediately organised and connected on touch down.
There are many options available, at a relatively low cost. However, horror stories abound of people being unable to connect, unable to reach customer service, and stranded!
To avoid this, I am going to break down the available options and look at what might be the best fit for you. This international SIM card comparison looks only at cards that are designed for global travel, so if you are staying in a particular region it might be more cost effective to purchase a SIM designed exclusively for Europe, Asia, etc, or a local country-specific sim.
Be aware that the rates shown are the minimum, so please check all details fully on the website before purchasing.
International SIM Card Comparison: Conclusions
So, which International SIM should you buy? This depends on where you are likely to be going and how you plan on using it….
- Travelling from the UK? If you plan on staying within the ‘feel at home’ countries, then the most cost-effective option would be to order a free Three SIM.
- Concerned about accessing data? If you don’t plan on making calls or texts, then check out an international data SIM.
- If you are truly traveling globally and will take advantage of the wide range of different countries covered, then the sim with most coverage is WorldSIM.
- Want friends and relatives colleagues to be able to call you at no cost to yourself? then try the One SIM card.
For truly budget travellers who are perhaps sticking only to one or two countries – it is sensible to buy a local sim on arrival. These will usually provide cheaper rates than any ‘global SIM’ can compete with. See my guide to local countries sim offerings under destinations.
Shop around based on your particular trip, and please thoroughly check the rates on the website before buying.
If you have used any of these SIMs, and want to conduct your own international SIM Card comparison, then please share your experiences with us in the comments.