This website is using cookies.
We use them to give you the best experience. If you continue using our website, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on this website. Read more
When you travel internationally, using your existing SIM card is usually a bad idea. The vast majority of service providers follow the controversial decision of applying extraordinary roaming fees with very few exceptions. Rather than pay excessive roaming charges there are other solutions; grab an international SIM card or get a local SIM in the country you are travelling to. Let’s discuss the pros and cons of these two options in a bit more detail….
Local SIM Cards
The first option is to buy a SIM from a local store when you arrive in the country that you will be visiting. This isn’t possible in all countries though as many countries require you to provide proof of residency in order to purchase one. Some of these countries include Japan and India to name a few. For those countries that you can purchase a local SIM card in the plus points are good rates as you will pay like a local. Unfortunately local SIM cards come with a lot of cons…
International SIM Cards
The second option is to obtain an international SIM card that you can use in most countries in the world. While the former option may prove to be marginally cheaper if you are staying in one country for extended periods of time, an international SIM is a far more flexible option. International SIM cards are all about convenience. Here are some of the perks of an international SIM…
What else you should look out for:
What country is the phone number on your international SIM?
Some companies give you an Eastern European number, others a US number (FYI we give you a UK and USA number, plus to option to add numbers from over 50 other countries)
Can you roam on your existing number?
Forwarding your existing number to a virtual number means you can be contacted on your regular number with no roaming charges (but you will pay for the call). Find out more here.
How long does credit last?
Ideally you don’t want to be forced to top up when you don’t want to. Although credit on a WorldSIM international SIM card never expires (as long as you use the SIM once a year) many other companies will terminate your SIM if you don’t top up every 30 days. Ideally you want to keep your international SIM for life so you always have the same number when you travel.
Not all international SIM cards are the same as some require you to top up every month in order to keep the SIM active (we don’t, just so you know). If you need help selecting an international SIM card you can read this blog post on how to select the best international sim card for your needs.