Published August 26, 2020
It’s no secret that traveling can be costly. But it can be even more so if you use your phone abroad. Roaming charges, in general, cost up to ten times more than what you would have paid for if you used network services locally.
But then again, it’s hard not to use your phone when traveling. I mean, you’d naturally still want to be connected with the people back home. But, as you know, there is really no assurance that you’ll always have access to wifi. Or that you’ll have internet connection 24/7 especially when you’re on the road. So many travelers end up subscribing to roaming services even if they know it’ll probably cost much more than their ticket.
This is where international sim cards prove to be of much use. Like a local sim card, you can use it to make international calls and send messages without subscribing to roaming services.
So how does an international sim card work?
If you’re using a GSM phone, you’re probably already familiar with a sim card. It’s a small chip you insert into your mobile so you can connect to the local network.
But unlike a local one, an international sim card is not limited by geographical boundaries. It works by partnering with local network providers so you can use their services while you’re within their area of coverage.
To put it in perspective, let’s say the international sim card you bought says its working in 50 countries around the world. The company that provides that sim will partner with a network provider in each of those countries. These sim cards are pre-programmed to look for any available local network that the company has partnered with. So when you insert it on your phone, it will automatically connect you to said local network.
If you’re still on the fence whether to get an international sim card for your next trip, here are five reasons why you should:
1. It’s Generally Cheaper
Compared to roaming services, making calls with an international sim card is generally cheaper. Some sim cards even offer calls, text, and data bundles that are as cheap or even cheaper than what you usually pay back home. So you not only save money, but you can also talk confidently with your friends back home without worrying about mounting phone bills.
2. You Can Use It In Multiple Countries
“Why not just buy a local sim in the country you’re traveling to?” you may ask. Well, you can do that. But then you’ll have to buy a sim card in every country you’re going to. I don’t know about you but that seems too much of a hassle for me.
But if you buy an international sim card, you can use it in multiple countries. Some sim cards even work in almost all territories around the world. So you won’t have to worry about losing connectivity or where to buy a sim card every time you go to a new country.
3. You Can Keep Your Contact Info Wherever You Go
Sim cards don’t just connect you to the local network. It also keeps the contact information of people you know. So using the same sim card when you’re abroad can be very convenient. You don’t have to worry about transferring all those contact information every time you travel abroad.
Since you can use the same sim card no matter the country you’re in, there’s also no need to worry about changing your contact number.
4. It’s Easy to Recharge It Online
Most international sim cards allow you to top up credits online. So you can recharge it wherever you are as long as you have an internet connection.
5. Can Be Cancelled Anytime
In some countries, getting a local sim can be a long and arduous process. You will need to show your passport and have your number registered. With an international sim card, you won’t have to go through all that. They’re basically plug-and-play. Just insert it into your phone, wait for it to scan all available networks and you’re good to go.
Besides, international sim cards are usually prepaid. Unlike a phone plan, you can discard it anytime you feel like it. Most sim cards also take years to expire. So you can keep it in your drawer for months and still get to use it without any penalties whatsoever. All these make it ideal for both occasional and seasoned travelers alike.