Buying a SIM: Local or international?

Thanks to the advancement of technology, we can communicate with people on the other side of the world easier than ever before.

Since mobile phones have become the main method of international communication, the SIM cards have also revolutionised.

One of the main arguments that have now come about in the travel world is whether it is smarter to buy a local sim for the country you’re in or simply purchasing an international sim card.

There are of course pros and cons to both options with international sim cards being more expensive. But it could also save a lot of hassle in the long term.

If you’re a frequent traveller or going overseas for a certain period of time, you may purchase local SIM cards for all the individual countries you have visited. But friends and family will have to pay international fees if they want to call you. You also don’t know your number until you purchase the SIM there, making it difficult to set up contact for the first time.

An alternative to this would be purchasing an international SIM card. Instead of purchasing multiple cards for each individual country, there would be just the one that you would need to buy for that trip. The majority of providers of this type of cards let you top up and manage accounts free of charge, unlike local providers.

One of the best things to do is to compare the costs before you go and figure what is the better option. If you are staying in one country, speak the language and don’t make international calls frequently, then a local SIM may be the best option.

However, international SIM cards are brilliant for gap-years and places that speak multiple languages. You just need to check the pricing and make sure there are no hidden charges.

Also be weary for what number you’re given. Some international cards offer numbers different to the countries you’re from. So be sure to check all the finer details.

For more information on SIM cards and the differences visit


Posted by Matthew Weston

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *