What is a travel SIM card?
July 17, 2023

What is a travel SIM card?

Why do you need a travel SIM card?

Are you planning a trip and want to stay in touch with your family and friends and forward those fun pictures you are taking, and stay connected on your social media platforms? Or are you heading overseas on a business trip and need to use your mobile device for phone calls, SMS, sending emails, and want to know how to avoid expensive roaming charges? We will provide you with options to stay in touch, avoid those high fees and explain the benefits to you.

A travel SIM card, also known as an international SIM card or roaming SIM card, is a small chip that you can insert into your mobile device to use when you are traveling abroad. It allows you to make and receive calls, send text messages, and access mobile data services while you’re in a different country.

When you travel internationally, your regular SIM card may not work or may result in expensive roaming charges from your home mobile service provider. A travel SIM card provides an alternative solution by allowing you to use a local network in the country you’re visiting. It typically offers better rates for calls, texts, and data compared to international roaming plans.

Travel SIM cards are usually prepaid, meaning you purchase a certain amount of credit in advance. The card may come with a specific data package, call minutes, or a combination of both. Some providers offer unlimited plans, while others have tiered options based on your usage needs. These SIM cards are often available for purchase online, at airports, or local stores in the country you’re visiting.

Before using a travel SIM card, ensure that your mobile device is unlocked, meaning it can accept SIM cards from different providers. Also, keep in mind that using a travel SIM card will change your phone number temporarily while you’re using the card.

If you bought a travel SIM card before leaving for your trip, you don’t need to worry about those roaming charges after landing. You already know that you have a secure connection with the local network. You can make phone calls, call an UBER via the app, or order a taxi.. You might have to use the navigation system to find your way to the hotel or to a grocery store. You can check your emails right away or check your calendar to set up an appointment during your business trip. You can do all that since you are connected to the internet from the moment of landing, so feel free to enjoy it.

You could also connect to a local public WiFi connection but depending where you travel, most connections are unsecure, especially in open-air locations, or there is poor reception or slow speed.

Some travel SIM cards are designed for use in one country only. If you don’t use up all the prepaid data you will lose it after the expiration date. International SIM cards can be used in different countries and you get your own number for that SIM card. You can check your balance online, contact customer support, activate internet bundles, make calls and send SMS.

The easiest way for traveling around the globe is a eSIM card from the RedBull Mobile Data App.

Using eSIM with the Red Bull MOBILE Data App for roaming offers several advantages compared to traditional physical SIM cards. Data roaming has become much easier, more efficient and cost-effective with the use of eSIM. You can read about the key advantages in our blog about What are the benefits of using an eSIM for roaming.

Simply download the Red Bull MOBILE Data app, choose your data plan for your destination, and follow the instructions on how to activate the Red Bull MOBILE eSIM data plan. Your device will prompt you to set up your eSIM, which typically involves selecting a mobile plan and confirming your activation. Once your account is activated you are ready to connect to the world without any basic or roaming fees. You will be able to email, chat, set up video conferencing and use your social media accounts. Connecting with your family and friends around the globe is instantaneous.

Do all devices support eSIM?

Not all devices support eSIM, so you should check if your device is compatible with eSIM technology. You can usually find this information in the device specifications under Settings.

Overall, using eSIM for roaming offers greater convenience, flexibility, and security compared to traditional SIM cards, making it an appealing choice for frequent travelers or those who frequently switch between mobile plans and operators.


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