International SIM Cards

International SIM cards make it possible to take your own cell phone on vacation with you and not have to pay overseas calling charges.

The best place to buy international SIM cards is Amazon.com, which has great prices. Find specific SIM cards in the search box below.

The SIM card is the brain of your cell phone, and as these small chips can often be moved from phone to phone, buying an international SIM card before embarking on a trip is the smartest way to save money and be able to take your own phone with you when you travel.

How travel SIM cards work:

  • GSM standard network for mobile phones around the world, though many US phones operate on CDMA. To make your international SIM card work, you need an unlocked GSM phone, meaning your phone is not locked to a specific provider or card. If this is the case and you’d rather use SIM cards than cell phone rentals, it’s usually possible to have your phone unlocked for a fee.
  • SIM cards can be bought either with prepaid or pay-as-you-go options, but buying a card for the country you’re visiting helps avoid high international roaming rates and ensures your phone will work during your trip. It’s best to buy ahead of time, to avoid any fees or registration hassle at your destination.
  • Some providers, such as AT&T, sell international SIM cards (be sure to check that it will work in the country you’re visiting ahead of time), but it’s also possible to buy SIM cards by country, which will ensure that your card works once you arrive.

Popular countries for international SIM cards include:
Australia
France
Germany
Italy
Mexico
Spain
United Kingdom

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