eSIM for Israel: compare, buy and travel connected

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Visiting Israel is a once in a lifetime experience. Whether you’re visiting Jerusalem, Tel Aviv or the Dead Sea, you’ll never run out of things to do in this beautiful country. But what if you run out of internet? Having internet connection is essential for any modern traveler. Buying an Israel eSIM card is a cheap and efficient way of accessing the internet abroad.

The eSIM (short for “embedded SIM“) is a virtual SIM card taking the tech world by storm. With an eSIM for your trip to Israel, you can enjoy cheap and fast internet on multiple devices.

So if you want to stay connected when you’re in Israel, we recommend buying an eSIM designed especially for travelers – this will save you from paying expensive data roaming charges.

We’ll explain how eSIMs work and compare the different deals you can get from mobile providers, so you get the best value for money.

What you should know about the Israel eSIM card

eSIM technology is still relatively new, so not all phones are compatible. Here’s everything you need to check before you buy:

  • Your cell phone must be compatible with an eSIM card. Also, check that your cell phone is supported by the carrier or eSIM card provider. The iPhone XR and later models are compatible with most providers. 
  • You need an email address to receive your eSIM.
  • You need internet connection to activate your eSIM. Your eSIM profile will be downloaded from the provider after scanning the QR code or installation code.
  • Some providers will ask you to install their app to download the eSIM.

If you can’t buy an eSIM, you can purchase a physical SIM card for travelers instead.

  • High speed connection without surprise bills.
  • Receive your QR code immediately.
  • Connect to the best network.
  • Forget about roaming and searching for WiFi.
  • Keep your WhatsApp number.
  • Easy to set up: you’ll receive an email with your eSIM in seconds, no matter where you are.
  • Get 5% OFF. Code: roaming5

Mobile eSIM card providers for Israel

If you have a compatible phone, you will be able to purchase and activate an Israel eSIM card. If your phone is not compatible, we recommend a traditional physical SIM card to Israel, which comes with 10GB-12GB of data and a phone number included.

Take a look at the companies that sell international eSIM cards:

  • Holafly
  • WifiMap
  • Sim2Fly
  • Truphone

Rates and data plans from eSIM providers for Israel

Take a look at the different packages offered to access the internet in Israel. Pay close attention to the prices of each provider, so you can choose the deal that suits you best.

Holafly plans and pricing for Israel

  • 3GB for 8 days for $41.21 (USD)
  • 5GB for 15 days for $53.34

WifiMap plans and prices for Israel

  • 3GB for 30 days at $92.09
  • 1GB for 30 days for $36.35
  • 500MB for 30 days at $19.38

Truphone Israel Plans and Pricing

  • 5GB for 30 days at $43.00
  • 3GB for 30 days at $27.00
  • 1GB for 30 days at $11.00

Comparison of eSIM providers for Israel

ProviderData planDaysPriceSupport available inSales channels
Holafly3GB8$41.21 English, Spanish, French & GermanWeb
Holafly5GB15$53.34 English, Spanish, French & GermanWeb
WifiMap3GB30$92.09 English, RussianWeb, Play store, App Store
WifiMap1GB30$36.35 English, RussianWeb, Play store, App Store
WifiMap500MB30$19.38 English, RussianWeb, Play store, App Store
Truphone 5GB 30$43.00 EnglishWeb
Truphone 3GB30$27.00 EnglishWeb
Truphone 1GB30$11.00 EnglishWeb
Table 1. Comparison of eSIM providers for connecting to the internet in Israel.

Features of an eSIM for Israel

To get the most out of your eSIM card, we’ve prepared some important information to bear in mind so that your trip to Jerusalem or any other city in Israel will be the best. We’ll also explain the differences between virtual eSIM cards and traditional physical cards.

  • Most eSIM cards do not offer mobile calls, only data. You can use apps like WhatsApp or Skype instead.
  • eSIMs can only be installed once, so if you’re experiencing problems with your eSIM card do not remove it from your mobile and contact your eSIM provider instead.
  • Some eSIMs set up automatic APNs.
  • You can add several data plans on your iPhone, although it is only possible to use one at a time.
  • Some eSIMs allow you to share data between devices.
  • With your dual SIM iPhone, you can keep your local SIM when you travel to Israel. 

eSIM coverage in Israel

It’s important to consider your eSIM’s coverage. And remember that sometimes cheap eSIM cards have poor coverage, possibly leaving you without internet when you need it most. The main providers in Israel are:

  • Cellcom
  • Golan Telecom
  • HOT Mobile
  • Socio
  • Pelephone
  • Xfone 018

Below you will find the coverage map of each of these operators so that you can get an idea of the extension of each of these servers in Israel.

4G coverage map of Cellcom carrier in Israel

Coverage map with Cellcom in Israel
Coverage map with Cellcom in Israel. Source: GSMA

4G coverage map of Golan Telecom carrier in Israel

Coverage map with Golan Telecom in Israel
Coverage map with Golan Telecom in Israel. Source: GSMA

4G coverage map of HOT Mobile carrier in Israel

Coverage map with HOT Mobile in Israel
Coverage map with HOT Mobile in Israel. Source: GSMA

4G coverage map of Partner carrier in Israel

Coverage map with Partner in Israel
Coverage map with Partner in Israel. Source: GSMA

4G coverage map of Pelephone carrier in Israel

Coverage map with Pelephone in Israel
Coverage map with Pelephone in Israel. Source: GSMA

LITE coverage map of the carrier Xfone 018 in Israel

Coverage map with xfone 018 in Israel
Coverage map with xfone 018 in Israel. Source: GSMA

Local mobile carriers offering eSIM in Israel

Residents of Israel can now change their physical SIM cards to eSIM. The following providers offer this service:

  • Cellcom
  • Partner
  • Pelephone

Tourists to Israel should use an international eSIM card, such as Holafly’s Israel eSIM card.

Frequently asked questions about eSIM in Israel

We hope you found this article useful. Here are some common questions that customers have when purchasing an eSIM to travel to Israel.

How does an International eSIM for data differ from the local eSIM in Israel?

The local eSIMs from CellCom, Partner and Pelephone are primarily intended for people residing in Israel. The international eSIM for Israel from Holafly or WifiMap is for tourists to connect to the internet during their travels to Israel.

Do I need a passport to purchase the Israel eSIM card?

You don’t need to present your passport, but some providers might ask for your address.

Can I share data between devices with the Israel eSIM?

Yes, eSIM for Israel will allow you to share your data with other devices. However, we recommend that you check with the provider’s customer service first.

How to activate your eSIM for Israel?

Install the eSIM with a QR code from your email, chose it as the default mobile data medium, turn on mobile data and data roaming, and your virtual SIM will work. Contact the company for more advice.

Do international prepaid eSIM cards expire?

Yes, just like physical cards, virtual SIM cards also have an expiration date.

When does my data plan start?

The days of your data plan start counting from the moment you activate your eSIM by scanning the QR code on your phone.

Which cell phones are compatible with the eSIM Israel?

These cell phones are compatible with an eSIM. Make sure first that the eSIM provider supports it: iPhone XR, iPhone XS, iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone SE 2020, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max, Samsung Galaxy S20, Samsung Galaxy S20+, Samsung Galaxy S20+, Samsung Galaxy S20+ Ultra, Samsung Galaxy S21, Samsung Galaxy S21+, Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, Huawei P40, Huawei P40 Pro, Google Pixel 3a, Google Pixel 3a XL, Google Pixel 4, Google Pixel 4a, Google Pixel 4a, Google Pixel 4a XL.

What is an eSIM or digital SIM?

The eSIM is the evolution of traditional SIM cards. The eSIM works thanks to a chip inserted inside the cell phone. You do not need to insert a physical SIM card.

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1 thought on “eSIM for Israel: compare, buy and travel connected”

  1. Thanks this is a helpful article. I am an iPhone XS owner, resident in the UK and looking for an Israeli e-sim as I spend 1-2 months a year in Israel.
    I am currently on a “3” mobile package, which does not levy any additional charges on roaming for data and calls to/from UK. Israel local calls are expensive, however.

    One thing you don’t mention is what phone number is then supplied for the e-sim. A BIG issue faced continually in Israel is various services/apps/application forms only accept an Israeli cellphone number (ie one beginning in 05X). If all the above listed e-sim suppliers do not provide an Israeli-style cellphone number, it rather misses the point.

    Furthermore, when I enquired locally, the main networks (Pelephone etc) said they provided e-sims for Apple watch only, but not cellphones.

    Reply

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