With globalization, traveling around the world is becoming more and more common. Doing it for business, tourism or study is the most common. However, when you leave your country, it is normal to lose your calls, messages and data connection. This is due to the local operation of the service.
Although it is possible to connect to the Internet abroad through international roaming, this service is highly expensive in most companies, so it is better to have it deactivated. Another option is to get a local SIM card from the country you are traveling to.
For those who prefer convenience, there are also international SIM cards, a really convenient alternative to avoid searching for local SIMs or paying exorbitant rates for data roaming. However, the most recent are the international eSIMs and that is what we are going to talk about today.
- 1 What is an international eSIM?
- 2 Advantages and disadvantages of the international eSIM
- 3 Countries included in an international eSIM
- 4 How to activate an international eSIM?
- 5 Alternatives similar to the international eSIM
- 6 Frequently asked questions about international eSIM
What is an international eSIM?
An international eSIM is a virtual SIM card that allows you to use the internet service abroad without the need to use your operator’s international roaming. With this product you will be able to travel with peace of mind in one or multiple countries around the world.
How does it work?
It works similarly to a local eSIM, installed via a QR code or activation code and activated instantly. International eSIMs do not usually require a passport or ID to purchase, which is quite beneficial for those who want it simple.
How and where to buy?
Now that you know how this wonderful product works, we tell you how to buy it. Actually you can buy it from anywhere in the world from an online store. In our case we recommend the Holafly international eSIM store. You can buy it easily without registering and the eSIM arrives in a matter of seconds.
Advantages and disadvantages of the international eSIM
Although international eSIMs are not perfect, they stand out for their great advantages, especially for those travelers who like convenience in their travels and peace of mind at all times.
- Convenience: When traveling to an unfamiliar country it is important to stay connected to the internet at all times. With an eSIM you get internet when you arrive at your destination without the need to search, speak other languages or wait in lines at local stores.
- Data sharing: with an international eSIM you have the facility to share your mobile data without restrictions. Share the data you need with your partner or companion. This way you avoid buying two SIM cards.
- Easy activation: turning on your data and roaming will activate the eSIM in a matter of minutes or even seconds.
- Incompatibility: as it is a recent technology, most cell phones are not compatible. It is expected that in the coming months and years manufacturers will implement eSIM. For the time being, the phones that support it are high-end and medium-high range phones.
- Data only: the international eSIM will allow you to connect to the Internet on your travels. However, if you need to make conventional calls, you will not be able to do so. An alternative solution is to use WhatsApp or Skype to communicate with your family or friends abroad.
Countries included in an international eSIM
Holafly has eSIM data to travel to different continents. Europe, America, Asia are the main ones. Similarly and for smaller destinations there are eSIMs for Africa and Oceania.
For Latino, U.S., Asian and African travelers there is eSIM Europe. If you are planning to visit the old continent, you have coverage in the following destinations:
Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, Sweden, Spain, Slovenia, Slovakia, Romania, Portugal, Norway, Netherlands, Malta, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Latvia, Italy, Ireland, Hungary, Greece, Germany, Georgia, France, Finland, Estonia, Denmark, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Belgium, Austria, Armenia and Jersey.
In America you have service with world renowned countries such as USA, Canada and Mexico. In addition to Latin countries among which are:
Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Chile, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Paraguay and Uruguay.
Asia is one of the countries where the language is totally different from western countries. For this reason it is advisable to take an international eSIM with you before traveling in order to avoid setbacks and to receive support in English. The destinations included are the following:
China, South Korea, Japan, Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Macau and Laos.
As we have already mentioned, in Africa the destinations are reduced, taking into account that in some of them having an Internet connection is a privilege and not a good mobile network connection. The countries included in the recommended international eSIM are:
Morocco, Egypt, Israel and South Africa.
On the continent where it is common to see kangaroos you will be able to enjoy a good Internet connection with an eSIM in the following destinations:
Australia and New Zealand.
How to activate an international eSIM?
The activation of an international eSIM is simple. After you make the purchase you receive an email with a QR code. This code must be scanned with your eSIM compatible iPhone, Samsung Galaxy or Huawei. By scanning the QR code you will be able to download the virtual SIM profile.
After downloading and installing the eSIM profile you only need to turn on mobile data and data roaming to activate your international eSIM. You will then be able to surf the Internet with complete peace of mind.
One important thing is to always select the international eSIM as the data line. If possible avoid inserting your usual SIM in your cell phone. This way you are preventing yourself from selecting the wrong SIM for mobile data abroad.
Alternatives similar to the international eSIM
As mentioned above, eSIM is a recent technology that solves Internet connection problems for travelers. Before this service arrived, there were and still are other options that you may be interested in knowing about, in case the eSIM does not meet your needs. Among them we have the following:
It is perhaps the best known service and you have it at hand in most cases, after getting a plan with your mobile operator. Some of them offer it for free (as is the case in the EU roaming) and sometimes there are special rates.
International roaming is usually expensive in most destinations. Paying for each MB spent is the norm, and must be borne by each traveler leaving his or her country.
Although not everything is discouraging, if you have registered your mobile number you will be able to continue using this service when roaming. This way you will be able to receive SMS if you need to make payments abroad. Normally receiving text messages while roaming is free of charge. The important thing is to clarify this issue with your bank before you leave.
Travel SIM cards
This alternative is the one that most closely resembles your local SIM card. In most cases they include a number and mainly mobile internet. There are prepaid travel eSIMs to use and dispose of, as well as subscription or contract eSIMs. The former are more convenient because they do not tie you down, nor do you have to sign or risk taking on usage commitments.
However, you should keep in mind that travel SIM cards are dedicated to that. Nothing else. Normally, you cannot receive messages from the bank and in many cases they do not include calls. Travel SIM cards are an excellent option for those who need to stay connected to the internet and use their social networks, upload photos to their networks and use Google Maps, among other uses.
Pocket WiFi for traveling
Being able to have a portable WiFi network always at hand, is the dream of many and the Pocket WiFi is a solution for it. With this device you will be able to connect to the internet on your travels through a wireless network that makes use of mobile data from a SIM card.
Pocket WiFi along with international roaming are the most expensive options for connecting to the internet abroad. With the service you have to keep in mind that you are paying not only for the use of mobile networks but also for the rental of the device, insurance, shipping and return.
Frequently asked questions about international eSIM
We will answer any questions you may have about this new service. You also have at your disposal the comments box to solve your doubts.
The price of an international eSIM depends on the continent you are traveling to and the number of days. In the example of this post the international eSIM cards are prepaid and include an amount of data adjusted to the days of travel.
This is the biggest advantage of this product. An international data eSIM can be delivered to your email in a matter of seconds or minutes. There is no need to wait hours to enjoy this service.
For now it is not possible. What you can do is to make calls using Apps that take advantage of your internet connection, also called VOIP calls.
At the moment this function is not enabled. However, this is not a disadvantage on your trips because you can receive conventional messages for free on your regular SIM.