One of the biggest concerns of tourists when traveling is to know how they will be able to use their cell phones in the country they are visiting. So, If you are a frequent traveler and need a lot more information for your trips, here we bring you a basic guide for travelers like you, to know how to use your cell phone in Mexico.
Nowadays, it is very easy to connect to the Mobile internet in Mexico in different ways when traveling to this country. So, here we will be talking about each of them, from the common SIM cards and new eSIMs, to roaming options, pocket wifi, and more!
Can I use my cell phone in Mexico?
Knowing whether you will be able to use your cell phone in Mexico will depend on different factors, such as the network frequencies that work in the country, and the different operator coverage availability, among others.
As for the network frequencies, you will have to verify if your cell phone works with the current network frequencies in Mexico, which are:
|5G Bands||n28a (700), n41 (2500), n78 (3500)|
|4G Bands||B2 (1900), B4 (1700/2100 AWS 1), B5 (850), B7 (2600), B28a (700), B66 (1700/2100)|
|3G Bands||B2 (1900), B4 (1700/2100 AWS A-F), B5 (850)|
|2G Bands||B2 (1900), B5 (850)|
On the other hand, in terms of coverage, in Mexico, there is excellent network coverage from the operators Telcel, AT&T, Movistar, and Ultravision. Likewise, the operators with the best coverage are Telcel and AT&T. If your phone complies with the above, then we will talk about the different alternatives to use your cell phone in Mexico.
What are the options for using a cell phone in Mexico?
As we already mentioned, it is very possible to use your cell phone during your trip to Mexico if you meet the requirements we previously mentioned. So if so, we will discuss all the options you have to use your cell phone during your trip. Among the list of options, we will be talking about eSIM and SIM cards, as well as local roaming, pocket wifi, and free internet.
eSIM for traveling to Mexico
First, let’s talk about what an eSIM is. This is new technology that allows you to stay connected to the internet with virtual SIM cards. They are basically integrated into smartphones, so no installation is required.
These eSIMs can be found very easily in different online stores. The store that we always recommend acquiring an eSIM from is Holafly, for all the advantages that you will have with them. Their eSIM for Mexico has the following features:
|Days of use||Amount of data||Price (USD)|
The store has unlimited data eSIM plans for Mexico, a big advantage over other providers. So, after reviewing the price, let’s discuss some advantages and disadvantages of Holafly’s eSIMs.
Having an eSIM with you while you are traveling, in this case to Mexico, brings many advantages. But you will be surprised to see all the advantages that you can have specifically with Holafly’s eSIM, so we will tell you about them below:
- The configuration of the eSIM is very simple since it is done through a QR code.
- You will be able to connect to the best connection network in Mexico, which is AT&T.
- You will be able to use WhatsApp in your native language.
- With Holafly you can count on a 24 hours a day technical service, and in different languages.
- In case you want to keep your SIM card you will be able to keep using it since your phone will work as a dual SIM phone.
On the other hand, any service will always have a disadvantage or two, so here are the disadvantages of Holafly’s eSIM:
- The eSIM only works for internet data, so you will not be able to make normal calls.
- It does not include text messages or calls.
- Not all cell phones are compatible with the eSIM, here are the cell phones that are.
The cell phones compatible with Holafly’s eSIM for Mexico are iPhone XS, XR onwards, including iPhone SE 2 (2020). Oppo Find X3 Pro, Reno 5A. Motorola Razr (2019). Motorola Razr 5GHuawei Mate 40 Pro. Google Pixel 3, 3a. Google Pixel 4, 4 XL, 4a, 5. Samsung Galaxy S20, S20+, and S20 Ultra onwards. Galaxy Fold, Fold 2, and up. Samsung Galaxy Galaxy Note 20 and onward. Samsung Galaxy Z Flip onwards. Huawei P40, P40 Pro
International SIM Card
In case your cell phone is incompatible with eSIM, don’t worry, your other alternative is a SIM card for Mexico from the Holafly store. You will have the advantage of receiving this SIM card quickly and being prepared for your trip. Here are the features of the Holafly Unlimited data SIM card for Mexico.
|Days of use||Amount of data||Price (USD)|
After knowing the prices that Holafly’s SIM card for Mexico offers you, let’s tell you about the pros and cons of this SIM card.
Advantages of the Holafly SIM card for Mobile internet in Mexico
Just like the eSIM for this country, Holafly’s data SIM card for Mexico has a series of advantages that you will definitely like and will be very useful:
- You can keep your WhatsApp number to continue using this app.
- Insert the SIM card in your cell phone upon landing, activate “Data Roaming”, and you will have internet.
- You will have Unlimited data
- Customer support 24 hours a day, in the Holafly online store chat. In addition, there is mail and WhatsApp support.
- Your cell phone will connect to Movistar or AT&T Mexico networks.
Negative points of Holafly’s SIM card for internet in Mexico
This physical SIM card to have internet in Mexico, despite having several advantages, also has its negative points. See these aspects in cons of this SIM card:
- It does not include SMS, received or sent.
- No incoming or outgoing calls.
Another way you can also connect to the internet is through Pocket WiFi in Mexico. These are devices that allow you to stay connected to the internet through a signal sent to the connected devices. This equipment is very famous among travelers who go out on adventures in groups!
However, one thing you should keep in mind about Pocket WiFi is that they tend to be quite expensive. Besides, if it gets lost or stolen, you will have to pay a very high penalty, so you will have to take good care of it at all times.
In case you are looking for a much more economical option during your trip, nowadays, it is effortless to find places where you can have free internet in Mexico. From hotels, shopping malls, or restaurants you can ask for a free wifi connection.
Even so, it is important to know that this is not the safest way to use your cell phone, since many people tend to connect to these networks, so in addition to being a slow connection, it could cause security problems. It is definitely not the first option that we would recommend choosing; however, it is good that you take it into account in case of an emergency.
Can I use my phone service in Mexico?
If you have internet service for your cell phone with an operator from your country, and you want to use it in Mexico, most probably you will be able to use it. Each operator has the option of international roaming for Mexico, which you can activate with your operator so that you can use cellular data.
Depending on the carrier you are affiliated with, you can choose to continue using network connectivity just like at home, or purchase different roaming plans. With this roaming option, you will be able to make use of cellular data, text messaging and calls, however, you should consider that when you get home after your trip you will probably come to a hefty bill.
Below we will discuss two carriers with which you can use your cell phone in Mexico, AT&T and Verizon.
Using my cell phone in Mexico with AT&T
If you are an AT&T user, with this one you will be able to activate the roaming option on your trip to Mexico. AT&T has a plan called AT&T International Day Pass, which allows you to use your internet plan in more than 210 destinations, including Mexico. With this plan, you can have unlimited high-speed data, make calls, and send and receive text messages. The price of this plan is $10 per day, which is quite expensive compared to other options, but it will bring you many benefits.
However, if you prefer another option, AT&T also allows you to stay connected with pay-per-use data. With this plan, the price for data usage is $2.05 USD per MB. It is important to know that AT&T is also a Mexican carrier, so you’ll probably have an excellent network connection in Mexico.
Using my cell phone in Mexico with Verizon
The company also allows you to use its data services with a pay-as-you-go plan, the price of which varies depending on the destination, but it is usually around $2 USD per MB. Although the company offers some packages of different MB, the most common one is the Travel Pass in which you must pay $10 USD per day for your domestic data allowance, unlimited texts, and calls.
Local Mobile operators in Mexico
Finally, we will talk about the last alternative you could count on in case you want to stay connected with your cellphone on your trip to Mexico. We will talk about the local operators in Mexico, who will offer you different ways to connect to the internet. Once you arrive at the airport in Mexico you will be able to find physical points of sale for different operators.
Among the main operators that make life in Mexico, we find Telcel, Movistar Mexico, and AT&T Mexico. Each of these carriers has its advantages, however many people comment that AT&T Mexico is one of the carriers with the best connections.
How much does it cost to use my cell phone in Mexico?
After discussing all the alternatives with which you can use your cell phone in Mexico, here we provide a summary of each one of them along with the rates of the expenses you will have:
|Service||Internet tariff in Mexico (USD)|
|eSIM card Mexico||Unlimited data for 30 days for $64 USD|
|SIM Mexico||Unlimited data for 15 days at $51.36 USD|
|AT&T USA carrier roaming||$2.05/MB|
|Verizone Roaming in Mexico||$2 /MB|
|Pocket WiFi||$84 to $122 USD+ shipping for 7 days|
After the above pricing table, we can see that the cheapest option is free wifi; however, this is not the safest option. So, the best option, in the end, is to purchase an eSIM or SIM card from Holafly, as compared to the other options it is cheaper and more secure.
If you would like to read more about how to stay connected to the internet during your travels we recommend you to read the following articles: