Roaming in Latin America: prices and how to activate it

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Many travelers decide to visit this wonderful Continent because of its countries full of wonders. But not all of them know how to connect to the internet, so they end up using the international roaming service. If this is your case, and you want to use this option, in this article, you are going to find all the information about international roaming in Latin America.

We are going to tell you how to activate it, prices, and more. But we will also show you other alternatives to connect to the internet during your trip that may be a great option, such as the eSIM card for Latin America, which we will talk about later.

Roaming in Latin America from different operators: a comparison

You probably want to know about each company’s price and data plans, so you can pick the one that best suits your needs and budget. In the comparison table below, you are going to find this information about mobile operators that offer roaming services.

Cellular operatorCellular data / Internet
AT&T$2.05/MB
T-Mobile$15/MB
Verizon10$/per day – 100$ (International Monthly Pass) – $2.05/MB
Three$6 per MB.
O2$6/day
Vodafone$6.05/MB
Rogers$15/ 10MB
Telus$9/per day
Telstra$10/day
Optus$2/MB
Comparison table between the prices of each company.

How much does the roaming service cost from the main operators in Latin America?

The first thing you have to know about this service is that the price is going to vary depending on the operator you use. It is because the roaming service works with accords with mobile operators, which means that your operator lets you connect to the services of a mobile operator from the country you are visiting. And the price for doing that is the one you have to pay at the end of your trip.

To know how much it will cost, mobile operators use rates by use or zones, that’s why it is a little bit more accessible to activate this service in some destinations. Since all the countries in Latin America belong to the same region, they will have similar prices.

Roaming in Latin America from AT&T

This is one of the biggest mobile companies in many countries. It will let you use all the mobile services in Latin America through different options. First, the International Day Pass is a plan with which you will be able to use your phone services, paying only $10 a day. On the other hand, AT&T offers the pay-per-use service, with which you will have to pay the following for the service you use:

  • Calls: $3 per minute.
  • Send texts: $0.50/message
  • Send pictures and videos: $1.30/message
  • Internet: $2.05

T-Mobile roaming in Latin America

Those who are T-mobile users and currently have one of the Simple Global Plans will be able to use the roaming service at no extra cost during their trip. They will only have to pay for calling minutes, which is $0.25 per minute. On the other hand, users with any of T-mobile’s other plans will have to pay for usage, and specifically, the cost of T-mobile’s internet is quite high, which you can see below:

  • Internet: $15/MB.
  • Calls made: $0.25/min.
  • SMS: $0.50 per text.

What’s the price of the Verizon roaming service in Latin America?

Verizon offers its users the ability to activate international roaming while traveling in three different ways. First, the International Travel Pass costs $10 per day, with which people can enjoy unlimited data. On the other hand, the International Monthly Pass costs $100 per month and is ideal for those who will be making long trips. Finally, the pay-per-use service has the following costs:

  • Calls made: $1.79/minute
  • SMS: $0.50.
  • Internet: $2.05/MB.

Three roaming in Latin America

If you are a Three user, and you want to connect to the internet in Latin America, then you’ll be able to activate the roaming through the pay-per-use services. Before activating it, we recommend you take into account the following prices:

  • Calling a UK number: $2 per minute.
  • Calling a local number: $2 per minute.
  • Receiving calls from any number: $1.25 per minute
  • Texts to the UK: $0.65 per text
  • Data: $6 per MB
  • Using voicemail: $2 per minute

O2 price for the roaming service in Latin America

It is a widely used operator in the UK and Europe. Therefore, if you are a user of this company, you will be able to use its roaming service in most Latin American countries. You will have to activate the O2 Travel Bolt On, which costs $6 per day, and includes unlimited data, minutes to make and receive calls, and unlimited texts to send.

Roaming with Vodafone in Latin America

Vodafone users who want to connect to the internet in Latin America will have to pay the following price:

  • Calls made: $1.69/min + $1.21 for call establishment (VAT included)
  • Received calls: $1.69/min + $1.21 for call establishment (VAT included)
  • SMS Sent: $1.21 per message sent (VAT included)
  • Received SMS: free
  • Data: $6.05/MB (VAT included)

How much does it cost to connect to the internet in Latin America with Rogers?

If you want to connect to the internet using this company, the prices you are going to pay are the following:

  • Call: $3 per minute
  • Text: $0.75 per text
  • Data: $15 per 10 MB

However, this company also offers its users a plan called Roam Like Home, with which they can enjoy its telephone services while they are in another country, paying only $15 per day.

Roaming in Latin America with Telus

Like Rogers, Telus is also a Canadian company. So if you are a user of this operator and you wish to use the roaming service for your trip to a Latin American country, then you will be able to do so. However, remember that you will need to verify that the carrier covers the country you are visiting. Telus roaming costs $15 per day with the Easy Roam Plan, and the pay-per-use service has the following costs:

  • Internet: $10 per MB.
  • Calls: $3.50 per minute.
  • Send SMS: $0.75 per text.

Roaming in Latin America with Telstra

Telstra users will only be able to use the roaming service in Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Mexico, and Panama, with the Day Pass. This is a plan that includes 1GB of data, unlimited calls, plus SMS at the cost of $10 per day. In case of needing more data during the day, people can top up for $10 per GB. In the case of roaming in Peru, users will also be able to use roaming, but with no data available.

Roaming in Latin America with Optus

Finally, Optus also offers to roam to certain Latin American countries.  So if you are a customer of this company, you can enjoy roaming services at the following prices:

  • Calls made to locals: $1.90 per minute
  • Calls made to other countries: $5.80 per minute
  • Received calls: $1.65 per minute
  • SMS: $0.55 for each SMS
  • Data: $2 per MB

Roaming alternatives for Latin America

In case the prices of the previous companies did not convince you, we are going to show you below other alternatives that may be better for you. Their prices are a little bit more accessible, and there are some options like the eSIM card for Latin America, that will offer additional benefits, like sharing your mobile data, customer service and support, and more.

Holafly eSIM cards for Latin America

Holafly virtual store. Source: Holafly.

As we told you before, the international eSIM card with mobile data, like the eSIM card for Latin America is one of the best alternatives. It is accessible, and since it is a virtual device, its shipping is free and immediate. You receive the product in your email after you make the purchase.

To acquire it, you have to find an international eSIM card provider, like Holafly. Once you enter the Holafly virtual store, all you have to do is to look for the destination you want and pick the data plan you need. Remember that your cellphone must be eSIM compatible.

Advantages:

  • You can buy it and activate it in less than a minute.
  • 24-hour customer service and support.
  • You will be able to use it simultaneously with your SIM card.
  • Keep your number.

Disadvantages:

  • You won’t be able to make calls without using mobile apps like Whatsapp or Skype.
  • Your cellphone must be eSIM compatible. We recommend you check this on the eSIM-supported cell phones list.

Free Wifi in Latin America

Free Wifi
Free Wifi representation. Source: Pexels.

Another way to connect to the internet in Latin America is using the public Wifi points you can find in different places. Anyway, we recommend you be careful if you connect to these networks because they are not safe and your information can be easily stolen.

Advantages:

  • Internet with no MB restrictions.
  • Free.
  • You can find them in different places.

Disadvantages:

  • It is not stable or fast.
  • It is not safe. Your personal information can be easily stolen, such as your email accounts, or passwords.

Renting a Pocket Wifi

Finally, you can connect to the internet using Pocket Wifi. It is a small router that you can carry in your pocket and will create a private Wifi network for you and your friends to connect to the internet. We don’t recommend you this alternative if you are traveling alone.

Advantages:

  • It offers many MB.
  • It is a portable device so that you can take it anywhere.

Disadvantages:

  • If you lose it, you will have to pay for it, because it is not protected against loss or theft.
  • You have to make sure you charge it because if it’s not charged, you won’t be able to use your data.
  • It is more expensive than prepaid SIM cards for Latin America.

How to activate roaming in Latin America?

In case you decide to use the international roaming service anyway because you don’t want to acquire any extra device, you can activate it following the steps shown in the list below:

  • AT&T: find the “Roaming” option and activate it through your cellular settings.
  • T-Mobile: call dialing #RON# or #ROF#
  • Verizon: find the “Mobile/Cellular Data” option on your phone settings, and once in there, activate the “Roaming” option.
  • Three: Turn on the roaming on the Mobile/Cellular Data option.
  • O2: text O2TRAVEL to 23336.
  • Vodafone: it is activated from its website in the private area or it’s My Vodafone App
  • Rogers: On your device, go to “Settings”, find the “Mobile/Cellular Data” menu, and then press on the “Roaming” option to activate or deactivate the service.
  • Telus: you can activate it through the company website or send a message to 7626.
  • Telstra: online via their website in My Account site or through the Telstra App.
  • Optus: You can activate it through the My Optus app.
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