Best prepaid SIM cards for travel to Canada in 2023

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You’re traveling to Canada and want to stay connected to the internet without paying roaming charges, with the peace of mind of being able to contact your family or find a restaurant nearby. You will get all this with a prepaid SIM card for Canada.

Therefore, we prepared an article with the comparison, advantages, disadvantages, and how to buy the best SIM card to travel to Canada without leaving home and from the comfort of your couch. Moving forward, we tell you that if your cell phone works with eSIM, you will be able to know which Canadian operators accept this benefit so you can know which eSIM cards Canada to look for.


Where to buy a SIM card for Canada?

It may not seem so familiar, but you have to remember that as a tourist, you can find many options for you. It is now easy to buy a prepaid SIM card for Canada before your trip and from home, thanks to the online stores that offer these services to travelers. Also, if you have the new eSIM available on your phone, the installation process is even more straightforward!

On the other hand, you can also buy locally in Canada once you arrive there. When you are there, you will have options for tourists from the carriers that work in the territory. Remember that you will not have mobile internet to use your phone until you find a physical store of these operators and make the process of buying and registering your SIM card.

Easy to buy

Nowadays, internet connection should not be difficult, thanks to how accessible it has become. While abroad, it should be no different, and the truth is that online stores are the ones that have taken the responsibility of directing prepaid SIM cards to travelers. Many of these providers have international shipping worldwide to make it possible to deliver the chips to customers before they leave.

They also simplify the purchasing process, so you don’t have to sign contracts and go through registration as with local solutions. The main thing is to confirm if the store can deliver to your address. Another advance that helps us even more is the embedded SIM card or eSIM, which are virtual chips that allow us to buy and instantly receive our service! We will comment on this option later.

Buy before you travel.

This way is undoubtedly the most beneficial and often the most affordable way to travel. Buying a physical SIM card or a virtual SIM card before your trip will allow you to be connected from the first moment you arrive in Canada. This is ideal when visiting a country we do not know to solve any inconvenience we may have. From ordering a cab to finding an address, having internet abroad simplifies our trip. 

By searching the web, you can find numerous online providers with which to buy a prepaid SIM card or an eSIM. One of the main recommendations we can give you is to use Holafly’s online store to solve your communication in Canada. They have a digital SIM card for this country with excellent coverage. You can also choose other options, but always check which local operator you will be connected with once you arrive in Canada.

Buy upon arrival

As a last alternative, we have the option of buying a tourist SIM card locally when we arrive in Canada. This must be done through a Canadian operator, which has stores throughout the country that we can go to. Three of the major phone companies are Rogers, Telus, and Freedom Mobile, all of which have SIM cards that foreigners can purchase. 

You should remember that the options for tourists are reduced compared to the plans for residents, so you should choose the one you find convenient. You will also often be asked for personal information and valid documents to proceed with the purchase. Once you purchase the SIM card, you must register it as the law requires. In some cases, you may be asked to confirm the IMEI of your phone and its compatibility with local networks.

Rogers, Telus, and Freedom stores in Canada

One of the first steps to buying a prepaid SIM card locally in Canada is to look for physical stores of any of these three operators. The first place to find them is at the airport. For example, Toronto Pearson Airport has phone and technology stores in its terminals selling SIM cards for tourists.

We can also find options in the city where you arrive, from supermarkets, electronics stores, and branches of the operators, even franchises like 7-Eleven sell these SIM cards for you! We recommend you use the maps that the phone companies have to locate the options you can take before arriving and have an overview of where to go.

How much does a SIM card cost to travel to Canada?

We have talked so far about three Canadian operators, but in the country, there are other options known as MVNOs from which you can buy prepaid SIM cards. Despite this, they all use the same main networks, so the costs of their services are very similar.

In Canada, you can pay 30$ for basic text, calls, and data options for tourists. Up to $55 for options with more data in case you are a more demanding user. All plans available are for use within thirty days, and there are no unlimited data options for tourists, only plans with 8GB of browsing maximum. Only for postpaid customers will we find plans with unlimited data.

eSIM card for Canada, the new alternative

eSIM for Canada

If you don’t know them yet, you can see the eSIM card as the virtual evolution of the traditional physical SIM card. This represents an advantage for tourists since you can buy them and install them almost instantly in just minutes, no matter if you do it before your trip or once you are in Canada! They are the perfect technology for all types of travelers.

One of the best-known stories to get these services is Holafly. They have options for more than 160 countries and even regional eSIMs with which you will have coverage in several countries. You can buy a virtual SIM card for North America with coverage in Canada, USA, and Mexico.

With an eSIM for Canada with unlimited data from Holafly, you won’t take time out of your trip to look for a physical store. There are just a few things to keep in mind before buying one.

  • You must have a valid email address to receive your virtual SIM card as a QR code after your purchase. The installation will only take a few minutes. 
  • Virtual SIM cards must have a compatible phone to work. Holafly has an up-to-date list of compatible phones.
  • The first time you activate the eSIM, you must have an internet connection. This is why it is recommended to do it before traveling, or if you are in Canada, look for a secure WiFi zone while you install it.

Holafly online store

Holafly has become very popular thanks to the accessibility it provides to its users. It has pages in more than ten languages, and you can see the costs of its services in various international currencies. Purchasing is effortless, and they have 24/7 multilingual customer service for any problem

When you are in Canada, the Holafly eSIM will connect to the Rogers network, one of the best in the country. This can be confirmed in the technical specs of the virtual SIM card for each of the destinations. Five plans are available for Canada, each with good unlimited browsing data. 

One of the best features of Holafly is that it allows you to top-up your service for the same destination whenever you need it. If you need more days or more data service, you can buy an extension that will be activated in your eSIM automatically without having to install it again. 

Another vital advantage to know is that you can use at the same time the Holafly eSIM and the physical SIM card you have at home. So it won’t affect your service, and you won’t have to install it once you arrive. You also keep your local WhatsApp number to be contacted more easily.

Disadvantages of Holafly’s eSIM card

Among all the positive aspects, there are also some disadvantages of this provider. With the digital SIM card for Canada, you will not be able to make analog calls as it does not include a phone number. This is only for browsing data. You will be able to call using applications such as WhatsApp or Skype.

How can I shop at Holafly?

Shopping is the easiest with Holafly; visit their official website and search for Canada as your destination. You will see the available plans to choose from. When you select one, you can proceed to checkout. Before paying, you will be asked to confirm the product and enter your contact information. Select one of the payment methods, among which are credit cards, Paypal, and others. Finally, you will receive your virtual SIM card in the email and you can install the service on your phone.

How much does the eSIM for Canada cost?

Below is a comparison of the plans Holafly has for its eSIM for Canada.

5Unlimited data$27
7Unlimited data$34
10Unlimited data$37
15Unlimited data$47
20Unlimited data$44
Table N°1. Holafly eSIM Canada Pricing Table

eSIM North America card, with coverage in Canada, Mexico, and the U.S.

5Unlimited data$27
7Unlimited data$34
10Unlimited data$44
15Unlimited data$54
20Unlimited data$64
30Unlimited data$87
60Unlimited data$144
90Unlimited data$214
Table N°2. Holafly eSIM North America Pricing Table

Frequently Asked Questions about Internet and SIM card for Canada

How to get internet in Canada?

With a SIM card or virtual SIM card, connecting to roaming, portable WiFi, or even the “Free” WiFi of establishments. These are some ways to have internet in Canada.

How much does roaming cost in Canada?

According to the details shown in our article roaming in Canada. Operators usually charge up to 12 euros per MB consumed outside Europe.

How to choose a data SIM card to have internet and telephone in Canada?

It is essential that when choosing a SIM card for Canada, you pay close attention to the quality-price ratio. If it has unlimited data, includes phone numbers, local calls, and SMS, allows sharing data, coverage in Canada, etc.

Where to buy a data-only SIM card?

You can purchase before traveling to Canada with online providers. At your destination, you can purchase these cards in supermarkets like Walmart or specialized stores.

How much does a SIM card for Canada cost?

The price depends on the data plan, days, and validity of the SIM card you buy. For example, at Holafly, eSIM for Canada costs 34$, and you can receive them immediately and install them on your phone in just minutes.

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