Sim card for Europe for iPhone 5?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by musiclvr, Jun 21, 2014.

  1. musiclvr macrumors member

    Oct 4, 2011
    I will be going to 5 countries (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, and France) for 2 weeks. I will be making a few calls/text but I mainly need it for the data (maps, etc).

    From what I've heard so far, buying a prepaid SIM card is my best option (and significantly cheaper than an international plan from AT&T).

    It seems as though everyone gets the SIM card once they are over there...BUT I'd like to get it in advance. Does anyone know the best way to go about getting a prepaid SIM card before I leave for Europe?
  2. bandofbrothers macrumors 601


    Oct 14, 2007
  3. 617aircav Suspended

    Jul 2, 2012
  4. EDH667 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 25, 2009
    Northern California
    Since you are going to so many countries it may be difficult to find one SIM that will work for all the countries without paying for roaming. You may want to use AT&T's international data and phone package for use throughout your travels (although expensive, you won't have to switch sims as you travel into each country).

    When I travel to only one or two countries I tend to purchase a prepaid SIM through eBay so I'm up and running when I arrive. I have read that at some countries, buying a SIM at the airport can take an hour or two while they get approvals through the government. If you go this route be sure you know how to change the voice prompts to English (I have been very frustrated in Italy and Spain trying to switch the voice prompts to English).

    Another option is Telestial, I purchased a 1 GB SIM from them in the past and used it in a portable Hot Spot which worked throughout all of Europe.

    Also reiterating the above poster, be sure your iPhone 5 is unlocked through AT&T. Submit your request at
  5. iolinux333 macrumors 68000

    Feb 9, 2014
    How much per GB of data are these things purchased at the airport usually? Does a data only SIM work in an unlocked iPhone 5 or a 5s if one does not care about making phone calls?
  6. Samanosuke macrumors 6502

    Mar 21, 2013
    Why not get a t-mobile sim, they give unlimited 2g data and unlimited texts.....

    Im currently in Europe for my second month out of 3 and will be here till the end of august and Im surviving off of this....
  7. DerekRod macrumors 6502a


    Jan 18, 2012
    Didn't the EU pass some law killing overages.Basically whatever plan you have in your home country will apply in the other EU member countries?
  8. IndyBob macrumors member


    Sep 23, 2012

    I have had good luck with ordering from before leaving the US. They have an "International" SIM that is good in several countries.
  9. bkends35 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 24, 2013
    I've been in Ireland and the UK for the past week and I've bought two "3" sims for my unlocked 5s, for 20 euro and 15 pounds respectively. I've gotten unlimited data, and lots of calls and texts (can't remember exact numbers). Coverage is very good and you get tethering as well. I'd recommend just buying a new sim in the different countries because otherwise you'll be roaming if you just buy one to my understanding. They can be found in the airport, convenience stores and cell phone shops obviously. Have fun!
  10. bigchrisfgb macrumors 65816

    Jan 24, 2010
    It doesn't come into effect until the end of next year. Also Switzerland isn't included in it as it's not an EU state.
  11. 617aircav Suspended

    Jul 2, 2012
    I went to London and bought a Vodafone prepaid SIM for 1 pound. I was able to roam with it to Switzerland. I used data and made most calls while on WiFi.
  12. Merkie macrumors 68020

    Oct 23, 2008
    Yes, but that doesn't go into effect until June 1st 2015 I believe.

Share This Page