How Much Do Thai Sim Cards Cost?

How Much Do Thai Sim Cards Cost?

There are an increasing number of ways to use an overseas SIM card while in Thailand.  Google Voice and the advent of the eSIM has made it rather more affordable than paying for international roaming if you need to retain an overseas phone number, albeit often pricey in the case of the latter.

It usually proves to be far more cost-effective, and convenient, to get a Thai SIM card – even for a short visit. Data speeds can be very fast in Thailand, and Chiang Mai has good 5G coverage.

You’ll soon spot that Thais are attached to their phones at all times, which means there are no shortage of options whatever your budget or data usage level.

Tourist SIM Cards

How Much Do Thai Sim Cards Cost?

If you arrive in Thailand by air, as soon as you get through immigration you will barely have time to breathe in the warm Thai air before someone calls you over to sell you a SIM card.

At least one of the main providers – AIS, TrueMove H, and D-Tac – will have booths at the main airports, including Chiang Mai.

For under 1,000 baht you’ll quickly have a pre-paid SIM card in your phone with plenty of data and perhaps even some call allowance for the next 30 days. These booths are there to sell their tourist packages and unlikely to offer you a longer-term package if you plan to stay for longer than a few weeks. You can get 7-days’ worth of data for around 300 baht, though, so you at least be connected to the world before you leave the airport.

If you can be patient (perhaps pay for a day or two’s roaming from your overseas provider), then you can widen your options and likely find a better value deal in the city.

Longer-Term SIM Packages

How Much Do Thai Sim Cards Cost?

The main providers have stores in the malls, and around the city, and are the best places to find the full range of packages. In fact, some of the better deals can only be accessed in-store.

Packages will range from 50 baht to 700 baht a month, depending on what you need, but most visitors can manage perfectly well with data-only packages somewhere in the middle of that range.

The longer you commit to the better value you will get. A popular 12-month package amongst expats that AIS currently offer includes 100Gb of data per month for 2300 baht. You’d do very well to exceed that, unless you use it to stream videos most of the day!

The other main providers offer similar packages, so shop around and you’ll find a package that fits your needs and at a very reasonable cost.

What Are eSIMs?

How Much Do Thai Sim Cards Cost?

An eSIM is a digital version of the physical SIM card you can remove and replace in your mobile phone. Most leading phone manufacturers now offer their phones with a programmable SIM embedded into the phone – most of them in addition to a physical SIM.

This means that you don’t need a physical SIM in your phone – or keep a foreign SIM in it – and when you travel between countries pay an eSIM service to add coverage in almost any country.

The cost of eSIMs can vary from service to service, but is rarely cheaper than getting a physical SIM with a Thai mobile provider. You will find limited data services from 500 baht for two weeks, wheras for unlimited data it is likely to cost more like 800-1000 baht.

You also won’t get some of the benefits local mobile providers offer in terms of discounts and loyalty, or control which provider’s service you are connected to.

As eSIMs are relatively new to the market, pricing and functionality are likely to improve as they increase in popularity.

One thing is for sure, you will need at least some data allowance whilst in Chiang Mai. Thailand is by no means behind when it comes to being online on the go, with apps like Grab, Bolt, and Foodpanda meaning anything you might need or want is available right from your phone.

It’s very affordable to stay connected if you shop around a little for a SIM card and the right package for you.

Most day-to-day living costs are very affordable in Chiang Mai, including:

Utility Costs In Chiang Mai

Banking Costs In Chiang Mai

Alcohol And Tobacco Costs In Chiang Mai

Transportation Costs In Chiang Mai

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