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As globalization paves the way for increased international travel, the need for reliable and cost-effective mobile connectivity is growing. Travellers often consider two popular options: local SIM cards and international roaming SIM cards. In this article, we’ll explore these options, weigh their pros and cons, and help you understand which might be the right choice for your travel needs. We’ll also address a commonly asked question: how to turn on international roaming.
Table of Contents
Understanding the Basics
Let’s start with the basics. A local SIM card is a chip that you purchase upon arrival in your destination country. It allows you to access local network services at local rates. On the other hand, an international roaming SIM card is your home country’s SIM that can be used abroad. When you turn on international roaming, your device will connect to foreign networks, allowing you to retain your home country number while you travel.
The Case for Local SIM Cards
Basically, local SIMs are apt for travellers staying in one country for an extended period and who don’t mind using a new, temporary phone number.
However, purchasing a local SIM card can sometimes be a hassle and it has several drawbacks too. Firstly, the entire process of SIM change can be quite daunting. From finding a store, understanding the different plans on offer, to potentially dealing with language barriers. Moreover, you must also submit your documents to the local SIM card provider (which could be risky in some cases), Also, not to forget the unreliable network issues which could result in you missing out on important calls/messages from loved ones in India.
Hence, all these issues make the local SIM card experience cumbersome. Then, what should you do in such a case? Get an international SIM card.
The Case for International Roaming SIM Cards
On the flip side, using an international roaming SIM card presents the allure of convenience. Activating international roaming before your departure is straightforward. It allows you to retain your original phone number, a benefit that lets you stay connected with your contacts back home without the need for notifying them about number changes.
So, how to turn on international roaming? The process usually involves contacting your service provider before your trip, selecting a suitable roaming plan, and enabling roaming settings on your phone. This ensures a seamless transition from your home network to the foreign network as soon as you land.
An international roaming SIM card is often the best choice for business travellers or those visiting multiple countries in quick succession.
Making the Right Choice
Choosing between a local SIM and an international roaming SIM card largely depends on your travel needs, budget, and the length of your stay. But ideally, you should always choose an international roaming plan, simply because it is safer, you get to keep your own phone number etc. In addition, local SIM plans may not be clear to you, and customers are asked to present their documents to the SIM card providers, which could be a risky move considering that you are in a foreign land.
To make sure you get the best deal on your international roaming plan, choose Airtel. Whether you are an Airtel prepaid international roaming or Airtel postpaid international roaming customer, there are incredible deals for you on both sides.