Thailand is a southeast Asian country which holds places worth visiting. Its vast landscapes are diverse melting pot of different cultures, places, and wildlife. There are a lot of places to visit in the country especially when it comes to natural wonders. One place you can visit is Railay Beach located in the province of Krabi. The beach is one of the most famous beaches in the country, with its white sand, glass like water and stunning islands. Another place worth visiting is Koh Phi Phi also located in the province of Krabi. The island holds Monkey Beach where you can visit a number of species of monkeys. If you want to learn about the country’s rich history, you should visit The Grand Palace located in Bangkok. If you want to have a taste of what Thailand offers when it comes to food, the Sunday Walking Street is the place for you as it offers a number of good and very affordable street food.
Are you looking forward on travelling to Thailand? We’ll help you get one thing off your mind. We will guide you on buying a SIM card for your travel in this wonderful country.
The First Thing You Need To Do
The first step to buying a SIM card actually doesn’t start itself but rather with our cellphones. Why? Most of the time, especially if you buy your phone from a particular service provider you can only use your phone exclusively with that provider hence you’ll need to get unlocked. An unlocked phone means that you can use it with any SIM Card.
It is worth mentioning that though most phones are now readily unlocked depending on its brand and who you bought it from, it’s necessary that you check your phone if it’s locked or unlocked. There’s a simple way of checking if your phone is locked, simply turn off your phone and replace the original SIM Card with a different SIM card from a different SIM Card provider. If a message such as “Restricted” and “Contact your service provider” your phone is locked. If you can still operate your phone and make calls and texts, good, it means that your phone is unlocked. If it is no need to worry, simply contact your service provider to get it unlocked. If for any reasons (like a lock up period) your service provider declines to unlock your phone, simply seek help from an independent phone store or tech store and ask your phone to be unlocked, this usually costs only a small amount.
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Choosing A SIM Card
In order to buy a SIM card in Thailand, one must show a form of identification such as a passport and expect your photo to be taken before buying one. After that everything will be a breeze as the SIM card will be already activated once given to you. There are three service providers in Thailand:
AIS is the largest service provider in the country. They offer four kinds of SIM cards: Super Play 4G costs THB15 and comes with 1GB worth of data. Zeed 4G costs THB100 and comes with 500MB worth of data, 2GB worth of data specifically for YouTube which is valid for one month. Super Social 4G costs THB100 and comes with unlimited Facebook, LINE, Kakao Talk, Wechat, Twitter and Whatsapp use and 1GB worth of data. They also offer a data only SIM card call Net SIM 4G which comes with 1GB worth of data.
They also offer SIM cards that specifically caters to tourists. Traveler SIM THB299 comes with unlimited internet for eight days. Traveler SIM THB599 comes with unlimited internet for 15 days. You can top it off with these packages: For THB50 you get 160MB worth of data valid for one day. For THB270 you get 1.5GB worth of data valid for ten days. For THB690 you get 3GB worth of data valid for 15 days.
DTAC is the second largest service provider in Thailand. They offer two main SIM cards: Super 4G SIM costs THB150 and Social Hero SIM which costs THB100, comes with free social media apps use and 1GB worth of data valid for seven days. They also offer SIM cards that specifically caters to tourists. Happy Tourist SIM 299 costs THB299 and comes with THB100 worth of credit and unlimited internet for seven days. Happy Tourist SIM 599 costs THB599 and comes with THB100 worth of credit and unlimited internet for 15 days. You can top it off with these packages: For THB229 you get 1GB worth of data, 30 minutes of call and is valid for seven days. For THB429 you get 4GB worth of data, 30 minutes of call and is valid for 30 days. For THB700 you get 6GB worth of data, 50 minutes of call and is valid for 30 days.
TrueMove H is the smallest service provider in the country. For THB159 you get a SIM card with 1.5GB worth of data valid for seven days. For THB199 you get a SIM card with 1GB worth of data valid for 30 days. For THB250 you get a SIM card with 2GB worth of data valid for 30 days. For THB399 you get a SIM card with 3GB worth of data valid for 30 days. For THB699 you get a SIM card with 6GB worth of data valid for 30 days.
They also offer SIM cards that specifically caters to tourists. Starter Pack costs THB49 which comes with 90MB worth of data, THB20 worth of credit and is valid for 30 days. Value Pack costs THB299 which comes with unlimited worth of data, THB100 worth of call credit and is valid for seven days.
When it comes to coverage all service providers have equal strengths and scope and is strongest in major cities. Though there might be weak to none in rural areas.
So where do you buy one?
With consideration to Thailand’s process when it comes to purchasing a SIM card we highly encourage you to buy from the official stores and authorized resellers as paperwork needs to be done and assistance in setting up the SIM card is readily available, especially if you have limited knowledge of the native language. However, top ups are available practically everywhere from supermarkets, news agents, gas stations and even corner stores. You can also avail and activate top ups online.
Remember to prepare passport before purchasing a SIM card and do the necessary paper works. Expect that a photo of you will be taken. You can only do these in official stores, hence it is important that you buy from one as you’ll need to go there anyway, if you buy your SIM card elsewhere. This also ensures the legitimacy of the product and you’ll have the advantage as assistance as it is readily available in the official stores. Another important reminder is to don’t buy SIM cards in the street as it is possible that it previously belonged to someone and using it is illegal. There are a variety of choices to choose from. Make sure that whatever you’re getting will suit all of your needs throughout your visit in the country.