Austria is a country often overlooked but shouldn’t be. It is a country that distincts itself from its neighboring countries. It has a lot to be proud of, from its natural wonders, unique culture, cities and its people. This country is the home of many outstanding people, like Mozart and Freud. It’s natural wonders are one of a kind. You can visit places like Eisriesenwelt Cave, which is home to a unique ice cave or Krimmler Ache, a dreamy waterfalls. It’s unique alpine landscape like, St. Anton am Alberg and Zell am See are famous especially for hikers and skiers. You can also visit places that shows the country’s rich history like Innsbruck, Krems, Vienna State Opera, Mirabell Palace and the Styrian Armoury.
If you’re looking forward on travelling to Austria, 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. You can do this by calling your service provider but if in any instance your service providers decline because of things like lock in periods, you can easily seek help from independent tech shops.
Choosing A SIM Card
Before we get started, it is worth mentioning that if you’re coming from other parts of Europe it’s not really necessary for one to buy a new SIM Card as it will work fine in Austria though do this with precaution and inquire with your service provider as terms and conditions may vary from one European Country to another and might cost unwanted charges. The best thing to do is call your service provider and ask for additional costs.
Book your accommodation now with Booking.com! Save upto 70%!
Another thing worth mentioning is that in 15th of June 2017, roaming services for countries which are a part of the European Union are cancelled meaning there are no additional charges for utilizing data, texts and costs without additional costs. We would like to emphasize this as this is only applicable to countries belonging to the European Union and not Europe itself and it is not applicable to countries like Turkey and Switzerland.
There is no need to present any sort of identification when buying a SIM card in Austria. The whole process is relatively fast and easy. There are three major service providers in Austria:
A1 is the leading service provider in Austria. Please note that A1 does not offer any international roaming packages. They offer a B.Free SIM card that comes with several packages: B.Free S costs €10 and comes with 1000 minutes of call and text messages, unlimited calls and texts to other A1 users and data base rate is €0.40 per MB. B.Free L costs €15 and comes with 1000 minutes of call and text messages, unlimited calls and texts to other A1 users and 4GB worth of data. B.Free Premium costs €20 and comes with 1000 minutes of call and text messages, unlimited calls and texts to other A1 users and 6GB worth of data. B.Free Internet Data Only costs €9.90 and comes with 5GB worth of data good for 30 days.
They also have data top ups such as: B.Free Internet S which costs €10 and comes with 5GB worth of data good for 30 days. B.Free Internet L which costs €15 and comes with 10GB worth of data good for 30 days. B.Free Internet S which costs €20 and comes with 5GB worth of data good for a year. B.Free Internet L which costs €20 and comes with 10GB worth of data good for a year. And B.Free Net Cube which costs €30 and comes with unlimited data good for a 30 days.
T-Mobile is the second largest service provider in Austria. They offer SIM cards called “Klax” ang “Wie ich will”. Like A1, T-Mobile does not offer any international roaming packages. They offer certain packages like: Starter Pack 1 costs €10 and comes with 4000 units or credit that can be used for calls, text messages and data. Starter Pack 2 costs €15 and comes with 15000 units or credit that can be used for calls, text messages and data. Both packages lasts for 30 days.
They also offer data- only packages called “Surfklax” that comes with 10GB worth of data and is good for 30 days and costs €15. Another thing worth noting is that these packages automatically renews themselves, so you might want to check the status of your package from time to time.
The smallest of the three service providers in Austria, Three offers one of most competitive packages in the country quickly gaining popularity amongst locals and travelers alike. The service provider offers two starter packages called “Nimm3”. Nimm3 Telefonie which costs €9.90 comes with 1000 minutes of call and text messages and 1GB of data good for 15 days. Nimme3 Internet which costs €9.90 comes with 1000 minutes of call and text messages and 1GB of data good for 15 days. Also once your SIM card is activated a €10 credit is added on your account for free.
They also offer “Klassik Package” and comes with three packages: For €15 you get 1000 minutes of call and text messages and 4GB of data. For €20 you get 1500 minutes of call and text messages, 6GB of data and 100 minutes of call that can be used all throughout Europe. For €30 you get 2000 minutes of call and text messages, 10GB of data and 150 minutes of call that can be used all throughout Europe. On top of this they also offer data top ups for €5 you get 1GB worth of data good for 30 days and for €9 you get 5GB worth of data also good for 30 days
When it comes to coverage area, all three including the smallest service provider, Three offers good and reliable coverage. Though there might be weak spots in rural areas.
Where do you buy one?
You can buy SIM cards and top ups in supermarkets, news agents, gas stations and even corner stores. Though we recommend you to buy it from the official stores and authorized resellers as assistance in setting up the SIM card is readily available, especially if you have limited knowledge of the native language.
Buying a SIM card in Austria is easier compared to other European countries. An identification is not necessary when purchasing one. If you want to utilize your own phone, remember to get it unlocked beforehand so that it can accommodate an Austrian SIM card. Another important reminder is that, if you want international roaming, Three is your best bet.