Visiting Australia soon? Make sure to know what to expect when it comes to purchasing an Australia SIM card.
Fortunately, Oceania is one of the best places where you can buy a SIM card easily. You should be able to find a cheap SIM card pretty much anywhere in Oceania. In fact, most data packages are affordable, which makes the whole thing easier!
In this guide, we’ll explain where to buy a SIM card in Australia in person and online. We’ll also discuss prepaid SIM cards and eSIMs if your mobile supports them.
Before you read this guide, you may wonder if you actually need a SIM card in Australia. If you don’t mind not having Internet, you’ll likely find free Wifi in restaurants, shopping malls, and hotels.
That said, if you need data to get around, call a cab, or translate English – you may want to get a SIM card for your travels in Australia.
Best SIM Cards In Australia
If you’re traveling in Australia, we recommend using a SIM card from Telstra, Vodafone, Optus, or Airalo. (I’ll get back to Airalo later on, so keep reading to learn more!)
That said, if you’re planning on visiting other countries during your trip to Oceania, you might want to make sure to pick an option that offers coverage in other Oceanian countries.
How To Buy A SIM Card In Australia
You can either buy an Australia prepaid SIM card in person in some international airports, mobile provider stores, convenience stores, or online.
Usually, you can expect higher costs and low data offers at the airport, so we don’t recommend buying a SIM card at the airport. That said, you won’t necessarily find SIM card shops in every airport, so it’s essential to keep this in mind. And, when you see a shop, you might also have limited options.
For this reason, I’d recommend buying a SIM card directly from the mobile provider store. Note that you may need your passport to buy one.
Although, this means you won’t get data right upon your arrival. So, if you prefer to be connected at all times, you could use an eSIM or purchase an Oceanian prepaid SIM card online.
Now, let’s take a look at the data plans offered by Telstra, Vodafone, and Optus.
Telstra SIM Cards
Telstra offers several different types of tourist plans available:
- 2 GB, valid for 7 days for AUD 10 ($6.48)
- 30 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 30 ($19.44)
- 40 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 40 ($25.92)
- 65 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 60 ($38.88)
- 90 GB, valid for 6 months for AUD 150 ($97.19)
- 200 GB, valid for 12 months for AUD 300 ($194.39)
Vodafone SIM Cards
Vodafone Australia has several different prepaid plans available:
- 40 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 30 ($19.44)
- 60 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 50 ($32.40)
- 80 GB, valid for 28 days for AUD 150 ($97.19)
- 150 GB, valid for 365 days for AUD 250 ($161.99)
Optus SIM Cards
Optus offers five main SIM-only plans for tourists:
- 1 GB, valid for 1 day for AUD 1 ($0.65)
- 7 GB, valid for 7 days for AUD 7 ($4.54)
- 30 GB, valid for 30 days for AUD 30 ($19.44)
- 100 GB, valid for 365 days for AUD 150 ($161.99)
- 200 GB, valid for 365 days for AUD 300 ($194.39)
Overall, we think Telstra is the best option if you plan to buy your SIM card in person. That said, any would do if you can’t find their store!
How To Buy A Australia Prepaid SIM Card Online
If you wish to have your SIM card ready for your arrival, you could purchase it online or on websites like Amazon.
You’ll find different plans on Amazon. For example, the OneSimCard works in more than 200+ countries and gives you data for $0.01 per MB. Australia is included.
But there are many other options worth considering, so have a look and make sure the countries you plan on visiting are listed.
Another option is to purchase a prepaid Oceanian SIM card on Simify. This works if you live in the United States or Australia. They currently offer one package that covers Australia:
- 12 GB, valid for 365 days for $65 – works in 71 countries
Finally, the last option is to buy an eSIM card for Australia or, if you’re traveling to multiple countries, an eSIM plan for Oceania.
How To Buy An eSIM Card For Australia
eSIM is a new concept allowing you to have a virtual SIM card inside your phone. If your mobile phone supports eSIM cards – it’s definitely one of the best options to get data in Australia.
Curious? Learn more about eSIMs for travelers on eSIM Roamers.
I started using eSIM as soon as my mobile phone supported it. And I first tried it when visiting my family in Canada. To buy eSIMs, I usually use Airalo. Keep reading to learn more about the best eSIMs for Australia.
If you want to buy an eSIM for Australia, you could purchase one on Airalo. This website offers many eSIM cards worldwide and special plans for Oceania and Australia. I’ve been using Airalo for several months, and it works fine.
Here are the options available:
- Yes! Go!: 1 GB, valid for 7 days for $4.50
- Yes! Go!: 3 GB, valid for 30 days for $9
- Yes! Go!: 5 GB, valid for 30 days for $12.50
- Yes! Go!: 10 GB, valid for 30 days for $20
Here’s an overview of the options available on Discover Global:
- 1 GB, valid for 7 days for $9
- 3 GB, valid for 15 days for $24
- 5 GB, valid for 30 days for $35
- 10 GB, valid for 60 days for $59
- 20 GB, valid for 180 days for $89
Now, one important thing to note about Airalo is that you’ll need to keep an eye out for the provider in each country. Suppose you ever have trouble connecting to the Internet during your trip. In that case, it might be because you’re connecting automatically to networks and need to select a network manually instead.
When you purchase the eSIM, you’ll get access to the list of networks supported in each country.
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Here’s an overview of the plan for Australia:
- 10 GB data, valid for 30 days for $34
- 20 GB data, valid for 30 days for $44
Finally, Nomad is also a great eSIM provider. Here’s an overview of the plans available for Australia:
- 1GB, valid for 7 days for $5
- 3GB, valid for 30 days for $10
- 5GB, valid for 30 days for $11
Nomad also has Global, an eSIM plan for 111 countries worldwide. This plan offers coverage in Australia. Here’s an overview:
- 1GB, valid for 7 days for $20
- 3GB, valid for 30 days for $38
- 5GB, valid for 30 days for $54
Final Thoughts On SIM Cards In Australia
As you can see, getting a prepaid SIM card in Australia or even an eSIM for your travels in Australia is pretty straightforward. You’ll even be able to stay connected wherever you go in Oceania without changing your SIM card, especially if you purchase an Oceania or global plan.
I believe the eSIM card is the most convenient way to get data in Australia if you wish to have data upon your arrival. This way, you won’t need to go to a store to buy a SIM card. Obviously, you need to make sure your mobile phone supports eSIM first.
Traveling to Australia soon? Read one of the following blog posts: