A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it

Advertisement

Luggage Transfer Correos

SIM card

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
You're not helping us out much with your lack of detail. I'm going to say though that you will need an unlocked phone. This means one that your plan allows you to use temporarily on another's plan and card. You also need a phone that uses the call protocol used in Spain. There are ways around this though if you use apps that make calls through wifi instead of the cell network.
 

CdnDreamer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (12, 15 & 18) San Salvador (18), Portuguese (19)
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
What you would recommend me?
I have an "old" iPhone 5 that is unlocked. I have the cell phone store put in a SIM chip. I bought my last one at the Madrid airport, and it was the same price as my previous one at a Vodafone store (they expire if you do not top them off). It was under 10E. Vodafone and Orange both have good reputations, and they do work throughout the EU now by statute. SIM chips are available over the internet, but you will need to install them and won't know if they really work until you get to Spain. The savings is not worth the uncertainty, at least to me.:)
 

nycwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF: (2001, 2002, 2004, 2014). Hospitalera: 2002, Ponferrada. 2004, Rabanal del Camino.
If you have an iPhone and friends and family do as well you can use FaceTime. It runs over WiFi. There is no way extra charge.

I did so winter camino 2014, worked beautifully.

You can also put phone on airplane mode and text all you wish.
 

robproct

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP from Lisbon 2018
My best deal was on the Portuguese. I bought a sim at Lisbon airport with three gig of data which included 30 min of international calls or sms. It was for 30 days but I had run out of data or calls in three days. So it was a bad deal, at least for me. Then I bought just a data card with unlimited data: €15 for 15 days. Perfect I could make endless calls on WhatsApp, web browsing,email, etc anywhere. But no direct calls. Now I’m in Spain and nearly at the end of the Portuguese Camino and looking for something similar here. It’s been a great deal for me.
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
You're not helping us out much with your lack of detail. I'm going to say though that you will need an unlocked phone. This means one that your plan allows you to use temporarily on another's plan and card. You also need a phone that uses the call protocol used in Spain. There are ways around this though if you use apps that make calls through wifi instead of the cell network.
Thanks,
I am sorry for newbie question.
Is it also in Pamplona there free wifi in many places like Central Bus station, cafes?
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
Thanks a lot,
good to know. Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
Is it also in Pamplona there free wifi in many places like Central Bus station, cafes?
Wifi is in many places, but in most bars and restaurants you must ask for the password. Often it is the original sixteen place hexidecimal password!!:)
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
I have an "old" iPhone 5 that is unlocked. I have the cell phone store put in a SIM chip. I bought my last one at the Madrid airport, and it was the same price as my previous one at a Vodafone store (they expire if you do not top them off). It was under 10E. Vodafone and Orange both have good reputations, and they do work throughout the EU now by statute. SIM chips are available over the internet, but you will need to install them and won't know if they really work until you get to Spain. The savings is not worth the uncertainty, at least to me.:)
Thanks,
Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
If you have an iPhone and friends and family do as well you can use FaceTime. It runs over WiFi. There is no way extra charge.

I did so winter camino 2014, worked beautifully.

You can also put phone on airplane mode and text all you wish.
Thanks,
I have Android.
 

Valery

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
French way(November 2018)
My best deal was on the Portuguese. I bought a sim at Lisbon airport with three gig of data which included 30 min of international calls or sms. It was for 30 days but I had run out of data or calls in three days. So it was a bad deal, at least for me. Then I bought just a data card with unlimited data: €15 for 15 days. Perfect I could make endless calls on WhatsApp, web browsing,email, etc anywhere. But no direct calls. Now I’m in Spain and nearly at the end of the Portuguese Camino and looking for something similar here. It’s been a great deal for me.
Thanks,
Can you provide more details please, what it was the company?
 

Bonnie M

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2018)
Be sure your phone is unlocked, is GSM compatible (note that some phone brands e.g. iphone are either GSM or CDMA depending on where you purchased it -- for example, my iphone 5 is CDMA which could not be used in Europe). Also be sure to know how to take out your sim card - although if you go to Vodaphone or Orange they should be able to do/help you. And be seure to KEEP your old SIM card for when you return Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
@Valery, check with your phone carrier to see if it is working on a GSM network or a CDMA network. GSM is what you need. If currently using CDMA ask if the phone would work if the card were replaced with a GSM one. If not it looks like you will not be able to use the phone the regular way in Spain using the cell network. You can still make calls over WiFi (once connected) using various apps.

If you do have a GSM card or can use one the next thing to ask is if your carrier will allow you to put in a different SIM card for a vacation. Your carrier may or may not let you. Sometimes you have had to use their service for a certain length of time before they will allow this. When you can switch compatible cards in your phone at will your phone is deemed unlocked. Your provider can also unlock it for a bit.

So, as mentioned earlier, if your phone is able to run on a GSM cellular network and is unlocked you can put in a Spanish SIM card. Otherwise you need a plan B, C or D. We can help with that too.

By the way, if you are using T-mobile or Google Fi in the US I think you are good to go without having to get a new SIM card at all.
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
@Valery, it might help members, and you, if you told us a little more about yourself and where you are from. For instance if you are an EC resident with a current EC telecoms provider then you will not be subject to roaming charges and can simply use your current 'phone and provider. If your current 'phone is not internet capable then be prepared to spend significant €'s obtaining one; and one that you may not be able to use in your home country.

I note that you were originally flying into Barcelona but now are flying into Bilbao. Both are large cities with a variety of retailers of technology and services. That said it is perfectly possible to walk the Camino Frances without any technology at all. Just follow the yellow arrows and ask your host for the night where the next accommodation is available.
 

robproct

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP from Lisbon 2018
It was NEO. I can’t find such a good deal in Spain and ended up with an Orange SIM which I bought tonight in Pontevedra.
 

robproct

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP from Lisbon 2018
The best I could find was Orange prepaid €20 for 1month with 10gig data and phone calls in Europe for 80 min.
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
Vodafone:
10E gets 1.5 g, four weeks, 15 minutes of phone calls
15E gets 2.0g, four weeks, 30 minutes of phone calls

They are the Yuser rates and include the SIM chip.
 

Salomon de Jager

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
If you have a European plan like Vodafone, you can use it in any country, we have free roaming in the EU. I live in Greece and my call and data plans work perfectly wherever I go. But as the other members have noted, if you come from abroad, make sure your phone is unlocked and pop into a Vodafone or Orange shop for a sim card. Also, load a call or data plan that suits you. Normally €10 is enough.
 

Pilar

Member
I have used Vodaphone and Orange in the past. Last two years the Vodaphone coverage was not very good on the Norte last year and Madrid this year. Check the coverage for the areas you will be in to make sure you will be likely to have the best signal.
 
Camino(s) past & future
French route (04,05,06) Portugues (07) VDLP (09,10,11) Aragon (0413) Levante (16) French (18)
Orange worked great in Spain for me: only national calls. Does anyone know of a SIM card/plan that will work in an unlocked iPhone throughout the E.U.?
 

C & W

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP to Santiago (2015)
Lourdes to Jaca (2016)
Pamplona to Santiago (2018)
Does anyone know how often these SIM cards must be charged? I live in the United States but make approximately three trips to Italy or Spain each year. Can I buy a SIM and recharge it each visit, or must I buy a new SIM each time?
 

Ted Stek

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis, SJPDP-Santiago (May 2016) Via de la Plata, Sevilla-Santiago (Sept 2016), CM/CF 2018
I am surprised that no one has mentioned Lebara. On my last Camino in May/June, Camino de Madrid/Camino Francis, I used Lebara for the second time on a Camino. I had used it on a previous Camino and loved it, and when I got to Madrid I just signed up with a sales vendor that was actually outside the Orange store at the Plaza. It took five minutes for her to pop in the Lebara sims card, and I was good to go. Make sure you save your old card, and just pop it back in when your done. It’s simple.

Lebara has numerous different plans, and the one I had was €20, which gave me 20gb of data and 1,000 minutes international calling time for one month. Yes, that’s right! That includes calling time in Spain. It’s 4G, but works well in almost all the places from Madrid to Sahagun, to Santiago. If you use up the data or talk time, which I did because I was there more than a month, you can just add on more directly from the app, or even at a store, gas station, etc. But, once to add more time for €5 or so, you keep all your unused data and call time from the previous month. You do have to install their sims card, but you still have all your data, contacts, etc., on your cell phone, so you can still use your phone like normal.

Having the large amount of data was great for me because I used the live Camino Madrid map app and it kept me from getting lost in those unmarked and remote places.

Seriously, I don’t know why anyone would use any other service that is so much more expensive, and with less data and call time. It makes life on the Camino easier and more pleasurable. Just take a look at their website.

Buen Camino!
 

Thundrla

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2014)
Muxia (2014)
Frances (2017)
Finisterre (2017 - 2x)
Portuguese (2018)
I would like to have a phone and the internet. What you would recommend me?
When I was there in Sept and Oct, Vodaphone had a sim card for 15€ which included 4 GB of data, and a HUGE 800 minutes of international calling - including US and Canada!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Lourdes/Burgos/SdeC 77; Frances 12,15,17; Finisterre 17; Lourdes/Aragones18; Logrono-Leon 19.
Bought a LlamaYa Movil 5GB in Sanguesa earlier this year that served me very nicely.
 
Last edited:

mdelag

Member
Camino(s) past & future
**CAMINO FRANCES: LEON-SANTIAGO sept. (2015)
**CAMINO FRANCES SJPP-SANTIAGO 2017
Hi !!!! I am from Mexico, do you know if I can buy just an internet plan ? I will be arriving to Paris and from there to SJPDP
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
Hi !!!! I am from Mexico, do you know if I can buy just an internet plan ? I will be arriving to Paris and from there to SJPDP
The SIM chips are geared for data, but usually come with a bit of phone service in Spain.
 

C & W

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP to Santiago (2015)
Lourdes to Jaca (2016)
Pamplona to Santiago (2018)
I have read that it is somewhat difficult to recharge a French SIM card in Spain and that it is better to wait until you arrive in Spain to purchase one. I do not know if this is true.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
I am surprised that no one has mentioned Lebara. On my last Camino in May/June, Camino de Madrid/Camino Francis, I used Lebara for the second time on a Camino. I had used it on a previous Camino and loved it, and when I got to Madrid I just signed up with a sales vendor that was actually outside the Orange store at the Plaza. It took five minutes for her to pop in the Lebara sims card, and I was good to go. Make sure you save your old card, and just pop it back in when your done. It’s simple.

Lebara has numerous different plans, and the one I had was €20, which gave me 20gb of data and 1,000 minutes international calling time for one month. Yes, that’s right! That includes calling time in Spain. It’s 4G, but works well in almost all the places from Madrid to Sahagun, to Santiago. If you use up the data or talk time, which I did because I was there more than a month, you can just add on more directly from the app, or even at a store, gas station, etc. But, once to add more time for €5 or so, you keep all your unused data and call time from the previous month. You do have to install their sims card, but you still have all your data, contacts, etc., on your cell phone, so you can still use your phone like normal.

Having the large amount of data was great for me because I used the live Camino Madrid map app and it kept me from getting lost in those unmarked and remote places.

Seriously, I don’t know why anyone would use any other service that is so much more expensive, and with less data and call time. It makes life on the Camino easier and more pleasurable. Just take a look at their website.

Buen Camino!
@Ted Stek
I bought a Lebara service for my iphone last fall, and it was a disaster. I paid 30 euros for phone/data service. I can't remember how much I was supposedly buying, but the data ran out in six days, although I tried to keep it turned off and never used it except for what the phone was using. I was an innocent, having just bought the phone second-hand, and the salesman at Madrid airport was very brusque, refusing to explain anything. I gave up on that service, as I couldn't afford five euros a day for the phone. I bought a cheap flip phone in Burgos, with a ten euro service from Vodaphone, and just used wifi on the iphone. There is no way I would use Lebara ever again. Of course, as with every other service, it is "buyer beware" and I was not informed enough to be able to avoid what happened.
 
D

Deleted member 77020

Guest
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
thanks for that info, I have done ten Caminos and never had a phone this year had problems with my debit card and those kiosks that allow you to use internet and phones could not accommodate me so the owner let me use his phone to call the Bank. never again will leave home without a cell. your info has resolved an issue for me for next Camino, thanks.
 

mdelag

Member
Camino(s) past & future
**CAMINO FRANCES: LEON-SANTIAGO sept. (2015)
**CAMINO FRANCES SJPP-SANTIAGO 2017
The SIM chips are geared for data, but usually come with a bit of phone service in Spain.
Thanks a lot...any recommendations ?
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
Thanks a lot...any recommendations ?
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
 

mdelag

Member
Camino(s) past & future
**CAMINO FRANCES: LEON-SANTIAGO sept. (2015)
**CAMINO FRANCES SJPP-SANTIAGO 2017
Thanks a lot !! :)
 
D

Deleted member 77020

Guest
Thanks a lot,
good to know. Do you know if there Vodafone or Orange stores in Pamplona?
would you need to purchase a phone in spain for this deal or bring an old phone and have a sim card installed
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
Vodafone. The price is between 10 and 15E for a couple of gigabyte good for a month, and has some phone service in Spain included. Have the SIM installed by a dealer and you can be sure it is working, and get the codes for checking your balance and adding time.
 

Tony Bobcat

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017
For the past two Camino I have bought orange SIM cards, they have work great. The only problem I found was that all messages are in Spanish, when our calls ran out we topped them up paying 10 euros each, only to find out later that the internet was topped up not our calls.
Next time I will make sure to buy a SIM card in Australia making sure all messages are in English. I just wish I could speak Spanish, life would be so much easier.
 

KarenLW

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances May 2019
It's true, it is true!
I bought an Orange Holiday SIM card in Paris January 2018. I reloaded it online from the US in April before returning to Spain for a trip and it worked fine. I recharged it again before returning to Spain again for a September trip. And again before a trip to Germany in December. You can reload online. Once you do this, it keeps the # active for 6 months. The reload on the holiday cards only works for 2 weeks though - that’s the bummer if you are traveling longer, such as the Camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (August 2019)
I am going in August and today was the first I heard about needing a Sim card. I have Verizon and was going to add on the internal plan for the time I'm gone. Do I still need a Sim card?
 

C & W

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP to Santiago (2015)
Lourdes to Jaca (2016)
Pamplona to Santiago (2018)
If you live in the USA and travel outside the country frequently, consider switching from Verizon to T-Mobil. They offer unlimited data in most countries worldwide as part of the basic package. Phone calls are 25 cents. I switched from Verizon to T-Mobil about two months ago because of this offer, then traveled to Malta and Sicily. No need to switch Sim Cards, no need to limit data usage. If you don't make a lot of phone calls, or if you can use the web for phone calls, this is a great solution to the problem.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (August 2019)
If you live in the USA and travel outside the country frequently, consider switching from Verizon to T-Mobil. They offer unlimited data in most countries worldwide as part of the basic package. Phone calls are 25 cents. I switched from Verizon to T-Mobil about two months ago because of this offer, then traveled to Malta and Sicily. No need to switch Sim Cards, no need to limit data usage. If you don't make a lot of phone calls, or if you can use the web for phone calls, this is a great solution to the problem.
Thanks. I do live in USA, but don't travel outside the country. This is my first trip. So, I guess you're saying I will need to switch Sim cards? I guess I'm not sure why that is if Verizon has international calling?
 

Thundrla

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2014)
Muxia (2014)
Frances (2017)
Finisterre (2017 - 2x)
Portuguese (2018)
I am going in August and today was the first I heard about needing a Sim card. I have Verizon and was going to add on the internal plan for the time I'm gone. Do I still need a Sim card?
To answer your question directly:. If you are satisfied with the price you will get when travelling from your current provider, you do not need a new SIM. If you think it is extravagant, then the options in this thread are worth looking at.

I'm in Canada. I'd rather buy a new car than travel in Europe with my Canadian sim.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (August 2019)
To answer your question directly:. If you are satisfied with the price you will get when travelling from your current provider, you do not need a new SIM. If you think it is extravagant, then the options in this thread are worth looking at.

I'm in Canada. I'd rather buy a new car than travel in Europe with my Canadian sim.
Thank you. Now I can compare.
 

Anna Cameron

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances sept-oct 2018
The reason some of us get a different SIM when in Europe is that ALL calls you make (on your US plan on international roaming while in Europe) will be charged as international long-distance, even if you are phoning ahead to book an albergue 11 kms away. If you think you will be using your phone to call local (Spanish) numbers, then it is cheaper to get a local SIM card. Remember you can use wifi for email or calls home - wifi is freely available on the Camino. I strongly recommend installing WhatsApp before you go and get your loved ones at home to install it, too, then you can communicate cheaply with each other using wifi. But, WhatsApp is no good for phoning albergues or local numbers, hence the need for purchasing the local SIM or paying huge international charges on your Verizon plan
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
I heard about needing a Sim card. I have Verizon and was going to add on the internal plan for the time I'm gone. Do I still need a Sim card?
So, I guess you're saying I will need to switch Sim cards? I guess I'm not sure why that is if Verizon has international calling?
@Susan M Fron had it right. You do not NEED a new Sim card. It is just a matter of cost. If you get a new one, you will have a new (Spanish) phone number for calling, but all of your usual phone apps (email, facebook, etc.) will continue to work, as long as you have wifi. If you keep your Verizon Sim card, be sure to find out how your data works - whether you need to turn off roaming data so you don't incur large charges from using the internet or automatic updates.
 

Ted Stek

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis, SJPDP-Santiago (May 2016) Via de la Plata, Sevilla-Santiago (Sept 2016), CM/CF 2018
Hello,

I am surprised by how few people know about Lebara cell service, it is great and cheap! I have used it twice on Caminos, the last time May, 2019, when I trekked the Camino de Madrid to Santiago. I actually got my SIM card from a vendor in front of the Orange store in Madrid. You can easily do it yourself, but she popped out my original card and put in the Lebara one and I was ready to go in few minutes. With Lebara the SIM card was part of the original cost. You will still have all your contacts and apps on your phone! It’s simple!

I am going back to Spain and doing my fourth Camino in August and just looked up Lebara’s plans and they haven’t changed much. The plan I will get is €25 for 20 gb of data and 2,000 minutes of international and national minutes calling, and 750 minutes to other Lebara numbers. That’s 2,000 minutes to talk to someone in the States if that’s what you want to do! It is great too if you have a mapping program, like I use, because you don’t worry about not having enough data.

To add more time or data, or renew after 30 days when it expires, you can just do it through their app tied to a credit card. If you don’t want to do it through the app, you can top it off at most stores and gas stations in Spain. It is simple!

When I got home, I just popped my old SIM card back in, so make sure you save your original SIM card.

Look it up online.



It’s
 

Ted Stek

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis, SJPDP-Santiago (May 2016) Via de la Plata, Sevilla-Santiago (Sept 2016), CM/CF 2018
Ops, that was May, 2018!
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2019)
Y
Go to a Vodafone or Orange store in Spain (better deals in cities than at the airport) and get a travelers package --usually you will get 30 - 50 minutes of calls and 2 GB of data for a month for less than 20 Euros along with the SIM card. You can then top it up if you use up your minutes or GB's. You need your passport when you go to buy the SIM card. As Rick said, you need an unlocked phone.
Yup... I also bought the Sim from Vodafone.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (August 2019)
The reason some of us get a different SIM when in Europe is that ALL calls you make (on your US plan on international roaming while in Europe) will be charged as international long-distance, even if you are phoning ahead to book an albergue 11 kms away. If you think you will be using your phone to call local (Spanish) numbers, then it is cheaper to get a local SIM card. Remember you can use wifi for email or calls home - wifi is freely available on the Camino. I strongly recommend installing WhatsApp before you go and get your loved ones at home to install it, too, then you can communicate cheaply with each other using wifi. But, WhatsApp is no good for phoning albergues or local numbers, hence the need for purchasing the local SIM or paying huge international charges on your Verizon plan
Good information. Thanks.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
Hello,

I am surprised by how few people know about Lebara cell service, it is great and cheap! I have used it twice on Caminos, the last time May, 2019, when I trekked the Camino de Madrid to Santiago. I actually got my SIM card from a vendor in front of the Orange store in Madrid. You can easily do it yourself, but she popped out my original card and put in the Lebara one and I was ready to go in few minutes. With Lebara the SIM card was part of the original cost. You will still have all your contacts and apps on your phone! It’s simple!

I am going back to Spain and doing my fourth Camino in August and just looked up Lebara’s plans and they haven’t changed much. The plan I will get is €25 for 20 gb of data and 2,000 minutes of international and national minutes calling, and 750 minutes to other Lebara numbers. That’s 2,000 minutes to talk to someone in the States if that’s what you want to do! It is great too if you have a mapping program, like I use, because you don’t worry about not having enough data.

To add more time or data, or renew after 30 days when it expires, you can just do it through their app tied to a credit card. If you don’t want to do it through the app, you can top it off at most stores and gas stations in Spain. It is simple!

When I got home, I just popped my old SIM card back in, so make sure you save your original SIM card.

Look it up online.
It’s
Lebara was my first experience of purchasing a sim card, as I bought one for my recently acquired iphone at Madrid airport in 2017. The salesman spoke English but totally brushed me off when I tried to ask questions. I paid 30 euros for basic service (I don't remember the details). I did my best to turn off the data, which I didn't usually need, because of wifi, but nonetheless it was all gone in six days, without my ever using it for anything. When I tried to get information from Lebara, I found that it was based somewhere in Eastern Europe and I never really figured out in what language they were responding to my questions. I would never use Lebara again. It may work for persons who are very competent with a smart phone, but it was impossible for me.
 

robproct

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP from Lisbon 2018
I had been advised to buy a SIM at the Vodaphone booth for my iPhone X when I landed at Lisbon. Eu 25. It stopped working after five days although I had hardly used it. When I got to Santarem was told that I had used all the data??? How? I bought another card for Eu 20, with a Portuguese provider, NOS, this was a data only card with unlimited data so I could use What's App anywhere along the Portuguese part of the Camino. However it had stopped working by the time I had arrived in Coimbra where a very kind man spent an hour on his phone sorting out the problem for me. It turned out the the person who had sold it to me in Santarem had forgotten to forward the payment to the parent company and I hasted up the three days grace. Luckily I had kept all of the documentation to prove that it was paid. So it worked fine after that until I crossed the border into Spain where it didn't work. I was now told that it would only work in Portugal. Thankyou for telling me now!

When I arrived in PontevedraI I bought another card with full European Roaming at the Orange store. I was assured this would work all over Europe. This worked well until I crossed into France at Irun/Hendaye where I hired a car and had intended using Google Maps to navigte. It stopped working as soon as I had driven five kilometres and out of range of the Spanish telecom towers. So much for the Roaming and the assurances. It was late on Sunday and everything was closed however with considerable luck and a strong sense of direction I managed to find my way to the small village in the Dordogne in Central France where I was to stay with friends. It took an hour with the kind man at the local store in Riberac before it was fixed and was again assured that it would now work all over Europe. It then worked fine in France but as I drove into Andorra once again it ceased working. I hoped that it would work again when I returned to France but it still would not work. I thought "I give up" and returned the car to Henday and caught the night train to Lisbon where once again I found a store to reconnect me to their system. Thankfully it worked for the few days that I was there.

My experience then is that the European mobile system is a total shambles. Each time I tried to have the problem sorted I was given the impression that it was my fault. If you are staying in just one country it may be less complicated but this was one shambles after another. Each time it was apparently my fault. I then flew to Ethiopia where I found the system there worked perfectly. MY ADVICE: carry enough dry sticks so that you can send a smoke signal in emergency. Fortunately the Wise Pilgrim App on the phone continued to work as the GPS is independent of the phone system. What would I do next time? Good question.
 

OLDER threads on this topic


Book your lodging here

Get e-mail updates from Casa Ivar (Forum + Forum Store content)




Advertisement

Booking.com

Most downloaded Resources

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store

Casa Ivar Newsletter

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 12 1.2%
  • February

    Votes: 5 0.5%
  • March

    Votes: 41 4.0%
  • April

    Votes: 154 15.1%
  • May

    Votes: 254 24.9%
  • June

    Votes: 78 7.7%
  • July

    Votes: 21 2.1%
  • August

    Votes: 18 1.8%
  • September

    Votes: 296 29.0%
  • October

    Votes: 123 12.1%
  • November

    Votes: 12 1.2%
  • December

    Votes: 5 0.5%
Top