• For 2024 Pilgrims: €50,- donation = 1 year with no ads on the forum + 90% off any 2024 Guide. More here.
    (Discount code sent to you by Private Message after your donation)

Search 69,459 Camino Questions

US International Phone plan or Spanish SIM card while on the Camino?

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Time of past OR future Camino
2018
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
We use our US ATT plan which let's us use our phone, data, text. It comes at a price. Sim cards are probably cheaper.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
I have the same issue with SIM cards. I got the Verizon ultimate unlimited or some overpromising name like that and it cost me $25/month on top of my normal monthly plan. Data and phone. Anywhere in the world.
 
I’m using Holafly eSIM, it’s working great. I have unlimited data and 60 mins. of tele. Using WhatsApp for communication and the connection has been very good here in France. Spain tomorrow, I’ll update then. 90 days, $99. They offer shorter plans as well.
 
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

€46,-
I've met friends out there using SIms. About half of them end up asking me to use my personal hotspot when they can't connect (for various reasons). I like my ATT international plan... works out to about $3 / day after 30 days. Yah, it's $10/day but they only charge for the first 10 days in the billing cycle. When I arrive at the airport in Spain I get a pleasant message saying, "Congratulations... u are using..." it just works.
 
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
Like many others on this thread I used AT&Ts international plan. Maybe slightly more expensive than a esim but it was convenient and reliable.
 
I have been using eSims for international travel (including my last Camino) and they are super easy and affordable. Buy it before your departure, turn it on when you are in country and you are good to go. I like being able to have data in the airport when I land. Message me if you have questions.
 
3rd Edition. More content, training & pack guides avoid common mistakes, bed bugs etc
I have been using eSims for international travel (including my last Camino) and they are super easy and affordable. Buy it before your departure, turn it on when you are in country and you are good to go. I like being able to have data in the airport when I land. Message me if you have questions.
In addition to Airalo and Holafly you can buy an eSIM online from Vodaphone.
 
In addition to Airalo and Holafly you can buy an eSIM online from Vodaphone.
I checked this out on their website. You can get much better plans if you go to a Vodafone store when you arrive. It takes about 10 minutes to set up a plan that will give you much more service options at a much lower price. Here is a screenshot from Vodafone that I took this morning: The eSim option is pretty weak compared to this one. There are also two more expensive plans that charge up to 40 Euros a month but unless you are downloading lots of movies or uploading the 25,000th camino vlog the three plans I showed are more then enough. Also according to the website you only get data. No calls or texts with the ESim.. Unless I am missing something it sure seems to me that the little extra inconvenience of going to a vodafone store is well worth the savings. If you are staying longer than 28 days you get a link to recharge. The link allows you to switch from Spanish to English if you can't read Spanish. The recharge takes less than a minute. The thing to remember is you must recharge with the same plan you originally bought.
 

Attachments

  • Screen Shot 2024-04-03 at 9.53.27 AM.png
    Screen Shot 2024-04-03 at 9.53.27 AM.png
    390.1 KB · Views: 26
  • Screen Shot 2024-04-03 at 9.56.31 AM.png
    Screen Shot 2024-04-03 at 9.56.31 AM.png
    628.5 KB · Views: 27
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
Be careful with the monthly international plans. If your regular home plan starts at the beginning of a month and you are taking a month long trip starting in the middle of a month you could end up paying twice as much for what you use.
 
I checked this out on their website. You can get much better plans if you go to a Vodafone store when you arrive. It takes about 10 minutes to set up a plan that will give you much more service options at a much lower price. Here is a screenshot from Vodafone that I took this morning: The eSim option is pretty weak compared to this one. There are also two more expensive plans that charge up to 40 Euros a month but unless you are downloading lots of movies or uploading the 25,000th camino vlog the three plans I showed are more then enough. Also according to the website you only get data. No calls or texts with the ESim.. Unless I am missing something it sure seems to me that the little extra inconvenience of going to a vodafone store is well worth the savings. If you are staying longer than 28 days you get a link to recharge. The link allows you to switch from Spanish to English if you can't read Spanish. The recharge takes less than a minute. The thing to remember is you must recharge with the same plan you originally bought.

That is correct, the beauty of an eSim is that you can keep your sim installed and when you are on wifi you will still get texts and can make calls with your normal number. When you get one of their sims (not esim) you will have to replace your sim.
 
New Original Camino Gear Designed Especially with The Modern Peregrino In Mind!
That is correct, the beauty of an eSim is that you can keep your sim installed and when you are on wifi you will still get texts and can make calls with your normal number. When you get one of their sims (not esim) you will have to replace your sim.
You do have to replace your sim but it only takes a few seconds to do it. Yes there are a few minor inconveniences but for me at least, going to Vodafone and getting a new sim and Spanish telephone number works best. When you get your new sim the people at Vodafone give you the choice of keeping your original number or getting a new Spanish number. (The Spanish number has no effect on people sending you messages or calling on whatsapp who only have your original number). A few years ago, for some reason I said I wanted to keep my old number. When I tried to register my cell phone with Alert Cops with my Mexican number it would not take it. I really like the security of having Alert Cops on my phone especially now that I just turned 70. But like I said whatever works for each person is the best plan for them.
 
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
I also have Verizon & have used their intl plan on Portuguese & Frances caminos. It worked well for me. Maybe not the least expensive option but easy. I only got kicked over to 3G data a couple times - didn’t love that when it occurred.
 
Hello pilgirms! For the last 3 caminos/3 years I used Vodafone and I kept my Sim card and used it when Im in EU.
€10 for 50gb including Sim card for 28 days. I registered my account and able to top-up online.
In Madrid to Puerta del Sol location have a vending machine for Sim cards, you’ll need your passport to get one.
Hope this helps!
 

Attachments

  • IMG_4109.jpeg
    IMG_4109.jpeg
    238.4 KB · Views: 15
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
I’m using Holafly eSIM, it’s working great. I have unlimited data and 60 mins. of tele. Using WhatsApp for communication and the connection has been very good here in France. Spain tomorrow, I’ll update then. 90 days, $99. They offer shorter plans as well.
I used Holafly on my CF last fall. My T-Mobile International plane didn't provide data outside of major cities.
 
Call me dense, but I always get confused using a Spanish SIM card while on the Camino. And I always deplete it sooner than I expect and I have to find a place to fill it up again. I just saw this on the Verizon site. I just want data, as I can use Whatsapp for calls. Texts are free. Why wouldn't this be a good deal?

International Monthly Plan

$100/Monthly

Ideal for trips of 10 days or more. Add as a one time or recurring charge. Use your phone in 210+ countries and destinations.

Includes
  • Unlimited data*
  • 250 minutes
  • Unlimited texts
*After first 20GB of high speed data get unlimited 3G data.
Lots of responses are offered. My US plan (Visible with Verizon) does not offer an international plan. Last month I got a Vodafone eSIM with only data. It worked very well for me to use apps and WhatsApp to call home. 12€ for 5GB for 10 days. Then top up at 2.50€ for 1GB for 5 days. My friend used his AT&T at $100 for one month.
 
I think it boils down to convenience/reliability vs price. I like keeping my USA number. I like unlimited data and calling. And I know, on multiple occasions, friends that went the other route and have experienced difficulties... (though they may not have been the most tech savvy or understood the language.) Just saying I've never been dissatisfied with my choice, YMMV. It's all about your risk tolerance. For me, I like to know my phone always works.
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
I have the same issue with SIM cards. I got the Verizon ultimate unlimited or some overpromising name like that and it cost me $25/month on top of my normal monthly plan. Data and phone. Anywhere in the world.
Do you have a link to that plan? It almost sounds too good to be true. I have only found the $100 International Plan from Verizon.

 
If your international plan has "unlimited data" that slows down to 3G after that first 20GB, then that's really just a "20GB data" plan in practice. You can do much better with a local SIM. When my parents were doing the Camino last year, I got them Vodafone SIM cards. A 50GB SIM would cost you 10 EUR/month right now:


And bear in mind, 50GB/month is A LOT. You'd need to stream a lot of videos to use that up.
 
If you are trying to estimate how much data you will need figure on 1 mb per minute for calls made with cellular data. You'll get about 16 hours of calls for 1 gb at that rate. I see various numbers given but most have the 1 mb rate at the high end of costs.
 
Join our full-service guided tour of the Basque Country and let us pamper you!
Inflation or I got ripped off in Barcelona today. Jas11 and krystianw above said they purchased their 50 GB plan for 10 euro at Vodafone. I went to the nearest Vodafone store near Placa de Catalunya and bought their least expensive prepaid plan (15euro/$16.26 USD/for 28 days): 50 GB data/ 300 minutes to call in Spain or back to the U.S. No contracts. Keep pre paying before your 4 weeks expire and you are all set for the next 4 weeks.

Copied the text I received after the sim was activated and Google translated:
VF Info: Ya tienes 50GB, 300Min nacionales e internacionales + Min ilimitados a Prepago VF hasta 01/05/2024 +Info m.vodafone.es o en WhatsApp vodafone.es/tobiwa

VF Info: You already have 50GB, 300Min national and international + Unlimited Min to Prepaid VF until 05/01/2024 +Info m.vodafone.es or on WhatsApp vodafone.es/tobiwa

Nicest staff. I don't speak Catalan nor Spanish The sales rep didn't speak English (and I never expect anyone to either). Despite my lack of language skills, I was in and out in less than 10 minutes (I was the only customer at that time). Of course it helps going in respectful, patient, kind and pleasant (easy for me).

I use Mint mobile at home which means I can use the albergue, bar or hotel wifi to call, check voice mail, or text to the U.S. for free.
Also, you will receive calls and texts when connected to wifi and your Mint sim turned on. The texts are saved for several days and pop up once the wifi connects. I have a dual Sim phone.

Also, been using Vodafone since 2017 or so after using Yoigo's poor service (I don'tknow if they are still around). I was surprised by their coverage when I first used them on VdP. I would be in the middle of nowhere and had no problem connecting by phone or internet.

crackpot
 
Last edited:
Got Holafly. I used the T-Mobile international plan before, and it worked pretty well, until they stated sending unpleasant messages about my “excessive data usage”.
Holafly is a bit more expensive, and I find that the setup instructions could be a lot clearer, particularly regarding how to work in tandem with your original eSim. But it worked great, and I never got any harassment about the amount of data I used.
 
Holafly eSIM update. I’ve now been using Holafly for 10 days in France an rural Spain. I’ve had good tele signal almost everywhere ranging from 3G (didn’t know it was still used), LTE, 4G and most of the time, 5G. The few calls have connected easily and WhatsApp works great. At this point, I highly recommend.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Do you have a link to that plan? It almost sounds too good to be true. I have only found the $100 International Plan from Verizon.

Sorry for the delay. I just saw this. I just called Verizon to verify this. The plan is called Unlimited Ultimate and is added $25 per month to my bill for unlimited data and calling. Who knows if it slows everything down and wrecks my life—Verizon is good at that— but that’s the plan i got. I always have WhatsApp as a backup.
 

Most read last week in this forum

Hi there, I’m starting my first Camino Frances early May, and I don’t know whether I need hiking poles or not? I’m 26 years old, relatively fit and don’t have any injuries (yet!) I used poles for...
My son has advised me to delete unnecessary apps, books, podcasts, downloaded videos etc from my iPhone. Saves up to 250gms. Great weight saving hack.
Hi. Shawn and Lainey are a lovely couple - so positive! - who now live in Galicia and have a Youtube presence "Days we Spend" with plenty of excellent and informative Camino videos - they are...
Hello all - thank you all so much for all of the guidance on what is not my only first camino but first hike over about 5 miles! I've headed a lot of advice about backpacks and trekking poles and...
While reading through one of the more recent water bottle vs. hydration bladder debates, I was reminded of something I came across a few weeks ago, bookmarked, and promptly forgot about until said...
I am finally embarking on my first camino later this year. I will be taking my Canon R6 camera with me. For others that have taken DLSR’s or mirrorless cameras, what lens or lenses did you find...

❓How to ask a question

How to post a new question on the Camino Forum.

Similar threads

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Updates on YouTube

Camino Conversations

Most downloaded Resources

This site is run by Ivar at

in Santiago de Compostela.
This site participates in the Amazon Affiliate program, designed to provide a means for Ivar to earn fees by linking to Amazon
Official Camino Passport (Credential) | 2024 Camino Guides
Back
Top