iPhone 4s SIM for China/Thailand

Discussion in 'Travel Technology' started by Ed Chandler, Sep 30, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Ed Chandler
    Original Member

    Ed Chandler Silver Member

    Messages:
    430
    Likes Received:
    501
    Status Points:
    645
    All,

    I'll be traveling to China and Thailand here in the next couple of weeks. In the past, I've pre-ordered foreign SIMs from companies like OneSimCard, but I'm considering just waiting and buying one locally when I hit the ground. My iPhone 4s is already (legitimately) carrier unlocked. All I need is some simple advice on where to pick up a SIM and which carrier/plan you think is best for my needs.

    My guess is that I'm probably looking at $30 US or so, for each country, and that's fine. I'm less worried about the money than I am about the hassle. My vacation time is more valuable, so I don't want to waste hours looking for someplace to sell me a SIM, comparing plans while I'm there, etc. I'd like all of my "groundwork" done before I embark.

    I'll be in China for about two weeks, then in Bangkok for about three days. I'm not going to be using many "talk" minutes, but would like enough data to work with maps, send a picture or two home, etc.

    In short, I'd like to be able to walk into the place (wherever) and say, "This is what I want."

    Suggestions?
     
  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

    Messages:
    4,747
    Likes Received:
    5,090
    Status Points:
    4,270
    I have not paid attention during my recent trips to China but I seem to recall that one of the first things that are offered to passengers arriving at PEK Capital Airport are SIM cards. I am not sure how well they work nor which carrier they are for. I just know that one can get SIM cards at the airport in China without even trying because they come to you.;)

    I have a DROID4 Global with Verizon for which I purchase only a data package for $25 for mobile email or GPS, preferring to make all my intl calls, even to landlines, using Skype from my hotel room.
     
  3. Tivoboy
    Original Member

    Tivoboy Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    460
    Likes Received:
    283
    Status Points:
    595
    I've used this company a couple times. Heck, I probably even have some SIM's that could be reactivated. Anyway, they are pretty cheap (it used to be about 25$ for the lowest priced SIM with 1GB data), but has gotten to be about 35-40$.. nice thing though is that they will deliver for about 5$ to your hotel so it's there when you get there. You can go the airport route, but I'm not sure where exactly the carts/stores are and if you can get it immediately and have it activated..sometimes one needs and address, etc..

    http://www.3gsolutions.com.cn/
     
  4. edekba

    edekba Gold Member

    Messages:
    3,462
    Likes Received:
    3,783
    Status Points:
    2,145
    in Thailand; I just went to a 7/11 (they're EVERYWHERE) & got a SIM Card; It was red in packaging and advertised 3G data. I used it for 10 days in January. Worked pretty well. I think it was called something something Happy something something.
     
  5. konoyaro

    konoyaro Silver Member

    Messages:
    566
    Likes Received:
    1,241
    Status Points:
    845
    In Thailand I typically use AIS/One-2-Go. After exiting customs into the arrival area of the terminal of Suvarnabhumi Airport, hang a left and they have a booth there. The staff can show you their available data plans, install and set up your phone. Expect to pay somewhere around 3-500 Baht depending on your needs. You can probably do this a bit cheaper in town but if time is precious, it might be worth the marginal difference to take care of it at the airport with an English speaking staff.
     
  6. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

    Messages:
    1,274
    Likes Received:
    2,287
    Status Points:
    1,270
    I don't think it's a problem finding places which sell SIM cards in China. Every Chinese equivalent of 7-11 seemed to sell. Ask for "SIM-KA", if I recall. Can't speak for Thailand but other people already have.

    BUT keep in mind that the 4S uses a micro-SIM. Most places just sell full-sized SIMs. You can cut them down and use them, but few places will do that for you. You might want to bring your own cutter with you. Here's one, as an example: http://www.amazon.com/Noosy-Cutter-MicroSim-Adapter-iPhone/dp/B00419V4L0
     
    949 likes this.
  7. 949

    949 Active Member

    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    13
    Status Points:
    80
    I did a search on ebay and found "China Mobile Prepaid Precharged SIM Card"

    It's 20 bucks shipped to the USA
     
  8. LIH Prem
    Original Member

    LIH Prem Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,666
    Likes Received:
    5,833
    Status Points:
    4,070
    You can get a SIM right at BKK airport, after you exit customs AIS and DTAC have booths. I usually get the DTAC Happy Tourist Sim, unlimited 3G data for 7 days for 300Bt. Since you're only going to be there for three days, you might look around a bit see if there's a better promo for you, but 300Bt is only $10 and it's about as hassle free and easy as it gets, Thai style.

    They will hook you up at the booth, put the SIM in your phone, tape your SIM to the materials they give you, make sure it's working and setup for you.

    Get some cash first from the ATM in the terminal, they don't take credit cards.

    -David
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2013
    bigx0 likes this.
  9. Ed Chandler
    Original Member

    Ed Chandler Silver Member

    Messages:
    430
    Likes Received:
    501
    Status Points:
    645
    Yeah, I thought about that, but I'm never quite sure how shady those are. It sounds like I'm going to trip over a sim card vendor as soon as I get off the plane though.
    Thanks for the tip.
     
    949 likes this.

Share This Page