eSIM vs Physical Sim for International Travel

The modern technology of eSIMs is changing the way we use mobile networks. eSIMs are a digital version of old-fashioned physical SIM cards. These new eSIMs have many advantages, especially for people interested in international travel. 

In this guide, we’ll share why SIM cards are important when you travel. We’ll also share the main differences between eSIM and regular SIM cards and why you should consider using AloSIM for your eSIM needs.

What is eSIM?

An eSIM, short for “embedded SIM,” is a built-in digital SIM card inside devices like phones, smartwatches, and tablets. 

Unlike traditional physical SIM cards, eSIMs make it easy for you to switch between networks without changing your SIM card.

eSIMs work with many devices and can store information for many carriers. Users can quickly change carriers or plans with a software update or app for their eSIM. 

eSIMs are helpful for international travelers, as you can use local networks without having to buy a new SIM card every time you go somewhere new.

Importance of SIM Cards During International Travel

If you plan to travel abroad, using a SIM card is essential during your trip. There are a few different reasons why using a SIM card is so important when traveling internationally. 

Saving on Roaming Costs

When traveling internationally, using your home carrier’s services can lead to high costs due to roaming charges. By using a local SIM card or an international travel eSIM, you can often enjoy better rates for calls, texts, and data usage. 

This can ultimately save you lots of money during your trip, which you can then use on other fun experiences! 

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Staying Safe

Though country hopping is exciting, you should still keep basic safety concerns in mind. 

Keeping in Touch

What’s the fun of traveling abroad if you can’t share your experiences with others? Having an eSIM will help you keep in touch with loved ones while you’re away. 

You can share photos, tell stories, and learn about what’s going on back at home as long as you’re able to connect to a local network using an eSIM!

physical sim cards are found in a slot in your phone but esims are embedded online
Physical SIM cards are found in a slot in your phone, but eSIMs are embedded.

Differences Between eSIM and Physical SIM

Though eSIM and physical SIM cards essentially offer the same services, there are a few key differences between the two. 

Space in Your Phone

Physical SIM cards take up space in your phone as you need a physical SIM card slot. eSIMs don’t need a physical slot in your phone. This can make future phones lighter, slimmer, and potentially more water-resistant. 

Overall Convenience

If you travel often, you’ll have to get a physical SIM card for every country you plan to travel to. With an eSIM, you can access multiple networks using the same app or package without needing to swap out a physical card. 

Several Carrier Profiles

Physical SIM cards only carry one carrier profile on them. If you want to switch between different carriers, you’ll need several SIM cards.

eSIMs offer users the ability to switch between multiple carrier profiles or plans at will. This provides more flexibility to international travelers needing reliable networks. 

Universal Compatibility

Most new smartphones and tablets are eSIM compatible. Physical SIM cards come in different shapes and sizes, so one size does not fit all. 

Using an eSIM guarantees compatibility with your device, so you don’t have to worry about getting the wrong card size at the store!

Environmental Friendliness

Using eSIMs is much more environmentally friendly than using multiple physical SIM cards. Physical SIM cards require materials to be used to produce and package the cards, while eSIMs don’t require any of this. 

you should consider device compatibility and user friendliness before deciding on an esim.
You should consider device compatibility and user-friendliness before deciding on an eSIM.

Things to Consider Before Buying an eSIM

Before running out and buying an eSIM from any company, you should consider the below factors to find an eSIM that works best for you. 

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Device Compatibility

Though eSIMs offer universal compatibility, older devices may not have been built with eSIM technology in mind. Make sure you check your device to see if it has eSIM capabilities before purchasing an eSIM plan. 

Carrier Support

Not all mobile carriers offer eSIM support or services. Check with your mobile carrier to see if they support eSIM and in what capacity. 

User Friendliness

eSim is great if you’re able to use it easily! A good eSIM company will offer user-friendly apps or web portals to use to make using their services easy. 

Check to see how easy it is to activate, manage, and switch between plans as you travel to see how user-friendly an eSIM option is.

Customer Support

A good eSIM company will over excellent customer support for international travelers. Access to good customer support is important if you run into any issues using your eSIM while abroad. 

Plan Options and Flexibility

Not all eSIM plans are the same. There are a few different things you should check before choosing an eSIM plan. 

Carriers and Coverage

Make sure the eSIM plan you’re considering offers the coverage you need while abroad. Some plans offer more carriers than others. 

International Roaming

Different carriers and eSIM providers handle international data roaming charges differently. With an eSIM, you shouldn’t pay any data roaming charges as you pay for data through your plan. 

To avoid roaming fees while using your primary phone number during your trip, consult your carrier before you leave. Any additional fees should be read carefully with any eSIM provider you’re considering. 

Still Unsure? Consider AloSIM

If you’re still unsure where to begin looking for an eSIM, we recommend AloSIM for international travel. AloSIM takes all of the above into consideration to give you affordable access to local networks anywhere in the world. 

alosim offers affordable network access to international travelers.
AloSIM offers affordable network access to international travelers.

Why AloSIM?

AloSIM offers a variety of prepaid eSIM packages for over 130 countries, so you can find an option that’s right for you. There are also several other reasons why we prefer AloSIM:

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Avoid Roaming Charges

AloSIM doesn’t charge for international roaming, as you purchase and install your eSIM package right on your device. Since you’ll be connected directly to your local international data network, you won’t be using your home data network at all!

If you need more data during your trip, simply top up your eSIM through the AloSIM app or web portal.

using an esim can save you lots of money in the long run.
Using an eSIM can save you lots of money in the long run.

Cheaper than Daily Travel Plans

Prepaid eSIM packages like those offered by AloSIM typically offer a certain amount of data over a specific period of time. Usually, this time period is anywhere between 7 and 30 days.

Carrier data packages are usually charged per day, which can add up quickly. It also only allows you to use the equivalent of your usual data plan, so you may be limited depending on your usual plan. If you accidentally go over this plan, you’ll end up with some hefty roaming charges. 

Using an eSIM can not only help you avoid data roaming charges, but it’s also cheaper per day than carrier data packages. On average, you could pay up to $15 per day through your carrier!

With an eSIM like AloSIM, you can expect to pay somewhere around $5 per week for access to the local network. That’s less than $1 per day. 

You decide what’s cheaper: $5 for a week using eSIM, or $105 for a week using your carrier. Just think of all the things you could do on your trip with that extra cash!

Safer and Faster than SIM Card Swapping

Because modern phones have eSIMs embedded, you don’t have to worry about accidentally damaging or losing it while swapping it out. This also makes changing carriers during busy travel much more convenient.

Plus, eSIMs have greater security than physical SIM cards, which can carry sensitive information on them. If someone steals your physical SIM card, they could use it in another device and access your personal information.

Using an eSIM through AloSIM keeps your data safe and secure without the ability to physically remove it from your device. 

Conclusion

eSIM technology offers a modern and convenient alternative to traditional physical SIM cards. 

With its ease of use, eSIM has several benefits for international travelers. 

Always remember to consider device compatibility and plan flexibility before choosing an eSIM. 

When in doubt, consider AloSIM. AloSIM works great for international travelers seeking affordable and reliable eSIM mobile data.

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Agness Walewinder
Agness Walewinder
Travel freak, vagabond, photography passionate, blogger, life enthusiast, backpacker, adventure hunter and endless energy couchsurfer living by the rule "Pack lite, travel far and live long!"
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