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I will be travelling to Germany for 9 days and I need a SIM card there as soon as I arrive at Frankfurt Airport. I can take a SIM from India with international roaming activated but that option seems very costly.

Is there a way to get a prepaid SIM in Frankfurt (preferably near the airport) with which I can make local calls as well calls to India?

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possible duplicate of What are the options for a prepaid SIM card in Berlin? –  nibot Sep 2 '12 at 10:57
    
Yes, it's very easy to get a SIM card in Germany. Plenty of network operators have stores where you can go, and almost all supermarkets also have re-branded discount SIM cards. To activate the SIM card, you'll need to go online and register a German address, but there is no verification. –  nibot Sep 2 '12 at 10:59
    
Comprehensive info on German SIM cards: prepaid-wiki.de –  nibot Sep 2 '12 at 19:31

3 Answers 3

up vote 6 down vote accepted

You would have to get a prepaid card; but you wont be able to make calls to India from a prepaid number - a 20 Euro charge will probably give you around 5mins talktime to foreign countries before it is depleted...

Get one of those phone cards where you call a special number and you have much better rates ("calling cards", see comments); the area around the Main Train station in Frankfurt should have shops who sell those cards. You are probably better off using skype to call home. Don't buy anything at the Airport; too expensive.

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so a foreigner can get a prepaid sim card outside the airport?? In India we have very strict documents required to get a sim. Also could you explain how I can use the phone cards or give a link.. thanks –  nischayn22 Sep 1 '12 at 11:08
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India is very unusual in requiring so much documentation to get a sim card, most places make it much much easier! –  Gagravarr Sep 1 '12 at 14:10
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"those phone cards where you call a special number and you have much better rates" are usually termed "calling cards" in my experience. –  hippietrail Sep 1 '12 at 15:04
    
It turns out that there are providers who offer SIM cards with very cheap international calling without using an additional calling card--see my answer. –  nibot Sep 3 '12 at 10:13

Try lebara.de, who offers SIM cards specifically targeted towards people who want to frequently call internationally. You can find one at almost any kiosk. They advertise rates to India of only 1 cent per minute (plus a 15 cent per call connection fee). I don't know what the catch is.

Another option might be LycaMobile. They advertise free or very cheap rates when calling other LycaMobile customers, even internationally.

Ortel is another provider advertising international calling from a mobile phone for 1-3 cents per minute.

I only know of these guys because I saw their ad in a kiosk window earlier today, just to illustrate how easy it is to get a SIM card in Germany:

enter image description here

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DO NOT BUY LYCAMOBILE, stick to LeBara. LycaMobile is unhelpful, misleading and does not work when you change smartphones (yes, smartphone was unblocked). LycaMobile is the VERY WORST carrier in Europe. STAY AWAY FROM LYCAMOBILE. –  tony gil Jun 5 '13 at 8:57

The German Telecommunication law requires carriers/resellers to register the name, address and birth date of every end user. Some will only accept German addresses or additionally require a passport number.

And yes, calls to India will be very expensive unless you get an additional callthrough card. I've also read that some carriers block such callthrough numbers - T-Mobile and Vodafone (and resellers in those networks) supposedly don't.

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Yes, the SIM card provider is required to register this data, but not required to check whether the data is valid. So there are many SIM card providers that don't bother if you register as "John Doe", with street "Platz der Republik 1" and zip "11011" in "Berlin". –  unor Sep 1 '12 at 23:01

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