Now the EU has waived roaming fees, one can buy a SIM from any of the EU countries. I am sure I am not alone in just wanting the lowest data prices when I visit. Is there a comprehensive comparison of prepaid SIM cards in the EU?

  • 2
    You should assume that there will be some form of a misuse clause within any contract of the providers, when they find out that you are using a SIM card from outside your country of residence. (Roaming: Using a mobile phone in the EU - Your Europe: 'Roaming is when you use your mobile phone while occasionally travelling outside the country where you live or have stable links i.e. you work or study there.'). Jun 14, 2021 at 6:43
  • Exactly. To prevent abuse by permanent roaming (using a SIM from country A while living in country B), the "roam like at home" schema comes with fair use restrictions that kick in if you spend more time roaming than in your home network and your service usage while roaming also exceeds usage of the home network. (Both are averaged over a 4-month period.)
    – TooTea
    Jun 14, 2021 at 6:51
  • @TooTea not a real concern if you're willing to stock up on a bunch of SIM cards and throw them out as they become unusable.
    – JonathanReez
    Jun 14, 2021 at 7:10

2 Answers 2


While not all phones are eSIM compatible yet, if yours is, I found a very good database at https://esimdb.com/region/europe

An eSIM combats most of the problems mentioned in the physical SIM answer.


There are several concerns besides "cheapest". An ideal EU travel SIM must satisfy the following properties:

  1. Available for purchase on Ebay or some other website that ships internationally
  2. Can be activated from abroad or can be purchased pre-activated
  3. Its possible to top up the SIM with a foreign credit card without huge surcharges. I.e. Czech phone operators block foreign credit cards on their website and you have to pay 10-20% to resellers.

To narrow down the search, an optimal strategy is to search for "activated"+"EU SIM" on Ebay, giving us a list of SIM cards that could be easily purchased in practice. As of today, here are the offers I'm seeing:

  1. Lebara/UK. 15 GBP for 9.4 gigs of data within the EU, as per their FUP document. Comes out to 1.85 EUR/GB.

  2. Three/UK. 15 GBP for 20 gigs of EU or UK data, as per their FUP rules. Comes out to 0.75 EUR/GB.

  3. Labas/Lithuania. 26 EUR for 3 gigs of EU data. Comes out to 8.7 EUR/GB.

  4. NOS/Portugal. 29 EUR for 10 gigs of data. Comes out to 2.9 EUR/GB. No special limits for EU roaming.

So currently the best pre-activated SIMs to stock up on are from Three/UK. This listing is a good example of what seems like a great deal.

This StackExchange post will inevitably become outdated in the future, so one's best strategy would be to head back on Ebay and check the latest offers on hand. I can't find a website actively tracking such SIMs at the moment, but at the end of the day knowing that some operator in Cyprus or Luxembourg has a great EU roaming deal is pointless if you don't plan to travel there and don't have a way to ship their SIMs to another country. So Ebay is probably the best resource for these kinds of deals.

  • And of course always compare them with the offers from the first country you travel to, where you can just hop into a shop and buy a sim card and enough credit for the trip!
    – Josef
    Jun 14, 2021 at 12:40
  • @Josef yes, definitely. If you’re going to Estonia or Finland you can get better domestic-only rates, for example.
    – JonathanReez
    Jun 14, 2021 at 15:59

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