I would like to get an eSIM with a Chinese number so I can use it to register for local services, apps and so on.

I'm aware that:

  • I can get a regular SIM in airports, but I'd like to save my SIM slot for my roaming SIM card.
  • I don't mind Internet restrictions on this eSIM. I expect to only use it to receive SMS verification codes and such.
  • I can get a travel eSIM (searched for "travel esim", "travel esim app" and "esim china") but I was unable to find one that gives a local phone number (at least Arialo and Nomad don't, I checked a few more of those search results).

I have tried:

  • 1
    Wouldn't a dedicated feature phone with a regular SIM do the work at a low cost?
    – FluidCode
    Commented Apr 29 at 20:25

1 Answer 1


As far as I know – I have researched this, as a HK resident – there are no prepaid eSIMs in Mainland China. I ended up doing two things: getting a regular SIM from China Mobile Shenzhen (I have a dual-SIM phone), and later on when it became available, I changed my plan with China Mobile HK to a generous Bay Area roaming plan with a Mainland number. The Mainland number required dropping by a CMHK shop, taking a photo, showing ID etc, and is limited to postpaid clients with that plan (and, I suppose, more expensive plans). I bet it's the same for 3HK.

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