France is a beautiful country. Every site is worth capturing. Every memory you make there stays with you for life. France is the heart of fashion; they have great, clothes, great food and most of all, Paris, the city of love. You don’t want to ruin your mood on a great trip just because you got fooled by a local vendor and purchased a poor data connection sim card.
Believe it or not, purchasing a sim card is more important than lining up places you’re going to visit. It is the only way you can make calls for reserving seats at those places, and also, sim cards are your only pass to social media, thanks to data.
We are here to save you from that trouble and compose a guide with the best sim cards for your trip and their data packages.
Why Buy a Sim Card?
Despite the fact that you went to Paris to take a break from your daily life. Yet you will need a way to stay connected to the people you left behind. The most reasonable way is via data. You will access all social media applications, such as Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, ETC, at cheap prices. Wi-Fi devices are another option, but I would only recommend them to those whose stay is less than a year.
Other than data, when you have a sim card you can always use it for call and SMS services for both international and local. It will help get reservations and confirm bookings.
List of Best Tourist Sim Card in France
Orange is the lead service provider in France, with the best 4G quality. They are considered the most important company in the country due to their splendid service and the considerable number of customers.
If you are willing to use a 2G connection, you can get Mobicarte (orange prepaid sim card), as it allows SMS, data, and calls in 2G, 3G, and 4G/LTE.
Where to buy from:
As far as you want the Mobicarte sim card, it is available online. The price online may be higher; however, it will save you from the hassle of roaming around stores looking for a sim card. In fact, you will get the sim card right away.
You can also find orange sim cards from local stores called orange Boutique for around 2.99 euros to 9.99 euros (standard prepaid sim card). To purchase a sim card, your ID card and Passport are compulsory. You will need them to register, buy and even activate the sim card. Even when purchasing online, you will need to send a picture of your ID card and Passport.
Mini Triple-cut, Nano, and micro sim cards are available at the orange boutique. An advantage of purchasing a sim card from orange boutique is that they will activate you sim card right away. Remember to have patients. An orange boutique is a crowded place, especially during vacations. So it may take a few hours, but it’s worth it.
Dial #123#, and you will be provided with a menu, among which there will be an option labeled recharged. There enter your 14 digit code from your voucher. You can purchase a voucher from the same menu in the purchase option.
Other than vouchers, the following packages are also offered for recharge. All these packages are valid for domestic, Europe, Switzerland, and Andorra:
- 20 MB of data, 2 HR calls, and unlimited SMS in 5 euros for seven days of package and one month for the line.
- 500MB of data, unlimited calls, SMS, and MMS in 10 euros for 10 days of package and 6 months for line
- 2 GB of data, unlimited calls, SMS, and MMS in 20 euros for 30 days of package and 6 months for line
- 10 GB of data, unlimited calls, SMS, and MMS in 30 euros for 30 days of package and 6 months for line
- 16 minutes international calls for 7 days package and 1 month for line in 5 euros
- 33 minutes international calls for 10 days package and 6 months for line in 10 euros
- 2GB of data and 66 minutes international calls for 30 days package and 6 months for line in 20 euros
Only data recharge:
- 1 GB of data in 5 euros for 5 days package and 1 month for line
- 5 GB of data in 10 euros for 14 days package and 6 months for line
- 20 GB of data in 25 Euros for 31 days package and 6 months for line
- 80 GB of data in 40 euros for 31 days packages and 6 months for line
Another way to recharge is by dialing 0800 224 from either mobile phone or landline, entering your orange phone number(when asked), entering 2 for a top-up, and entering the voucher number. Don’t hang up until you get confirmation of top-up.
Orange Data Packages:
- 5 GB of data in 10 euros for 14 days
- 15 GB of data in 25 euros for 1 month
- 35 GB of data in 40 euros for 1 month
Orange Holiday Sim Card:
Most of our visits to France are on holidays like Christmas, New Year’s, etc. hence trying a special holiday sim card may not be the worst option. It is considered the most popular prepaid tourist sim card in France.
The holiday card includes 2 magnificent offers for 14 days:
- Holiday Zen offer has 8 GB of data, unlimited calls, and unlimited SMS in 26.19 euros
- Holiday Europe offer contains 20 GB of data, unlimited calls, and unlimited SMS in 43.71 Euros
The Holiday sim card cost 43.71 euros. The card also offers 1000 international SMS and 20 GB for 14 days
Data sim card:
Orange offers a unique data sim called pochette pert a surfer, previously known as let’s go sim card. It is specially made for tablets, portable Wi-Fi devices, dongles, and modems. If your stay becomes longer and you purchase any Wi-Fi device, you can give it a shot.
Not all stores have this sim card. To purchase, you will need to tell them which device you want it for, and then they will provide you with a sim suitable for your device. You will get 10 GB of data in 14.90 euros for 1 month in the starter pack. You will receive 2 GB extra during the activation period.
With no usage, your sim card will stay activated for maximum 6 months. You will receive an SMS after activation regarding expiration, but if you don’t, check online. If you want to extend the expiration date, then top up your sim card minimum 10 euros, and the expiry date will be extended by 6 months.
Must remember that all packages mentioned above are for phone usage. If you want to use a dongle, Wi-Fi hotspot, you should purchase pochette pert surf. P2P, USENET and VolP are banned. If any mentioned, used, then your plan will be canceled. For VPN, there is only a 50% chance of it working.
2. SFR SIM card:
SFR is the second-largest service provider in France. They provide2G, 3G, and 4G/LTE, to be fair, the best 3G and 4G in town. They are the biggest competitor of orange. SFR was a part of Vivendi not so long ago but was sold to Altice. SFR is also the partner of Vodafone in France.
Despite the best data connection in France, they don’t provide data roaming.
Where to buy from:
SFR has many retail outlets throughout France. You will also find their sim card in local retail outlets. The best option is that SFR sell their sim card online. This is the best option because it saves you from roaming store to store hassle.
Welcomed tourist prepaid sim card is sold at selected stores.
SFR la carte:
La carte is SFR’s prepaid sim card. This sim card is available for online purchases and local stores in mini, micro, and Nano sizes. If you purchase this sim from SFR’s retail outlet, let them activate your sim right away. All they will need is your ID card and Passport. But if you purchase your sim online or from any other store, activate your sim card via the website or call at 963. The activation call has no charges.
The starter pack of la carte cost around 9.99 euros, which can be lowered to 3.99 euros and even 1 euro. The sim card has 5 euros worth of credit and 50 MB of data for 30 days. Another starter package called la carte connect contains 15 GB of data 5 euros worth of credit and is valid for 25 days. This package cost 14.99 euros.
Welcome prepaid sim card:
SFR offers a unique tourist sim card called welcome prepaid sim card. As mentioned earlier. A welcome sim card cannot be found at every SFR store or other small/ large scale store. It cost around 34.99 euros to 40 euros, depending on which retailers.
The sim card includes:
- 1-hour international call to Europe, USA, and China.
- 2GB of local and international data
- Unlimited Wi-Fi service
The sim card is valid for
For top-up, SFR gives us magnificent recharge offers. Recharge offers are divided ion 2 categories:
- 300 MB of data for 5 days in 5 euros. Activation code in WEB5
- 2 GB of data for 8 days in 10 euros. Activation code in WEB10
- 15 GB of data for 30 days in 25 euros. Activation code in WEB25
- 30 GB of data for 30 days in 35 euros. Activation code in WEB35
The following packages include local unlimited SMS and calls:
- 2GB of data and 1-hour domestic voice for 7 days in 5 euros. Activation code in ILLI5
- 10 GB of data and unlimited domestic voice for 10 days in 10 euros. Activation code in ILLI10
- 50 GB of data and unlimited domestic voice for 30 days in 20 euros. Activation code in ILLI20
- 80 GB of data and unlimited domestic voice for 30 days in 30 euros. Activation code in ILLI30
- 100 GB of data and unlimited domestic voice for 30 days in 40 euros. Activation code in ILLI40
For recharge, send SMS on 952 with 10 number code
if you are not interested in recharge packages, then the following may dazzle you:
- 20 MB of data and 1 hr. local calls for 7 days in 5 euros
- 500MB of data and unlimited local voice calls for 10 days in 10.99 euros
- 1GB of data and unlimited local voice calls for 30 days in 20.99 euros
- 4 GB of data and unlimited local voice calls for 30 days in 30 euros
SFR provides roaming service on their prepaid sim card “la carte” only on SMS and voice calls. Roaming service is only offered inside Europe.
3. Bouygues telecom:
Bouygues telecoms are the third most prominent service provider in France. They started selling their service in 2017 October and gained around 94% of the market share by providing 4G/LTE with 1800MHz. Recently Bouygues telecom has restricted their roaming plans on the ordinary sim card. Only tourist sim card offers roaming at high prices.
Where to Purchase
You can find Bouygues sim cards in their retail outlet and other local retailers. You can also find Bouygues, my European tourist sim card, in a third-party store in the airport.
Prepaid sim card:
Bouygues telecom’s prepaid sim card XL is available in the market and can easily be found at Bouygues retail outlets. Prepaid sim card offers 4G / LTE on all data packages and unlimited local SMS and calls; however, you can add international calls with the bonus credit.
It takes around 10 euros to 25 euros to top up this sim card even if you plan to take one of the data top-up packages and can be done online and by calling 630. You can use a credit card to top your sim card, but only local credit cards will work. International credit cards are not accepted if you recharge 5 euros or under.
Top up data packages:
- IDD credit of 3 euros, 500MB of data, unlimited local calls, and SMS in 5 euros recharge for 3 days.
- IDD credit 5 euros, 1 GB of data, unlimited local calls, and SMS in 10 euros recharge for 10 days.
- IDD credit 10 euros, 2 GB of data, unlimited local calls, and SMS in 20 euros recharge for 30 days.
- IDD credit 25 euros, 5 GB of data, unlimited local calls, and SMS in 40 euros recharge for 60 days.
My European Sim Card:
Bouygues telecom offers a tourist sim called my European sim card. This sim card can be purchased from the airport, at a third-party store, or online. Bouygues delivers worldwide.
Many travelers consider this sim card a better purchase than the 40 euros data package of Bouygues XL. Bouygues only sim card offers roaming in Europe, the UK, and Andorra. They offer:
- Unlimited local SMS and calls with 20 GB of data for 39.90 euros. You can add international calls for25 euros. The offers are valid for 30 days.
Remember to verify your sim card within 30 days of purchasing it, or else it will be blocked.
International roaming on Bouygues prepaid sim card has been blocked; however, if you purchase my European tourist sim card, you will be accessed with roaming in Europe, the UK, Faroe island, and Andorra
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does a sim card cost in Paris?
Generally, a standard prepaid sim card costs around 15 euros in Paris.
Which is the best prepaid sim card company in France?
Orange, SFR, and Bouygues telecom are the leading service providers in France?
Is the internet in France free?
France has the highest internet usage in Europe. In France, free Wi-Fi is offered in large food spots like cafes and restaurants, and even in a few smaller towns, free Wi-Fi is provided. Tourist offices throughout the country offer free Wi-Fi.
How can I get Wi-Fi in France?
You can use free Wi-Fi in restaurants, cafes, and many local food spots. You can purchase sim cards and use data or purchase modems and USBs of different companies.
Having a sim card is not important. Having the correct sim card is. All the best possible options are listed above to help you make the right decision and choose a suitable sim card with the best offers. I recommend all readers to have a bit of understanding of the French language, or else managing your sim card will be difficult. I hope the article was help full.