The Best eSIM Providers for Travel

Travelling is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences one can have. Exploring new places, and cultures, and meeting new people can be unforgettable experiences that will last a lifetime.

However, staying connected while on the road can be a challenge. Roaming charges can be expensive, and finding a local SIM card can be a hassle.

The Best eSIM Providers for Travel

Travelling is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences one can have. Exploring new places, and cultures, and meeting new people can be unforgettable experiences that will last a lifetime.

However, staying connected while on the road can be a challenge. Roaming charges can be expensive, and finding a local SIM card can be a hassle.

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

Hi, we’re Rach & Marty!

We’ve visited every country in the world and want to help you get the most out of your travels!

Whether you need an expertly planned itinerary, some experienced hints and tips, or just craving a delicious food adventure, we’ve got you covered!

We may earn affiliate commissions from websites we link to, at no cost to you. Click here for details.

Best eSIM Providers Girl Laptop phone

This is where the best eSIM providers come in, making it practical and cheap to stay connected while travelling. Whether you’re on vacation, an expat, a remote worker, or a digital nomad, an eSIM is an affordable and convenient way to stay connected all over the world.

eSIM has changed the way the world stays connected and there are many eSIM providers to choose from.

But, which eSIM providers offer the best product?

From single-country plans, to regional and global eSIM data packs, we’ll cover the best eSIM providers for travellers and explore why eSIM is a practical and cheap way to stay connected.

Let’s talk more about the best eSIM providers for Travel

What is an eSIM?

eSIM stands for embedded SIM, essentially it’s a digital SIM that is embedded in your device.

It allows you to activate a mobile plan without having to insert a physical SIM card. This means that you can switch between different mobile carriers without having to swap out SIM cards.

It’s a practical solution that saves you time and money. 

eSIM – The Positives & the Negatives

I’ve been using eSIM for many years now, and I’ve got to admit that there is no turning back for me now! I love this product.

But, with most things in life; there are a few pros and cons of using eSIM rather than physical SIM.

The Pros of using eSIM:

  • A physical SIM card is no longer required
  • Store multiple eSIMs on your device at once. It means you can stay connected in many countries (providing your data pack is still valid)
  • Much more cost-efficient in comparison to paying expensive roaming charges
  • So easy to download, setup and activate on a device
  • Better security and privacy as the data is stored in digital format rather than physical format on your device.
  • Keep your original mobile phone number

The Cons of using eSIM:

  • eSIM is sometimes a little more expensive than buying a local SIM card, but it makes up for it in convenience – I predict that prices of eSIM data plans will be the same or cheaper than physical SIM cards in the near future.
  • The device must be compatible with eSIM. (Check the eSIM provider’s website for this information).
  • You may encounter technical issues with the activation process (but Customer Support of the eSIM company can assist you with this). 

I honestly believe that eSIMs are the future of staying connected all over the world.

Physical SIM cards will get phased out over the coming few years.

Technology is awesome, and so are the best eSIM providers that are getting better all the time and offering some amazing data plans to keep us connected.

Best eSIM Providers woman with eSIM on phone

Where to purchase an eSIM?

You can purchase an eSIM for international travel directly from the eSIM providers website. Usually, you’ll need to download their app, then sign up and create a profile (generally takes less than 5 minutes). 

From there, you can browse what eSIM data packs they have available, then download and activate your eSIM to get connected.

Your first purchase and activation may take a little longer, but after that, the process is much faster.

Is eSIM better than a physical SIM card?

eSIMs are the way forward! Ask anyone that travels for leisure, or business; it’s convenient with a capital C!

And, if you saw the recent Apple iPhone 14 announcement that said all US iPhones will now only support eSIMs, then it’s a good indication that the future really IS eSIM to stay connected around the world. Physical SIM cards will be a thing of the past, at least for iPhone users.

With the increased popularity of eSIM, it means that eSIM providers are popping up everywhere. 

But, that doesn’t mean they’re all offering a good eSIM product. Many eSIM providers out there offer an average product. One that isn’t competitive in price, doesn’t offer a reliable connection and doesn’t offer any customer support when you need it.

But you don’t need to worry about that, because I’ve done the legwork for you and tested them. Those dodgy eSIM providers do not feature here, I’m giving you the top 3 eSIM providers only, however, I strongly recommend the first one on my list, Airalo.

After visiting every country in the world and downloading more eSIMs than I can count, here are the best eSIM providers that I can recommend with confidence.

The Best eSIM providers for Travel

1) Airalo

Airalo is our preferred choice of the three best eSIM providers listed here. They offer coverage in 190+ countries and we’ve been using Airalo for a number of years now.

Their range of Global eSIMS was a game-changer for us to stay connected on our world journey. Read more about what it’s like to visit every country on planet earth.

Airalo best eSIM Provider Homepage
Airalo is top of the list of the best eSIM Providers – Best eSIM plan for sure!

What makes Airalo my Top Choice of eSIM Provider?

Airalo is different from other eSIM providers because they work with local telco companies worldwide. This means that they can offer bigger data packs for less because they cut out the middleman, which saves you money and gives you more data for your dollar!

Furthermore, they generally have more reliable coverage in each country too. 

Airalo has a user-friendly app that makes it easy to download and activate any eSIM. They offer a range of data plans, including daily, weekly, and monthly plans, making it easy to find a plan that fits your needs.

Furthermore, Airalo is a great option for travellers who need affordable data plans and excellent coverage.

Whether you just need the best eSIM card for the UK, a regional eSIM to travel around Europe (eSIM covers 39 countries) or a Global eSIM for travelling the world, Airalo is hands down one of the best eSIM providers available today.

Best eSIM Providers Airalo eSIM on phone
Airalo – Best eSIM Provider available today

I love the regional and global eSIM plans that Airalo has to offer. These allow you to have access to the internet in groups of countries all over the world.

View the six regional data packs offered by Airalo.

The Airalo regional plans listed above offer excellent value for money. I highly recommend the EuropeLink eSIM which offers coverage to 39 European countries on the same eSIM! 

Airalo Eurolink Data Packs
Airalo Eurolink Data Packs – The best eSIM plan for travelling in Europe

The Asia plan is also another one offering fantastic value.

This regional eSIM covers up to 13 countries in Asia, and if you’re heading to Southeast Asia, this is the ONLY eSIM you need!

If you’re planning to visit say Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos on the same journey, then you’re good to go with AsiaLink Regional eSIM.

Downloading and activating an Airalo eSIM is very easy, and there’s a step-by-step guide to take you through the process. And, if you run into any issues, Airalo has a great Help Centre online that can assist. 

Regional eSIM Provider Airalo
Regional eSIM Data Packs offered by Airalo, my favourite eSIM provider

The excellent customer support is why I rate Airalo in the number one place as the best eSIM providers out there.

Sign up for Airalo and use code RACHEL5045 to get $3 off your first purchase.

Read my complete Airalo review to learn more about why I recommend Airalo eSIM.

2) Holafly

Holafly is another contender for the best eSIM providers available today. These guys offer coverage in 130+ countries and some unlimited data packages too. There’s a downside here though, as you cannot use the unlimited data packages to hotspot to another device.

The process of setting up Holafly is easy. And, you can get 5% off your first eSIM purchase when you use our referral code VERYHUNGRYNOMADS, just enter it at checkout.

Like Airalo, you can choose from local or regional plans, however, they DON’T offer any global plans.

For my travel lifestyle, this is the reason why Airalo is my number one eSIM provider. 

Holafly best eSIM providers

In saying that, Holafly offer some affordable plans. 

You can view the range of eSIMs offered by Holafly here.

In my experience, Holafly eSIM is a little more expensive than Airalo eSIM.

Furthermore, the customer service team is smaller at Holafly, so they do take a  little extra time to get back to you to solve any issues (which can be a little frustrating), but they do offer solutions in the end.

3) Nomad

Nomad is on my list of the best eSIM providers because they offer global coverage in over 100+ countries, and it’s reliable.

The service is convenient and easy to set up, which is something we all look for in a good eSIM provider and any product if I’m being honest.

Nomad offers both regional and global plans in addition to single-country data packs. They have some good regional plans but do not offer anything in the region of North or South America yet.

I guess it’s another reason why I confidently back Airalo as the best eSIM provider, they’ve got the biggest range of eSIMs worldwide in most countries offered by any eSIM provider. And, the price is right – which is important to me, as I travel as a lifestyle.

Right now, Nomad only offers short-term plans with a maximum validity of 30 days. So, it’s OK if you’re taking a short vacation, but not ideal for those seeking eSIM for a much longer trip.

Nomad esim provider
Nomad – A good option for eSIM providers, but in my opinion, it’s not the best out there.

Overall Benefits of Switching from Physical SIM to eSIM

Here are the main reasons why I love using eSIM:

  1. You can activate your eSIM just before arrival in a new country/region
  2. You get online as soon as you arrive, it’s so convenient
  3. Keep your original phone number (so useful for family and friends to contact you on the same phone number)
  4. No need to remove your SIM card from your device.
  5. No time wasted trying to find a store to purchase a SIM card.
  6. Top up with more data within seconds. I love it!
Best eSIM Providers Man holding phone

A Final Word on the Best eSIM Providers for Travel

In conclusion, eSIM is a practical and cheap way to stay connected while travelling. With eSIM, you can easily switch between mobile carriers without having to swap out SIM cards, and you can save money on traditional roaming charges.

So, next time you are travelling, consider using eSIM (Airalo wins my vote as the best eSIM provider overall) and enjoy the benefits of staying connected without breaking the bank and making your travelling life 100% easier.

More Travel Tips

We have so many tips to help you travel more!

These 21 cheapest countries to visit will help you stretch your hard-earned dollars further.

Read our top 6 travel hacks to save money and the 20 best travel apps to make travel easier! 

For food lovers, don’t miss our top 10 best countries for foodies. And, if history is your thing, these 30 amazing historical places worldwide will fascinate you!

We have many tips to save money for travel and consider these 20 jobs that PAY YOU to travel the world to help you travel longer.

If you become a trusted housesitter, you can also get FREE accommodation worldwide. Read more about how this works.

Check out our ultimate packing list for travellers, and remember to pack travel insurance! We recommend these two travel insurance companies for excellent coverage.

Our 12 essential tips for safe travel in any country are worth a read. 

You’ll need to stay connected while travelling the world. We recommend eSIM. It’s easy, reliable and affordable. View eSIMs for individual countries, or consider a Global eSIM if you travel to multiple countries or regions. This eSIM connects you in 124 countries, offering data-only eSIM and data/call/text eSIM.

The Global eSIM has been a game-changer; we couldn’t imagine travelling without it now.

If you want to travel with like-minded travellers, consider joining a group tour. Get the best deals on worldwide group tours with Tourradar.

Check out our best-ever travel tips compiled from more than twenty years of experience.

Did you enjoy this article? Share it with friends and family!

Travel Planning Resources

✈️ Flights: We use Skyscanner to book cheap flights worldwide.

🏨 AccommodationBooking.com is our preferred platform for booking hotels and accommodation. We use Vrbo to book apartments and long-term stays.

🏥 Travel Insurance: We recommend Heymondo (Get 5% off Heymondo) & SafetyWing

🚌 Transportation: Trainline is the best website to reserve trains. We use Omio to book transport worldwide. For travel in Asia, we use 12Go. 

🚘 Car Rental: We use DiscoverCars to book rental cars worldwide.

👫 Group ToursG Adventures OR compare multi-day tours worldwide with Tourradar.

📸 Day Tours & TripsGetYourGuide & Viator are the only two platforms you need.

📚 Lonely Planet: The Best Range of Travel Guides & Ebooks, and FREE Shipping! (use code RACHELDAVEY10 for a 10% discount)

🎒 LuggageOsprey Farpoint 40L Backpack or Samsonite Luggage Range.

🛄 What to Pack: Don’t forget your Universal charger and a good power bank.  To help you pack the essentials, here is our ULTIMATE Packing List for all Travellers.

🐶 Become a House Sitter: Join Trusted Housesitters and enjoy FREE accommodation worldwide. Use our invite to receive 25% off your new membership.

💰 Send Money Anywhere: WISE & Revolut are the best online accounts that let you send money, get paid, and spend money internationally. Both are so easy to use and way cheaper than any bank transfer.

📶 Stay Connected: Airalo eSIM allows you to get connected the moment you land at your destination, and you can avoid those expensive data roaming charges. We LOVE this product! Use promo code NOMAD15 for 15% off ALL eSIMs (new Airalo users only) OR use NOMAD10 for 10% off ALL eSIMs (for existing Airalo users)

✅ Check out our Travel Gear and Travel Resources for more valuable tips to save you money!

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