Does Changing SIM Card Change Phone Number? – International Travel

One of the questions that a lot of people have about buying an international SIM card while they are abroad is what will happen to their phone number. Does changing SIM card change phone number? There is a quick and easy answer to this. Your phone number is going to change to a local phone number if you buy a local SIM card. This means that of course, the number that is on the SIM card is not going to be the same number that you are used to having. There is a difference though. If you change mobile companies within your home town you have probably seen the commercials right. You keep your phone if you come with us. That is true only if you are changing mobile carriers locally not internationally.

The whole point of buying a SIM card if you travel is to be able to use your phone as a local phone. Which means that you are going to the same rates for local ideally than what locals get. On the other hand, you are going to be able to have local data without roaming. This means that the cost of data is going to be lower than what it would normally cost you to keep using your regular phone while abroad with roaming.

  • What are the benefits of buying an international SIM card?
  • International SIM card vs local SIM cards
  • How much could you potentially be saving
  • Is my personal information safe with a foreign SIM card?
  • Buying from respectable retailers
  • What is the actual risk of using a foreign SIM card?
  • What is the best option?

Does Changing SIM Card Change Phone Number: Benefits of The Change

The benefits of buying one of these SIM cards are pretty simple. You are going to be able to have local coverage at more decent rates than you would if you where to use your regular plan internationally. The coverage from a local company is usually better than the type of coverage that you could from using roaming with your regular provider. Things are pretty simple then, you are going to be able to save money on your phone bill and you are also going to be getting decent coverage.

What a lot of people don’t know is that when you are out of the country you are not going to be able to answer incoming calls to your regular number. Especially if you don’t have an international plan with an additional fee enabled. For the most part, your regular phone is going to just work on wifi. For these reasons people can look into a local SIM card in whatever company they are visiting to be able to use their phone regularly.

Does Changing SIM Card Change Phone Number: International SIM card vs local SIM cards

This is one of those things that is rarely talked about. We are going to try and make a little sense of this. These days if you just google SIM cards for Europe for example, you may get results that are these international SIM cards that could supposedly use everywhere. That is not a lie or at least most of these cards are not a lie. Then, there are the local SIM cards or prepaid plans that certain companies offer. These could be even from very noteworthy companies like Vodafone, Virgin or AT&T that are exclusive to one company. These are usually country-specific. If you are going to Colombia you can buy a local SIM card there, but it won’t be effective maybe in Peru where the next half of your trip is taking place.

When it comes to traveling across Europe you are usually going to be better off with one of those sort of all-inclusive SIM cards. The EU works more as a unit than any other region in the world. Despite the Brexit scandal that in the coming years could see things for the UK change quite a bit even in things like cell phone coverage. If you are in the Caribbean or Central America you may be able to get one of these SIM cards that have a wider range of coverage for many different countries. This is usually not the norm though. What works in Mexico is not going to work in Guatemala or even further down into South America. So, that may be something that you are going to want to consider.

As with a lot of these issues, it is really going to depend on where you travel. As was mentioned before a trip to Europe you are probably going to be ok, with some of those multi-country travel cards. A lot of times though, it could be a good idea to check the price tag on them and the expiration date. Some times it may actually be a decent option to buy the cheapest SIM per the duration of your stay in a certain country. The problem with doing that is that you would have to keep track of what your new number is for a specific country. So, that could be a problem for most people. That is why those multi-country offers are popular even though they could be more expensive.

How much could you potentially be saving?

The average cost of a simple 5GB option for Europe is going to cost you around 25 American dollars. The credit validity for these particular cards is of 30 days. There are options that could as high as maybe 70 dollars. These, of course, offer a tremendous amount of data. For comparison, even on the most expensive pay as you go cards or other options you could be saving around 200 to 250 dollars per month of usage. As if you were to stick with the international plan on your regular service provider you would be paying 10 dollars a day. That adds up of course to 300 dollars a month. If you have Sprint you are going to be paying actually 50 dollars a week. So the savings are less in that company. Still, you are going to be saving around 180 dollars on the most expensive SIM cards for Europe.

If you are going to Mexico you are going to be saving a lot more money with a SIM card. Even though for most carriers you are going to be paying only 5 bucks a day for the international plan that does not mean that it is going to be a great option. In Mexico, Colombia and other places further down south you are going to be able to obtain a SIM card for under 10 dollars. So you are going to be able to save quite a bit of dough when it really comes down to it.

Is my personal information safe with a foreign SIM card?

Generally using another SIM card is not something that could end up in you having your personal information stolen or things of that nature. That being said, it is clear why many people would have that fear. Given the amount of information that we typically store in our phones these days. A thing that you have to watch out for is data loss. If you switch SIM cards you are going to lose the contacts that you have on your regular SIM card. That is why it may be a good idea to save your contacts directly on the device itself. This is something that you are going to be able to do when saving your contacts on most devices. Another good idea is to have pictures or any other types of things that you may have saved on your phone backed up on a cloud service. This is going to ensure that even if you can’t find them when you switch SIM cards you have a chance to get them back at any time.

Now, as far as buying a fake SIM that is going to literally corrupt your phone or steal personal information this could happen. Especially with some of the SIM cards that are literally on sale in the street. This is very common in some European countries where people come up to you and try to sell you certain counterfeit or bootleg items. If you are buying from these people then you may have to seriously worry about what could happen to your personal data. The best thing that you could do is buy from a certified dealer online or an official Amazon shop. This is one of the ways that you are going to be able to guarantee that what you are getting is legit. Also, you are going to have someone that you can complain to if anything goes wrong. That is usually something that is understated a lot of times. Basically as long as you don’t fall for some of the scams that are out on the streets you are probably going to be fine.

Just on a side note, you have to make sure that you are buying a SIM card or an eSIM that is going to be compatible with your phone. SIM cards are not a one size fits all type of ordeal. At least not at this particular point in time. Another reminder that can actually help you avoid unnecessary data loss is making sure that you have your phone unlocked when you insert a new SIM. Unlocking your phone in this type of sense is not about inputting your password or your face recognition or whatever. It is making sure that the phone is not tied down to one service provider. If you bought the phone itself from T-Mobile, Version, and all of the usual guys this probably means that your phone is locked. You are going to need to get it unlocked to be able to add a new SIM. This is true even for the new iPhones.

Buying from respectable retailers

This is something that we sort of brushed on, in the previous paragraphs. We want to amend something though. It is not like you can only buy SIM cards from some of the usual names that you may know. Such as AT&T, Verizon, maybe Vodafone or Orange in Europe. There are other companies that you may not be completely familiar with that can sell you pretty good deals on SIM cards. Especially if you are looking for one of those SIM cards that is going to allow you to use your phone all over Europe. Even though, these may not be the property of a brand name that you know it does not mean that they are fake.

It is just that as was mentioned before buying from people on the street is a huge no-no. We mentioned this with the fear of data loss. It is more of a fear of getting scammed really. You don’t know if you are going to be getting your money’s worth, a lot of times you really can’t guarantee that the SIM is going to work properly. So, that is why yet again we feel it is important to mention that you should think about buying from retailers that are actually the real deal. It is going to save you time and money and it can save you a couple of headaches too as well.

What is the actual risk of using a foreign SIM card?

A lot of people want to know if there is a possible setback toward using a foreign SIM. It is one of those things that you are not going to be at risk if you do everything properly. Don’t worry we are not going to be talking about buying SIM cards on the street again. This is more of an issue of making sure that you remove the SIM card that you have properly so that you don’t break it or cause any harm to it at all. Service providers can be very picky about damaged SIM cards. What you don’t want is to come back home and have a damaged SIM card. You are not going to be able to put it back in and use your phone as you normally would. This is going to lead to other types of issues.

Another “risk” that you can have is not switching out your SIM card when you get home. That is not a big deal the worst thing that could happen on a prepaid or pay as you go plan is that you reach your limits as far as data or minutes go. Maybe some data loss could be the risk also. Make sure that you have everything properly backed up. As we mentioned before the risks are more a result of not operating things properly. Not so much with actually using other SIM cards in a proper manner.

Does Changing SIM card Change Phone Number: What is the best option?

Throughout the site, we try and provide many different types of avenues or ways that you could potentially use your phone abroad. We try and stay pretty consistent with the recommendations that we give. These could change over time if different technology is developed or there is a change in legislation someplace. For the most part, though we are pretty consistent with this advice. If you have a newer version of the iPhone that can hold two SIM cards at the same time, then, by all means, take advantage of this feature. That way you won’t have to ask yourself, “does changing SIM card change phone number?”.

If you don’t happen to have one of these phones then maybe your best bet would be to buy a travel phone. This could be a cheap phone that you don’t have a lot of private information on. That you could use with different SIM cards from across the globe. This is a great option if you happen to be an avid traveler. Especially if you are traveling across the pond. That way you can have chargers that are native to the current that is used in Europe and America. Having to deal with voltage converters can be a bit of a pain. It can also be something that if it is not done properly can really mess up your devices. These days you could actually buy a native charger for your phone. If it is an iPhone though it is going to cost you some money. Even with the dual SIM feature you just may be more comfortable going ahead and buying another phone.

We mentioned that there really were not a lot of risks involved with this whole process. We really stand by that. The fact is though, a lot of folks could be carrying around very sensitive data on their phones. Even just taking your regular phone on the adventure with you could be putting that information at risk. That is why in a sense the idea of buying a new phone is an extra layer of safety. Even in those cases though, buying a prepaid or pay as you go SIM card is going to be the better option so that you can control what you are going to spend. Don’t put yourself into a foreign contract with a phone company for a service that you are going to use for just a little while. Even if you are going to be there for 6 months getting into a contract may not be a great idea.