Page update - Mar 18, 2023
How to use the internet cheaply on vacation in Tunisia? What's better - roaming or Tunisian SIM-cards? What to do for tourists who only need a few gigabytes? What to choose for those who need a lot of gigabytes? Read the answers on this page.
The prices, tariffs, option packs and other information on this page were updated in March 2023.
Many tourists find themselves in an unpleasant situation in Tunisia (and not only in Tunisia). After landing at the airport, your smartphone activates international roaming and internet roaming. Naturally, the rates are bad or even predatory.
The apps on your smartphone start downloading updates, messages, mail and other. Your account goes to zero very quickly. The worst thing is that tourists find out about this after the fact, when they get an SMS about the lack of money on their account or try to call home, but there is no money on the account. Postpaid subscribers then receive huge bills.
Important tip! If you don't plan to use roaming at all. Before you land, turn off data transfer via the mobile network on your smartphone. Some websites recommend removing the SIM-card from the smartphone altogether, but this is unnecessary and smells of paranoia. If you have chosen a roaming option beforehand, switch it on before you take off.
The vast majority of beach hotels in Tunisia have free WiFi for their guests. But using it is a real lottery. There are hotels where the WiFi only works within the hotel lobby, and hotels where it works perfectly in all rooms and on the beach. The speed can be good, but it can also be terrible. It depends on the hotel.
The only way to find out is to read the reviews about the hotel. In some cases, it is possible to use WiFi in a hotel, but you will have to forget about: calling by Skype, WhatsApp or Viber, watching videos on YouTube or social networks, posting large photos on Instagram or transferring files.
Important tip! If being online is important, don't rely on WiFi in your hotel but plan to buy a local SIM in Tunisia and use it to get mobile internet. We'll talk about this in more detail below.
There are now (March 2023) three mobile operators working in Tunisia: Ooredoo, Tunisia Telecom (TT), Orange. There is also a pseudo-operator Lycamobile, which operates through Tunisia Telecom's network.
Orange and TT SIM-cards are difficult to buy, but Ooredoo is easy. Ooredoo dealers sell SIM-cards in train stations, airports, shopping centers, and near sightseeings .
The prices for internet traffic are given in the table below. The prices are expressed in Tunisian dinars. For the current exchange rates, please see our review "Tunisian dinar".
Traffic prices with Tunisian SIM-cards are now several times lower than roaming offers. If you need internet for an adequate price, Tunisian SIMs are the best options.
Note that you can buy the traffic on a Tunisian SIM-card cheaply in a single package, and you can spend it for many days. Roaming operators' offers (in most countries) usually imply a daily subscription fee, which is very inconvenient and expensive.
For tourists who only need a couple of gigabytes of traffic for their vacation, Tunisian SIMs turn out to be the only affordable option.
- Have a look at the reviews of the hotel. Does the hotel have free WiFi? What is the speed? What is the coverage - does WiFi work in the rooms, by the pool, on the beach? If the WiFi is good and you don't need the internet outside the hotel, then it's the 0 cost solution;
- In all other cases, buy an Ooredoo SIM-card, choose the right traffic package and use it at your pleasure. We have discussed the prices of the traffic packages earlier on this page;
- Check your home operator offers and roaming options. There may be profitable solutions, but the chances are low. Staying with your phone number is a great advantage in case of roaming. Whatever, check not to lose chances to take the advantage.
- In many cases, it is better to bring a separate smartphone to use a Tunisian SIM-card. You probably may take an old device lying around somewhere in your house. For more tips on what to take with you, see our in-depth review "What to take with you to Tunisia";
- You'll need to buy a local SIM-card for dinars. It may be that dealers at the airport will accept Euros, US Dollars, or UK pounds, but this is not guaranteed. Exchange money, read our detailed review "Currency exchange in Tunisia";
We wish you good communication during your vacation in Tunisian resorts and read our interesting and useful pages about Tunisia and Tunisians (see the pages list below).
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