If you’re excitedly planning your trip to Spain, you’ve more than likely got a few lists going of things to get before you leave and things to pack. Of course, sun cream, money, and a passport are the most essential. But it’s very easy to overlook one very important item – a sim card.

There’s nothing that can sour the lovely memories of your trip than returning home to a phone bill inflated from roaming charges. Not to mention that you don’t want to find yourself suddenly without coverage when you’re relying on your GPS to get you to your next destination.

We’ve done the research can compiled this super handy guide to sorting out a sim card in Spain. We’ve looked into the various providers, costs, coverage, ease and a few other bits you might need to consider.

GigSky Spain
GigSky Spain

GigSky Spain

  • Price > From $0.00
Jetpac eSim Spain
Jetpac eSim Spain

Jetpac eSim Spain

  • Price > > From $1
SimOptions Spain
SimOptions Spain

SimOptions Spain

  • Price > From $4.50
Sim Local Spain
Sim Local Spain

Sim Local Spain

  • Price > From $3.69
Best Hostels in Granada, Spain

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Why Buy a Sim Card for Spain?

Whether you’re using your phone to call an Uber, using the GPS function to navigate new places or to translate the menu at dinner, travel these days is made immeasurably easier by our phones. Backpacking Spain will be so much easier if you stay connected.

Sure, your current sim card might work in Spain, but there’s far too much that can go awry. For a start, using your day-to-day sim outside of your home territory can rack up the charges at eyewatering speed. Pesky roaming charges and enormously inflated data can leave with you a nasty bill on your return. Not to mention that every time you receive a call, you’ll get charged for that too. 

Note that any other EU or even European sim will probably work seamlessly in Spain.

Can Americans travel to Spain

There’s also the unreliability of using your native sim in a foreign country. Truth is, coverage can drop at some inopportune moments, like when you’re utterly lost in Barcelona’s bustling neighbourhood and can’t find your hotel. 

Getting a local sim in Spain will save you these headaches and ensure you stay connected for the duration of your travels. Not to mention that oftentimes, hotel Wi-Fi can be slow and unreliable, so you don’t want to be reliant on it. 

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    Buying a Sim Card for Spain – Things to Consider

    Get connected and get exploring Spain!

    Choosing a sim local vs international sim card for Spain really comes down to what works best for your needs. Things like budget, coverage and other factors deserve consideration, and what suits you may not work for someone else. 

    We’ve broken these down and explain them in more detail. 


    Cost is a hugely important factor when choosing a sim card in Spain. No one wants to get ripped off, so it’s essential to find out which provider offers the most bang for your buck in terms of data and call charges. 

    Like most things in life, it’s easier to get a deal when you’re buying big. Accordingly the trick is to buy a big enough bundle to save some bucks, without pointlessly buying minutes and data that you can’t realistically use! Typically, Spain is NOT expensive by European standards so you shouldn’t have yo pay too much.


    This is where most providers will snag you. They’ll lure you in with low prices for small bundles that they know you’ll burn through in no time. You’ll then be forced to top up at a much higher rate, thereby costing you significantly more. Always check the costs for top-ups.

    The best way to stay wise here is to get familiar with your average usage and then pad that figure generously as you’ll be using more data for things like maps and translation apps. 


    Don’t take coverage for granted. Not all providers offer coverage in all areas, some specialize in a particular region in Spain only. Once you know precisely where you will be staying in Spain, Make sure to check this or risk being caught out without coverage. Research the area you’ll be visiting and ask about the best coverage for that area. 

    Also, remember to ask about coverage issues or blind spots. This is usually common in very mountainous areas and islands. 

    If you’re travelling to other EU countries on the same trip, purchasing a sim card in Spain often includes free data roaming in the EU. Be sure to check if it is capped or not as this isn’t always clear.  

    5G coverage in Spain is pretty poor compared with other European countries. Some providers are a bit behind the curve and aren’t offering a robust coverage network for even 4G. Research where you’ll be travelling and ensure you won’t be left frustrated by snail’s-pace 3G.

    Also bear in mind that whilst the Balearic and Canary Islands are Spanish territories, they are nowhere near the mainland. As such, a Sim Card that works very well in Madrid may not be much cop out on the distant dunes of Lanzarote!


    In most places, getting a sim card is a fairly quick and easy process. You should be able to secure a sim without too much paperwork or having to provide too much information. 

    Red tape is unfortunately unavoidable in some countries, but thankfully Spain isn’t one of them. If you were heading to Russia or Pakistan, it would be way more complex to get a sim. 


    Don’t get caught out by an expiring sim card. Some sims come with a set lifespan or expiration date and after such time become totally useless. There’s no way to extend or update these which can be annoying if you’re caught out. 

    While some sim cards can expire after 30 days or even 60 days, some will last indefinitely as long as you keep topping them up. 

    The Future of the SIM Card is HERE!
    mockup of a person holding a smartphone in white background with Holafly logo

    A new country, a new contract, a new piece of plastic – booooring. Instead, buy an eSIM!

    An eSIM works just like an app: you buy it, you download it, and BOOM! You’re connected the minute you land. It’s that easy.

    Is your phone eSIM ready? Read about how e-Sims work or click below to see one of the top eSIM providers on the market and ditch the plastic.

    Grab an eSIM!

    Where to Buy a Sim Card for Spain

    Buying a sim card in Spain should be a relatively painless process. Sims are available at international airports, book shops, and mobile internet provider stores, as well as gas stations and convenience stores. 

    Downtown, Cordoba Spain

    In the Airport

    It’s tempting to purchase a sim card at the airport. Usually, the shop staff at airports speak good English and can help get you set up right away. Unfortunately, this comes at a higher price than other stores. 

    At Barcelona Airport you can find a great Orange sim card for €20 in Terminal 1 and 2. It gives you 9 GB of data all over Europe and €5 calling credit.

    In Madrid Airport (Terminal 4 only) you can buy an Orange sim card that will work in Spain and Europe for €25 with 10 GB data + €10 calling credit. 

    At a Store

    Barcelona, Alicante, Malaga and Madrid offer a wide variety of sim card vendors, as do Ibiza and Mallorca. 

    Some of the bigger gas stations and convenience stores will also sell sim cards, however, there won’t be much in the way of service and you’ll need to activate the sim yourself. 

    If you’re hitting the stores, be aware that you may encounter some language barriers – try to learn some Spanish if you have time.. 


    If you’d prefer to hit the ground running when you arrive in Spain and get straight to the business of enjoying your trip, you can always order a sim card for Spain online. Aside from being the easiest way to source a sim card for Spain, this way also allows you plenty of time to research and choose the best sim card for a trip to Spain. And it doesn’t waste precious vacation time.

    Remember, this will require you to order far enough in advance that it arrives before your departure date.

    Have you considered an eSim? Check out the Spanish based HolaFly which offers great deals not only in their home country but in over 100 other nations too.

    Best Sim Card Providers in Spain

    The Kings Little Path Spain


    Founded in 2010, GigSky is a Palo Alto, California-based mobile technology company that provides e-SIM and SIM card data services to international travellers. Unlike many (maybe even most) other eSIM companies, GigSky are actually a Network Operator themselves in their own right, and partner with over 400 other carriers worldwide. This means they have access to a lot more transistors than most other competitors ensuring stronger service and letter outage.


    While they don’t offer local phone numbers, you can still make and receive calls via WhatsApp, Signal, Skype or whatever using the general data allowances that come as part of their eSim packages.

    GigSky offers a range of packages for Spain including a tasty ‘try before you buy’ deal that gives you 100MB of data for 7 days. They even have a game-changing “Land + Sea” package making it one of the best sim options for cruise-goers.

    • 1GB – $3.99 – 7 Days
    • 3 GB – $10.99 – 15 Days
    • 5 GB – $16.99 – 30 Days
    • 10 GB – $31.99 – 30 Days


    Jetpac eSim
    Jetpac eSim

    As our world gets smaller, staying connected while travelling becomes not just a luxury but an absolute necessity. Enter Jetpac, a cutting-edge travel eSIM provider promising seamless connectivity at low costs, across the globe.

    Based out of Singapore Jetpac offers packages, designed primarily for travellers and Digital Nomads. They offer various data plans that can be used across many countries, and the service includes features like free airport lounge access if your flight is delayed.

    Good news, Jetpac eSIMs are compatible with a range of devices, including many models from Apple, Samsung, and Google. If you’re wondering what is an eSIM, don’t panic, it’s simple and straightforward to activate a Jetpac eSIM. Users need to sign up on the Jetpac website or app, choose a plan that fits their travel needs, and then scan a QR code to install the eSIM on their device.

    We love Jetpac for its ease of setup and reliable connectivity. JetPac makes it a handy tool for international travel, ensuring continuous access to mobile data across multiple destinations. While they don’t offer local numbers, we love that most of their packs last for 30 days by default so you can just concentrate on how much data you need.

    Sim Options

    Homepage of SimOptions website

    SimOptions is a reputable global marketplace that specialises in offering high-quality prepaid eSIMs for travellers in over 200 destinations worldwide. The platform has been dedicated to providing the best possible eSIM and international sim options at the most competitive rates for travellers since 2018. They rigorously test and select eSIMs to ensure that you receive the best connectivity and service wherever you travel.

    As well as effectively acting as a broker from a number of the best eSIM providers, SimOptions also offer their own eSIM products too.

    Basically, SimOptions is kind of like a market comparison website for eSIMs. You simply type in your destination and they bring up the different eSIM options from a wide number of prospective providers and suppliers

    Sim Local

    sim local homepage
    Sim Local

    Irish based Sim Local specialise in providing eSIM services, primarily targeted at global travellers to help them stay connected without incurring expensive roaming charges. Based in Dublin and London, Sim Local sells local SIM cards and eSIM profiles through their retail outlets, vending machines, and online platforms.

    Sim Local offers a variety of eSIM plans that can be activated instantly and are designed to provide a convenient and secure way to stay connected in numerous countries. Their services are beneficial for those who travel frequently, as they provide the option to switch between multiple eSIM profiles on a single device, depending on the user’s location and needs.

    They also offer pretty comprehensive customer support and a range of payment options, including Visa, Mastercard, Apple Pay, and Google Pay, all processed securely via Stripe.


    Yoigo are a relatively young Spanish telecoms company so if you want to “buy local”, Yoigo is your boy. Their network is not as extensive as others and whilst it works perfectly well in cities, we did encounter a few black outs when on Road Trips and heading trekking in the Sierra Nevada’s.

    • $25
    • 16GB Data
    • No Expiry date


    Vodafone is always a safe bet with a vast array of packages available and a solid network of coverage in Spain. Packages include free EU roaming. 

    • $27.50
    • 24GB and 300 minutes national and international prepaid calls 
    • Expires after 28 days


    Another strong international contender. Orange also offers a variety of packages at different price points. Some packages include free EU roaming. 

    • $29
    • 60GB in Spain, 14GB in the rest of Europe, and 100 minutes for international prepaid calls 
    • Expires after 15 days

    What Is The Best Sim Card in Spain For Tourists?

    Buying a Sim Card In Spain
    PackagePrice (basic sim)Top Ups Allowed?Expiration
    OneSim e-Sim World$13YNA
    OneSim Universal$29.99YNA
    Vodafone Spain prepaid sim card$27.5028 days
    Tour Tech Orange Spain$29.0015 days
    Three PAYG AIO20$39.9030 days

    Final Thoughts on Getting a Sim Card for Spain

    Cordoba in Spain

    Spain is a year round destination that offers so much to do. A visit to Spain will offer you diverse experiences ranging from art, architecture, history, food, and music. Using our Spain sim card guide will ensure you spend as much time as possible enjoying your trip and making memories. There’ll be no suffering with poor coverage, extortionate roaming charges, or finding yourself adrift without GPS access. 

    Want another kind of sim card? Check out the revolutionary new Nomad e-sim, an app-based sim card covering over 100 countries that can be organised before you leave home!

    Whichever option you settle on, we’d love to hear your experience with it. You can share your experience with us in the comments below.