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Data Roaming in France: Which One Should I pick?

If you are traveling to France soon, international roaming is an option that will allow you to stay connected to the internet. 

Leoneska R.

August 31, 2023

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Your next destination is France, but you don’t know how to stay connected to the internet? Not to worry! There are actually many alternatives ways to remain online, and one of the most common is with the international data roaming for France. An option that will allow you to stay connected to cellular internet in France as if you were at home. 

Also, if you want more options to have an internet connection during your trip to France, we will be talking about other alternatives later on. Among the different options, we will talk about Pocket WiFi, places with free WiFi, and our favorites, eSIM, and SIM cards. 

eSIM for France

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What is Roaming?

Have you ever imagined walking through the streets of the cities of France and being connected to the internet as if you were at home? Well, this is a reality thanks to roaming. This is a service offered by most domestic carriers to their users, with which they can make use of their telephone services while they are in another country. 

Among the advantages of this service, you will find that you will be able to use cellular data services, calls and text messaging. In addition, you will be able to count on the service of your operator, in case you have any problems. 

On the other hand, roaming also has certain disadvantages, and the most notorious of all is that it is a service that can be pretty expensive. In the upcoming paragraphs, we will tell you more about the roaming prices for France so that you can evaluate if it is convenient to use this service with your operator. 

Roaming rates in France

The roaming prices for France will depend mostly on your domestic cellular operator. Also, there are different ways in which you can make use of the roaming service, and this will also have an effect on the total cost of the service used. Among the ways, you can use roaming is through plans and packages for certain days or countries, as well as the usual pay-per-use option, however, this tends to be more expensive. 

In general, roaming costs for France can range from $5 to $10 per day with some operators. However, if you use the pay-per-use option, you could spend $2 to $3.5 per MB of consumption, not counting the calls and messages you use. Next, we will talk about the roaming services of several international operators. 

O2

First, we will talk about O2, a UK company, which allows its users to make use of its telephone services in many European countries, including France. People who want to make use of this service will have to pay around 4 dollars a day to be able use of their roaming services abroad, 

The great thing about this company is that it tends to give a lot of benefits to its customers, especially if they will be traveling to countries in Europe. So if you have certain special O2 plans, you may be able to make use of your phone services at no extra cost. 

Telstra

Telstra is a company from Australia that allows its users to maintain an internet connection throughout their trips. For France, you can use international roaming in two ways. Firstly, you can purchase a day package, with which you can have 500 MB of data available, as well as unlimited calls and messages, for a price of 10 dollars per day. 

On the other hand, in case you prefer to use the pay-per-use option, it will be priced at $3 per MB. However, if you use the latter option, you will have to be very careful with your usage, as you could end up with high bills. 

AT&T USA

AT&T is one of the most famous telecommunications companies in the world, the services of this company are currently available in many countries, however, we will be talking about the costs for USA-based customers. 

The users of this company can make use of the International Day Pass, with which they can use cellular data, calls, and messages in France paying 10 dollars a day. On the other hand, they can also use the pay-per-use option, in which if you want to make use of cellular data, you will have to pay 2.05 dollars per MB, a little cheaper than the other options mentioned. 

Vodafone

Finally, if you are a Vodafone user, specifically in the UK, you will also be able to roam on your trip to France. If you have one of the Xtra Airtime Plans, you will be able to use your phone services at the same rate you use at home. 

However, you can also roam from $2 to $3 a day with their European roaming passes, in case you don’t have a plan that allows you to have an internet connection in France at no cost. However, keep in mind that if you don’t limit your data usage, you could have very hefty bills at the end of your trip.

How to avoid roaming charges in France

Louvre Museum, Paris, France. Source: Unsplash

In case you think that roaming is not your best option to stay connected during your trip to France, and you wish to avoid it at all costs, then we are pleased to tell you that there are many more alternatives with which you can have an internet connection. Among these alternatives, you will find eSIM and SIM card services for France. Likewise, you can also rent a Pocket WiFi or look for places with free Wi-Fi in the city of this European country you’ll be visiting. 

Below we will tell you more about each of these alternatives, so you can compare between different options, and purchase the one that best suits your travel needs. 

Prepaid International France SIM Card

As a first alternative to avoid the high roaming costs, we will tell you about the Prepaid SIM card for France. There are currently International SIM cards available for travelers. How do they work? Basically, they allow you to have cellular data while traveling to another country. It’s like having the SIM card you use at home, but in another country and especially for cellular data. 

Getting a SIM card for France is very simple, especially because there are currently many companies and virtual stores that offer this type of service. There are local providers and internation SIM card carriers where you can get a traditional chip.

eSIM for France

As a second option, we will talk about International roaming eSIMs, these are virtual SIM cards, which tend to be very easy to acquire and activate through QR codes, in less than five minutes. So, if your trip to France is coming up soon, and you need a quick alternative to purchase, Holafly’s eSIM for Europe or France is probably your best option. 

With Holafly, the online store we told you about earlier, you can also purchase an eSIM. And for France, you can choose between 8 different plans, with various features, so you can choose the one that best suits your trip. Here are the eSIM card plans for France from Holafly: 

  • Unlimited data with calls for 5 days at 19.00 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 7 days at 27 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 10 days at 34 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 15 days at 47 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 20 days at 54 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 30 days at 64 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 60 days at 87 USD
  • Unlimited data with calls for 90 days at 99 USD

Definitely, the eSIM is a very competitive alternative, easy to acquire and that will bring you many benefits on your trip to France. However, we recommend that before acquiring one of these, you verify that your cell phone is compatible with an eSIM.

One of the best and most recently launched features of the Holafly eSIM is included talk-time. You’ll receive a total of 120 minutes, 60 for outbound calls and 60 for inbound calls. You’ll receive an Austrian number (+43) so anyone who needs to talk to you, can call you while your plan is active.

Pocket WiFi

If you will be traveling with many people, or on the other hand, you will have many devices with you, such as your cell phone, laptop, and smartwatch, among others. Then we recommend the Pocket WiFi, which is a wireless device, which allows you to keep several devices connected to the internet at the same time. 

So renting a Pocket WiFi could be a good option for you. Currently, there are different companies with which you can rent one of these devices for your trip. For France, we recommend companies like Cello Mobile or Hippocket WiFi, with which renting a Pocket WiFi for seven days could cost you between $50.00 to $349.99. 

However, keep in mind that to rent one of these Pocket WiFi, you will also have to pay for delivery to your location, as well as extra accessories and sometimes insurance. So, this could end up being a costly alternative as well. 

Free WiFi

As a last alternative, we will talk about the cheapest option of all, since you will not have to pay anything for it. Yes, we are talking about free WiFi. In European countries, it is very common to find many places where you can connect to their WiFi for free, with which you can stay connected to the internet. However, you must consider that you must be close to the places to be able to catch the WiFi signal on your cell phone. 

So, if you want to have an internet connection at all times during your trip, we recommend you to think about another option, such as the eSIM or SIM cards that we already mentioned. However, keep in mind that in case of emergency, you can find places with free WiFi in the different cities of France.