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A guide to finding the best prepaid SIM card when traveling to Austria

Buy a local SIM card to reduce your cell phone roaming bills


Fact checked

Austria has some of the best SIM card deals in Europe and they can seriously reduce your phone bills. You can buy 1GB of data from Austria’s leading telco provider for as little as €3.56 (about US$3.85). So, whether you’re planning a short trip or a lengthy tour, check out the best SIM card options available at

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1-12 business days
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Prices last updated 28 Apr 2017

Cell phone carriers in Austria

There are three main cell phone operators in Austria: A1, T-Mobile and 3. Although there are many other SIM card options offered by the likes of tele.ring, Hot, and yesss!, they are operated through A1, T-Mobile and 3, so these are the three operators we will be looking at today.

All three operators go through a strict approval process before being allowed to operate in the country, and each one competes with the others to offer the best deals.

According to OpenSignal’s country report, Austria was voted an above-average cell phone provider that has 66.39% 4G availability, beating the likes of the United Kingdom, Greece, Israel and France – meaning Austria has one of the best cell phone coverages in the world.

Below, we have broken down each telco provider to highlight exactly what they can offer you during your visit to Austria.

About Austria’s cell phone operators

Austria’s operators offer great cell phone coverage for a country that has difficult terrain, providing good 2G, 3G and 4G services.

Customers are offered 2G GSM on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G UMTS on 2100 MHz, and 4G/LTE on 800, 1800 and 2600 MHz.

Roaming rates are among the lowest in the world – one MB can be purchased for as little as 0.10 cents. All three operators sell prepaid credit, which allows users to take advantage of cheap offers and deals.

The Austrians call their SIM cards Wertkarte, and they can be purchased and registered anonymously without any form of identification or passport checks.

Credit can be purchased from official stores, supermarkets and Vienna International Airport. Top-ups can also be made online.

About A1

A1 is the largest operator in Austria and offers the best 4G/LTE service.

The network has several prepaid options but the best is its starter pack, the Welcome pack. It’s sold in A1 stores, post offices, supermarkets, Media Markt, and small shops and kiosks. You also have the option of taking a nano or micro SIM which covers most phones.

Credit and top-up vouchers can be purchased in virtually every store, pharmacy, post office and supermarket in Austria. Top-ups of €10, €20 or €40 can be uploaded to your phone by typing *102*<voucher code>#, and the balance can be checked by dialing *101#.

The Welcome pack covers most bases by offering a set monthly prepaid SIM or pay-as-you-go versions. It also offers data and Internet packages which can further reduce costs.

There is no international roaming on A1 prepaid SIMs, so they can only be used in Austria. SIM deals: S: €12 – 1,000 mins and SMS, unlimited A1 mins and SMS, 4GB data volume M: €16 – 1,000 mins and SMS, unlimited A1 mins and SMS, 10GB data volume, Unlimited data for Messenger, Viber, WeChat, Snapchat L: €22 – 4GB, 1,000 mins and SMS, unlimited A1 mins and SMS*, Unlimited data for Messenger, Viber, WeChat, Snapchat Talk: €9 1GB, 700 mins and SMS

*On the above-mentioned plans, A1 offers several extra deals for longer-term options. For example, price reductions after 3 months’ usage and a month for free with extended usage.

Data add-ons: Internet S: €10 – 4 weeks – 8GB
€20 – 6 months Internet L: €22 – 4 weeks – 20GB
€32 – 12 months Unlimited: €28 – 4 weeks – Unlimited

A1 has an English prepaid website to help with information and topping up credit.

About T-Mobile

T-Mobile is A1’s biggest competitor in Austria, with good coverage on GSM and UMTS, and a great 4G/LTE service. Prepaid SIM deals called Klax are sold online, in most shops, supermarkets, petrol stations and official stores. Nano, micro and standard sized SIM cards are available depending on the package.

Vouchers and credit top-ups can be purchased from almost everywhere for €10, €15, €20 or €40. You can check your balance by dialing *101#, or *114# for data credit.

T-Mobile’s Wie ich will SIM card deals are a relatively new addition to the Austrian market and are already proving a great success. The main reason for this success is that you can mix and match your plans, choose how much you want to spend on minutes, data or SMS packages, and take advantage of deals to reduce costs.

There is no international roaming on T-Mobile prepaid SIMs; they can only be used in Austria.

Starter pack 1: €10 – 4,000 units (mins/MB/SMS), 20 Mbit/s (4G/LTE) – 30 days (auto-renew)

Starter pack 2: €15 – 15,000 units (mins/MB/SMS), 50 Mbit/s (4G/LTE) – 30 days (auto-renew)

You can also add extra credit to boost your deal by paying €1 for 100 units or €10 for 1,000, which run only until the end of your original plan.

T-Mobile also offers the Surfklax package for data-oriented modems and tablets, which also has voice and text allocation. Surfklax SIM cards offer 10GB for 30 days for just €15.

Be careful if you have your credit card details saved on your account because the Surfklax package will automatically renew each month unless you cancel it.

To activate the service text SURFKLAX 10GB to 0676 2222. Once activated, you can take advantage of basic rates of €0.02 per MB by texting KLAXINTERNET or STOP SURFKLAX 10GB to the same number.

About 3

Austria’s 3 network (or Drei, the German word for three) was the smallest network until they purchased Orange, making it a healthy competitor to the other networks. 3’s market share now equals T-Mobile and network coverage is up there with A1.

3 is fast becoming extremely popu dayslar in Austria with both locals and international travelers because it offers the lowest rates on the market, and some good unlimited plans.

3 offers two starter packs called the Nimm3 prepaid lines on the Wertkarte:

Nimm3 Telefonie: €9.90 – 1,000 mins, 1,000 SMS and 1GB data – 15 days

Nimm3 Internet: €9.90 – 1,000 mins, 1,000 SMS and 1GB data – 15 days

As a starter promotion, a one-off credit of €10 is added for free.

Bizarrely, Drei/3 shops only sell the contract plans; 3’s pay-as-you-go SIM cards can be purchased at Libro, Hartlauer or supermarkets. Standard, micro or nano SIMs are available.

Top-up vouchers and credit can be purchased almost everywhere, from supermarkets and tobacconists to pharmacies and newsagents.

3 also offers the following data packs:

Nimm3 Telefonie SIM: calls, texts and data

There is the Klassik package which can be used by uploading prepaid credit. The data can be quite high on this package at €0.35 per MB, but there are some great 4G/LTE bundles available for 30 days:

€105GB100 Mbit/s1,000 mins100 SMSNo EU mins
€1511GB100 Mbit/s2,000 mins2,000 SMS200 mins EU mins
€1518GB100 Mbit/s1,000 mins1,000 SMSNo EU mins
€2023GB150 Mbit/s2,000 mins2,000 SMS200 mins EU mins
€3021GB150 Mbit/s5,000 mins5,000 SMS500 mins EU mins

Data add-ons called Zusatzpakete can also be purchased:

€5 – 1GB – 30 days

€9 – 5GB – 30 days

Nimm3 Internet packages also offer data-only SIM cards. Although they are data-only SIMs, they allow calls and SMS services but costs are extremely high because this package is focused on data.

Nimm3 Internet Klassik data-only charges €0.02 per MB, but the maximum speed on that is only 4 Mbit/s. Top-ups are extremely cheap, and an extra four months can cost as little as €20.

There are also monthly SIM card deals on 4G/LTE:

€1030 Mbit/s5GB
€2030 Mbit/s20GB
€3030 Mbit/sunlimited
€4050 Mbit/sunlimited

3 also offers unlimited plans on 4G/LTE, which are quite good. Packages don’t automatically renew so once you get toward the end of your package check your online account to add credit. Also, make sure you check your data usage because as soon as you use the amount allocated in your bundle it can shoot up in price to €0.35 per MB

Finally, there is a roaming option called 3Europa which gives you an extra 1GB of data roaming on 3 networks in UK, Italy, Ireland, Denmark and Sweden for just €7.50, which can be quite handy if you plan on visiting any of those countries during your travels.

Some top tips from staff:

  • They speak German in Austria, so if you don’t know any German then download Google Translate onto your phone before you travel. The good thing about Austria is that they are very cosmopolitan and English is taught in all schools, so most people speak English.
  • Austrians call a SIM card a “Wertkarte”.
  • Ask the SIM seller to set up the SIM for you; they will know how to do it. If not, follow the instructions we have highlighted above or go to the official operator website to seek advice.
  • Remember, it’s always better to buy your SIM early in the day, before the shops get too busy – that way you are more likely to receive better assistance and avoid the crowds!

TripAdvisor tips for the best SIM cards and where to buy them

While it’s well known for booking hotels, flights, holidays and its reviews, TripAdvisor has many user comments that can help guide you through the SIM cards that have been tried and tested in Austria.

Here are some top tips from TripAdvisor users:

  • “All providers in Austria offer prepaid SIM cards. Purchase them in their shops or in supermarkets, post offices etc.”
  • “If you are on Kärtner Strasse or Mariahilfer Strasse you will find many shops of different providers”
  • “If you have a (new) phone that can work on UMTS networks (2100 MHz), then DREI would be a serious option. They have a package for 4€/month that significantly lowers the costs for international calls”
  • “Austrian mobile phone networks work on the frequencies 900, 1800 and 2100 MHz. So, check beforehand on which frequencies your phone can be operated”

Pros and cons of Austria’s top telco providers

All networks require you to have a SIM-unlocked GSM compatible international cell phone. To double check you have this phone, or if it’s possible for your provider to unlock your device, contact them before you leave.


  • Good value for money on 3 unlimited plans
  • Austria has good coverage
  • No ID needed to purchase or register the SIM card
  • Prepaid credit when required
  • No in-store contract needed
  • Could be compatible with your current cell phone
  • Cheap handsets are sold in-store


  • No cell phone devices offered with the SIM card packages
  • Can only be used on SIM-unblocked GSM phones
  • Can only be used in Austria – except for Drei’s 3Europa package unlocked for limited countries

Have more questions about finding the best SIM?

What about other SIM card providers in Austria?

There are many smaller carriers providing SIM cards in Austria, including tele.ring, yesss!, Bob, Hot (Aldi supermarket chain), eety, S-Budget Mobile, Spusu, Ge org!, yooopi!, WOWWW, Lycamobile, Vectone Mobile, Delight Mobile, m:tel Austria and FINK. Most of these are run through the three main operators we have highlighted. Although they may offer slightly different packages, the prices are not any lower than the three main operators, and it’s usually better to stick with the main providers.

When traveling around Europe, Austria will most probably be at the top of your visit list. Vienna has been voted the world’s best city by the 18th Mercer Quality of Life study, and it’s famously called the “city of music” thanks to one-time residents Beethoven and Mozart. What’s more, Austria was the birthplace of Sigmund Freud and has some of the finest palaces and tourist attractions on offer.

Lots to see and lots to do means lots to tell friends and family about! Don’t forget, Europe is many miles away, so it’s important to make sure you can contact friends and family on Facebook, Instagram, Skype or can make or receive calls in an emergency.

Using your home phone abroad could eat up your cash fast, so to keep call and roaming costs down why not switch to a local SIM card so you can take advantage of better deals, plans and tariffs.

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Switch to a cell phone plan with international calling

Name Product Data Minutes Texts Can I bring my own phone? Cell phone plans starting at:
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Bring your own phone for a free plan with 500MB of data, 200 minutes and 500 texts per month using Sprint's CDMA Network. Prepaid plans with more data, talk and text start at $9.99/month.
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2 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    LeahpoSeptember 4, 2017

    Hi, we will be arriving into Vienna airport on Sept 12 and would like to buy a Sim Card for my unlocked Samsung Galaxy phone. We need a few talk minutes within Austria, and at least 3 GB of data for mapping etc. We will also travel for 4 days to Hungary and were wondering if we can buy A1 Sim card, can we use it in Hungary? Thanks

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      MariaSeptember 4, 2017Staff

      Hey Leahpo,

      As stated on this page, the A1 sim card has no international roaming and can only be used in Austria. The same applies for T-Mobile. For Austria’s 3 Network, they do have international roaming but you’d have to confirm directly with them if Hungary is included.

      Should you want to compare other prepaid sim cards that can be used in Hungary, you may find useful information on this page.

      I hope this helps.


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