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

Belize has some of the best prepaid SIM card deals in South America to help reduce your mobile phone bills while you travel.

Last updated:

Using your phone in Belize can be expensive, so consider switching over to a local SIM card to take advantage of better tariffs and plans. You can buy 500MB of data for as little as BZD10 (about £4). So, whether you’re planning a holiday or a tour of the Americas, check out the best SIM card options available on finder.com/uk.

Prices last updated 28 Apr 2017

Promoted
WorldSIM

WorldSIM.com International SIM cards

Heading overseas? Reduce your global roaming charges by up to 85% with a prepaid 4G international SIM card from WorldSIM.

Works in 200 countries
Receive calls for free in over 95 countries
Keep your existing number with WorldSIM Virtual Numbers service
Free UK and US mobile numbers included
Add data bundles to suit your needs – Only pay for what you need
4G SIM card works with any unlocked phone and fits all SIM sizes
Affordable rates for global calls, texts and data

    WorldSIM WorldSIM
    Top deal!

    £10 off, when your order is over £60

    £10 off everything! Apply this discount code when spending over £60 at Worldsim to make a tidy saving. T&Cs apply.

    Last verified

    Popular WorldSIM discount codes

    Last checked Code description Code
    24 Jul 2019 £10 off, when your order is over £60 SMA****
    24 Jul 2019 5% off sitewide Sma****
    24 Jul 2019 5% off all products at WorldSIM WG5****
    24 Jul 2019 Bag a bargain on your international sim at WorldSIM today ********

    Mobile phone carriers in Belize

    There are two main phone operators in Belize: DigiCell and Smart! Both operators have been tried, tested and trusted by locals and travelers alike, and go through a strict approval process before being allowed to operate in the country. DigiCell works on GSM compatible phones, while Smart! operates through the antiquated CDMA platform. However, Smart! is due to switch over to GSM this year.

    According to Speedtest’s connectivity report, Belize has an average cell phone network compared to other South American nations, reaching 8.91 Mbps speed, slower than Panama and Honduras, but faster than Costa Rica and El Salvador.

    About Belize’s mobile phone operators

    Belize’s operators offer competitive roaming rates and sell prepaid credit, which allow users to take advantage of local offers and deals. Both networks offer customers 2G, 3G and 4G services. Both operators sell prepaid SIM cards on either short-term or long-term plans, and they can be purchased from most stores, supermarkets, post offices, or approved resellers. Locals call their SIM cards chips and there are rules and regulations when purchasing them. Tourists can only buy SIM cards from authorized dealers, after filling out a registration form and supplying a passport.

    DigiCell

    DigiCell is the only GSM-based operator in Belize, so most of you won’t have a choice over your network provider. CDMA-users from the US or Canada can use the Smart! SIM card (detailed below), but other users with a world phone, which provides a GSM SIM slot can also use this service.

    DigiCell is run by state-owned Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL), and because of the monopoly they have over the market, speeds can be slow and prices are sometimes higher than other South American countries. BTL also offers many Wi-Fi hotspots throughout the country. DigiCell offers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. To use their new 4G/LTE plans you’ll have to purchase a uSIM which can be changed for your old DigiCell SIM, totally free of charge. Up until 2013, all voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) services were blocked, but luckily for those who like to keep in touch with family and friends through Skype it has been reactivated!

    DigiCell offers a prepaid SIM card package, which includes BZD10 credit, for BZD20. This SIM can be purchased from any store, supermarket or official reseller. Insert the SIM card to activate and the credit will automatically show up when the number comes online. Credit can be purchased from official stores, supermarkets, or post offices. Dial *10 to add credit using the vouchers, and dial *20 to check your account balance.

    Data plans:

    The following data packages are available for 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE:

    75MBValid for 24 hoursBZD2‘Data S’ to activate
    200MBValid for 3 daysBZD4‘Data M’ to activate
    500MBValid for 7 daysBZD10‘Data L’ to activate
    1.2GBValid for 30 daysBZD30‘Data XL’ to activate
    2.5GBValid for 30 daysBZD40‘Data XXL’ to activate

    Text the code to 400 to activate. The prepaid data SIM plans will run until the data runs out or the time allocation ends. Notifications will be sent via SMS when your data consumption reaches 80%, then once it has expired. It’s better to add more credit once you receive the 80% notification to avoid being idle.

    Smart!

    Smart! is the only other provider in Belize run on a CDMA and EVDO network. In 2017, they announced that they will change over to the GSM platform. 4G/LTE has already started on 700 MHz (band 13) for mobile broadband.

    Smart! sell data plans called Zoom+ for 4G/LTE, which is still only compatible with CDMA phones. The SIM costs BZD15, and comes with 1GB of standard data and BZD10 credit.

    Prepaid Plans:

    Smart! provide bundles of anytime national minutes, SMS and Internet. Smart prepaid, Flex Jr., Choice or Select customers can now choose the bundles which suit them. Dial *3539 to purchase the following bundles:

    3G Prepaid Plans

    BZD1225 min.160 SMS
    BZD20500 SMS512MB
    BZD2530 min.160 SMS512MB
    4G LTE Prepaid Plans
    BZD1225 min.160 SMS
    BZD20500 SMS720MB
    BZD2530 min.160 SMS720MB
    * Bundles exclude international minutes.* Bundles expire 30 days after purchase.

    Some top tips from finder.com/uk staff:

    • They speak English and Spanish in Belize. English is the main language spoken, as up until 1981 Belize was a British colony.
    • Locals call a SIM card a chip or SIM.
    • Ask the seller to set up the SIM card for you. If not, follow the instructions above or go to the official mobile operator website to seek advice.
    • Belize is small, so try and get to the shops early to beat the crowds. Because there a few shops they tend to get rather busy.

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

    TripAdvisor users offer some great advice to help guide you through the best SIM cards to purchase in Belize.

    Here are some top tips from TripAdvisor users:

    • “I picked up a SIM at the telecom office and had my iPhone up and running in 10mins. BZD30 for 60 mins and 1G. Renew easily online. Belize is beautiful”
    • “First you need an unlocked phone for a BTL SIM card to work, that means if you are on two-year contract for your phone it will not work. Speak to your provider before you travel to see if they will unlock it”
    • “Digicell SIM chips are on sale at the Belize Telemedia Office just north of town for about BZD50. They will be able to tell you if your phone will work with a local SIM”

    Pros and cons of Belize’s top telco providers

    Both networks require you to have a SIM-unlocked GSM compatible mobile phone. To double check you have this option on your phone, contact your provider before you set off on your travels.

    Pros:

    • Competitive rates
    • Belize has an average speed for South America
    • Prepaid credit when required
    • No in-store contract needed
    • Could be compatible with your current phone

    Cons:

    • No mobile phone devices offered with the SIM card packages
    • Can only be used on SIM-unlocked GSM phones or CDMA handsets
    • Rules and registration make buying a SIM complicated

    Have more questions about finding the best SIM?

    Q: Can I use the SIM card in other South American countries?

    A: Both networks should only be used in Belize if you want to take full advantage of local offers. Although the chips will work in other South American countries they will operate on higher roaming rates, which doesn’t make sense when the point of switching to a local SIM is to reduce your roaming costs. Using a local SIM card will certainly offer competitive pricing to your mobile phone plan, and could save you money!

    Need to book a hotel room in Belize?

    Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

    Ask an Expert

    You are about to post a question on finder.com:

    • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
    • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
    • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
    • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

    Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

    By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

    Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
    Go to site