Travelling to Indonesia? Check out our guide to finding the best prepaid SIM card

Reduce your roaming rates by using a local SIM.

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If you’re planning a trip to Indonesia, a top tip for keeping down costs is to switch to a local SIM card. Take advantage of better tariffs, plans and deals to dramatically reduce your roaming rates. You can get 1GB of data from Indonesia’s top telco providers for about IDR40,000 (£2.23). So, whether you’re a short or long-term traveller, you can save money by comparing your SIM card options on finder.com/uk.

Prices last updated 14 Sep 2017

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    Telco providers in Indonesia

    There are four main telco providers in Indonesia: Telkomsel, IM3 Ooredoo, 3 (Tri) and XL Axiata. Both locals and travelers use SIM cards from all four networks, and they can be trusted whatever plan you choose. According to OpenSignal’s coverage map, Indonesia has a strong or above-average network coverage along the shoreline and around the main cities. The signal can become weaker the further you head toward the unpopulated areas but this will happen on any SIM provider you use there.

    About Indonesia’s operators

    All four networks offer prepaid SIM cards and you can buy them from supermarkets, kiosks, drug stores and official stores as well as at the airport. 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services are available on all networks for GSM phones. Locals call their SIM cards “SIM Kaa” and they must be registered before you can use them. Although passports don’t have to be shown for proof of identity, we advise you to take it along to be sure. Below, we have broken down each telco provider and exactly what they can offer you during your stay in Indonesia.

    Telkomsel

    Telkomsel is Indonesia’s largest operator and is active in all provinces. It offers customers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services and Internet speeds are fast. Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased from official stores and approved resellers, plus SIM card vending machines, corner stores and supermarkets. Credit can also be purchased from the same retailers or you can upload credit online. SIM cards can be picked up for free but credit or plans must be added in order to use them.

    They offer the following prepaid SIM card options: “SimPATI“, “Kartu As” or “Loop“. The base SIM cards can be purchased for IDR2,000 and top-ups can be added in the following denominations: IDR10,000, IDR20,000 and IDR50,000.

    The following plans can be added to all prepaid SIM cards:

    • Pulsa 777 national credit. Works in all provinces and the same amount of credit can be used anywhere in Indonesia.
    • Pulsa 369 local credit. Credit topped up in certain provinces will only work within those provinces.
    • Pulsa is a mixture of the above and sold in most supermarkets.

    The following data add-ons can be added to the Pulsa 777 SIM cards:

    IDR5,0007 days10MB
    IDR10,0007 days30MB
    IDR20,0007 days80MB
    IDR25,00030 days150MB
    IDR50,00030 days450MB
    IDR100,00030 days1.5GB

    The following data packs can be added to Pulsa and Pulsa 365 SIM cards:

    IDR5,0007 days20MB-40MB
    IDR10,0007 days50MB-110MB
    IDR20,0007 days200MB-420MB
    IDR25,00030 days360MB0-440MB
    IDR50,00030 days800MB-1,000MB0-500MB
    IDR100,00030 days2.5GB0-2GB

    There are also “Flash” SIM cards available for data-only options. Check the deals at time of purchase because SIM plans change from time-to-time.

    Telekomsel’s APN: telkomsel, and website: http://www.telkomsel.com/

    IM3 Ooredoo

    IM3 Ooredoo is Indonesia’s second largest provider and has great offers. It has some very good voice and data packages and is popular with Indonesians. 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services are available and both network coverage and Internet speeds are good. Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased from official stores and approved resellers, corner stores and supermarkets Credit can also be purchased from the same retailers or online by using a credit card.

    Prepaid SIM cards are called “Freedom Max.” and can be purchased for around IDR4,000. They come with 25MB of data but the following data packs can be added:

    24 hours5MBIDR2,000Harian1k
    24 hours15MBIDR3,500Internet3k
    24 hours50MBIDR5,500Internet5k
    7 days100MBIDR10,000Internet10k
    30 days1GB2GB bonusIDR40,000Internet40k
    30 days2GB3GB bonusIDR60,000Internet60k
    30 days3GB5GB bonusIDR80,000Internet80k
    30 days5GB8GB bonusIDR130,000Internet130k
    30 days8GB10GB bonusIDR160,000Internet160k

    Text the activation code in the right-hand column to 363, or dial *123# to activate. Text “USAGE” to 363 to check data allowance.

    The following add-ons are also available:

    IDR15,000200MB
    IDR25,000600MB
    IDR40,0002GB
    IDR60,0004GB
    IDR80,0006GB

    Dial *123# and select your preferred plan to activate.

    IM3’s APN: indosatgprs, and website: https://indosatooredoo.com

    3 (Tri)

    3 (Tri) is the third largest operator in Indonesia and offers some great promotions and deals. Signals are now much better and 3(Tri) offers customers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased from official stores or approved resellers and credit can be purchased from the same retailers, most corner stores, supermarkets and gas stations.

    Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased for IDR2,000 which comes with the same amount of credit. Top-ups can be purchased in several denominations between IDR1,000 and IDR100,000.

    The Bali prepaid SIM card costs IDR40,000, which triples your credit as a bonus and comes with 3GB data. The following data packs can also be added:

    IDR2,00020MB
    IDR3,00035MB
    IDR5,00080MB
    IDR7,000135MB
    IDR10,000300MB
    IDR20,000650MB
    IDR33,0001.25GB
    IDR45,0002GB
    IDR85,0004.25GB
    IDR150,0009GB

    The following sumo data packs can also be added if you use the Internet a lot. Dial *123#: to activate these packs

    • IDR150,000: 1GB daily for 14 days
    • IDR250,000: 1GB daily for 30 days

    Tri’s APN: 3gprs, and website: http://tri.co.id/en/

    XL Axiata

    XL Axiata is the smallest provider in Indonesia but offers some of the best deals. It provides 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services and speeds are relatively fast. Prepaid SIM cards can be picked up for varying amounts from official stores or approved resellers and credit can be purchased from the same retailers, most newsagents, supermarkets and gas stations.

    The basic prepaid SIM card can be purchased for IDR5,000 which comes with 2MB of data. Credit can be added in the following denominations: IDR5,000, IDR10,000, IDR20,000 and IDR50,000. Enter *123*<voucher PIN># <call> to add credit amounts. The following data packs can also be added:

    Daily pack:
    IDR1,50015MB
    IDR3,00060MB
    IDR4,500100MB
    Weekly pack:
    IDR6,000120MB
    IDR2,000350MB
    Monthly packs:
    IDR30,000800MB
    IDR50,0001.5GB
    IDR60,0003GB
    IDR100,0006GB
    IDR130,0008GB
    IDR180,00012GB
    IDR230,00016GB

    The following voice and data combo packs are also available:

    1GB500MB30 minutesIDR39,000
    2GB10GB50 minutesIDR59.000
    4GB15GB75 minutesIDR89,000
    6GB20GB100 minutesIDR129,000
    10GB30GB125 minutesIDR179,000
    16GB40GB150 minutesIDR239,000

    Dial *123# and select your preferred plan to activate.

    XL’s APN: internet, and website: http://www.xl.co.id/en/home

    Some top tips from finder.com staff:

    • The official language is Indonesian but English is taught in most schools.
    • Locals call a SIM card a “SIM Kaa” or “SIM”.
    • Ask the sellers to set up the SIM cards for you because they will know how to do it. If not, follow the instructions we have highlighted above or go to the official operator website to get advice.
    • We advise you to purchase your SIM card from official stores rather than through a street vendor.
    • Get to the shops early to receive better assistance and to avoid the crowds.

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

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

    Here are some top tips from TripAdvisor users:

    You can get a Simpati card then once you have it you can buy data with the credit you have. It is very easy as you do it yourself on the phone and the rates are extremely cheap.”

    You can buy SIM cards at the airport. Should cost you around IDR2,000 including the data. Look for the telkomsel booth after customs and ask the seller to set everything up for you.”

    It doesn’t matter what your phone is, there are only 3 types of SIMs, regular, nano and micro. Whoever is selling you the SIM will have some kind of clipper to cut it to fit your phone.

    Pros and cons of Indonesia’s top telco providers

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

    Pros:

    • Good value for money
    • Prepaid credit when required
    • No in-store contract needed
    • Could be compatible with your current phone

    Cons:

    • Some areas can suffer from bad coverage
    • No phone devices offered with the SIM card packages
    • Can only be used on SIM-unlocked GSM phones
    • Double check whether there are roaming charges when traveling to different provinces

    Had more questions about Indonesia?

    Q: What if I lose my phone?

    A: Your phone is your lifeline, especially when traveling around Indonesia. Make sure you keep it safe and always make a note of where it is. The importance of having a direct link to family and friends via social media or through phone services can never be underestimated. If you do lose your phone, then retrace your steps and ask around. If you still have no luck then report it missing. Finally, find a cheap replacement to keep in touch with the outside world, and don’t let this one out of your sight!

    Q: What about other providers in Indonesia?

    A: There are two other MVNOs called Smarfren and Bolt, which are on 4G/LTE only. Check the latest options before purchasing your SIM card.

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