Back in the 2000s, for U.S citizens, there was a time when traveling abroad could be such a hassle, and often US phones won’t work in Europe or Asia at all, especially if the phone is locked, normally you have to rent a different handset like a MiFi box. But it’s difficult to keep the two lines active, you could only use your domestic phone number at home. Though MiFi boxes are still in use when some users are not aware of better solutions in the market.
Things have changed nowadays.
There are things that are much more convenient, with a phone in your pocket, everything could be done within the phone, within the apps, and no more heavy wifi boxes and wait-for–delivery times.
The following solutions in the market are mainstream solutions for international data:
- prepaid SIM or home country carrier roaming, prepaid SIM is usually a card you could order at the destination country with some requiring swapping the current SIM card so you could not use your domestic number anymore, and some are in the format of a piece of paper with a QR code on it, by scanning the QR code for a local phone plan, but it would be an issue after landing without network connection before picking up or buying the local prepaid SIM at point of sales, though it’s relatively low in cost than roaming by a carrier. Roaming by a carrier might offer some free data but is very slow, relatively low cost than wifi box, but still charged by minute calls or free calls. You may call your carrier and go through the process of waiting until the customer service picks up to ask for answers to questions or a better solution, some carriers could offer day passes like 10$ per day for unlimited calls, unlimited text, and data, but going out for 7 days or 10 days is still very costly. And especially for students coming home or going back to school, back-and-forth network switching with the contract for a local carrier is very expensive and not convenient, eSIM allows carrier switch instantly and flexibly to support students’ short trips.
- International data app within your phone (especially based on eSIM), if you have a recent phone( with iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR, or later, Xiaomi 12T pro, some Huawei and OPPO models as well, please refer to this page: https://redteago.com/esim-for-qrsim/), you might have the option of dual SIM with eSIM- the answer to the new connectivity needs of travelers. The eSIM (or embedded digital SIM card) allows travelers to activate a mobile data plan instantly, remotely (with a QR code or via an application, or some other innovative ways by tech-oriented eSIM vendor), without having to change their physical SIM card, this is the really convenient way to get yourself a foreign plan, and still get to connect to the local carrier and contact families, Apple describes dual SIM case scenarios like this:
3. How can you use Dual SIM?
Use one number for business and another number for personal calls.
Add a local data plan when you travel outside of the country or region.
Have separate voice and data plans.
Both your phone numbers can make and receive voice and FaceTime calls and send and receive messages using iMessage, SMS, and MMS.2 Your iPhone can use one cellular data network at a time.
eSIM app is normally provided by local carriers that support eSIM and official Apple eSIM service providers. If you go to the Apple eSIM support page, you could find in more than 100 countries or regions with 400 carriers eSIM commercial is ready already, so taking an eSIM-capable phone to travel won’t be a problem anymore. But, local carrier eSIM app normally only support local data plan and it requires complicated procedure and contract to sign with documents to finish the registration to follow the local policy, while an app offered by a third-party Apple eSIM service provider (officially recognized like @RedteaGO) could offer one eSIM for global data plan available in more than 100+ countries, next time when you travel to a new country, just top up your last data plan.
There are also some travel apps with eSIM data plan options already as well. When you select transportation tickets or hotel booking, you get to order a data plan as an ancillary product like insurance, designed especially for its app user, with its eSIM service in collaboration with some eSIM vendors. And some travel platforms offer great discounts or free credits, in the format of a QR code, scanning the code directs you to a page for the travel app download, then 1GB could be offered for a free international travel data plan. All done in a digital way instead of going to a physical store or local rental points of sale for prepaid SIM or a second terminal like wifi box, then enjoying a local network with very friendly rates for temporary use, connecting to local apps about maps, restaurant, car rental, hotel booking, etc. Travel light and finish everything simply with an app.
And we’ve seen a growing number of travel platforms adopting eSIM to guarantee network to enjoy local service for its end users, such as SBB— the most popular public transport app in Switzerland. a dedicated data plan for its travelers leveraging this app for all the journeys along with the alps mountain, supported by an eSIM vendor, so the travelers will buy transportation tickets together with the eSIM data plan, offering a new revenue stream, customer delight, and convenience of staying on the go for its end users.
And there are some forward-thinking travel guide platforms that have already investigated the eSIM market and shared some tutorials or eSIM promo codes. So before you go, you may search local eSIM data plan if your phone is eSIM-capable and look for lower rates or some promotion activities, or at least some tutorials, for example:
It’s a wise decision for the travel platform to embrace eSIM to advocate the new technology for much more convenience or a cool experience to taste the latest technology for its end users, as people are always looking for better convenience and less time in exploring the unknown in next travel, it might be a better way to improve the retention and user loyalty, and SEO-friendly with the blog to bring traffic and convert to sales when travels are looking for a data plan for the travel checklist. Just like an insurance product after an airplane ticket or hotel booking, not expensive but quite necessary, with a good network (normally eSIM supports multi-carrier switch by automatic selection at will when the network doesn’t work out well) activated right after landing, the good service and user experience would definitely improve customer satisfaction. With a growing trend of eSIM adoption in smartphones including the latest iPhone 14 (eSIM Only) and eSIM-capable xiaomi12T pro, it’s high time that travel platforms consider offering eSIM (the digital SIM) as an auxiliary product as a new revenue stream, a new approach to acquire users in blogs or QR code order page or email, as an intuitive experience, international data plan, hotel, transportation ticket all done within an app or website digitally. And a new product like this will add a competitive edge to set itself apart in the long run. A network connection is quite essential for leisure travel or business travel since nowadays people literally live in the app and live on the phone.