There are three mobile network operators active in Algeria ranked in number of subscribers:
- Djezzy, by Optimum Télécom Algeria
- Mobilis, by Algerie Télécom Mobile
The Algerian law has two specific rules on prepaid SIM-cards; one on mandatory user registration and one on its validity.
SIM registration Edit
Every user of any SIM card, whether prepaid or postpaid and, regardless whether the user is a local resident or a visitor, has to be registered and for such has to provide with an offical ID (ID Card, Passport, Visa) and a copy of the same ID that has been notarised in Algeria, as well provide with an address (for which no proof is required, so for visitors hotel address will suffice). To get a notarised copy of your passport, you need to visit a town hall (in French: mairie, in Arab: البلدية) where they can make a copy of your document and give it the necessary stamps. Because these civil administration offices are only open during regular office hours, this will be a hurdle to take before walking into a store of one of the three operators.
Airport shops Edit
Different rules seem to be enforced for foreign tourists at the international airport in Algiers. There, your passport seem to be sufficient for registration and activation. One user reported, that it's now to easy to purchase a SIM from the Djezzy boutique shop in the international terminal (located towards the middle of the terminal, between halls 1 and 2). It can be presumed that this is possible for the other operators too. The same discounts like in local stores are offered and so it's highly recommended to try your luck there to skip a lot of paperwork.
A reader in 2018 confirmed again that at least a Djezzy SIM can be purchased for free in the airport and a passport copy was enough for registration. They will provide SIM card and activate it there.
SIM validity Edit
The other rule is that, by law, providers have to switch off prepaid SIM cards that have shown no activity for 3 months. This means that if you want to keep your SIM card alive, you have to make sure to recharge it and to make at least one call or send one text message every 3 months. Fortunately roaming is activated by default on Algerian cards AND some external providers do recharge Algerian phone numbers as well, making it not that difficult to keep the SIM alive.
Djezzy is the brand under which Optimum Télécom is marketing its mobile offer. It's the market leader in Algeria with 45% of all customers.
Djezzy broadcasts 2G on 900 MHz and 3G up to HSPA+ on 2100 MHz in 48 Wilayas. 4G/LTE was launched in 2016 on 1800 MHz (band 3) and is available in most Wilayahs. Djezzy is the most popular brand amongst young people with the most agressive marketing and generally on par with Mobilis.
Coverage in cities is good, while outdoors on 4G/LTE, but often falls back to 3G indoors. Rural coverarge ranges from 3G to sometimes EDGE or no service. Speeds on 4G/LTE ranges between 10 and 20 Mbps to occasionally poor or trouble connecting to some websites. Overall, connectivity is fairly reliable, though.
The prepaid offer is called Djezzy Carte. A SIM starter pack, available in their shops. It costs 300 DA and includes 100 DA of credit and 100 MB of data. The flat rate is 4.99 DA per 30 minutes for call, per text message and per 1 MB of data. Via *777# you can check your balance.
The default rate is 4.99 DA per MB. The following options can be activated via USSD *720#:
Djezzy Millenium and Liberty Edit
These packages are valid for one day, week or month and contain data and unlimited calls and texts to Djezzy numbers and calls to other subscribers:
|10 MB||1 day||50 DA||50 DA|
|50 MB||1 day||100 DA||100 DA|
|200 MB||1 day||150 DA||200 DA|
|1 GB||7 days||400 DA||400 DA|
|3 GB||30 days||1200 DA||1500 DA|
|8 GB||30 days||2300 DA||3000 DA|
|20 GB||30 days||3400 DA||6000 DA|
Overuse is at default rate or from credit 1 GB for 400 DA.
Djezzy Speed Edit
These options are for data users. Speed are data packages for a day, week or month:
|50 MB||1 day||20 DA|
|100 MB||50 DA|
|250 MB||100 DA|
|200 MB||7 days||150 DA|
|1 GB||30 days||500 DA|
|6 GB||1000 DA|
More info Edit
- APN: Djezzy.internet
- Website in French: http://www.djezzy.dz/
Mobilis is the brand under which the mobile subsidiary of state-owned Algérie Télécom is marketing its mobile offers. Based on the number of subscribers it's currently the second operator in the country and was launched in 2003.
Mobilis has been offering 3G connection in basically 80% of all the cities and towns since 2012. 4G/LTE was launched in October 2016 on 1800 MHz (band 3). 4G/LTE is available in the Wilayas of Tlemcen, Constantine, Batna, Bordj Bou Arreridj, El Oued, Biskra, Boumerdès, Tipaza, Blida, Tizi-Ouzou et Sidi Bel-Abbès. Current coverage for 4G can be checked online by selecting the Wilayah, the city and the part of the city.
A 4G Mobtasim SIM card costs 100 DA and includes 200 DA of credit. This specific SIM is only available in the Wilayahs currently covered by 4G. In other areas you will get a 3G Mobtasim card, but they, as well as existing prepaid subscribers, can have 4G activated on the same card and will get 2 GB of data as bonus. The SIM cards are available in the Mobilis Stores and agreed resellers, don't forget however to bring your passport and a notarized copy of it.
These are their new all-in combo packages with unlimited on-net calls:
|500 MB||7 days||500 DA||500 DA|
|1.5 GB||30 days||1000 DA||1000 DA|
|4 GB||30 days||2000 DA||2000 DA|
In contrast to Djezzy Mobilis credit can be used for all domestic networks. For additional data these add-on packages called Pass Connect+ can be added:
- 200 MB: 100 DA
- 500 MB: 200 DA
- 1 GB: 400 DA
Data-only SIM Edit
As a offer for data only they have introduced Navigui 4G. For 2400 DA you get 3 GB and free WhatsApp and Facebook for 30 days and another 2 GB for another 6 months. Regular data packages can be added fro more data.
More info Edit
- APN: internet
- Username and Password: internet
- Website in French and Arab: http://mobilis.dz
The third operator in number of users in Algeria is Ooredoo and used to be called Nedjma before. It's now owned by an international telco based in Doha, Qatar.
Just like the other Algerian operators they operate 2G on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G on 2100 MHz and since end of 2016 on 4G/LTE on 1800 MHz (band 3) as well. Ooredoo covers with 3G most populated areas in Algeria and 28 out of 48 Wilayahs are covered with 4G so far.
Availability and plans Edit
Sim cards are available from Ooredoo shop's and authorized resellers. The following starter packs are available with either a bonus scheme for topping up or included calls and data. You can check and change plan with USSD *321#
- La Plus: 300 DA with 200 DA of credit. For every recharge of 2000 DA you get 3990 DA on top.
- MAXI Hadra with combo packages for 30 days in following sizes inlcuding unlimited on-net calls:
- 500 DA: 1 GB + 2 GB Facebook + 500 DA credit
- 1000 DA: 1 GB + 1000 DA credit
- 2000 DA: 4 GB + 3000 DA credit + reduced international calls
- La 1000: 1000 DA with 1000 DA of credit and 5 hours of calls to Ooredoo subscribers
- Maxi Internet with data only in 2 sizes for 30 days:
- 4 GB + unlimited Facebook + 2000 DA credit: 1000 DA
- 10 GB + unlimited Facebook + 5000 DA credit: 2000 DA
- SIM N'ternet prépayée: 250 DA for data-only without any included volume
Data packages Edit
For all plans you can book the following data packages via *113#, and via the portal :
|100 MB||24 hours||100 DA|
|300 MB||48 hours||200 DA|
|500 MB||72 hours||300 DA|
|1.5 GB||30 days||1000 DA|
|5 GB||30 days||2000 DA|
|12 GB||30 days||4000 DA|
For Facebook a 2 hour pass is sold with unlimited FB data and 50 MB general data for 50 DA.
- APN: Ooredoo /or/ internet
- Website in French and Arab: http://www.ooredoo.dz