Lycamobile with roaming packagesEdit
This offer has just being verfied in summer 2015. Note that it's still a 'promotion' and can be suspended anytime by Lycamobile.
Lycamobile gives out roaming data in 14 EU countries near the domestic rate of around €12-15 for 1 GB in roaming packages.
Lycamobile as a MVNO uses its respective local network partners (MNOs) for roaming (see below).
Issuing Country Edit
This option is offered to be booked on local Lycamobile SIM cards from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden and the UK. It seems to be not available for Lycamobile SIM cards issued in Italy, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland and out of Europe.
Roaming Option Edit
These are regular roaming packages for data which have to be booked on the SIM by using an activation code. Only one roaming option can be booked at a time. All options are for 30 days only and don't renew. There seems to be no way to upsize, add-on or rebook ahead of time.
The validity is divided into 4 zones according to roaming country:
- Zone 1: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK
- Zone 2: Norway
- (Zone 3: Portugal, France - not mentioned any further, because overpriced and therefore against the guidelines)
- Zone 4: Italy
Note that each issuing country of the SIM card is excluded, as you need to book domestic data bundles here instead. Domestic and roaming data bundles can both be booked on the same SIM. In some cases, even data in the issuing country could be used as long as you stick to the same zone. But this can't be verfied for every option and is not officially advertised. You may need to check it out.
Outside of these countries, roaming may still be possible, but at much higher rates. This may also be true everywhere, if your roam without having booked a package before or have exceeded your included bundle volume.
Roaming Networks Edit
Local Lycamobile MNOs: Australia (Telstra), Austria (A1), Belgium (Mobistar), Denmark (TDC), Germany (Vodafone), Ireland (Three), Italy (Vodafone), Netherlands (KPN), Norway (TeliaSonera), Poland (Plus), Romania (Telekom), Spain (Movistar), Sweden (Telenor), Switzerland (Swisscom), UK (O2).
Prices for data Edit
Here are the prices for their monthly roaming packages according to the zones mentioned above and the USSD activation codes to book:
|Data Volume:||50 MB||250 MB||500 MB||1 GB|
|Zone 1||1.99 €
|Zone 2||2.99 €
|Zone 4||n.a.||n.a.||n.a.||15 €
Each zone is comprised of different countries. Travelling several countries, you don't need to book for each country seperately. The booked bundle works for roaming in all countries of this particular zone. But for countries in a different zone, you will need to buy a new bundle for the zone this country is in.
You don't need to have purchased a domestic data bundle before to book a roaming data bundle (except for Swiss-isssued Lycamobile SIM cards). You can only book two roaming packages in a row, as this offer is only available for a continuous period of 59 days. So it's not suitable for 'permanent' roaming, but how long you need to pause, remains unclear.
Some local Lycamobile promotions can be combined with the roaming bundles. So if you are e.g. on the Saver Plan of Lycamobile Spain, 50% discount is given to roaming packages as well.
Voice rates Edit
They sell roaming bundles for voice and texts in some countries too. But unlike data, to purchase one of them you need to have subscribed to a domestic package or plan before (like in Switzerland for data bundles too). So they are not recommended for roaming only.
The Lycamobile SIM card is a locally-issued SIM card given out only in the countries mentioned above.
Within the issuing countries Edit
Lycamobile sells the SIM card for free (or a small fee) in the mentioned countries. Either ordered online to be sent to a domestic postal address only, or in the local shops and outlets of Lycamobile. Normally, they don't have credit included and need to be topped up rightaway.
Outside the issuing countries Edit
Online vendors distribute it worldwide on Ebay, Amazon and other platforms. Be sure to get one of the issuing countries mentioned above. And be aware that they can be tricky to top up, unless you stay in the issuing country (see below).
Different rules for registration or activation apply according to local regulations of the issuing country. In some countries you need to register them first online or by phone, in others you don't and they work from the start.
Managing the SIM card Edit
Roaming should be enabled by default. If it's not, call their customer support. Data is sometimes not enabled before you buy a package. At other times it should stay disabled, as long as you don't have purchased a bundle because you will stay on their expensive default rate.
You can log in and create an online account. There you can check credit and consumption. For booking roaming packages or topping up, it's not required to set up an account.
Lycamobile normally accepts credit and debit cards for their online top-ups. But there is a long list of exceptions in many countries, which cards mostly from abroad are not accepted. It's a hit and miss and you can never rely on that. Being in the issuing country, you can always buy vouchers on location at their outlets. In some countries Paysafecards can be used as well. Lycamobile top-up vouchers from other countries than the issuing country of your SIM card don't work.
But this gives you the task to load sufficient credit for roaming as long as you are in the issuing country of your SIM card. Or check out whether your credit/debit card is accepted online to top up later from abroad. Have in mind that all top-ups remain valid for 90 days only.
This varies from country to country too: according to their T&Cs, your SIM card will be blocked after 45-180 days of not using it. Then Lycamobile will send you an SMS. They'll give you a grace period of 15-30 days in which you need to top-up or do any chargeable activity to keep it alive for another initial period. If you don't, they'll switch it off. Note that all top-ups stay valid for 90 days only in all Lycamobile countries.
Technical Issues Edit
Similar to Toggle Mobile, Lycamobile sends out a new ID profile as soon as you enter the roaming country. You will get a new MCC (Mobile Country Code) and MNC (Mobile Network Code). Most devices will find this new profile automatically and SIM toolkit changes identity to the only unblocked network option. Some older devices need to be adjusted manually: Select the new network manually and check if the right APN is stored. We have reports, that on Android devices APN, username and password are sometimes lost in the transition. So know your APN and how to set it manually.
- Lycamobile hates tethering. It's known to detect and kill tethering connections. There are ways to bypass it, but you need to have a rooted or jailbroken device and/or special apps/software. So this SIM card is clearly not recommended for tethering even using Android devices.
- Lycamobile stays always on an UK IP-address, no matter on which network you are. This should only bother you, if you intend to use geo-restricted or geo-referenced services.
- This offer has started in April 2015 and is still labeled in many countries as a 'promotion'. So it can be discontinued anytime by Lycamobile without prior notice.