There are three physical network operators (MNOs) in Greece:
All three MNOs have closely attached MVNOs or subsidiaries that resell their offers: Frog Mobile on Cosmote, Tazamobile on Vodafone and Q on Wind. Other MVNOs like Cyta focus on the triple-play market and started to sell SIM cards too.
2G/GSM is on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G mainly on 2100 MHz and some 900 MHz. 4G/LTE has started on 1800 MHz and is now on 800 MHz and 2600 MHz too on all three operators.
Cosmote has the best coverage and the best speed, while Wind has the cheapest prices at the lowest coverage nationwide, Vodafone is in between.
You can buy a SIM card in an official branded shop of the operator and from distributor points. There is no place to buy any SIM card in Athens airport (ATH). So it's better to buy it in the city.
In order to purchase the SIM card, you'll be asked for an ID card or a passport, as this is required by law since 2011. Children under the age of 18 can't activate a SIM card on their own.
Be aware, that many shops prefer to sell more expensive bundles (e.g. with mobile phones or with 3G USB modem sticks) pretending they ran out of stock of naked prepaid SIM cards. But where they sell bundles, they need to have SIM cards too.
With all the three MNO providers you have the choice between a call, text and data SIM card and a data-only SIM with lower data rates but no calls and SMS possible. Each MNO has its own MVNO which only sells one SIM card and doesn't need to be a better deal. MVNOs are harder to find, don't have sales points in the countryside and limited support only. Here is a survey of their products:
|Call, text & data||Cosmokarta,
|Prepay, CU, International||F2G|
Mobile Internet prepaid
Cosmote is the national provider with the most subscribers and the best coverage in 2G, 3G and 4G. 2G/3G Cosmote Coverage.
4G/LTE was launched in 2012 and now covers 85% of population in 2016: 4G Cosmote Coverage . 4G/LTE is given out without surcharge to all customers including prepaid plans. In 2016 it was expanded to over 60 islands in the Saronic, Cyclades, Dodecanese, Ionian, Sporades, North and East Aegean and Crete. Also, most summer destinations in mainland Greece, including Halkidiki, Nafplio and Pelion are now covered by LTE speeds.
You can buy Cosmote prepaid packages in their official shops (preferred) or from street distributors. There is no place to buy the SIM card in the Athens airport, but their ads are hanging almost everywhere. No kiosks, no gadget shops, no distribution point - you will need to buy it in the city. Central office in Athens located near Syntagma square subway station. Distributors (usually working students) are also often noticed there. You can also buy the SIM cards and connection kits (SIM card + cheap simple mobile phone or USB modem) in their "Germanos" gadget stores (stores list). You will need your passport or ID card to buy their package. You should also sign the terms and conditions agreement. Some people report successful registration with driver license or student ID card. You can also try asking the distributor to sell the SIM card without showing your ID, but this is illegal according the law. Cosmote offers 2 different prepaid packages - "Cosmokarta" and "What's Up".
Both tariff lines have different combined packages, but the same data-only bundles. You can change between the two plans by texting 'ALPAK' to 1314. The first change is free. All subsequent changes cost 3 €.
Recharging and account validity Edit
You can recharge your account online here using PayPal or Visa/MasterCard EU-issued credit cards. Recharging page is only in Greek but the process is straightforward and easy. You can read instructions how to recharge in English here. Minimal recharge amount is 5 €. 12% state telecommunication tax is applied to all top-ups. So if you load 5 €, you'll actually get 4.86 € net worth.
When you recharge online for 30 €, you will get 3 € bonus.
Recharged credits valid for 90 days (3 months) since last recharge. The mobile number and the SIM card is valid for 12 months (1 year) since last top-up. If you don't recharge for 13 months (12+1), your subscription terminates. To save your number it is enough to recharge for 5 € at least once per year.
You can also recharge in Cosmote offices and Germanos stores or buy the top-up voucher.
Their common prepaid SIMs for talk, text and data are called Cosmokarta.
Available for 5 EUR without credit in their Cosmote or Germanos stores. For a list click on Cosmote and Germanos shops here and know how your place and prefecture is written in Greek. You can also obtain a SIM from specific kiosks and service stations, but this is not preferred. 4G/LTE is enabled by default, wherever there is coverage. Both combi micro/regular and nano SIM are sold.
Topping up can be done by internatl. credit cards online from 5 to 30 € or by buying Cosmote Top-up cards at 5, 10, 20 or 30 € in their outlets. A top-up of 30 € or more gets 10% bonus.
What's up EditOriginally started as their youth line, but is open to everyone.A new starter package costs 5 €. It can be empty (without any credits), but there is a promotion with 5 € preloaded. So you can pay only 5 € and get the SIM card with 5 € credits.
When you insert the new SIM card at the first time, it will ask for a PIN code printed on the SIM card plate. Dial any number to activate your package.
Same packages can be added as for Cosmokarta.
Data feature packages Edit
Default rate on both plans is the daily tariff of 1.01 € and a 20 MB maximum up to 3G speed. If used more, speed will be reduced. For daily use, better take their day pack of 60 MB at 1.01 € by calling 1330 for free. Both of these packs are for 24 hours and shut off data, when used up.
These data bundles can be booked both on Cosmokarta and What's up:
- Giga Day: 1 GB for 24 hours: 1 €; activation: gigaday
- Giga Soukou (= weekend): 3 GB from Fri 6pm - Sun midnight: 2 €, activation: gigask
- Internet Monthly Pass 60: 120 MB for 30 days: 3.02 €, up to 3G speed
- Internet Monthly Pass 200: 600 MB for 30 days: 6 €, up to 4G/LTE speed: activation: by app or calling 1330
All packages can be subscribed by calling 1330 free of charge, by app or texting code to 1330. They can be renewed anytime. Other packages for domestic calls and SMS are offered: see here all the packs for Cosmokarta and here all the packs for What's up (in Greece only).
Mobile Internet PrepaidEdit
Their prepaid SIM for data-only has the following starter packs available:
- 15 € for COSMOTE SIM Pack includes SIM card only with 10 € credit.
- 35 € for COSMOTE Full Pack includes 3G USB Stick and SIM with 20 € credit,
- 49 € for COSMOTE Pocket WIFI includes 3G Mifi and SIM with 20 € credt
- 59 € for COSMOTE 4G Full Pack includes 4G USB Stick and SIM with 30€ credit
You can book these packages called "Mobile Internet Prepaid":
|5 €||1 GB||1 day|
|10 €||2 GB||5 days|
|18 €||3 GB||15 days|
|30 €||5 GB||30 days|
Passes can be booked on their website only through cellular connections using the Cosmote SIM, free of charge; their website may allow online payment for passes, but only one payment per day can be made.
- APN: internet
- You can user VPN internet as the APN name after calling customer support, to enable port forwarding features etc on supported clients
- Website, partly in English: http://www.cosmote.gr/
Frog Mobile Edit
Frog Mobile is a subsidiary or sub-brand of Cosmote on their network in 2G, 3G and some packages on 4G/LTE.
Their starter called connection pack is sold for 5 € in kiosks and other outlets like Cosmote branded stores (for store locator see Cosmote above). It contains 5 € credit, but only 0.04 € are given out from the start. 1.24 € credit are awarded for the next 5 months provided if there is a top-up.
To activate your connection pack, you have to call any number. Once you dial it, you will hear a recorded message welcoming you to Frog mobile saying that your number has been activated.
Top-up vouchers for 5 € or 10 € are available at their oulets, Germanos and Cosmote stores. To top up, text "ANA<blank><16-digit top-up code>" to 1298. Check credit by sending "YP" to 1298 free of charge.
The validity period of the cash balance is 6 months (180 days) from the last recharge. If you spend six months without recharging, you lose any cash balance left on your account. The validity period of your connection is 12 months since the last renewal or the date of activation of the connection. If you spend 12 months without recharging, you cannot make and receive any phone calls. However, they offer you one additional month, in which you have the option to top-up your airtime and renew the validity period of your connection for 12 months. But if 13 months have passed without any recharge, your number is automatically deleted and thus your connection is deactivated.
Data rates Edit
Default rate is 1.01 € per 24h day. After 20 MB the speed will be throttled. These passes are sold:
- 120 MB for 31 days: 3.02 €
- 500 MB for 31 days: 5.04 €
Both packs can be activated by calling 1330 for free. Activation of multiple packs per month is possible. Overuse is at the default rate.
More info Edit
- APN: internet
- Website partly in English: http://www.frogmobile.gr/en
Vodafone EditVodafone Greece is the 2nd network in Greece. Coverage and speed is shown here: Vodafone 2G/3G Coverage. 4G/LTE Coverage is mostly on 1800 MHz and limited to Athens, Thessaloniki and a few other places 4G Coverage list. 4G/LTE is given out without surcharge to all customers, including prepaid plans.
Vodafone Prepay / CUEdit
The voice, text and data SIM are called Vodafone Prepay or Vodafone CU. The connection set for Prepay is 5 EUR, while Vodafone CU is free. Getting the Vodafone CU set is recommended. But you can change both tariff lines once per month by calling 1266.
It is recommended to buy a SIM card directly from a Vodafone store and have it activated there: Store Locator in English. For this you need to know the prefecture. Although you can buy a prepaid SIM from specific kiosks, service stations or supermarkets, it's preferred to do it from a Vodafone store to avoid delays in the activation process of your SIM. A SIM activated from a Vodafone store will be instantly activated.
Recharge vouchers are available for 10, 15, 20 and 30 EUR, and can be obtained from kiosks, service stations and super markets. You can also top-up your account online, with credit card or Paypal. A 12% tax applies. If you load 5 EUR, you'll get 4.86 EUR worth of balance. To check your balance, make a free call to 1252, change language, then option 1 from top menu. There doesn't seem to be an SMS or USSD option for checking balance.
All new connections of Vodafone Prepay, will be by default registered to the auto activation service of a bundle of 250 domestic minutes and 500 MB for 8.50 EUR. With the auto activation service every time you top up €10 or more, the bundle of 250 minutes to all and 500 MB for 1 month will be automatically activated with an 8.5 € charge from your account.
The only add-on bundle is:
- Surf & Email 100: 600 MB for 30 days: 6.05 EUR, for activation call 1252 for free
It's intended for smartphones and can be purchased by an activation call from a Prepay Vodafone or CU SIM card. Other packages for voice, text or roaming are shown here for Vodafone CU and here for Vodafone Prepay.
Vodafone gives out data bonus for top-ups on their CU cards only called "Just Surf Bonus". For top-ups of 10 € 500 MB are awarded, for top-ups of 20 € 1 GB free as bonus valid for one month. This must be activated online before top-up.
Vodafone international Edit
For tourists and visitors Vodafone sells their new "international" SIM card. For a top-up of:
- 5 €: you get 500 MB and 300 mins to other Vodafone internatl. numbers for 30 days as a bonus (meaning not debited from the topped up value).
You can change from CU or Prepay plans to this tariff line too. It contains heavily discounted internatl. bundles for calls: 50-90 mins in 30 days to landlines and mobiles in the EU or 160 mins to the US for 5 EUR. For more data, you can add the Surf & Email bundle 100 (like on Prepay/CU shown above). All activations by calling 1252 free of charge.
Vodafone offers a prepaid data-only SIM called KartoInternet on 2G and 3G at their stores (store locator) for data devices without voice or text.
The SIM starter pack includes 15 days and a maximum of 2 GB of internet. It supports VoIP like Skype, but cannot be used for phone calls, meaning there is only data in this offer. It can be ordered online for 15 € to be picked up at a Vodafone store. On location, they may charge you 20 € or more.
|2.02 €||500 MB||30 minutes|
|5.04 €||1 GB||1 day|
|10.08 €||2 GB||3 days|
|20.14 €||2 GB||15 days|
|40.33 €||5 GB||30 days|
- The 30 minutes and 3 days packages can only be booked by SMS, all other packages by recharge vouchers too
- Vodafone doesn't allow tethering on the iPad (throught Carrier settings), but it works with the same SIM card on iPhone (Carrier settings 14.0) as long as you specify the same APN for tethering and regular surf (APN: web.session)
- VoIP is not supported
- Once connected, you can check your data balance here
- APN for KartoInternet: web.session
- APN for Prepay and CU: webonly.vodafone.gr / internet.vodafone.gr
- VoIP: Supposedly, they ban VoIP according to their terms, but Skype and some others work without a problem. Some other users had problems with certain VoIP apps/software.
- Website partly in English: http://www.vodafone.gr
Tazamobile is a MVNO on Vodafone network in 2G and 3G. Be aware that the points of sale to get a SIM card are limited, as you can't obtain a SIM card directly from a Vodafone store.
Mostly the SIMs and top-up vouchers can be purchased at small kiosks that sell magazines and newspapers, found scattered around the city centers. But you can find actual Taza stores: store locator too, but they may be hard to find.
You'll get free 500 MB mobile internet upon the first top-up of the month for the first 6 months in selected shops and kiosks around Greece. Getting a Tazamobile top-up voucher is not difficult, because regular Vodafone top-up vouchers and e-top up work too on Taza. They give out 500 MB data bonus for the 1st top-up of the month of €10 or more. Top-up amount is valid for 90 days. Dial 1252 to check your credit and validity.
Data rates Edit
The following package options are available:
- 1 GB mobile internet at € 4.44 for 30 days. Text 70 to 19109 to activate the bundle.
- 4 GB (often with 8 GB instead as a promotion) mobile internet at € 8.87 for 30 days. Text 4 to 19109 to activate.
Packages can be renewed up to 8 times per month.
More info Edit
- Tethering: on Android phone sharing internet through WiFi hotpots always works
- APN: The APN normally given is “internet.vodafone.gr”, but internet reports suggest “webonly.vodafone.gr” will allow tethering off a smartphone to multiple devices. Another earlier contribution suggested “webcarta.vodafone.gr” does the same thing. Comments from others may be useful on this point. In both cases username and password are left empty.
- Website: http://tazamobile.com/
Wind is the smallest network provider in Greece, but can give good speeds where available at low rates: Wind 3G Coverage Map. In 2015 4G/LTE started in major parts of Athens and Thessaloniki. It is now available in other parts of the country too: (4G Coverage Maps ). 4G is given out without surcharge to all customers, including prepaid plans.
F2G (for free to go) is the name of their prepaid talk, text and data line. The connection pack is free, but you have to buy a top-up card for 10, 15, 20 or 30 EUR. Wind gives high bonuses for online top-ups. They can be done by internatl. credit cards and PayPal, if you have registered online before. For every 1st online top-up of 10 EUR or more per calendar month 1 GB of data is added for free.
So it's a better idea to buy the SIM card for 5 EUR including 0.55 EUR credit, 60 domestic mins, 50 domestic texts and 20 MB (valid for 30 days) but without top-up right from the start at their stores: Wind Store Locator. Default or above bundle rate is 1 EUR per 20 MB and day. Two different data packages can be booked on the F2G SIM:
- Giga Surf: 1 GB for 30 days at 6 EUR, you can later add 500 MB at 2 EUR for 1 day
- Smart Data: 1.5 GB for 30 days at 8.50 EUR
- Absolute Surf: 5 GB for 30 days at 15.12 EUR
A Giga Surf bundle can be activated up to 4 times in a month on www.f2g.gr or the F2G app. They also offer Blender with an allowance of 400 domestic mins, 100 dom. text and/or 1 GB data at 8 EUR valid for 30 days. You can mix all three consumptions, but the value of the others will decrease.
Wind also sells their Mobile Broadband without contract data-only SIM card. The connection pack is sold at 18 EUR with a SIM and 3 GB data included for 90 days. Following top-ups are available:
- 1 GB for 30 days: 5 EUR
- 5 GB for 30 days: 15 EUR
- 6 GB for 90 days: 25 EUR
These SIM cards can be loaded with Wind top-up cards. To activate a pack, text the 16-digit number to 1268. To check data balance, text free SMS to 1228 with the word "balance". This SIM is for data-only and no SMS, but those two service numbers.
- APN: gint.b-online.gr /or/ gnet.b-online.gr
- There is no possibility to receive a SMS, that provides information or offers in English.
- Website partly in English: http://www.wind.gr
- You can manage your account and top-up with the F2G App available for Windows, Android and iOS phones. The App also works in English.
Q is a subsidiary of Wind on their 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE network (for coverage see above). Unlike Cosmote and Vodafone, that have outsourced their sub-brands, Q is sold by Wind in most of their stores and integrated into their own product. They give the highest bonuses for top-ups and lowest rates in the country.
Q starter packs are available for free at some kiosks and most Wind branded stores (store locator) with a scratch card for the top-up value.
You need to register and top-up online using an international credit card or PayPal. They give out a 500 MB bonus for the registration every month (not accumulable). Only one of these additional bonuses are given out for top up of 10 EUR or more for the first top-up only per calendar month:
- 500 MB and 1000 Q mins: for an online top-up
- 524 MB: for a top-up more made in a Wind store
- 500 MB and 1000 Q mins: for a top-up using scratch cards
Data rates Edit
For more data, Q offers this package:
- 700 MB per month plus unlimited Whatsapp: 4 EUR
Package is valid for 30 days and can be activated up to 4 times per month. If you activate it online on your account, the online bonus is given for every activation.
Thus, combining top-up and online bonuses with a data package, very good rates for data can be achieved. Default rate outside packages and bonuses is 1.01 EUR per 20 MB.
More information Edit
- APN: myq
- Website in English: https://www.wind.gr/en/q/
Cyprus-based operator Cyta started as first full MVNO in the country in 2014. While it focuses on triple-play mostly, it launched in June 2016 its first prepaid offer for Greece. Cyta operates on the network of Vodafone in 2G and 3G.
Their prepaid SIM card called Kartokiniti (Καρτοκινητή) is available in Cyta stores nationwide (stores list) for 5 EUR with the same credit loaded. You have to show your ID card and it's activated instantly.
For top-ups you can buy cash cards of 5, 10 or 20 EUR, use their app or go online. The 12% mobile tax is deducted from the value. That's why a 5 EUR voucher gives only 4.46 EUR value. To top-up by voucher, text its PIN to 1277. To check credit, text 'ΥΠΟΛΟΙΠΟ' to 1277, if you have a Greek alphabet installed or call 1277 or check their app instead.
The credit stays valid for 90 days after top-up. The SIM card will be suspended after 180 days without a top-up.
Data feature packages Edit
Data outside of packages is charged at 0.1033 EUR per MB. All packages are valid for 30 days:
- 150 MB, 50 domestic SMS: 5 EUR - activation; COMBO1
- 50 MB, 100 dom. mins, 50 dom. SMS: 5 EUR - activation: COMBO2
- 20 MB for 1 day: 1 EUR
- 150 MB: 3 EUR - activation: 150MB
- 500 MB: 5 EUR - activation: 500MB
A day ends at midnight local time. Activation is through My Cyta Mobile app, online or text code to 1277.
More information Edit
- APN: internet.cyta.gr
- Website in Greek only: http://www.cyta.gr
MiFis and data SIM cards could be ordered online, or through their partners across Greece, and they are delivered at any address in Greece including hotels, enterprises, or apartments. Customers can also pick-up and drop-off their packages from/at more than 180 PDPs (pick-up/drop-off points) across the country.
Their pocket hotspots (MiFis) offer 4G/LTE Internet access up to 150 Mbps and allow to connect up to 10 devices for more than 10 hours of operation. The MiFi is easily fully recharged in about 2 hours. Optionally power bank battery and car charger could be rent extending outdoor life time.
Data Volume Edit
They offer "unlimited" mobile data and internet access on a daily basis. A FUP is applied allowing full 4G speed for up to 1 GB per day, reducing the connection speed for the rest of the day, when volume limit is exceeded. Still connectivity is available at throttled speed. Everyday at midnight the speed is reset to 4G.
MiFis and data SIM cards are delivered pre-configured, activated and ready to use. MiFi packages should be always returned back, while return it's not required for data SIM cards as they are permanently blocked when service is expired.
The MiFi rental service offered on a daily basis, from 1 day to 180 days (6 months) and pricing is based on the total time of rental. A refundable deposit of 150 € is charged for the MiFi. The service time of their data-only SIM card is based on the same system.
|Duration||MiFi rental||Data SIM card|
|Price per day||Total price||Price per day||Total price|
|1 day||10 €||10 €||8 €||8 €|
|2 days||9.5 €||19 €||7.5 €||15 €|
|3 days||9 €||27 €||7.3 €||22 €|
|4 days||8.5 €||34 €||6.7 €||27 €|
|5 days||8 €||40 €||6.4 €||32 €|
|6 days||7.5 €||45 €||6 €||36 €|
|7 days||7.1 €||50 €||5.7 €||40 €|
|10 days||6.5 €||65 €||5.2 €||52 €|
|14 days||5.4 €||75 €||4.3 €||60 €|
|22 days||4.3 €||95 €||3.4 €||75 €|
|30 days||3.8 €||115 €||3 €||90 €|
|30+ days||3.8 €||3 €|
More info Edit
- Website in English: http://www.wizifi.eu