The Palestine Territories in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip have two mobile operators:
- Jawwal (owned by Paltel)
- Wataniya (owned by ooredoo)
West Bank Edit
UPDATE Jan 2018: After 12 years of delay 3G services finally started in the West Bank from 23/1/2018 with both operators. Therefore Palestine has been partly removed from the Greylist and this article will soon be updated. Note, that there are still no 3G or 4G services in the Gaza Strip due to ongoing security concerns of Israel.
Up to January 2018, Palestinian providers have not been able to build up 3G or 4G networks because of the refusal of Israel to allocate frequencies and bandwidth. This situation continued for 12 years and still goes on in the Gaza Strip, as Israel still has ongoing "security concerns", while they have been given away spectrum to their own 4G providers.
For fast data Palestinians had to switch to Israeli networks which cover major parts of the Palestine Territories in 3G and 4G/LTE too. Thus, local providers were losing a lot of revenues gained by Israeli providers instead. Back in 2015 Israel and the Palestine authorities signed a deal allowing Palestine operators to launch 3G and possibly 4G networks. But it took 3 more years to implement the agreement.
Be aware that the use, importation or selling of an Israeli SIM is considered a severe crime according to Palestine law. In police raids imported SIM cards from Israel have been seized and people have been thrown into jail for selling them. Though, as a foreign visitor you will probably have no problems using one in your phone, but better stay away from the local black market selling Israeli SIM cards at around 50 NIS. At least in the West Bank you can use Palestinian providers from now on for faster data.
Gaza Strip Edit
The introduction of 3G services in 2018 has not been extended to the Gaza Strip so far. The Hamas-led government has been considered "terrorist" by Israeli authorities. That's why developments in this area have been further delayed.
In 2017 Wataniya started as second provider on 2G only there, now competing with incumbent Jawwal.
For now, this leaves this area as the only city of more than a million inhabitants in the world without an own 3G or 4G internet so far. Major parts of Gaza are covered by Israeli providers which can be used instead. While this is common place in the Gaza strip, it's considered illegal by local authorities inflicting severe penalties for the black market. Thus, the World Bank estimated a loss of US$ 1 billion over the last three years alone for the Palestinian providers.
Jawwal is owned by the local Paltel Group and the leading provider in the Palestine Territories including Gaza with more than 2.5 million customers and a market share of more than 80%. 3G services were finally added in January 2018 in the West Bank, not in Gaza so far. Speeds of up to 20 Mbit/s were recorded.
Starter packs are available in their 29 stores (list). Recharges are sold in more than 10,000 sales outlets.
Their starter pack is sold in different tariff lines for 29 NIS with a credit of 1 NIS valid for 21 days after activation. For data, it doesn’t make a difference on which plan you are.
Data feature packs Edit
Data outside of packages is 0.30 NIS per MB.
For the introduction of 3G services to all monthly bundles 5 GB are added for free until 31/1/18. Until 31/3/18 most data volume will be doubled by a bonus.
|40 MB||20 MB||1 day||3 NIS|
|60 MB||60 MB||1 day||5 NIS|
|80 MB||80 MB||7 days||10 NIS|
|200 MB||200 MB||30 days||15 NIS|
|700 MB||500 MB||30 days||30 NIS|
|1.5 GB||1.5 GB||30 days||50 NIS|
|3 GB||3 GB||30 days||80 NIS|
|5 GB||5 GB||30 days||100 NIS|
To all packages add 16% VAT. Activate by *999#. Check data conspumtion by *997#.
The packages are automatically renewed once their validity ends. If you do not browse the internet, the package won't be automatically renewed, unless you browse the internet again; in addition, you can't purchase the same package, whether daily, weekly or monthly the same day, month or week.
By *911# you can add more data to a monthly plan valid for the rest of the running time of the base package:
- 75 MB: 5 NIS
- 250 MB: 15 NIS
- 500 MB: 25 NIS
- 1 GB: 35 NIS
More info Edit
- APN: internet
- Website in English: http://www.jawwal.ps/index.php
Wataniya Mobile Edit
Wataniya Mobile is now run by the Kuwait-based and Qatar-owned Ooredoo Group. It started 2009 as second provider on the West Bank. It used to operate in some towns on the West Bank only. In 2017 it extended its area of operation to the Gaza Strip.
Finally on 24/1/17, one day after Jawwal Wataniya, started its 3G network on the West Bank, not in Gaza so far. Their new 3G is up to 42 Mbit/s.
You can get their starter packs for 20 NIS with 1 NIS credit valid for 30 days at their authorized dealers.
Data rate Edit
Default data rate is 0.20 NIS per MB. The following packages can be booked via *660#. To check remaining data *106#. For the introduction of 3G free 10 GB are added to every package as bonus until 31/1/18.
|500 MB||1 week||10 NIS|
|1 GB||1 month||19 NIS|
|3 GB||1 month||35 NIS|
|5 GB||1 month||52 NIS|
|10 GB||1 month||69 NIS|
To all prices add sales taxes of 16%.
More info Edit
- APN: internet
- Website in English: http://www.wataniya.ps/encti