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Prepaid Data SIM Card Wiki

Sri Lanka

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Basics Edit

Sri Lanka has 5 network operators for now:

  • Dialog (owned by Axiata) merging with Airtel
  • Mobitel (owned by Sri Lanka Telecom)
  • Etisalat (UAE-owned)
  • Hutch (owned by Hutchison Whampoa)
  • Airtel (owned by Bharti Airtel) merging with Dialog

2G/GSM is on 900 and 1800 MHz up to EDGE, 3G/UMTS on 2100 MHz up to DC-HSPA+ and 4G/LTE started on Dialog and Mobitel on 1800 MHz.

In 2016 it's expected that Airtel is merging with Dialog to disappear from the Sri Lankan market. Another merger between Mobitel and Hutch was put to an halt instead and seems uncertain now.

Coverage Edit

Coverage is fairly good. You can expect 3G speeds in every city and town, even relatively small ones. Along the coast, you'll have signal of some sort everywhere, but it drops in the mountains. where you often get only slow 2G.

Availability Edit

When you arrive in the country at Bandaranaike International Airport near Colombo, buying a SIM card is extremely simple. As you exit the baggage reclaim area, you’ll encounter a row of cell company vendors .If you’ve got a few minutes, ask around at each vendor and see which one has the best rates at the time. You'll pay more at these stalls as they often only offer "tourist packages" which are more expensive than standard plans. Ask for their standard packs and if they won't sell you, go in town to one of their outlets to make a better deal for data.

Regulations Edit

When purchasing a SIM card, you may need to prove your ID by showing a passport. A digital photograph of you is taken at some stores. If you do not wish to be photographed, please produce a recent passport-size photograph conforming to passport specifications.

All operators list their prices with taxes included, only for Airtel you need to add taxes (+12.24%).

Dialog AxiataEdit

Dialog

Dialog Axiata, formerly known as Dialog Telecom, is the biggest mobile provider in Sri Lanka. It has the best coverage in the country at the highest rates: Coverage map. 4G/LTE on 1800 MHz is given out on prepaid where available without surcharge.

Tourist plan Edit

Their tourist plan comes in two sizes:

  • for Rs. 499: including Rs. 250 IDD call credit, Rs. 100 local call credit, 1 GB data and 6 hrs of WIFI valid for 30 days
  • for Rs. 1,299 including Rs. 700 IDD call credit, Rs. 250 local call credit, 3 GB data and 12 hrs of WIFI valid for 30 days

To activate dial #778# and register, normal and micro SIMs are available and you can top up with regular vouchers and add regular data packages.

Availability Edit

Their standard SIMs may be a better deal, if you only want data. They come in two tariff lines: per minute package and per second package, both for Rs. 150 start-up fee. For data it doesn't make a difference as the same data packs can be added. They are available islandwide from Dialog customer service centers and local dealers: Dialog Store locator

Recharge cards are available everywhere from Rs. 50 - 1,000 adding 15 to 365 days of validity.

Data feature packsEdit

Default rate outside of packages and for overuse is Rs. 1 per MB.

Time-based Packages:

Price

Time Validity Data Code
Rs. 20 30 mins 1 day unlimited KBB20
Rs. 50 2 hours 3 days unlimited KBB50
Rs. 100 5 hours 5 days 500 MB KBB100
Rs. 200 12 hours 5 days 1 GB KBB200
Rs. 400 24 hours 7 days 2 GB KBB400
Volume-based Packages:
Data Price Validity Code
20 MB Rs. 3 1 day DBB3
100 MB Rs. 20 1 day DBB20
130 MB Rs. 29 3 days INT29
300 MB Rs. 49 7 days INT49
600 MB Rs. 99 21 days INT99
1 GB day, 1 GB night Rs. 199 30 days INT199
2 GB day, 4 GB night Rs. 449 30 days INT449
4 GB day, 5 GB night Rs. 649 30 days INT649
7 GB day, 8 GB night Rs. 949 30 days INT949
10 GB day, 12 GB night Rs. 1,449 30 days INT1449
15 GB day, 10 GB night Rs. 1,949 30 days INT1949
25 GB day, 10 GB night Rs. 2,949 30 days INT2949

Note: All prices including taxes. To activate, send text with code to 678. Night data is midnight to 8am, day data 8am to midnight. Once usage of volume-based packages exceeds the indicated data amount, you'll get a message and the default rate will be charged.

They offer these special nighttime packages for midnight to 6am only, valid for one night only:

  • 1 GB: Rs. 20, activation: NT20
  • 3 GB: Rs. 50, activation: NT50
  • unlimited: Rs. 100, activation: NT100

For activation, text code to 678.

More infoEdit

  • APN: ppwap
  • Tethering is allowed
  • Webs

MobitelEdit

Mobitel

Mobitel, owned by Sri Lanka Telecom Plc. is the 2nd provider in the country. It has a good coverage in 2G and 3G and started with 4G on 1800 MHz. Coverage map. Plans to merge with Hutch have not yet materialized.

Tourist Pack Edit

Their tourist SIMs come in two sizes:

  • Rs. 499: including Rs. 100 worth of local calls, Rs. 200 worth of IDD calls, 1.5 GB data and 6 hours of WiFi valid for 30 days
  • Rs. 999: including Rs. 250 worth of local calls, Rs. 500 worth of IDD calls, 3 GB data and 12 hours of WiFi valid for 30 days

Available at the airports, for data-only better take a regular package.

Availability Edit

Regular SIM cards are available islandwide for Rs. 200-300 in their service centers (Store locator) and at local dealers. A digital photograph of you is taken at the Mobitel centre. If you do not wish to be photographed, please produce a recent passport-size photograph conforming to passport specifications.

Top-ups as cards or electronic recharges are sold all over the country. Check balance by *100#.

Data feature packsEdit

Price Validity Data Volume Overuse Activation
Rs. 5 24 hours 25 MB Rs. 0.50 / MB D5
Rs. 29 3 days 80 MB day, 80 MB night Rs. 0.01 / 10 KB D29
Rs. 49 7 days 200 MB day, 200 MB night Rs. 0.01 / 10 KB D49
Rs. 99 21 days 400 MB day, 400 MB night Rs. 0.01 / 10 KB D99
Rs. 199 30 days 800 MB day, 1.2 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D199
Rs. 299 30 days 1.2 GB day, 1.8 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D299
Rs. 399 30 days 2 GB day, 2.5 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D399
Rs. 699 30 days 4 GB day, 4 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D699
Rs. 999 30 days 6 GB day, 6 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D999
Rs. 1999 30 days 14 GB day, 14 GB night Rs. 0.20 / MB D1990

All prices are tax included. For activation text code to 7678. daytime is 9am to midnight, nighttime is midnight to 9am. Check data balance by #170#,

More infoEdit

EtisalatEdit

Etisalat

Etisalat from the UAE is the 3rd provider in Sri Lanka giving a reasonable coverage in populated areas mostly: Coverage map

Tourist SIM Edit

Etisalat's tourist SIM is sold at the airport and in flagship stores in 2 denominations:

  • Rs. 1,000: including Rs. 500 worth of IDD calls, Rs. 50 worth of domestic voice, 30 intern. and 150 national SMS and 1 GB of data, valid for one month
  • Rs. 1,300: including Rs. 750 worth of IDD calls, Rs. 100 worth of domestic voice, 50 intern. and 200 national SMS and 1.5 GB of data, vaild for one month.

To reload, you have to top up another Rs. 1,000 or 1,300. So their regular SIM cards, may be a better deal for data.

AvailabilityEdit

Their regular prepaid SIM is sold for Rs. 150 in their stores: locator. It comes as a per minute pack or per second pack.

Top-ups are done through "refresh cards" of Rs. 1 - 1,000 giving validity of 1 to 365 days. To check your balance, dial #134#.

Data feature packsEdit

Default rate is Rp. 1 per MB. These packages can be booked on the prepaid cards:

Etisalat chart

All prices but the Rs. 1500 plan are tax included. Excess usage is at default rate. Night traffic is midnight to 8am. For activation text code to 2211.

Data-only SIM Edit

Their SIM card for data-only is called "Maxxa" and sold for Rs. 300.

The MAXX data-plan: For every reload of Rs. 199, you get 1 GB data plus 1 GB for night traffic, valid for 30 days. For Rs. 59 you can get a night add-on of 1 GB and for Rs. 99 a night add-on of 2 GB, both valid for 3 nights by texting N59 or N99 to 2211.

More infoEdit

  • APN: ebb

Hutch Edit

Hutch Sri Lanka

Hutch by Hutchison Whampoa is the 4th provider in the country giving the lowest rates for data on a reasonable coverage in the populated areas mainly: coverage map and list with 3G covered towns. Max speed is 3.6 Mbps. Plans to merge with Mobitel have not come true up to now.

Availability Edit

Their SIM card is available for free or a minimal price in their stores (Store locator). Reloads are avaiable from Rs. 10 and are all valid for one year.

To check balance text "bal" to 344.

Data feature packs Edit

They have a huge variety of plans for prepaid. All prices are tax included. Excess is at default rate.

  • Always Internet on: 15 cts per MB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 30 cts per MB nighttime (6pm - midnight). Activation: *131*1# - default rate
  • Pocket Internet: for light and shorttime use
    • 20 MB for 1 day, Rs. 3 activation: *131*2*1#
    • 75 MB for 2 days, Rs. 14, activation: *131*2*2#
    • 130 MB for 3 days, Rs. 29, activation: *131*2*3#
    • 500 MB for 15 days, Rs. 89, activation: 131*2*5#
  • Daytime blast: for daytime users
    • 40 MB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 10 MB anytime for 2 days: Rs. 7, activation: *131*4*4#
    • 100 MB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 30 MB anytime for 4 days: Rs. 17, activation: *131*4*3#
    • 650 MB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 100 MB anytime for 15 days, Rs. 97, activation: *131*4*1#
    • 1.5 GB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 500 MB anytime for 30 days, Rs. 197, activation: *131*4*2#
    • 40 GB daytime (midnight - 6pm), 2 GB anytime for 30 days, Rs. 1970, activation: *131*4*6#
  • Value internet: for medium users
    • 750 MB, 100 dom minutes for 30 days: Rs. 195, activation: *131*3*5*6#
    • 8.5 GB, 7 GB night use for 30 days: Rs. 998, activation: *131*3*1#
    • 15 GB, 10 GB night use for 45 days: Rs. 1690, activation: *131*3*2#
    • 25 GB, 10 GB night use for 45 days: Rs. 2490, activation: *131*3*3#
  • Day and Night Internet: for heavy users (daytime = 9am - midnight, nighttime = midnight - 9am)
    • 30 MB day, 40 MB night for 2 days: Rs. 6, activation: *131*5*1#
    • 100 MB day, 100 MB night fro 4 days, Rs. 18, activation: *131*5*2#
    • 550 MB day, 550 MB night for 14 days, Rs. 99, activation: *131*5*3#
    • 1.1 GB day, 1.1 GB night for 30 days, Rs. 198, activation: *131*5*5*6#
    • 1.5 GB day, 3 GB night for 30 days, Rs. 290, activation: *131*5*5*7#
    • 3 GB day, 6 GB night for 45 days, Rs. 490, activation: *131*5*5*8#
    • 5 GB day, 7 GB night for 45 days, Rs. 649, activation: *131*5*4*7#
    • 8.5 GB day, 7 GB night for 30 days, Rs. 998, activation: *131*5*5*10*11#
    • 15 GB day, 10 GB night for 45 days, Rs. 1690, activation: *131*5*5*10*12#
    • 25 GB day, 10 GB night for 45 days, Rs. 2490, activation: *131*3*5*10*14#
  • Ghost Internet: for night users (2am - 6am only)
    • 2 GB for 3 nights: Rs. 45, activation: *131*6*2*1#
    • 4 GB for 7 nights: Rs. 75, activation: *131*6*2*2#
    • 10 GB for 15 nights: Rs. 175, activation: *131*6*2*3#
    • unlimited for 7 nights (1am - 6am): Rs. 299, activation: *131*6*1*2#

More info Edit

  • APN: Hutch3g

airtelEdit

Airtel2

Airtel a.k.a. Airtel Lanka, by Indian Bharti Airtel is the smallest provider in Sri Lanka and started in 2009. It has a rather limited coverage in populated areas which you can check here: coverage map. Speed is up to 3.6 Mbps. It can be expected that Airtel will disappear from the country in 2017 after merging with Dialog.

Take care: All prices listed of Airtel are without taxes. So 27.55 % for phone products and 12.24 % on data need to be added.

Availability Edit

Their SIM cards are available in their stores (locator). You can get the "per second" or "per minute" plan which doesen't make a difference for data. They both come in two starter packs:

  • Rs. 103 plus tax: including 300 MB, 500 on-net SMS and Rs. 103 airtime
  • Rs. 101 plus tax: including 50 MB, 95 domestic SMS and Rs. 101 airtime

Recharges are sold Rs. 30 - 1000. To check your data balance, dial *550#.

Data feature packsEdit

They offer these packages without taxes (always add 12.24 %):

Price Data Volume Validity Activation
Data Plans:
Rs. 10 34 MB 1 day D15
Rs. 21 64 MB 3 days D21
Rs. 29 80 MB, 50 MB @ night 3 days D29
Rs. 59 300 MB, 300 MB @ night 5 days D59
Rs. 78 380 MB 14 days D78
Rs. 95 450 MB, 350 MB @ night 14 days D95
Rs. 119 650 MB, 550 MB @ night 20 days D119
Rs. 149 600 MB, 750 MB @ night 30 days D149
Rs. 190 800 MB, 1 GB @ night 30 days D190
Rs. 299 1.3 GB. 1.7 GB @ night 30 days D299
Rs. 399 1.9 GB, 2.5 @ night 30 days D399
Rs. 699 3.8 GB, 5 GB @ night 30 days D699
Rs. 799 4.5 GB, 6 GB @ night 30 days D799
Rs. 999 5 GB, 8 GB @ night 30 days D999
Price Call credit Data Volume
Smartphone Plans for 30 days:
Rs. 215 Rs. 150 512 MB
Rs. 315 Rs. 200 1 GB
Rs. 675 Rs. 500 1.5 GB

Different packages require separate SIM pack for each plan. All prices are without taxes (+ 12.24%). Nighttime is 1am-7am. For subscription text code to 155.

For night users (1am-7am) they have these packages:

  • 2 GB for 10 nights: Rs. 121, N121
  • 5 GB for 30 nights: Rs. 285, N285
  • 10 GB for 30 nights: Rs. 570. N570
  • 15 GB for 30 nights: Rs. 865. N865
  • 20 GB for 30 nights: Rs. 1201. N1201

Add 12.24% tax, packages must be booked on a seperate SIM, to activate type *155*1*3# <call> for all packs.

SIM sizesEdit

  • mini-SIM (2FF) available., others may need to be cut to size

More infoEdit

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