During your trip to Peru, you may wish to purchase a SIM card in order to make contact with your friends and family with ease. Being both relatively cheap and accessible, getting a SIM card in Peru is often the best option for travelers! Some visitors find purchasing SIM cards in Peru a difficult task. Follow this quick guide and you’ll be making calls and roaming with your Peruvian sim card in no time!
In order for a Peruvian SIM card to work in your phone, it must first be unlocked. Ensure that your phone is unlocked before traveling so as to avoid the hassle of having to rectify this problem in Peru.
There are two main types of phone networks used across the world, GSM (Global system for Mobiles) and CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access). While most countries in Latin America (including Peru) are connected with GSM, those whose phones are connected with CDMA (most American phones) should check compatibility before their trip to Peru. Many new-model phones are compatible with both networks. The models that are compatible with all networks are The iPhone 6 and later; the Motorola Moto G4, E4, and later; the Samsung Galaxy S7 and later; and Google Pixel.
Purchasing Peruvian SIM Cards
When it comes to communication providers and Peruvian SIM cards, Claro and Movistar are the two market leaders. While they both offer a wide range of internet and mobile phone plans, the most common option for foreign travelers is to purchase a prepaid SIM with no contract. Prepaid SIMs allow you to both make and receive local calls, and to top up on credit whenever needed.
There are various Claro and Movistar stores throughout Peru. Both can be found in the Miraflores area of Lima as well as in other popular Peruvian destinations such as Arequipa, Cusco and Puno. The store clerk will assist you with setting up the new SIM in your phone. Make sure to bring your passport or another official form of identification as the sales assistant will need it.
Peruvian SIM cards usually cost approximately S/.15 (about $5). When you purchase the SIM, also purchase phone credit so that you are ready to make and receive calls straight away. Approximately S./20 (about $7) should be enough to get you started. The cost of making and receiving calls depends on the individual carrier pricing. Sending texts usually works out cheaper than making phone calls and communicating with someone who has a contract with the same communications company as you. For instance, someone with a Claro contract calling another Claro contract works out substantially cheaper than calling someone with a contract from another company (Claro contract to Movistar contract).
Another Peruvian SIM card that is tailored specifically for the needs of tourists is the Super Chip Turista. This Peruvian SIM card is offered by the communications company, Entel. The card costs S/.69 (about $20) and can be purchased in Lima (Miraflores), Arequipa and Cusco. The S/.69 buys you 20 minutes of domestic calls, 2 GB of data and unlimited WhatsApp and Facebook for 15 days.
There you go! You should be all set to purchase your own Peruvian SIM and communicate freely during your time in Peru. Happy travels!