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prepaid sim card in london

Hi everybody!

We will be in London in Mid-june. I wish to procure a pre-paid sim card for my phone -preferably one with good data on board (5 GB per day).
Where can I get these at heathrow? Are they any cheaper outside - at Sainsbury's -( I have one close to where I'm staying)?
Im especially interested in Lyca - as Ive used this on a previous visit and it worked like a charm. Im sure there are others too - any suggestions?

Posted by
752 posts

Hi, Sumeetsingla55,

Since your phone is unlocked, you have a number of options. EE is the carrier I usually use in the UK, they have the largest network and coverage 4G LTE. Here is a link to their pay as you go SIMs

Their largest data plan is 20 GB for £30 Comes with unlimited texts and lots of phone minutes, but I understand data is really what you’re needing. Vodafone has the exact same offer. The Lyca data only SIMs on their website seemed to be more expensive, but perhaps having experience with them last time outweighs price.

Just curious...Do you need the high daily data because you are using your phone as a hotspot for your other family members? Will their data needs be as high in London when you will all be out seeing the sights? How many days will you be in the UK?

EE has boutiques around London. Both EE and Vodafone SIMs are available at Carphone Warehouse, many locations around London. Hope this helps!

Posted by
5358 posts

Three does a genuinely unlimited data add-on for PAYG for £35 valid for 30 days. Also 36GB for £27.50.

Posted by
12 posts

Not to hijack this thread, but regarding texting - We arrived in the UK last week and purchased SIM cards from an EE store in Bath; my understanding is that they don’t cover international texts which surprised me; I’m able to text my kids on their US numbers as we all have iPhones and so we’re using iMessage. But, I can’t text my brother in the US who has another type of phone. The EE store rep seemed to think that no UK carrier offered SIM cards with international texting? If I’m missing something, hopefully someone here will speak up.

Other than the concern about international texting, these EE cards have worked well - good coverage everywhere we’ve gone so far.

Posted by
8889 posts

The EE store rep seemed to think that no UK carrier offered SIM cards with international texting?

The rep is a (choose your expletive). I get texts to and from family and friends in the UK all the time (I have a Swiss phone). Not being able to text to other countries would make the phone useless for many people.

Posted by
752 posts

Hi, Mommapalooza,

EE does have a pay as you go sim that includes 500 texts to the US as well as Europe and some other countries.
EE sim with US texting

It’s possible not all the stores stock it. If you print out the SIM details or do screenshots, and take to the store, you may have better luck.

Posted by
1 posts

I'll be there with my family in June as well. I've looked at EE and Vodafone for a while now, they've had some really good specials in the last couple months (like double data), but I found your 30 day use period starts when you buy the card, so I am waiting until I am "on the ground" there to purchase. I'm planning to visit a Carphone Warehouse store once in London - there are many locations all over the city and they sell cards from many carriers. So, no first hand success stories yet, but this is my plan, and what I've learned.