Airalo eSIM Review: The Right Data Solution for Your International Trip?

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by Anisa // 2 Comments

Imagine a world where you can travel without worrying about roaming charges or the hassle of changing SIM cards. It’s a world made possible by Airalo eSIMs, the digital solution for modern travelers.

Our journey with Airalo uncovered a game-changing way to stay connected on international adventures. From the convenience of installation to cost savings and global coverage, we’re here to share our experiences, limitations, and whether Airalo eSIMs are your ticket to seamless travel.

Read our Airalo review and get ready to discover why Airalo might be the missing piece to your travel puzzle.

Note: This post contains affiliate links.  Please see disclosure for more information.

What is Airalo?

Founded in 2019, Airalo is the world’s first eSIM store. Its mission is to provide global data connectivity for all travelers, liberating them from high roaming costs and traditional SIM card hassles. With Airalo’s eSIMs, users can easily download and install digital data packs from over 200 countries and regions, ensuring instant connectivity upon arrival.

The service is trusted by over 5 million users (as of August 2023) and is supported by a diverse, global team spanning 44+ countries and six continents. With coverage in over 200 countries and regions, Airalo redefines how travelers stay connected on their international journeys.


My Personal Experience with Airalo eSIM: A Case Study

Brexit had brought some unwelcome changes, and one of them was the end of free roaming for UK mobile phones. Suddenly, our cherished ability to travel abroad with our local numbers became a costly affair, with charges of £5 per phone per day and other hidden fees quickly piling up. It was time to explore alternatives, and that’s when we stumbled upon Airalo.

For our recent Caribbean cruise, which included stops in the US, Mexico, and Belize, we decided to give Airalo a shot. We opted for the 15-day 2GB plan for our 10-day journey, which cost us a mere $12 each. Sure, this plan didn’t cover Belize or our time on the ship, but we wanted to stay somewhat connected without breaking the bank. When we considered options to include Belize, it would’ve doubled the cost.

The process was straightforward. I installed the eSIM before our departure, thanks to the clear step-by-step instructions provided on the Airalo website. I chose the manual installation option, and everything went smoothly.

The moment we landed in Miami, our phones effortlessly connected to the network, and we were good to go. But, as with any tech adventure, a minor hiccup came along. We noticed that our iMessage wasn’t working as expected. I followed the troubleshooting steps on the Airalo website, but that didn’t seem to resolve the issue. So, I decided to take the classic approach – I restarted my phone, and it worked like a charm.

When I noticed the issue, I reached out to Airalo’s support. They responded quickly, asking for further details, but by then, I had fixed the issue myself. It was reassuring to know their support was ready to assist, just in case.

We ended up using more data than I initially anticipated, but that wasn’t a problem. Airalo made it easy to purchase additional data a few dollars more. What I found particularly helpful was the Airalo app, where I could keep tabs on how much data we had left. As an added bonus, they sent me an email notification when our data was running low.

Airalo allowed us to save money on roaming charges while ensuring we remained connected on most days during our cruise. It was the perfect balance between staying connected and going off the grid when we wanted to. No more fretting over hefty bills when returning from a vacation!

Our experience with Airalo was such a success that there’s no doubt we’ll be using it again for our future international journeys. It’s a game-changer for travelers like us who refuse to compromise on connectivity or blow the budget on roaming fees. Airalo made our Caribbean cruise not just memorable but also incredibly convenient.

See the eSIMs offered by Airalo here.

It’s easy to keep track of your eSIMs with the Airalo mobile app.

The Advantages of Using Airalo eSIM: Why You Should Consider It

Airalo isn’t just your average travel companion – it’s a real game-changer for international travelers. Let me walk you through the multiple advantages we discovered during our Caribbean cruise, which convinced us that Airalo is a must-have for any trip.

  1.  Saving Money:
    Gone are the days of returning from an international trip to a jaw-dropping phone bill. Airalo is a cost-effective solution that allows you to stay connected without breaking the bank. With their affordable eSIM options, you can forget about the exorbitant roaming charges.  Plus, with each purchase you can earn “airmoney” that can be used to buy future eSIMs.
  2. Easy Installation and Instant Activation:
    The beauty of Airalo lies in its simplicity. Installing the eSIM was a breeze, and it was ready to use before we even left the airport. No need to spend precious vacation time hunting for local SIM cards or dealing with complex activation processes. As soon as we landed, our phones were connected – an instant solution to staying in touch with loved ones or accessing maps and travel information.
  3. Excellent Support:
    In the rare event of a hiccup, Airalo’s support team is there to help. They’re responsive, prompt, and ready to assist with any issues you might encounter. During our journey, their support team got back to us quickly when we reached out, ensuring we could get back to enjoying our vacation with minimal disruption.
  4. Extensive Coverage and Flexibility:
    Airalo doesn’t limit you to a handful of countries or a one-size-fits-all approach. They offer eSIMs for an extensive list of locations, covering over 200 countries and regions. Whether you’re a leisure traveler or a globetrotter, you’ll find options tailored to your specific needs. The flexibility to choose different lengths and data amounts is incredibly convenient. You can select the plan that aligns with the duration and nature of your trip without paying for what you don’t need.
  5. Easy Data Top-Up:
    Sometimes, plans change, and you find yourself using more data than expected. Airalo makes it easy to top up your data with a few taps. The Airalo app not only helps you keep track of your data usage but also sends you email notifications when you’re running low, ensuring you remain in control.

In summary, Airalo provides a comprehensive solution for international travelers. It’s a money-saving, easy-to-install, and instantly active eSIM service with reliable support, extensive location coverage, and flexible options to cater to all types of travelers. When you’re on the go, the last thing you want to worry about is staying connected, and with Airalo, you won’t have to. Our experience with Airalo was a game-changer, and we’re confident it can do the same for your international adventures.

Try an Airalo eSIM yourself here.

Limitations of Airalo eSIM

While Airalo offers an impressive solution for international connectivity, it’s important to recognize its limitations. Here are some aspects where Airalo might not be the perfect fit for every traveler:

  1. Voice Calls and SMS Texts:
    One of the significant limitations of Airalo is that it primarily focuses on data connectivity. If you rely heavily on traditional voice calls or SMS texts, you might find Airalo lacking in this regard. While Airalo makes data usage seamless, you can’t make regular voice calls or send SMS texts through their service. However, this might not be a deal-breaker for many travelers who increasingly use messaging apps like iMessage, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp, or make calls through services like FaceTime, WhatsApp calls, and Facebook Messenger calls.
  2. Minimum Length of eSIM Plans:
    Another limitation is the minimum length of eSIM plans. Most eSIMs come with a minimum length of 7 days, which can be a downside if you have a short trip. You may find yourself paying for time you don’t need. However, for many popular countries, the cost of an eSIM can still be significantly cheaper than traditional roaming charges. So, while it’s a limitation, it’s often a minor inconvenience when you consider the cost savings.
  3. Limited Coverage for Remote Countries:
    Airalo’s global reach is extensive, covering more than 200 countries and regions. However, for some remote or less frequently visited destinations, you might not find them included in regional or global eSIMs. In such cases, you may need to purchase a separate eSIM for that specific country. For instance, we encountered this limitation when planning a one-day visit to Belize. Belize wasn’t covered in any regional or global eSIM, and purchasing the Belize eSIM would have cost $9.50 per person. We opted to go without it, but it’s worth considering for travelers heading to less common destinations.
  4. Connectivity in Limited Locations:
    While Airalo provides extensive coverage, there may still be pockets where you experience connectivity issues. The reliability of the service may vary depending on the local mobile networks in the country you’re visiting. It’s a good practice to check the coverage of the specific eSIM for your destination.  When there are no cell towers like when a cruise ship is at sea, you won’t be able to get any data service.
  5. Only Works on Devices that are eSIM Compatible and Unlocked:
    You will not be able to use Airalo if your device unless your device is eSIM compatible and unlocked.

In conclusion, while Airalo is a fantastic solution for many travelers, it’s not without its limitations. It’s essential to weigh these limitations against the benefits to determine if Airalo aligns with your specific travel needs. In our experience, these limitations didn’t outweigh the advantages, making Airalo a valuable addition to our travel toolkit.

Is an Airalo eSIM Worth It?

Whether an Airalo eSIM is worth it depends on your specific travel needs and priorities. Here are some factors to consider when determining if Airalo is the right choice for you:

  1. Frequency of International Travel:
    If you’re a frequent international traveler, Airalo can be a cost-effective and convenient solution. The more you travel, the more you can benefit from the flexibility and savings it offers compared to traditional roaming or buying local SIM cards especially with their “Airmoney” loyalty program.
  2. Data-Centric Usage:
    If your communication primarily relies on data-intensive apps like iMessage, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and VoIP calls (e.g., FaceTime, WhatsApp calls), the lack of traditional voice calls and SMS texts may not be a significant limitation for you.
  3. Trip Duration:
    Consider the length of your trips. If you have short trips, the minimum 7-day eSIM plan might not be the most cost-effective option. However, for longer journeys, it can provide excellent value.
  4. Destination:
    Review the countries you plan to visit. Airalo’s extensive coverage includes many popular destinations, but for remote or less-visited locations, you might need to purchase separate eSIMs, which could be more expensive.  If you need to be connected on sea days during a cruise, unfortunately Airalo will not help you there.
  5. Cost Savings:
    Compare the cost of using Airalo eSIMs to traditional roaming charges or purchasing local SIM cards. For many travelers, Airalo’s pricing is competitive and can result in significant savings.
  6. Convenience:
    Airalo’s easy installation, instant activation upon arrival, and user-friendly app make it a convenient option for staying connected while traveling.

In our experience, Airalo was worth it, primarily due to its cost savings, flexibility, and the convenience it offered. We were willing to overlook the limitations, such as the absence of regular voice calls, the minimum eSIM plan length, and lack of coverage while at sea, because the benefits outweighed these drawbacks. However, the decision ultimately depends on your specific travel habits and preferences. If you value connectivity, savings, and hassle-free international travel, Airalo might be worth exploring further.

How to Get Your Airalo eSIM

Getting your Airalo eSIM and ensuring it’s ready to use on your international adventure is a breeze. Say goodbye to the hassles of visiting a physical store, and follow these simple steps to secure your eSIM from the comfort of your own home:

  1.  Visit the Airalo Website:
    No need to leave your home; just visit the Airalo website from your computer or mobile device. You’ll find all the eSIM options and information you need right there.
  2. Create an Account (If Needed):
    If you don’t already have an Airalo account, you’ll be prompted to sign up. Don’t worry; the registration process is straightforward and won’t take much of your time.
  3. Choose the Right eSIM:
    Airalo offers a wide variety of eSIM options to cater to different needs. You can select a specific location, a regional plan, or a global eSIM, depending on your travel itinerary. Be sure to consider the amount of data you’ll need and the length of time that suits your trip. If you’re uncertain about the data amount, don’t fret. You can always top it up later.
  4. Make Your Purchase:
    Once you’ve found the eSIM that aligns with your travel plans, proceed with the purchase. Airalo’s user-friendly interface ensures a smooth and secure transaction process.
  5. Install Your eSIM Before Departure:
    To make the most of your eSIM, it’s advisable to install it on your device before you leave for your trip. This ensures that it’s ready to go when you arrive at your destination. However, do note that for some eSIMs, the validity period begins upon installation.
  6. Easy Installation with Step-by-Step Instructions:
    Don’t worry if you’re not a tech expert. Airalo has your back with detailed step-by-step instructions, complete with helpful screenshots here. These instructions cater to all types of phones, so virtually anyone can follow along. You’ll be amazed at how user-friendly the process is.
  7. Instant Activation Upon Arrival:
    Here’s the beauty of Airalo eSIMs: they activate automatically when your phone connects to a supported network at your destination. No need to fumble with complex settings or configurations. As soon as your plane touches down or you cross the border, you’ll be connected.

Should you encounter any issues during the process, Airalo’s support team is at your service. They’re responsive and ready to assist, ensuring you experience a seamless transition to your new eSIM.

With Airalo, the days of visiting crowded stores and wrestling with unfamiliar SIM cards are over. Getting connected for your international trip is as easy as a few clicks on the Airalo website. So, gear up for your adventure, and stay connected with Airalo eSIMs.

Airalo eSIM FAQs

What is an eSIM, and how does it work?

An eSIM, or electronic SIM, is a digital SIM card that eliminates the need for a physical SIM card. It’s embedded in your device and can be activated with a carrier’s profile, allowing you to access mobile networks without a physical SIM card.

Is my device compatible with Airalo eSIMs?

Airalo eSIMs are compatible with a wide range of devices, including smartphones, tablets, and wearables. However, you need to make sure your device supports eSIM technology and is unlocked.

Do I need an internet connection to install my Airalo eSIM?

Yes, an initial internet connection is required to download and install your Airalo eSIM, which in most cases you would do before you leave for your trip. Once installed, the eSIM will automatically activate upon reaching your destination and connecting to a supported network.

Can I use Airalo eSIMs for voice calls and SMS texts?

No, Airalo primarily focuses on data connectivity. It does not support regular voice calls or SMS texts. However, you can use data-based messaging apps and VoIP services like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and FaceTime for calls.

What is the minimum length of an Airalo eSIM plan?

Most Airalo eSIM plans have a minimum duration of 7 days. If your trip is shorter, you might need to consider this when choosing a plan.

Can I top up my data if I run out during my trip?

Yes, you can easily top up your data through the Airalo app or website if you find that you need more data than initially planned.

Are there any hidden charges or fees with Airalo eSIMs?

Airalo is transparent about its pricing. There are no hidden charges or fees. You only pay for the eSIM plan you select, and any additional data you purchase.

What countries and regions are covered by Airalo eSIMs?

Airalo offers eSIMs for over 200 countries and regions around the world. 

Can I use my Airalo eSIM for more than one trip?

Yes, you can use the same eSIM on multiple trips, provided a few conditions are met. First, the eSIM must offer available top-up data packages that you can purchase. Second, you should keep the eSIM installed on your device to use it for future trips. Additionally, ensure that the eSIM is compatible with the country or countries you plan to visit on your subsequent journeys.

To reuse the same eSIM, refrain from deleting it from your device. Instead, keep it installed and simply switch it OFF under Cellular Data Plans when it’s not in use. This way, you can preserve the eSIM for future adventures and continue to add top-up data packages as long as they are available, ensuring a cost-effective and hassle-free way to stay connected on multiple trips.

Is Airalo customer support available in case of issues or questions?

Yes, Airalo provides customer support to assist with any issues or questions you may have during your experience. You can reach out to their support team for assistance.  

Get Ready to Travel Internationally with Airalo

Airalo eSIMs have ushered in a new era of international travel, where staying connected is no longer a burden on your wallet or your peace of mind. Our journey with Airalo unveiled a world of advantages, from cost savings to instant connectivity.

If you’re ready to embark on a journey where connectivity is seamless, affordable, and convenient, it’s time to explore the possibilities with Airalo eSIMs. Break free from the constraints of traditional roaming and embrace the future of travel. Your passport to hassle-free exploration awaits, so why wait? It’s time to get connected with Airalo eSIMs for your next international adventure.

Get your Airalo eSIM here.


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Expert Tips for Using Airalo for International Travel

  • Before purchasing an Airalo eSIM, ensure your device is eSIM-compatible and unlocked.
  • To make the most of your eSIM, install it on your device before your trip begins (unless it is one where validity period begins upon installation). This way, you’ll be ready to connect as soon as you arrive at your destination.
  • While Airalo makes it easy to top up your data, it’s essential to monitor your usage, especially if you have a limited data plan. Use Wi-Fi networks when available to conserve data.
  • Be aware of the validity period for your eSIM. Some start from the moment of installation, while others activate upon arrival in your destination. Plan accordingly.
  • Download the Airalo app for easy access to your eSIM information, data usage, and the option to purchase additional data on the go.
  • If you encounter any issues or have questions, don’t hesitate to contact Airalo’s support team. They’re there to assist you and ensure your experience is trouble-free.
  • Since Airalo doesn’t support traditional voice calls or SMS texts, make the most of messaging apps and VoIP services for communication. Ensure you and your contacts are reachable through these platforms.
  • If your trip includes very remote destinations, research connectivity options in advance. You might need to purchase a separate eSIM for certain locations.


Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post, we purchased the Airalo eSIM to use on our trip and thought we would share our experience with our readers.  This post does contain affiliate links. This means we will receive a small commission for some purchases made using links in our blog with no additional cost to you.  Please be assured we would not promote any product unless we believe that our readers will also benefit.  The commission does not influence the editorial content of this site.

Two Traveling Texans is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to,, Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates.

About the Author

Anisa is an experienced international traveler with extra pages in her passport and stamps from 41 different countries across 5 continents (and counting). She was born and raised in Texas. After a 13 year stint in NYC, she moved to England to live with her husband.