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Prepaid eSIM : The Ultimate Guide for a travel to Singapore and beyond [2023]

Singapore eSIM : Prices, Duration, GBs, Speeds, Network Quality, Compatibility with other Asian countries : we selected the best eSIM plans for your trip.

Published: Nov 21, 2023

prepaid eSIM singapore cover

Say goodbye to the hassle of physical SIM cards and welcome the ease of digital connectivity that will keep you online whether you're sipping on a Singapore Sling at the Raffles Hotel or trekking through the ancient Angkor Wat.

In this comprehensive guide, We will take you through the essentials of selecting the best eSIM plans for your trip to Singapore and the surrounding Southeast Asian countries in 2023.

Why Go eSIM?

Gone are the days of hopping from store to store, seeking a local SIM card that might not even fit your device or match your data needs. Enter the eSIM age—a digital SIM that allows you to activate a cellular plan from providers around the world directly on your smartphone and without the need for a physical SIM card.

eSIM is a great addition, as it will allow you to avoid the hassle of purchasing a physical SIM card locally, or to pay exhorbitant roaming charges.

eSIM compatible devices (from iPhone XR to iPhone 15 PRO + many Android devices onwards) allow you to download the data plan right after landing, enabling you to share your experiences instantly. Yes, you will just be able to buy, download and setup your eSIM fully digitally before you arrive or when you arrive to Singapore.

Who are the main mobile operators in Singapore? Do they offer prepaid eSIM ?

In Singapore, the mobile operator landscape can be divided into two primary categories: those : MNOs (Mobile network operators) and MVNOs (Mobile Virtual Network Operators).

Singapore MNOs and whether they offer eSIM

First, we have the full-service mobile network operators (MNOs). The MNOs are the big players who not only provide mobile services but also own and manage the entire mobile network infrastructure. This infrastructure comprises cell towers, base stations, and all the hardware necessary for seamless mobile communications.

Most Singapore MNOs offer eSIM to their "local subscribers", but not all them offer prepaid eSIM for travelers & tourists who only stay for a couple of days of weeks in Singapore.

Here is an overview of the main Local Mobile Operators in Singapore and whether they offer prepaid eSIMs :

Singapore MNO

Offers prepaid eSIM

Singtel

Yes, here. Your identity (passport) information needs to be provided to be able to purchased

Starhub

No, only prepaid SIM cards (not eSIM)

M1

Yes, but eSIM can't be purchased online and needs to be purchased locally in-store.

All those three telecom companies offer great coverage and mobile services (voice, messaging, data) in Singapore, at great speeds (5G).

To this day, Singtel is the only Singapore Operator that properly offers prepaid eSIM plans that you can purchase 100% digitally before your travel. Starhub does not offer prepaid eSIM plans yet, and M1 requires that you purchase your eSIM in Store.

Singapore eSIM MVNOs

The second category is MVNOs : Mobile virtual network operators. MVNOs don't possess their own network infrastructure. Instead, they opt to rent network capacity from the full-service MNOs.

MVNOs often carve out their niche by offering specialized services, like cost-effective plans or plans tailored to specific market segments. Many MVNOs have specialized into providing eSIM plans that are prepaid and made for tourists and travelers.

We list a lot of those "specialized" eSIM providers for Singapore on esims.io today !

Here is an overview of the top eSIM MVNOs that offer products for Singapore :

Since those providers don't own the local network, they will have to rely on the first list (MNOs) to get you connected to a local network in Singapore !

We will explain below what that means and whether it's preferable to purchase your eSIM from a Singapore or from a MVNO.

Should I purchase my Singapore eSIM from a MNO or from a MVNO?

Deciding whether to buy your Singapore eSIM from a Mobile Network Operator (MNO) or a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) depends on your specific travel needs and preferences.

Here are some crucial factors to consider:

  • Local Operator (MNO) Advantages:

    • Local Number : If having a Singaporean phone number is important for your stay, MNOs are your go-to choice.

    • Comprehensive Services : MNOs typically offer a broader range of services, including calls, texts, and data.

    • Stable Connectivity : Being direct owners of network infrastructure, MNOs usually provide more stable and reliable connectivity.

    • Longer Stays in Singapore : Ideal for those spending a significant amount of time solely in Singapore.

  • MVNO Advantages:

    • Flexibility for Short Stays or Layovers : MVNOs offer plans well-suited for brief visits or transits.

    • Regional Travel Plans : If your itinerary includes multiple countries, MVNOs often have regional plans that cover several nations, reducing the hassle of multiple SIMs.

    • Cost-Effectiveness : Generally, MVNOs provide more budget-friendly options, particularly if your primary need is only data and you don't need a phone number.

    • Convenience : Many MVNOs allow for digital purchase and activation, ideal for last-minute arrangements or avoiding in-store visits.

What are the top eSIMs plans for Singapore ?

With all those considerations in mind, here is our selection of the best eSIM providers and plans for travelers to Singapore :

Singtel is the best local option

Singtel is the only Singapore MNO that offers eSIM plans you can purchase online directly.

The Singtel Prepaid Tourist eSIMs provides up to 120GB of 5G data, ensuring high-speed connectivity across the country​​. Singtel sells prepaid eSIM plans that include 5G or are 4G only.

Those plans are very competitive in terms of price and offer a tremendous amount of data.

4G only plans start at just SGD$12 with their smallest plan, that includes 100GB of mobile data valid for 14 days.

singtel Singapore esim Plans 5G

If you need a 5G plan, you will need to spend at least SGD$30, granting you 100GB of mobile data valid for 30 days.

singapore singtel 5G plans

Some considerations and features regarding Singtel's prepaid eSIM plans

  • You will need to download their mobile app to setup your eSIM : You will set up your eSIM in Singtel hi!App within 90 days from your date of arrival to prevent it from expiring.

  • Phone number & voice + text : All plans come with a phone number, and include a various amount local calls and text

  • Top-Up Options : For the $12 Tourist eSIM, a $3 top-up on hi!App before expiry rolls over the unused balance and adds additional data and call minutes. For $30/$50 Tourist eSIMs, top up any plan on hi!App to extend validity and continue usage​

  • Some plans include roaming data in other Asian countries : Depending on which plan you purchase, you will get between 3GB and 10GB of Roaming data with your plan across Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

Learn more about Singtel prepaid eSIM plans here.

Best options for trips in Singapore and other Asian countries

While Singtel is very competitive locally (if you're staying only in Singapore), if you intend to visit other countries, it might be best for you to look at eSIM MVNOs that offer regional eSIM plans that work in Singapore and other Asian countries.

In case you visit multiple countries, it's important you get enough data, so we stuck to plans that offer at least 10GB of mobile data and up to 40GB.

Here are a few great value plans offering multiple countries compatibility :

In Asia :

Yohomobile SouthEast Asia eSIM - 10GB

Data

10 GB

Validity30 day(s)

8 countries

Data only

$13.00

$1.30/GB
Learn more â€ș

Yohomobile SouthEast Asia eSIM - 20GB

Data

20 GB

Validity30 day(s)

8 countries

Data only

$19.99

$1.00/GB
Learn more â€ș

In multiple regions of the world :

Monty eSIM World Discovery! - 20 GB

Data

20 GB

Validity30 day(s)

47 countries

Data only

$29.99

$1.50/GB
Learn more â€ș

Maya mobile (MVNO) offers the best unlimited plans for Singapore

If you're coming for a good amount of days to Singapore and need to work, Maya Mobile offers highly priced but very interesting plans that offer Unlimited mobile data.

Those plans come with a Fair usage Policy, which means that after using a few GB of daily high speed data, your bandwidth will be capped at 1Mbps.

Nevertheless, those plans are very interesting, especially if you need to use your phone Hotspot for work or to share with your group.

Our top recommendation which we think will suit most travelers is the "Singapore Unlimited STANDARD - 15 Days" plan, which offers 15 days of 5G speeds in Singapore with a daily high speed allocation of 3GB.

Maya's local operator partner is Singtel, which offers 5G connectivity.

Data

Unlimited

Validity15 day(s)

🇾🇬 Singapore

Data only

$66.00

Learn more â€ș

Those unlimited plans by Maya come in many variants : first, in terms of duration : either 15 days of validity or 30 days of validity. Also, those plans vary by their coverage : some variants of those plans are local only, while some cover more Asian countries.

Here are some of those variants

Data

Unlimited

Validity30 day(s)

12 countries

Data only

$59.00

Learn more â€ș
Data

Unlimited

Validity30 day(s)

12 countries

Data only

$88.00

Learn more â€ș

Best options for short stays and layovers

For those of you zipping through Singapore, for instance during a quick layover, (if you do not want to use the Airport WiFI), or for two or three days here are quick, cheap and dirty data eSIM options.

Those options come with 1 to 3 GB of mobile data.

Singapore 1GB by Mogo eSIM

Data

1 GB

Validity15 day(s)

🇾🇬 Singapore

Data only

Network(s) : Starhub (4G, 3G)

$2.00

$2.00/GB
Learn more â€ș

Nomad Local Singapore 3GB

Data

3 GB

Validity30 day(s)

🇾🇬 Singapore

Data only

Network(s) : Singtel (5G, 4G)

Special Offer : $1 OFF

$6.00

$7.00

$2.00/GB
Learn more â€ș

Nomad Local Singapore 5GB

Data

5 GB

Validity30 day(s)

🇾🇬 Singapore

Data only

Network(s) : Singtel (5G, 4G)

Special Offer : $1 OFF

$9.00

$10.00

$1.80/GB
Learn more â€ș

Closing Thoughts

Whether you're a casual tourist or a hardened traveller, these eSIM plans are designed to cushion your journey and connect you to the experiences that await for you in Singapore.

For more details on these plans and a broader range of options tailored to your unique travel needs, dip into esims.io's Singapore plans page.

Yoho Mobilelogo

South East Asia eSIM

Yoho Mobile

$38.00

Yoho Mobilelogo

Singapore eSIM

Yoho Mobile

$43.00

Nomadlogo

Local Singapore - 30 Days - 50 GB

Nomad

$48.00

Nomadlogo

Local Singapore - 30 Days - 40 GB

Nomad

$39.00

Yoho Mobilelogo

South East Asia eSIM

Yoho Mobile

$19.99

As connectivity becomes more important than ever in our global lives, the eSIM is your bridge to a seamless, stress-free travel experience. Singapore is ready for you, and now, you’re more than ready to take on Singapore and the rest of Asia with the digital confidence of a seasoned explorer.

As you embark on your journey, remember that the best travel experiences are those where you're fully present—capturing not just the images but the essence of each moment. Let your eSIM plan take care of the connectivity, so you can take care of making memories. Safe travels and stay connected!

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