If you would like to use your smartphone in Belgium (and other countries in Europe), there are several options available.
Enable International Roaming
International Roaming is an extra feature you can add to your mobile plan. It lets you use your phone in different countries by connecting to local phone networks that you temporarily rent. International Roaming allows you to use your phone in Belgium (and other European countries) for calls, texts, and data.
To use international roaming, Check with your phone contracts to see if they offer international roaming plans. For some contracts, your international roaming might have been already enabled (you would not realize it unless you travel to other countries).
International Roaming can be very expensive, depending on your country. If you are not sure about the rate, we recommend to buy SIM card (explained below) instead.
Buy SIM Cards or eSIM
For short stay tourists, it is popular to buy a prepaid local SIM card. A SIM card is a tiny card that you put into your phone. It helps your phone connect to the network so you can make calls, send texts, and use the internet. It works for both Android and iOS (iPhone).
You can buy SIM cards on your country’s online shopping site (Amazon etc.) or buy after arriving Belgium, at airports, convenience stores, and phone shops. We strongly recommend you to buy on your country’s online shopping site because you can have better instruction in your own language and you feel prepared before your trip!
Changing SIM cards by yourself looks a bit scary for the first time, but do not worry! Remember to keep your own SIM as you need it again when you are back after your trip.
Europe SIM Cards available online
Orange Holiday Europe
Orange Holiday Europe is a widely recognized international SIM card provider that offers coverage in many countries, including Belgium. They provide prepaid SIM cards with competitive rates for data and calling services.
OneSimCard is another well-known international SIM card provider catering to travelers worldwide. They offer global coverage and various plans for data, voice, and texting in Belgium and other countries.
Google Fi (eSIM)
Google Fi is a popular eSIM service offered by Google that provides international data and calling options in multiple countries, including Belgium. It offers flexible plans and transparent pricing for international travelers.
Apple introduced eSIM support in certain iPhone models. With eSIM support, iPhone users can add a secondary cellular plan to their device without the need for a physical SIM card.
Rent Wi-Fi router / Mobile Hotspots
If you have multiple devices or are traveling with friend and family members, consider renting a Wi-Fi router (mobile hotspot). These portable devices provide Wi-Fi access and can connect multiple devices with a password.
You can rent the device in your own country (online or travel agency) . You can also rent it in Belgium and other European countries, mostly at airport. We recommend to rent it in your own country as you can have instructions and helpdesk in your local language.
Use Public Wi-Fi
Most hotels, cafes, restaurants, and major public places in Belgium offer free Wi-Fi access. You can use these Wi-Fi connections to stay connected for messaging, emails, and light internet browsing.
Use Wi-Fi to make internet-based calls (VoIP calls) . Apps like WhatsApp, Skype, FaceTime, and others support voice and video calls over Wi-Fi.
Before making a decision, compare the costs and benefits of each option based on your usage needs and the duration of your stay. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to check with your mobile carrier to understand their international plans and policies to avoid unexpected charges.