In this high-tech era, the SIM card plays an essential part in not only maintaining communication but also offering easy access to local networks. Read on to find more about where to buy a SIM card in Hanoi as well as helpful tips.
There are three major network brands in Hanoi: Viettel, Vinaphone, and Mobifone. Viettel has the most extensive coverage network and customers, Vinaphone works just as well but avoid Mobifone if you are heading too far off the beaten track.
While Viettel has the largest network coverage, Vinaphone and Mobifone offer more promotions.
You should only purchase SIM cards from official stores where you will need to present your passport to register, since SIM cards from street vendors may be shut down unexpectedly. If you do not plan to stay for a long time, the convenience of that may worth the risk. However, for those who have intentions of living in Hanoi for a while, prioritize SIM cards from an official outlet.
SIM card often costs VND 50,000 with no credit loaded. However, there are a wide variety of available tourist packages. If you run out of data, there are plenty of kiosks along the street that sell vouchers to top up your credit.
Top-up vouchers’ sellers are pretty much everywhere in Hanoi.
Right at the main arrival gate, you can see numerous tourist information desks that sell SIM card packages. The ones that sell local SIM cards are often located next to the money exchange or the visa on arrival desks. Purchasing from these stores is convenient and time-saving. However, the prices and packages fluctuate and change from store to store. Don’t hesitate to ask for help from the staff since they all speak English.
Noi Bai Airport offers a wide range of mobile data plans in the arrival hall.
Besides the airport, it is suggestible to buy a SIM card at the official stores of the network brands mentioned above. The price point goes from VND 100,000 to VND 200,000, and this kind of SIM card is only valid in a short period, which makes it more suitable for short-stay trips.
See our guide on SIM Cards and Mobile Data 3G/4G in Vietnam for more details.
You can find many official stores in Hanoi Old Quarter from Viettel, Vinaphone, and Mobifone.
Viettel is the network brand that has the most users in Vietnam.
Opening hours: 8 AM – 8 PM
Vinaphone often provides many promotions.
Opening hours: 7:30 AM – 11:30 AM and 1:30 PM – 5 PM
Mobifone does not have as broad coverage as Viettel and as many promotions as Vinaphone.
Mon-Fri: 7:30 AM – 6 PM
Sat: 8:30 AM – 4 PM
Sun: Some still open (8:30 AM – 4 PM), some do not.
These places are not our best recommendations, but if you are in an emergency, they are easy to find anywhere. Remember that they do not have the authority to register for you, and the SIM cards are mostly pre-activated. Nonetheless, you can buy top-up cards at these stores since they do not require registration.
Do not trust the authority of these mobile vendors for long trips.
- Make sure that your phone is UNLOCKED and can be USED ABROAD.
- Try to contact the official store first to know about the required documents.
- Check who your SIM is registered to by texting “TTTB” to 1414, the Vietnamese reply message includes your name, birthdate, passport or ID number in details.
- Feel free to ask for more information since the staff can speak English.
- To top up your credit, dial *100*code-on-top-up-card#
- To check your data, dial *101#
Being connected to the Internet has a significant impact on the convenience of a trip, so purchasing a SIM card and a suitable data package is highly advised. If you are planning to visit the city and wondering where to buy a SIM card in Hanoi, we hope that this article has been helpful.
Check out some of our Hanoi Travel Tips:
If you are in Ho Chi Minh City, check out our guide on Where to Buy A SIM Card in Ho Chi Minh City.
© Written by Giang Le for itourvn.com