Best way to get high speed data on my American phone in Mexico?
May 8, 2024 1:09 PM   Subscribe

I'm traveling to Mexico next week and instead of buying the (expensive) international data pass through my American cell provider, thought I'd see about getting a Mexican plan with an eSIM, but it's horribly confusing (which maybe speak more to the general poor state of web search.) Looking for recommendations. Thanks!
posted by rhymedirective to Travel & Transportation around Mexico (12 answers total)
Could you just get a normal sim card at the airport with enough pre-paid days for your trip?
posted by signal at 1:20 PM on May 8 [1 favorite]

Best answer: A high-speed (e.g. 5G) connection will depend on the availability of 5G in the area where you are. Otherwise you'll be limited to 4G/LTE.

I've successfully used Airalo eSIMs, as have friends of mine. Easy to set up before you travel, and the eSIM activates as soon as it connects to a network at your destination. It supports 5G provided your phone and the network you're connected to supports it too.
posted by essexjan at 1:20 PM on May 8 [2 favorites]

You don't have a google project fi phone by chance?
posted by maloqueiro at 1:29 PM on May 8 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you're able to use eSIMs with your current phone (this is increasingly common but not universal) eSIM is the way to go. I've used eSIMs from Airalo and MobiMatter in the EU, UK, and Canada and it was ridiculously easy and very reasonably priced.
posted by mskyle at 1:36 PM on May 8

Best answer: Assuming you have a phone that supports eSIM, the answer (as above) is Airolo.
posted by caek at 1:38 PM on May 8

I've had great luck with Holafly, whose rather inexpensive unlimited daily eSIM plans better fit my needs than Airalo's set amount of data plans. I've used them in a few places overseas and was pleasantly surprised by the price and experience each time.
posted by eschatfische at 5:00 PM on May 8

I use Ubigi, and have used them in Italy, Portugal, Switzerland, India, Taiwan and Singapore thus far. I also have Airalo, but so far Ubigi has been slightly more convenient on the trips I've made (this does not mean they will be a better deal for your trip; their selection of plans has so far met my requirements vis-a-vis trip length, data involved, etc.).

...I will say that eSIM installation processes are a bit wonky, so be absolutely SURE you are following the instructions to the letter! None of this "oh, I can probably skip that step it sounds unnecessary".

To The Letter

...I know this because when I first installed my Ubigi eSIM I was buzzed, and therefore overconfident, and fucked it up.

Fortunately, their tech support had me sorted by the next day, but even so learn from my error.
posted by aramaic at 6:01 PM on May 8

Are you sure your US cell provider doesn't include Mexico for free? Verizon includes Mexico on the plan that I have.
posted by A Blue Moon at 6:44 PM on May 8

ATT also includes Mexico in a standard US plan. We go there and our phones work fine without any shenanigans.
posted by chuke at 7:22 PM on May 8
posted by sid at 7:02 AM on May 9

Response by poster: Thanks everyone, I went with an Airalo eSIM and it was pretty easy.

(My cell plan does include Mexico, but only voice/texting. Data is limited to 2G speeds as I have a very old grandfathered plan.)
posted by rhymedirective at 12:50 PM on May 9 [1 favorite]

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