We can all say goodbye to the expensive roaming service when we can simply rent a WiFi device or buy a sim card to get online when we travel. But what’s the pros and cons and how should I choose which one to get?
To make life much more easier, you can reserve a WiFi device or a sim card online and pick up at the airport when you arrive. I’ve done both and here’s my verdict on their pros and cons:
- rental fees are cheaper and base on the days to charge
- you can check and verify if the device works well at the location when you pick up
- able to share network with friends
- you can keep your original sim card in your phone to stay connected by roaming calling services
- need to return the device at designated time and location
- need to charge often (on average each device linking to one phone can use up to 8 hours)
- need to carry it around with you
- penalties will be charged to loss of WiFi device/charger/battery
- more flexibility for individual use
- no need to return
- network can be more stable and faster with no one sharing
- more expensive than renting a WiFi device
- restricted to designated usage days
- there could be a chance that the card is not functioning
- need to take your own original sim card out to change with the new one
- unable to stay connected via roaming calling services with your original number (and many of the travel sim cards does not provide calling services)
Most WiFi devices are very stable and are sharable with people whom you’re travelling with. However if you’re planning to split up with your parties then you should be using your own sim card instead for more flexibility with everyone.
Sim cards are certainly more flexible but one big problem is these prepaid sim cards have restricted days options, for example there are 1/5/10/30days options for 4G SIM Card (KR Airport Pick Up) for Korea and when I volunteered at PyeongChang last year for 22 days, I bought two 10 days sim card and gave up the first and last day of network for the best value.
When you’re renting WiFi devices, please be aware of the returning time and location, especially for those of you who are taking late night flights or budget airlines with a very early/late schedule. Most of the operating hours of these offices are 7am-10pm。
While many of the WiFi devices and sim cards claim they offer 4G unlimited usage, I suggest everyone to read the fine print carefully. The above two options may have a daily cap, and once the daily limit is reached will then switch from 4G network down to 3G and may experience a slower connection.
I suggest for anyone who has a large usage and looking for more flexibility should use the prepaid sim card instead, even though there’s a limitation in calling services, you can always use Whatsapp/Line apps to make voice or video calls. As for people who are looking for simple usage with a budget, renting a WiFi device is certainly a great option! Just make sure to return the device before your flight takes off to avoid any penalties!
- 需要經常充電 （一部手機使用的話電池壽命有大約8小時）
- 需要隨身攜帶 （而且共用WiFi的朋友都要在左近啊！）