Best eSIMs for Thailand.
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3 BEST eSIMs for Thailand: How to Stay Connected

Whether you’re hitting the beaches, exploring the temples, or indulging in street food, you’ll need an eSIM for Thailand to stay connected.

Let’s talk about the best ways to keep your phone online without breaking the bank or losing your mind (I did the hard work for ya, my friend!).

Here are the top options for staying connected in Thailand. I’ll help you figure out which one is best for your trip…

1. The Easy App eSIM for Thailand

eSIMs couldn’t make life any easier. Essentially, it’s a non-physical SIM that’s installed onto your phone with a few clicks, giving you access to data almost anywhere in the world.

Homepage of Saily eSIM.
Saily eSIM.

There are a ton out there, but I’m going to give you the low down on one of the most cost-effective and reliable eSIMs I’ve recently come across, Saily eSIM.

Saily is a new eSIM service designed to make your travel experience smoother and more connected. It’s super easy to use, cost-effective, and perfect for travelers.

Features and Benefits:

  • Global Coverage: Available in over 150 countries.
  • Flexible Plans: Choose from data packages that suit your needs, ranging from 1GB for a week to 20GB for a month.
  • Ease of Setup: No need to swap SIM cards. Just a few clicks and you’re good to go.

Cost and Data Plans:

  • Prices start as low as $3 per week for 1GB.
  • 20GB plans are available for around $18 per month.
Saily eSIM pricing.
Saily eSIM for Thailand.

Pros and Cons:

  • Pros: Affordable, easy to use, wide-coverage, excellent customer support.
  • Cons: No unlimited data plans, some countries have fewer plan options, and there are no regional plans (i.e. “Europe”)

👉 GET IT NOW: Saily eSIM for Thailand

2. The Local Thai eSIM Options

If you’re staying in Thailand for a while or need loads of data, a local SIM might be the way to go. AIS and dtac are two of the top providers.

How to Get Them:

You can get either SIM card at the airport, convenience stores, or their respective shops nationwide.

Keep in mind you will need to walk in and show your passport to obtain one.

AIS eSIM pricing.
AIS eSIM pricing.

Cost and Data Plans:

  • AIS: Plans start around 299 THB (~$9) for 15GB of data valid for 8 days.
  • dtac: Offers the same packages starting around 299 THB (~$9) for 15GB for 8 days.

Both offer very similar coverage, although it’s said that DTAC performs a bit better in urban settings, while AIS might be better if you plan on heading off the path into more rural areas.

I’ve now used both, and they are fine all around Thailand.

They also offer both an eSIM and a regular SIM, depending on what you need.

dtac eSIM pricing.
dtac eSIM pricing.

Pros and Cons:

  • Pros: Great local coverage, good for long stays, cheaper data rates, you get a local number.
  • Cons: Requires finding and buying a SIM, dealing with setup, and potentially language barriers.

AIS | dtac

3. The Phone Plan You Have

Sticking with your US plan might be more convenient if you’re on a short trip and don’t want to fuss with new SIMs or eSIMs.

Cost Considerations:

  • Call Your Provider: Rates vary, so check with your provider. Some plans offer reasonable international packages.
  • Convenience vs. Cost: It’s easy but can be pricier than local options.
Person on their phone.
Staying connected requires a SIM either way – which is best for you?

Pros and Cons:

  • Pros: Convenient, no need to change SIMs.
  • Cons: Potentially high roaming charges, not ideal for long trips, no local number, service could be spotter.

So Which eSIM for Thailand is Best For You?!

FeatureSaily eSIMLocal SIM (AIS/dtac)US Phone Plan
Cost$3 (1GB) – $18 (20GB)$9 (15GB)Varies, call to confirm
Ease of SetupVery easy, app-basedRequires buying and setting upCall to notify of travel
Coverage150+ countriesExcellent local coverageDepends on provider, generally good
Data PlansMultiple flexible optionsVarious local plans availableOften limited or expensive
ProsAffordable, easy to use, globalCheap, good for long staysConvenient
ConsNo unlimited dataRequires local purchase/setupHigh roaming costs

Two things to keep in mind before you make your decision:

  • You’ll need an eSIM-compatible phone to use an eSIM.
  • If you plan on using an eSIM or a local eSIM, your phone must be unlocked.

My Personal Experience

When I first moved back to Thailand, I had a lot on my plate. Setting up my new home, figuring out the local culture (again), and, of course, staying connected without missing a beat.

Nina's phone with a Thai temple in the back.
Staying connected in Thailand!

Honestly, I didn’t have the time or energy to figure out which local provider was best for me. The idea of researching, choosing, and setting up a local SIM felt like an extra burden I didn’t need.

Saily was super easy to set up. I just downloaded the app, chose my plan, and bam—I was connected. No hunting down SIM cards, no hassle.

👉 TRY IT NOW: Saily eSIM for Thailand

Settling Back into Thailand

For the first month, Saily was super convenient. It gave me reliable internet access while I was getting settled. The flexibility and ease of use were exactly what I needed during a hectic move after living in Vietnam.

Eventually, I switched to a local eSIM (AIS) after a while.

As someone living abroad long-term, having a local number became important for day-to-day activities, and it was slightly cheaper in the long run.

Woman looking up at lanterns at Loi Krathong festival while living in Thailand
So happy to be back in Thailand!

But make no mistake—Saily was perfect for that initial phase. It gave me the breathing room to figure things out at my own pace.

As a long-term nomad, I frequently use eSIMs like Saily when I first arrive in a new country. It’s a seamless way to get connected immediately without the upfront hassle.

For short trips, it’s unbeatable—it’s convenient and cost-effective. If you’re staying longer and need a local number or want to save a bit more, switching to a local SIM makes sense.

Conclusion

So, there you have it! If you want a hassle-free, cost-effective way to stay connected, Saily eSIM might be your best bet.

It’s perfect for travelers who want flexibility and ease of use. For longer stays, a local SIM from AIS or dtac is a great option.

And if convenience is king for you, sticking with your US phone plan works for short trips, but at a higher cost.

Stay connected, have fun, and enjoy every moment of your trip to Thailand!

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