Data rates in Thailand are inexpensive, and even a typical prepaid is relatively affordable.
However, for those who are staying for a reasonably long period of time, or for those who are staying for 3 months and don’t want to bother asking for wifi installation, there is the best SIM available.
There are SIMs that carrier stores do not carry.
I don’t know why the SIM that referring to is in circulation, but it is not available at official carrier stores.
But it is a carrier SIM. I heard that it is for campaigns, but it has been sold for years now, and the number of them is increasing, and it supports 5G.
Its existence is a mystery, but it is not illegal, and it is a very affordable SIM that can be used normally.
*However, the SIM usage period will be one year, and the SIM usage period can be extended by “TOP UP: Charge” (the stipulated amount of data will not be extended, but the phone number can still be retained).
Where you can buy a SIM
If you can’t buy it at an official carrier store, it sounds fishy, but you can buy it at MBK in the center of Bangkok, or at “Lazada” (Thai amazon).
Stores that carry Lazada are listed below.
Plans & Prices by Carrier (February 2023)
Each carrier has its own SIM for this deal, but as of January 2023, I personally recommend the “true 70GB” plan or the “true 60GB” plan.
*Please note that the dtac “100GB/100Mbps” was actually only about 5Mbps in front of the Prakanon station when I purchased it (although it may be faster in some places).
Selection Criteria for Data Speed
Unlimited plans are also available, but at 15 Mbps, the speed is too slow for video browsing.
30 Mbps is fine for viewing compressed video data such as Youtube, but if you want to view Netflix or other video distribution services in high quality, you will want about 100 Mbps.
So, I recommend the two plans in bold below.Data is “monthly usage” and rates are annual (SIM price).
100GB/100Mbps: 1,750B *The SIM I purchased only gave me about 5Mbps.
If you are staying for a year, even 100GB per month will cost 146B, so you can fill a corner of your double SIM with this SIM for now.
*If you use a device that does not support 5G, the max speed will be about 40Mbps.
The advantage of this SIM is that it can be used just like Wifi
You may not think you need that much since 70GB-100GB is quite a large amount of space.
But if you use this SIM with tethering, you don’t need to subscribe to Wifi, and if you work remotely at a Cafe, you don’t need to use Wifi at a store where you are concerned about security.
If considered as a tethering line, it can be used as a comparable alternative to pocket Wifi.
(IF it use a 5G device and it’s faster than wifi if you’re in the center of town).
Wifi contract in Bangkok
If you are in an apartment, use the apartment’s line and pay a monthly fee (you can use the wifi provided).
If you are in a condominium, you will use a basic individually contracted line (with initial installation).
Many people will live in condominium, so if the initial installation is a hassle, tethering will get you through.
Actual monthly data amount I use
I work remotely, so I need to pay for the data communications I use for my work.
Also, for those who usually use Wifi to browse videos, the total data usage may not be clear.
Amount of data used at work
I work in the web production industry and generally average about 1.5 GB/day.
I uploaded and downloaded some data for production and had about 1-2 hours of MTG and this is about it.
Sometimes there are days when heavy data is downloaded, so the average will be higher, but for a typical job, it would be about 500 MB.
Amount of data for daily use
This depends a lot on how much video you watch.
Youtube videos are light, but if you watch a lot of videos for about 2 hours, you will use 2GB in no time.
Also, watching video services such as netflix in high quality can use up to 10 GB per day.
So I am using two of these SIMs. However, if I stay in Thailand for a year, the monthly conversion is about 250 baht, so it is cheap.
Pitfalls of this SIM
As mentioned earlier, the term ends after one year. Also, the calling plan is not sufficiently equipped as standard, so it is expensive to add it as an option.
Some may not think I will use calls, but if you are a resident of Thailand, your banking application is tied to your SIM phone number, and it is a must for online shopping and delivery related services.
However, the workaround is simple: just have a separate SIM card for calls. Unless you have an older model, you can put in two SIM cards, so you can have a separate SIM card for calls.
For nomadic users, for example, even if you register for a 10-day limited travel SIM, the SIM usage period will be extended if you TOPUP, so you can keep your phone number as long as you TOPUP on a somewhat regular basis.
Note for those who are not 5G compatible devices.
Note that 4G devices will only provide speeds of about 30 MB.
For general work use, this is not a problem, but when using Teams as a tool for meetings, the connection is not stable.
This is not a problem with Meet or Zoom, but again, if you use the infamous Microsoft tools, you will waste a lot of data, so if you use Teams, it would be better to have a 5G device to avoid stress.
SIM activation and TOP UP
To start using the SIM, the SIM must be activated.
I have seen many blogs that you need to go to an official store to activate, but this is not necessary if you buy from MBK or other stores. (True has confirmed this. Others are unconfirmed)
You can have it done at the store where you purchased the SIM.
To top up is to charge.
You can charge your account and purchase data space and call usage from it.
You can charge by phone number and purchase the capacity/period you want from “Extra Pack”.
Beware of credit card companies
In order to top up, you will need to link your credit card, Thai bank account or digital payment service.
If you are a resident of Thailand, this should not be a problem, but if you only have a minor credit card, please be careful with the credit card company you have.
Cards from credit card companies with poor international credit ratings will be played.
This trend is not only SIM-related, but also airline reservations, so be sure to have one card issued by Amex or a large bank.
Conclusion: SIM you should keep for now
I think each situation is different, and some people already have wifi that they can use at home.
However, the price is unbeatable compared to a regular SIM from a carrier, so it is safe to fill one of your SIM slots with this SIM.
You will no longer have to pay a premium TOPUP due to running out of capacity on your contracted SIM, and you will no longer have to connect to wifi with questionable security when working in a cafe.
Be careful with Blue Tooth connection settings
When tethering at 5G, the BlueTooth Ghz must be set to 5Ghz or the network speed at the destination will be slow.