Data roaming on iPhone: How to Save Money with eSIM

Data roaming on or off
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Many of us, when planning a trip abroad, are wondering how to stay in touch away from home. With the irrational use of all mobile operator services, huge amounts of money can be withdrawn from the account, simply incommensurable with our income, right? Roaming, of course, is a necessary thing, as it gives us the availability of mobile communications and internet services even when we are traveling throughout another country. But, what do you think, should data roaming be on or off?

To date there are some local operators that provide extra tariff plans combined with foreign operators and this is a great thing! Such tariffs differ significantly from local ones. Mobile connection fees for a limited period of time are mainly used. For example, daily and weekly tariffs are in demand among travelers.
In any case, all tariff plans for roaming are quite expensive. I remember once in Italy, for just one message sent using iPhone mobile data roaming, they charged me $5 at once! Fortunately, you can avoid extra payments if you know what is data roaming on iphone is and how to use eSIM when traveling outside your country.

Roaming abroad: What are the Alternatives?

Long gone are the days when tourists went to their operator’s office before starting vacation abroad and applied for the inclusion of international roaming services. Now roaming is on by default, and that’s a negative point. Once you land at the airport of another country, your mobile gadget will connect to the network of a local carrier and start using the internet to download updates, email, news, notifications, etc.

About Data Roaming on iPhone

Roaming is a simple and profitable solution for those who go to foreign lands for 1-2 weeks, no more. Tourists normally have their own SIMs, and so they do not need to purchase a new card and delve into the tariffs, while the mobile number remains the same.

So, what do you think, should data roaming be on or off? To use roaming correctly, you should clarify your mobile carrier’s terms and conditions and understand the specifics of tariffs for those who travel abroad.

The largest mobile operators provide billing, which removes the subscription fee daily, which is unprofitable for long trips. Roaming costs money not only outgoing, but also incoming calls, so you should be careful.

Data roaming on iPhone

Benefits of local SIM card

If you don’t want to spend money on data roaming when traveling, try to buy a card in the country of visit. This option is suitable for those who come to a foreign place for a long time (one month or more). The traveler should familiarize himself in advance with the mobile operators and the tariffs they offer. To buy, you will have to go to telecom salons, claim a new number, and inform your relatives and friends. You will also have to create new messenger accounts, because the old ones will be lost.

As you can see, there is a lot of fuss here, but all negative features are covered by big savings, because with a local SIM card you will have to pay for the tariff and registration once — and for a whole month you will use mobile calls and a lot of Internet if you have chosen the right tariff. Calls to the homeland will be expensive, so forget about them for a while and use only messengers — WhatsApp, Viber or Telegram.

local sim cards

eSIM as a way to get rid of Roaming

The eSIM card is a digital module that meets the requirements of the highest telecom industry standard. This electronic card is available for many recent smartphone models. The iPhone 14 does not have a slot for a physical SIM card at all. The given mobile gadgets support only eSIMs.

Related: “What Is An ESIM And How To Use It In Traveling

How to set up eSIM on your iPhone?

A virtual SIM is an embedded chip for new smart devices. You don’t need extra slots for a second SIM module, so you can use eSIM and SIM at the same time. If your device supports electronic sims, it’s much more convenient than plastic cards.

To set up an eSIM, the first thing you should do is to check if your phone has an embedded chip. If yes, just download the settings from the selected mobile operator via browser or application. You can get several virtual profiles from different operators. During the trip, you can turn off your home SIM card and set up call forwarding to eSIM. Or use one of the electronic cards for cellular calls, and another for internet services.

set up eSIM on iPhone

Besides, cheapest eSIM cards work like a regular plastic card: fares for traveling abroad must be checked with the operator. Adding eSIM to the iPhone is not difficult at all. You can read our step-by-step instructions on how to do this in our previous article.

You can add several tariffs to one mobile phone at once and turn them on alternately. Moreover, iPhone 14 can simultaneously keep up to eight eSIM modules, older models — up to five. You can change one eSIM card to another in the menu. No need to look for the coveted paper clip, turn off the phone and change the physical card. And it’s really convenient and safe!

QR-codes provided by operators can be either one-time or reusable. In the second case, it is better to save the code securely, because it may come in handy soon.

How to transfer eSIM to new iPhone

If you have been using eSIM for a long time, but decided to upgrade your gadget, transfer the tariff from the old cell phone to the new one — a couple of trifles. There is only one requirement: both devices must have an iOS version of at least 16.

What does data roaming do on iphone and how to transfer eSIM? To transfer eSIM to new iOS devices you need to delete your profile from an old iPhone first. Here is a brief guide:

  1. Head to “Settings” and select “Cellular communication”.
  2. On “Cellular tariffs” pick the number you want to remove.
  3. Tap “Delete Cellular tariff”.

That is it and from now on your current number is ready to be added to a new Apple device. The next step is to add your eSIM number to a new iPhone using particular codes. To do this, follow given instructions:

  1. Run the “Settings” section on your iPhone;
  2. Open “Cellular communication” section;
  3. Tap “Add Cellular Tariff”;
  4. Point a viewfinder at the QR code and scan it;
  5. Follow the system prompts.


What is data roaming on iphone and how can you save money? In the past, one had to spend a lot on expensive roaming service packages or buy local SIM cards when traveling abroad. Thus, many tourists literally collected local mobile cards purchased in different countries. Some carriers provide a fixed tariff or even free roaming to particular countries. Moreover, some devices support 2 SIM cards making it easier to stay connected abroad.

However, none of these options can match new eSIM technology. This brilliant product is a golden key that travelers need. An electronic card built into devices allows us to switch networks of different providers, without physically removing the module and even using several profiles at once. Thanks to eSIM, roaming becomes much cheaper! This is the best alternative for today.

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