You can buy a France SIM card at Paris airport (Charles de Gaulle – CDG) in person, in carrier stores, Relay stores, or online.
If you’re a traveler looking to stay connected during your time in France, you’ve come to the right place. Here we guide on buying a SIM card at CDG airport, from where to buy, what to prepare, which network operator to go for to alternative to Paris airport SIM Card. Let’s get started!
I. Why buy a SIM Card in Paris airport?
Having a working internet connection on your phone is essential when visiting Paris. But, relying on public WiFi can be risky as these networks are often unsecured, and there’s no guarantee of reliable performance. Hotel WiFi signals may be weak, and restaurant WiFi might be too slow for basic tasks like uploading photos. Other options like roaming and pocket Wifi is either expensive or inconvenient.
The best bet to stay connected while traveling in Paris, France is buying a prepaid France SIM card or an eSIM card (if your phone supports it).
Buying a SIM card at Paris Airport is an old-fashioned option to get Internet in France. Though it offers a convenient and quick solution, the SIM card prices at Charles de Gaulle Airport can be slightly higher compared to the city center. If you’re looking for more affordable SIM card plans specifically tailored for tourists, exploring options in the city center is a good idea.
II. Where to buy a SIM card for CDG Airport?
There are two main options for purchasing a prepaid SIM card at CDG Airport:
1. Relay Bookshops
Note: Relay bookshop operates from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm.
Relay Stores are convenience stores located in airports and railway stations across France. They have several locations within Charles de Gaulle Airport. The Relay Stores in CDG Airport can be found in both the departures and arrivals terminals. Here are the specific locations within Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 where you can find Relay Stores:
- Hall A, Level 1, Store n°A-101
- Hall A, Level 2, Store n°A-202
- Hall A, Level 3, Store n°A-301
- Hall A, Level 4, Store n°A-401
- Hall D, Level 1, Store n°D-101
- Hall D, Level 2, Store n°D-202
- Hall D, Level 3, Store n°D-301
- Hall D, Level 4, Store n°D-401
2. Tourism Information Desk
Note: This option is available only in Terminal 1.
Terminals 2 and 3 do not sell prepaid SIM cards for tourists. In Terminals 2 and 3, the Tourism Information desk will redirect you to the Relay shops. However, in Terminal 1, the Tourist Information desk should be able to provide you with information about the prepaid SIM cards available for tourists.
Advice: You can take the initiative by getting a prepaid eSIM plan before departure in your home country.
III. What to Prepare for Getting a SIM Card at CDG Airport – Registration Process
The procedure to buy a SIM at CDG Airport is not difficult and you can buy a SIM card here very easily. Below are the basic steps to buy a SIM card at the airport:
- Bring your valid passport for identification. This is required for SIM registration.
- Find a store selling SIM cards from major French providers like Orange or Bouygues.
- Choose a plan that fits your data, calling, and texting needs and your duration trip as well.
- Provide your passport and personal details to the staff for registration. Fill out any required forms accurately.
- Pay for your chosen SIM plan and activation fees.
- Have the staff support you to activate your new SIM card in your phone.
Our recommendation: Below will give you pros and cons of buying at CDG Airport. You should take it into consideration to decide whether you should buy at this airport:
|Pros of buying a SIM card at CDG airport
|Cons of buying a SIM card at CDG airport
|Convenience: Allows you to get connected immediately upon arrival without the need to search for a store outside the airport.
Language and Support: At the airport, you’re likely to find staff who can speak English or other common languages. They can assist you in selecting a plan, explaining the terms and conditions, and providing support.
|Price: Prices at the airport are higher compared to purchasing a SIM card from a local store in the city.
Diversity of Plans: The range of plans at the airport may be more limited compared to what is available from the same providers’ stores in the city.
IV. Best Tourist CDG Airport SIM Cards Options and Price
Good to know: USD 1 ~ EUR 0.92 (as of January 2024)
Here are some of the most popular prepaid SIM card packages for tourists at Paris Airport. You can consider which is the best for you:
1. Orange Holiday Europe SIM Card:
- €29.99 EUR
- 10 GB data in up to more than 80 countries around the world (including France)
- Valid for 28 days
2. Orange Mundo 5G Europe SIM Card:
- €39.99 EUR
- 20 GB data in Europe + unlimited calls/SMS + 120 international minutes
- Valid for 28 days
3. SFR Travel Multi SIM Card:
- €29.99 EUR
- 10 GB data in Europe + unlimited calls/SMS within France
- Valid for 14 days
4. Free Mobile Europe SIM Card:
- €20 EUR
- 5 GB data in Europe + unlimited calls/SMS within France
- Valid for 14 days
5. LeBARA Play France SIM Card:
- €19.99 EUR
- 3 GB data in France + unlimited calls/SMS within France
- Valid for 30 days
Note: Prices may vary depending on the retailer and the SIM card provider.
Advice: If you are unsure which SIM card to choose, ask a retailer for support.
V. Which is the Best Mobile Network in Paris? Coverage & Speed
Here is a table comparison of 4 big operators in France. You can consider which provider is the most suitable for you, depending on your priority in price, coverage or speed:
|Fast and Consistency
|Fast and Consistency
So, which is the best?
- Coverage: Orange wins for near-total network reach, ideal for venturing beyond the city lights.
- Speed: SFR and Free Mobile tie for speedy 5G and strong 4G, perfect for streaming baguettes-and-butter videos.
- Value: Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile offer budget-friendly options, ideal for light users.
- Tourist: Orange and SFR have dedicated tourist plans, simplifying your connection.
VI. France eSIM – an Alternative to Prepaid SIM Card at Paris Airport
Currently on the market, digital SIM, also known as eSIM, is extremely convenient and can overcome the disadvantages of other connectivity options. In particular, it is superior to the physical SIM line in many aspects. Let’s see what those aspects are:
- Convenience: you don’t need to physically insert or remove a SIM card from your device. It’s a digital SIM that can be downloaded and activated wirelessly
- Flexibility: eSIM allows you to switch between different mobile network operators without changing physical SIM cards.
- Dual SIM Capability: you can have the benefits of dual SIM functionality without occupying a physical SIM slot. This means you can use two different numbers or plans simultaneously
Note: When using eSIM, make sure that your phone supports eSIM functionality. Most modern smartphones, including iPhones from XS onwards and many Android devices, are eSIM-compatible, but it's always good to double-check.
Upon choosing eSIM for Paris, we recommend Gigago eSIM. This is a reliable eSIM provider offering eSIM plans for more than 200 countries and territories in the world, including France.
Gigago offers multiple data plan options for France, with prices ranging from $3.50 – $126.00 . Their minimum 1 GB/3 days starts at just $3.50 . With this range of affordable plans, Gigago can accommodate any type of user and trip length in France. Whether you only need occasional internet access or plan to stream extensively, Gigago has a France eSIM plan to fit your needs and budget.
Besides multiple plans and affordable price, Gigago eSIM also has other advantages:
- Easy Activation: Purchase online and activate instantly by scanning a QR code or entering a code.
- Reliable Coverage: Uses major French networks like Orange, SFR, and Bouygues.
- Instant Delivery: Get eSIM details directly via email for immediate access.
- 24/7 Support: Get help promptly with any questions or issues.
Which mobile network providers have stores at CDG Airport for purchasing SIM cards?
At Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG), you’ll find two primary providers offering SIM cards: Orange and Bouygues Telecom.
Are there any additional fees or charges associated with buying a SIM card at CDG Airport?
Yes, you can usually top up or recharge your SIM card at CDG Airport. Mobile network provider stores or kiosks within the airport terminals often offer services for adding credit or purchasing data packages to recharge your SIM card.
Getting a SIM card at Paris airport (CDG) will not be difficult if you know all the basic information we have just given above. If you have any problems, you should contact the number on the airport’s official portal or ask the staff there. Hope you have a great time in France!