Buy Personal SIM Cards and eSIM for tourists in 2024

How to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM is of interest to many customers thanks to its popularity in Argentina. The information in this article will be important information for you.

In this article, Gigago will mention how to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM, which is an issue that is receiving a lot of attention from tourists and foreigners coming to Argentina for the first time. We will also introduce where to buy it as well as how to use it. All will be listed by Gigago below.

I. Quick facts about Personal

Personal is Argentina’s leading telecommunications services company. Here are some details:

  • Ownership: Personal is owned by Telecom Argentina (this is also one of the 3 mobile telecommunications companies in Argentina)
  • Brand change: Previously, Personal used the same logo as Telecom, which was changed in November 2011
  • Establishment: Established in 1998 under the Personal brand
  • In 2013, the number of Personal customers reached more than 19 million users
  • Includes: fixed and mobile services
Personal has been changed to a handwritten logo since 2011
Personal has been changed to a handwritten logo since 2011

II. Argentina Personal  Coverage and Speed in the Argentina

Among the criteria for deciding which network to choose, coverage area and access speed play an important role. As follows:

1. Personal  coverage in Argentina

Personal’s coverage cannot be denied that it is very large. Just since 2013, the number of users has reached 19 million. By 2017, Personal had covered 71% of the entire Argentine population in 1000 large and small cities and towns; More than 90% of the Buenos Aires metro system is covered by Personal’s 4G/LTE network. Currently, Personal provides 4G coverage to 98% of the population.

Personal's coverage area in Argentina is very wide
Personal’s coverage area in Argentina is very wide

2. Personal speed in Argentina

Personal’s access speed is good and provides high performance nationwide. Most large cities such as Buenos Aires, Mendoza, Cordoba, La Plata,… have average access speeds of up to 80MB. As of Q4 2023, Personal has a download speed of 93.84 Mbps, far exceeding many other network operators. Of course, there is also a disparity between urban and rural areas.

Access speeds vary between regions
Access speeds vary between regions

III. What are the Best Connectivity Options for Personal Travelers to Argentina?

In addition to using the internet with a SIM/eSIM card, Gigago suggests a few other ways such as: Using data roaming services, pocket wifi,… Visitors can compare through the table below:

Connectivity optionsProsCons
Data roaming with PersonalStay in touch with a permanent personal SIM card
Reduce the risk of losing your SIM card
Stable connection within the coverage area of the switched network operator
The costs are high and it is difficult to control your spending
Make sure that the carrier you are using has a data transfer agreement with Personal. Otherwise, you cannot roam data.
Personal SIM cardGet the easiest local support
There are local and tourist data plans to choose from
You can get a SIM card registered and activated for free from Personal
Do not keep the fixed phone number on the slot, it needs to be pulled out temporarily
It takes a few steps to activate the SIM card
Pocket wifi connects to PersonalShare wifi for a minimum of 5 people, a maximum of 15 people
No need for a separate SIM card
Need to carry it with you, very difficult if you need to walk a lot
Needs a high amount of battery and needs to carry a backup charger
Access is not fast because many people are connecting at the same time
Not sure if the SIM card in the pocket wifi will work well in Personal’s coverage area or not

It is not difficult to see that the Personal SIM card brings the most convenience to customers. It not only ensures access speed but also has many options for data packages.

IV. Best Personal  SIM cards for Tourists & Cost

Along with questions about how to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM, having data packages and trip expenses also need to be carefully prepared. These are Personal’s data packages for travelers you should consider:

CostDataValid
69903 ARS ($80 USD)1 GB1 day
122330 ARS ($140 USD)2 GB3 days
209708 ARS ($240 USD)2 GB7 days

In particular, since 2018, Personal has provided data packages specifically for tourists as follows: 699026 ARS ($800 USD) = 3 GB data + unlimited WhatsApp + 30 minutes international calling + 100 minutes of domestic calls (valid 30 days).

Important note: Cost and data package at the time you purchase may change, please visit the website for the latest information.

Personal has a SIM card specifically for travelers
Personal has a SIM card specifically for travelers

V. Does Personal  Argentina support eSIM?

Yes, Personal is one of three major network operators in Argentina that offers eSIM to customers. This is a form of technical SIM embedded into the device via QR, without the need for a physical SIM card. Personal’s eSIM has nationwide coverage and can activate 2 phone numbers on the same device.

Personal is the first carrier to operate eSIM in Argentina
Personal is the first carrier to operate eSIM in Argentina

It is a known fact that Personal is the first eSIM operator in Argentina, bringing a new experience to customers. However, due to the high cost and not really wide coverage, Gigago does not have an agreement to provide Personal eSIM.Argentine eSIM packages provided by Gigago come from Claro network with many time options for users to refer to.

VI. Where can you buy a Personal  SIM card and eSIM?

Behind the question of how to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM, visitors are wondering where they can buy a SIM/eSIM card. Here are specific suggestions from Gigago:

1. Where to buy Personal  SIM for Argentina

Ways to buy Personal SIM card in Argentina are as follows:

1.1. Buy at the airport upon arrival

If you choose to buy a Personal SIM card at Ezeiza International Airport, after checking in, go to Terminal A on the ground floor of the airport to see the kiosk. In addition, Aeroparque Jorge Newbery airport also has Personal SIM cards, you just need to go to the ground floor to see the carrier’s kiosk. However, you need time to queue for your turn to buy.

Buy a Personal SIM card at the airport upon arrival
Buy a Personal SIM card at the airport upon arrival

1.2. Buy at Personal’s store

As you may not know, Personal’s service is not available in English, so it requires you to have some Spanish vocabulary. That helps you find your way to the store and communicate with store staff. Here, you need to provide your passport to confirm your identity and activate your SIM card.

Personal store in Buenos Aires
Personal store in Buenos Aires

1.3. Buy at kiosks or authorized stores

There are many phone stores and kiosks in Argentina that have Personal SIM cards. This can help you buy a SIM card faster than buying at an official store. However, this method is not recommended because it is not guaranteed to be reputable and you may have to prepare extra cash to avoid credit card failure.

Personal's kiosks or other authorized stores
Personal’s kiosks or other authorized stores

2. Where to buy Argentina Personal eSIM

There are usually two ways to buy an eSIM: buy directly at the store or buy through an eSIM provider. However, you need to make sure your phone supports eSIM and is ready to use it. Then, contact the website for support staff to process and receive the eSIM QR code via email to activate according to instructions.

VII. How to Use and Activate Personal Argentina SIM/eSIM in Argentina?

If you’ve wondered how to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM, you can’t help but mention how to use and activate it. Here are detailed and easy-to-understand instructions for first-time users:

1. How to Use and Activate Personal SIM Cards in Argentina?

The steps for using a Personal SIM card are the same as many other SIM cards:

  • It is necessary to determine that the slot on the phone is empty
  • Restart the phone device to receive the SIM
  • Activate the SIM card on the phone
  • Check phone data for proper use
  • Turn on phone data
Turn on mobile data on your phone
Turn on mobile data on your phone

2. How to Use and Activate Personal eSIM?

How to use eSIM is even simpler than SIM card, specifically as follows: 

  • Get QR
  • Scan QR to install eSIM
  • Activate eSIM on your phone
  • Reset eSIM on the phone
  • Start your phone and it’s ready to use

VIII. How to top up Personal Argentina SIM/eSIM

One of the following ways can top up SIM and eSIM cards:

  • Download the Personal app to top up
  • Top up via Personal’s website
  • Top up at kiosk or store
  • Top up via online service
  • Top up with scratch card

The simple way to do it yourself is to download the Mi Personal Flow app > Go to Deposit > Enter the amount to deposit > Make payment > Ready for use.

Simple deposit on Mi Personal Flow app
Simple deposit on Mi Personal Flow app

IX. Alternatives to Argentina Personal

In addition to Personal, Movistar and Claro are also major network operators in Argentina ready to provide many services to customers. However, each network has its own advantages and disadvantages. If you have a device ready to use eSIM, Gigago introduces you to eSIM Argentina with many attractive offers.

eSIM Argentina with high-speed data levels
eSIM Argentina with high-speed data levels

X. FAQs about Personal  in Argentina

Does Personal have a SIM card specifically for travelers?

Since 2018, Personal has offered plans and SIM cards specifically for short-term tourists in Argentina.

If I need to top up, where can I top up?

If you top up directly with a scratch card, you can buy it at kiosks, stores, pharmacies or convenience stores. If you want to top up online, download the Mi Personal Flow app or visit the website.

Do I need to provide a passport to buy an eSIM?

Yes, normally if you buy at the network operator, you need to provide your passport. On the contrary, if you buy it at a house that specializes in providing eSIM, you don’t need it.

XI. Conclusion

Above are all instructions on how to get and activate a Personal SIM & eSIM. Hope you have a great experience in Argentina with your SIM and eSIM cards. Gigago will be pleased to provide you with an Argentine eSIM.