Buy a local SIM card to reduce your roaming bills.
Fiji not only has great beaches and spots for surfing, but some of the best SIM card deals available, deals that could reduce your bills. You can buy 1GB of data from Fiji’s leading telco provider for as little as FJD5.99 (AUD4). So, whether you’re planning a short trip or an island tour, check out the best SIM card options available on finder.com.au.
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There are two main operators in Fiji: Vodafone and Digicel.Both operators go through a strict approval process before being allowed to operate on the island, and they compete to offer the best deals. The services have been tried and tested by both locals and travelers, and can be trusted.According to OpenSignal’s country map, Fiji has a good phone network area around the shoreline, but it becomes weaker as you venture inland. Vodafone appears to have the better signal out of the two operators.
About Fiji’s telco providers
Fiji is extremely popular with tourists and both providers offer prepaid SIM cards to cater for that. Roaming rates are good (compared to what your home phone can offer) and calls can also be reasonably priced. Fiji’s operators offer good network coverage, providing 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE wireless services. Locals call their SIM cards “chips”, and they can be purchased and registered anonymously without any form of identification or passport checks. Credit can be purchased from official stores, supermarkets and at the airport. Below, we have broken down both telco providers to highlight exactly what’s being offered during your visit to Fiji.
Vodafone has the best coverage across Fiji and the accompanying islands. Customers can use 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE wireless services. Vodafone is the best option if you plan to travel around the islands, as it can pick up a signal in even the most remote areas, whereas Digicel has trouble. SIM cards can be purchased from official stores or approved resellers. Credit can be purchased from the same outlets or online by using your credit card.
You can also buy SIM cards as you go through arrivals at Nadi International Airport. The following SIM starter packs are available:
- FJD35 – 35MB and FJD25 credit
- FJD70 – 60MB and FJD50 credit
- FJD100 – 90MB and FJD75 credit
The following Flashnet data-only packs are also available:
- FJD49 – 500MB data
- FJD65 – 8GB data
The standard default data rate is FJD2.79 per MB. The following data packs can be added:
|FJD1.99||Valid for 24 hours||450MB|
|FJD2.99||Valid for 24 hours||800MB||+ free Snapchat and Instagram|
|FJD3.99||Valid for 24 hours||1GB||+ Facebook and Twitter|
|FJD4.99||Valid for 3 days||500MB||+ Facebook and Twitter|
|FJD5.99||Valid for 7 days||800MB|
|FJD6.99||Valid for 7 days||1GB|
|FJD7.99||Valid for 7 days||1.5GB||+ Snapchat and Instagram|
Dial *555# to activate the relevant plan. Send an SMS to 131 to check your balance.
Vodafone also offers the ‘Flashnet’ data-only SIM card for tablets and modems. The following data packs can also be added:
|FJD6||Valid for 6 days||500MB|
|FJD11||Valid for 11 days||1.2GB|
|FJD15||Valid for 15 days||2GB|
|FJD25||Valid for 30 days||8GB|
|FJD35||Valid for 30 days||12GB|
|FJD50||Valid for 30 days||25GB||Plus 10GB night bonus (11pm-7am)|
|FJD65||Valid for 30 days||30GB||Plus 20GB night bonus (11pm-7am)|
|FJD100||Valid for 60 days||50GB||Plus 30GB night bonus (11pm-7am)|
Vodafone’s APN: live.vodafone.com.fj
Digicel is the only other operator on the islands and is catching up with Vodafone, thanks to a competitive pricing strategy and better offers and deals. It offers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services and is probably the better option in the cities and towns. SIM cards can either be picked up for free (credit must be added to activate) or by paying a small fee. The airport stands tend to give away free SIM cards if you purchase prepaid packages with 500MB of data. Modem-only SIM cards can be purchased for FJD27.
FlexCard top-ups can be purchased in the following denominations: FJD6, FJD10, FJD15, FJD20 or FJD50, each valid for 90-180 days depending on the cost. There are also top-up stations dotted around the islands and you can also send your credit to another Digicel number or vice versa. Dial *128* to top up by entering your phone number and amount when prompted. Dial *120# to check your balance.
There is also a voice and data SIM with a standard default data rate of FJD2.85 per MB. The following data packs can also be added.
|Valid for 1 hour||250MB||FJD0.99|
|Valid for 24 hours||350MB||FJD1.49|
|Valid for 3 days||500MB||FJD2.49|
|Valid for 7 days||1GB||FJD5.99|
|Valid for 30 days||4GB||FJD24.99|
|Valid for 1 night11pm-7am||1GB||FJD1.89|
Dial *555# to activate the relevant plan. Dial *555# to cancel the plan, because it will automatically rollover to the next cycle unless you opt out. Finally, there is the "Data Explorer" with a 3G "DigiModem” prepaid data SIM card, available for FJD27. The standard default data rate is FJD0.04 per MB. The following data packs can be added:
|Valid for 3 days||300MB||FJD3|
|Valid for 6 days||800MB||FJD6|
|Valid for 10 days||2GB||FJD10|
|Valid for 15 days||4.5GB||FJD15|
|Valid for 30 days||8.5GB||FJD25|
|Valid for 30 days||20GB||FJD50|
|Valid for 60 days||36GB||FJD100|
Digicel’s APN: web.digicelpacific.com
- The languages spoken on Fiji are English, Fijian and Fiji Hindi. If you want help with languages, consider downloading Google Translate onto your phone before you travel. However, Fiji is very cosmopolitan and English is widely spoken.
- Locals call a SIM card a “SIM” or “chip”.
- Ask the sellers to set up the SIM for you,because they will know how to do it. If not, follow the instructions we have highlighted above or go to the official operator website to seek advice.
- Remember, it’s always better to get things done early, before the shops get too busy. That way you are more likely to receive better assistance and avoid the crowds!
TripAdvisor tips for the best SIM cards and where to buy them
While it’s well known for reviews, booking hotels, flights and holidays, TripAdvisor has many user comments that can help guide you through which SIM cards have been tried and tested in Fiji.
“On arrival at Nadi Airport you can get a FREE Vodafone SIM card – this will give you a 'local' phone number which is active for 3 months. This way you won't be faced with huge global roaming bills when you return home.”
“Ensure your phone is 'unlocked' and have data roaming facilities.”
“You won't be able to “top up” easily if outside the city areas (ie on a faraway Island) as the communications companies don't normally have an outlet in isolated places.”
Pros and cons of Fiji’s top telco providers
Digicel and Vodafone require you to have a SIM-unlocked, GSM-compatible international phone. To double check you have this phone, or whether it’s possible to unlock your device, contact your provider before you leave.
- Good value for money.
- No ID needed to purchase or register the SIM card.
- Prepaid credit when required.
- No in-store contract needed.
- Could be compatible with your device.
- Cheap handsets are sold in-store.
- No devices offered with the SIM card packages.
- Can only be used on SIM-unlocked GSM phones.
- Some islands have a poor signal and no stores.
- Data speed can sometimes be slow.