Reduce your rates by using a local SIM.
Jordan is one of the Middle East’s most cultured nations, with much to see and do across the entire kingdom. Using your home phone network there can be expensive, so consider switching over to a local SIM card to take advantage of better deals and plans. Jordan has some good prepaid SIM cards available, with deals that can reduce your bills. You can buy 1GB of data from Jordan’s leading telco provider for as little as JOD5 (about AUD$9). So, whether you’re planning a short trip, longer stay or tour of the entire Middle East, check out the best SIM card options available on finder.com.au.
Telco providers in Jordan
There are three main operators in Jordan: Zain, Umniah and Orange. All three operators go through a strict approval process before being allowed to operate, and each one competes with the others to offer the best deals. Their services have all been tried and tested by both locals and travellers, and can be trusted. According to OpenSignal’s coverage map, Jordan has very good service in the northern and western areas, but the more southeast you head, the worse your signal will become.
About Jordan’s operators
Jordan’s operators have good roaming rates and sell prepaid credit that allows users to take advantage of cheap local offers and deals. All three providers offer customers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. Locals call their SIM cards “SIMs” or “chips”, and they can be purchased from official outlets or approved resellers. Credit can also be bought from the same retailers and at most stores and supermarkets. You will need to show your passport when purchasing a prepaid SIM card, and the retailer will then register and activate the SIM for you. Please note that there is an 8% tax charge added to all prepaid SIM cards and credit purchases in Jordan.
Below, we have broken down each telco provider to highlight exactly what’s available during your visit to Jordan.
Zain is the largest operator in Jordan and offers some great prepaid voice and data packages. It offers customers good 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. Internet speeds are fast and the network coverage is good. Your passport must be shown when purchasing a prepaid SIM card, and a registration form will have to be filled out and signed before it can be activated. Credit can be purchased from the same retailers and at supermarkets, corner stores and service stations.
The "Al Kul" prepaid SIM cards can be purchased for JOD5, but credit or packages will have to be added before use. There are also "Mish Tabee3i" combo packs that offer voice and data plans. You can order these plans by dialling *500#, and they come with 3GB of data and voice and data discounts for JOD8.82.
The standard default data rate is charged at JOD0.21 per MB. The following data packs can be added as well:
|Main Internet Plans|
|Bundle Validity||Bundle Capacity||Price (JD)|
|Monthly||Facebook, Whats App & Instagram||2|
|Daily||Facebook, Whats App & Instagram||0.25|
Dial *240# to subscribe to one of the above-mentioned packs. Dial *121*2# to check your balance. 4G/LTE can be added to any prepaid SIM card for JOD5 per month.
There is also the "EzNet" data-only SIM card available. The following options can be purchased:
- JOD6: 3GB daytime + 3GB nighttime
- JOD10: 6GB daytime + 6GB nighttime
- JOD20: 32GB anytime
In addition, there are special 4G/LTE plans available for tourists that can bring down the cost of voice and data even further. For JOD12 you can purchase a voice and data SIM card, which comes with 3GB, 5,000 intranet, 50 local minutes and 50 local SMS, valid for 30 days. You can also add the 4G/LTE booster pack, mentioned above, to this prepaid SIM card.
Please note that there will be an 8% local tax added to all prepaid SIM card and credit amounts purchased in Jordan.
Zain’s APN: internet and website: www.jo.zain.com
Umniah is the second-largest operator in Jordan and offers good prepaid voice and data packages. Umniah offers customers some great 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. Internet speeds are fast and the network coverage is respectable. Your passport must be shown when purchasing a prepaid SIM card, and a registration form will have to be filled out and signed before it can be activated. Credit can be purchased at the company’s retail outlets, supermarkets, corner stores and service stations.
Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased for JOD5, and credit can be added in the following denominations: JOD1, JOD3, JOD5, JOD6, JOD10 and JOD15.
The following prepaid voice and data packages are also available:
- Kul Bil Kul: Standard SIM card charged at default rates
- 100% Line: 250MB data free every month
- Zarqa Plus: 1GB data for JOD5 every month
- Khaleek Tabi3i Extra: 2GB data for JOD5 every month
- Golden Line: 7GB data for JOD7, 14GB data for JOD9 or 21GB data for JOD12; each is a monthly charge
The following "evo mobile prepaid" data packs are available too:
|1 minute||Unlimited data|
(in 60 seconds)
|Month||2.5GB + 1GB for Skype only||JOD5|
Dial *888# and select the relevant pack to activate.
In addition, there is a data-only prepaid SIM card available called "evo mobile prepaid", which comes in the following options:
- 3G USB dongle and 3.5GB of data valid for one month: JOD15
- SIM card with 1.5GB of data valid for one month: JOD5
The following packs are also available:
|Evo Plan||Capacity||Free Capacity||Price|
|2-Weeks||1 GB||2 GB for Facebook|
& sports URLs*
|Monthly smart||7 GB||2 GB at night**||JOD6|
|Monthly Mix-JOD7||5 GB||7 GB at night and|
2 GB for governorates***
|Monthly Plus||10 GB||4 GB at night**||JOD10|
|Monthly Mix-JOD11||10 GB||7 GB at night and|
2 GB for governorates***
|Monthly Limited Edition||30 GB||-||JOD15|
There is a selection of special SIM card packages available for 4G/LTE only:
For JOD2 per day, you can add 2GB of data, or for JOD5 per week, you will receive 5GB of data. Remember there is an 8% tax charge in Jordan.
Umniah’s APN for mobile phones: net
APN for routers and dongles: Umniah
Orange is the smallest operator in Jordan but still offers some good prepaid voice and data packages. It provides customers with good 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE services. Internet speeds are fast and the network coverage is relatively good. Your passport must be shown when purchasing a prepaid SIM card, and a registration form will have to be filled out and signed before it can be activated. Credit can be purchased from the company’s retailers and at supermarkets, corner stores and service stations.
Prepaid SIM cards can be purchased for a relatively cheap rate of just JOD1.72, and there are several prepaid base plans which can be added:
- Orange Basic: Base plan, data is charged at JOD0.20 per MB
- Orange 2: 1GB, 60 minutes, 60 SMS, valid for 1 week: JOD2
- Orange 6: 2GB, 150 minutes, 150 SMS, valid for 1 month: JOD6
- Orange 7: 4GB, free Facebook and Twitter, 400 minutes, unlimited SMS, valid for 1 month: JOD7
- Orange 9: 5GB, free Facebook and Twitter, 500 minutes, unlimited SMS, valid for 1 month: JOD9
- Orange 11: 7GB, free Facebook and Twitter, 700 minutes, unlimited SMS, valid for 1 month: JOD11
The following data packs can also be added to all prepaid SIM cards mentioned above:
Dial *777# and select the relevant pack to activate. Dial 155# to check your credit and data balance.
Orange’s "3akaifak 2" data-only SIM card can be purchased for JOD15, and it comes with a 3G USB dongle and 3.5GB of data. Dial *201# or send an SMS to 99555 to purchase the package if you’re an existing prepaid customer.
The following top-up variations are available too:
|Scratch card value (JOD)||Validity period||Download capacity (GB)||Free off-peak capacity GB from 2-10am|
Dial *155# or send an SMS to 99555 to check your balance. You can also go online and update credit via the "my account" option. Dial *150*<14-digit code># to 99555 to add credit if you purchase vouchers.
The following 4G/LTE-only SIM card packages are available as well:
- 4G 1 Month 16GB: Including a 4G USB dongle and 16GB for a month: JOD27.3
- 4G 6 Months 100GB: Including a 4G MiFi router and 100GB for 6 months: JOD100
- 4G IEW 1 Year 600GB: Including a 4G router and 600GB for 1 year: JOD300
Remember there is an 8% tax charge in Jordan.
Orange’s APN: net.orange.jo, and website: http://www.orange.jo
- The official language in Jordan is Arabic, so if you don’t know the language, then consider downloading Google Translate onto your phone before you travel. English is widely spoken throughout the country and is taught in all schools.
- 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 get 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 also has many user comments that can help guide you through what SIM cards have been tried and tested in Jordan.
“If you’re aiming for international calls, pick Umniah service provider and get their SIM card since its the cheapest when it comes to overseas calls. If you are after making local calls or Internet and other services, pick Zain.
“Free Wi-Fi is available nearly everywhere: cafes, hotel, hostels, even the private car/taxi. To buy a SIM card is cheap in Jordan, under JOD10 you be well covered for a week.”
“90% of Jordan is covered with cell phone networks; never encountered any problems with Internet, especially on cell phones. 3G is provided by all networks and you can navigate without any worries, although it will cost you an arm and a leg for international roaming with Internet!”
Pros and cons of Jordan’s top telco providers
All networks require you to have a SIM-unlocked, GSM-compatible international phone. To double check you have this phone, or if it’s possible for your provider to unlock your device, contact your provider before you leave.
- Good value for money
- Jordan has good coverage
- Prepaid credit when required
- No in-store contract needed
- Could be compatible with your current phone
- Cheap handsets are sold in stores
- No devices offered with the SIM card packages
- Can only be used on SIM-unlocked GSM phones
- Tough rules and regulations could make buying a SIM card difficult
- There is an 8% tax charge added on top of all prices
- Signal can suffer in some regions
More questions about finding the best SIM?
Q: Can Jordan’s SIM cards be used throughout the Middle East region?
A: Jordan SIM cards can be used in other Middle Eastern countries, subject to additional roaming charges, but that defeats the object of purchasing a local SIM card to avoid using your home phone network abroad. We advise you to only use the Jordan SIM card in Jordan to reap the full benefits of what it can offer. If you plan on travelling around to other Arab nations, it might be better to purchase a SIM card from each country to cut costs.