Kapono Cheruene

Travelled to 5 countries / regions

Written 24 briefs
I'm Laotian living in Vientiane but to go LP a lot



Asia > Laos > Luang Prabang > Useful Info
Submitted on Jul 09, 2019 Useful Info

How to get a local SIM card in Luang Prabang, Laos

  • I strongly recommend getting a local SIM card while you're in Laos. It will help you a lot when getting around the city and looking up information on-the-go
  • Getting a SIM card in Luang Prabang is very easy. You can get it either at the airport or in the city center; prices are basically the same whether you get it at the airport or in the city
  • I recommend getting your SIM card at the airport simply because of convenience. As I will mention below, the telecom stores in the city are all 30 minutes walking outside of the city center and there's basically no difference in price
  • Even if you're not technically savvy, it's really easy to get a SIM card. All you need to do is to make sure that your phone is unlocked (you need to check with your own telecom provider for that), and everything else will be done by the store you get your SIM card from in Laos. The entire process takes less than 10 minutes

  • What you need to purchase a SIM card in Laos:
  • Your phone needs to be unlocked
  • Cash. Purchase can be made by cash only, so you need to have either LAK or USD on you to pay. No other currencies are accepted. If you pay with USD, any change will given back to you in LAK
  • You do not need your passport to get a SIM card in Laos, but I recommend bringing it with you anyway

  • Which company's SIM card to get:
  • In Laos, there are four major telecom companies that you can get SIM card from: Unitel, Lao Telecom (or Laotel), Beetel, and ETL
  • I recommend getting your SIM card from either Unitel or Lao Telecom. They are the biggest operators in Laos and their speed, coverage, and reliability are usually better than the other two, especially in Luang Prabang
  • Websites of the four telecom companies where you can see their current prices:
  1. Unitel: https://www.unitel.com.la
  2. Lao Telecom: https://www.laotel.com
  3. Beetel: http://www.beeline.la
  4. ETL: http://www.etllao.com

  • Prices: these are just for reference as the actual prices will vary frequently and telecoms usually have unadvertised offers they give out at their stores. But I will say that these prices look to me like they're in the ballpark of what you will actually be able to get
  • Unitel:
  • 5G for 3days: 10,000 LAK (~$1.2 USD)
  • 2G for 7days: 10,000 LAK (~$1.2 USD)
  • 5.12GB for 30days: 50,000 LAK (~$5.8 USD)
  • 8GB for 30days: 55,000 LAK (~$6.3 USD)
  • 30GB for 30days: 200,000 LAK (~$23 USD)
  • 70GB for 30days: 300,000 LAK (~$34.5 USD)
  • Lao Telecom:
  • 3GB and 10min for 3days: 25,000 LAK (~$2.9 USD)
  • 7GB and 20min for 7days: 50,000 LAK (~$5.8 USD)
  • 15GB and 30min for 15days: 100,000 LAK (~$11.5 USD)
  • Beeline: not sure
  • ETL:
  • 1.5GB for 7days: 10,000 LAK (~$1.2 USD)
  • 5.5GB for 30days: 50,000 LAK (~$5.8 USD)
  • 12GB for 30days: 100,000 LAK (~$12 USD)
  • 30GB for 30days: 200,000 LAK (~$23 USD)

  • Where to buy a SIM card at the airport:
  • After you go through the immigration and pick up your luggage, you will see a bunch of service counters of the major telecom companies in Laos (Unitel, Lao Telecom, Beeline, ETL)
  • Just go to one of them and ask for their prices. These booths usually have special deals that you won't find on their websites
  • The booths will also help you set up the SIM card on your phone. So after you buy the card, just give them your phone and they will ready it for use
  • These counters are not always open. If you get in past 8pm, they will likely be closed. In that case you can get your SIM card in the city center

  • Where to buy a SIM card in the city:
  • In Luang Prabang city center, the best place to get your SIM card would be one of the telecom companie's stores
  • These are the current locations of the four telecom companies:
  • Unitel: open 8am-5pm Mon-Sat, Google Maps link
  • Lao Telecom: open weekdays 8am-3pm, Google Maps link
  • Beeline: I actually don't think they have a physical store in Luang Prabang
  • ETL: open 8am-5pm Mon-Fri, 8am-2pm Sat, Google Maps link
  • None of these stores are at the city center. They're all about 30-minute walk away from the city center
  • If you don't want to make the trip, you can also just go to any convenience/general/corner store close to you and see if they sell SIM cards. Many of them do, but their selection won't be as good as the telecom stores