Bali Backpacker's Guidelines

MOBILE OPERATORS & SIM CARD

BALI SIM CARD

– All Details to Know About Mobile Operator & SIM Card in Bali –

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WHAT SIM CARD USED IN BALI?

In Bali, Indonesia you will find 5 main mobile operators:

  1. Telkomsel
  2. XL Axiata
  3. Indosat Ooredoo IM3
  4. Smartfren
  5. Tri 

Every mobile operator has some different prepaid SIM cards and every prepaid SIM card has own benefits. Here the mobile operators and their SIM Card products:

  1. Telkomsel: simPATI, LOOP, Kartu As
  2. XL Axiata: XL, Axis
  3. Indosat Ooredoo IM3: Freedom
  4. Smartfren: Smartfren
  5. Tri: Tri

Telkomsel SIM Card Products

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XL Axiata SIM Card Products

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Indosat SIM Card Product

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Smartfren SIM Card Product

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Tri SIM Card Product

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WHAT IS THE MOST RECOMMENDED SIM CARD IN BALI?

One of the SIM Card is more expensive but covers mostly all Bali and Indonesia and you will be connected (have signal) when hiking at volcano or camping somewhere further from civilization. The other SIM card brand will be cheaper but sometimes with delay SMS, slow internet, poor connection, etc.

I recommend a backpacker using “Telkomsel” products. It has wide area coverage in Bali and Indonesia, better than others. You can SMS, Calling or use it for internet. But, the signal depend on location. If  far away from transmitter tower, you can not use for internet, just call and SMS only. Other place like in the city center it has high 4G internet speed.

Telkomsel SIM Card Products

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WHERE YOU CAN BUY TELKOMSEL PREPAID SIM CARD IN BALI?

The telecommunication ministry release a new policy on 2018 for SIM card. It must be registered by the buyer, not the SIM card seller. I recommend you buy a Telkomsel SIM card at official shop and then you register it on the official shop. Don’t forget to bring your Passport for registration. Here i provide the maps of Telkomsel SIM card official shops:

UBUD:

*) Today Ubud Plaza Telkom under renovation. The building move to the north of Delta Dewata supermarket for temporary.

KUTA:

DENPASAR:

HOW MUCH THE PRICE OF TELKOMSEL SIM CARD?

It depend on how much internet data you need when you traveling. You need to pay around IDR 50,000 to 150,000 depending on how many GB you want to have included.

TELKOMSEL SIM CARD PRICE IN BALI NGURAH RAI AIRPORT

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*) It’s very expensive if you buy SIM card in the airport. Better you buy in the other places or Telkomsel official shop. This picture taken on December 12th, 2017.

HOW LONG A TELKOMSEL SIM CARD CAN BE USED OR VALID?

Validation depends on the telecommunication operator policy – one common validation is 1 month. Others promo products can be use for a few months. Even a promo product can be use till one year, but it’s rare promo. You can check your SIM Card validity using *888#.

HOW I PUT THE LOCAL SIM CARD INTO MY SMARTPHONE?

After you choose Telkomsel SIM card products, you can put it into your smartphone SIM Card slot or you can ask them (seller) to set up it as long your smartphone not locked. They will also help you to register your SIM Card. After that you can use it for internet in any places in Bali.

HOW I EXTEND INTERNET DATA PACKAGE IN MY TELKOMSEL SIM CARD?

If your internet  quote is finished, then you will need to put money (credit) to prepaid SIM card that called (“pulsa”) each time when you want to extend your internet quote. The “pulsa” amount depends on how much you want to put to prepaid SIM card. Usually its fixed amount – IDR 5 000, 10 000, 15 000, 25 000, 50 000 or 100 000. After you have ‘pulsa’ at your SIM card, you can use it to choose and pay the internet data package. Every internet data package has own price. You can choose the options using *363#.

As well the internet data package validation depends on the telecommunication operator policy – one common validation is 1 month.

WHAT IS PRO AND CONTRA USING TELKOMSEL SIM CARD?

PROS:

1. Wide area coverage.

It can cover mostly any places in Bali. Batur volcano, Lovina beach, Nusa Penida, etc. Even you can use it in Gili and other island in Indonesia.

2. High speed internet.

It’s relative more fast than other SIM Card brand. But, don’t compare the speed to your country’s speed. Indonesia is developing country, not advance country.

CONS:

1. Expensive.

It’s relative more expensive than other SIM Card brand.

2. Annoying advertisement.

Some advertisement come through SMS. You will accept some SMS as advertisement when you use it. Could be from Restaurant, ‘Donut’, ‘Pizza’ or ‘Cinema’. Much of travelers not love this things.

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18 thoughts on “MOBILE OPERATORS & SIM CARD

    1. kunzbali Post author

      Telkomsel SIM card price include internet data quote:
      6GB = IDR 75K.
      9GB = IDR 100K.
      17GB = IDR 150K.
      If you found the price higher than the price above, it mean a tourist price.

  1. Act like tourist, pay like tourist

    You can get far cheaper internet packages if you buy them outside the touristic areas.

    I bought a 30gb smartfren pack at 60k rupiah (unlimited internet at 70k) in legit shops at the ubud outskirts, well away from any tourist area or hostel/guesthouse/villa. The only con is that you get 15gb in the morning and 15gb in the afternoon. Not a big problem for me. And it works very well wherever I’ve gone (I haven’t gone to the north with a smartfren sim card, i can’t say how it works there, though i guess it will work ok provided you don’t get lost deep in the jungle hehe).

    You can get any company sim card at fair prices in places for balinese people, I’ve seen 30gb xl sim card by 72k near Canggu and so on. Just pay attention to signals on the road while driving from one place to another or stop at phone shops on the road or where locals live. But always OUTSIDE TOURIST AREAS, if you drive from Canggu to Kuta surrounded by shops forget about any fair deal.

    1. kunzbali Post author

      Thank you for share your experience and information.
      I think it will useful and fair since you gave other SIM card option.

    1. kunzbali Post author

      I don’t think “lokal data” working in different island.
      But, sometime it works but with the super low internet speed.
      I suggest you buy “National paket data”.
      So, you can use it anywhere in Indonesia.
      You can request it at official Telkomsel shop.

    1. kunzbali Post author

      I think you can link your Apple Watch to Bali SIM card on your iPhone.
      A week ago my friend from Vietnam did the same thing.

  2. Sabrina

    Hi, previously I bought a simpati card and check *888#. The message is Sisa pulsa Rp.0.Penggunaan pulsa Rp.45000.Aktif sd 31Jan20.Aktifkan SMS autoreply utk bls otomatis SMS yg masuk.Rp265/SMS. 1.YA, 2. Cek Kuota, 3. Nelpon, 4. Intern

    After I topped up and check *888#. The message is Sisa pulsa Rp.100000.Penggunaan pulsa Rp.45000.Aktif sd 31Jan20. Mau NSP OST SUSI SANTI dari Rossa? Trf Rp1100/7hr. 1.YA, 2. Cek Kuota, 3. Nelpon, 4. Intern, 5. La

    May I check why the validity date is not extended after I topped up? What does NSP OST SUSI SANTI dari Rossa mean? What are the options 1 to 5 mean?

    1. kunzbali Post author

      Hi,

      It should be extended after you topped up.
      After you check *888# you can continue to number 2 or 3.

      If you press number 3 (Cek Nelpon), it should show your Pulsa (Credit) and the validity date.

      If you press number 2 (Cek Kuota), it will show other menu such as:
      1. Cek Kuota Internet.
      2. Cek Kuota Nelpon.
      3. Cek Kuota SMS.
      4. Cek Kuota lain.
      9. Back.
      0. Home.

      Well, in my Telkomsel SIM card is not show like that.
      Sometime it show different menu depend on Telkomsel SIM card product.
      Yes, since a few years ago Telkomsel more complicated.
      It will show other menu after you press *888#.

      NSP = Nada Sambung Pribadi.
      It’s a Ring Back Tone (RBT).
      Telkomsel offering you to use SUSI SANTI ring back tone from Indonesian singer (Rossa).
      If you press this option, your pulsa will cut in some amount of Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) to pay the Ring Back Tone (RBT).
      So, no need to press this option.

      Number 4 (Intern), seems it will show how many credit you have for calling other Telkomsel number.
      Sometime Telkomsel has promo for free calling to other Telkomsel number.
      So, this option show to you how much you got.

      Number 5 (La), sorry i have no idea about it.

  3. Rebecca Grac

    Hi!
    I bought an XL portable modem. It worked in Denpasar 18 upload/download speed, but I can not connect to internet in Ubud!

    I’m going to try replacing the SIM card in it with a different provider. What are the best provider in Ubud?

    Thank you!

    1. kunzbali Post author

      Hi,
      Well, i already wrote in this article actually.
      I’ve been living in Denpasar, Kuta and Ubud.
      Also i traveling and explored whole Bali island.
      I using a Telkomsel SIM card and without any problem for internet.
      So far Telkomsel is the good one compare to other.
      I don’t know in the next few years.
      Maybe technology changing and make a new history.

  4. Chris Ritchie

    I don’t think Telkomsel has consistent speed. Sometime fast and sometime slow depend on the location. Even sometime XL faster than Telkomsel at some spot in Bali. How ever i can use it for Google map apps.

    1. kunzbali Post author

      Yes, absolutely right.
      As i mentioned in the article above,
      the signal quality is depend on BTS or Tower location.
      It will affect to the speed itself.

      It’s true when XL faster than Telkomsel for sometime.
      I think is depend on the traffic user in the area who use the same services.

      Yes, i did it too.
      I use Telkomsel SIM card for Google map apps in Bali.

  5. Andrea Sabatini

    Thanks for the information.
    I just want to share my experience.

    The sim card price is not expensive actually.
    Just because you are a tourist, they lift up the price.
    I suggest you to go to Denpasar Telkomsel office. Then telling them if you want to buy National internet data package. Voala, the price is cheaper than other sim card shop and it isn’t a local internet. They also help you to register your sim card. Just bring your passport. That’s all. Smooth and easy.
    Cheers!

    1. kunzbali Post author

      That’s true.
      Bali is a touristic and popular place.
      Almost all the SIM card shop sell the different price for tourist and local.
      I agree the Telkomsel office is sell SIM card cheaper than SIM card shop.
      But, sometime it has a long queue.
      Thank you for share your experience!

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