3G in Cuba

Digicel Cuba Roaming, the newest Cuba SIM card

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While classic cars remain a romantic tribute to the past, WiFi and 3G in Cuba is changing rapidly into the future. Daily, I receive frantic messages from travellers who need WiFi while visiting Cuba to touch base with home or meet online work deadlines and today, I am happy to announce that the next stage of development in communication for Cuba is finally here. So while you wander you can roam with this Cuba SIM card! One of the biggest players providing 3G in Cuba is Digicel with their Digicel Cuba Roaming product. The Digicel Group has been connecting people in the Caribbean, Central America and Asia Pacific for over fifteen years.

Can I use 3G in Cuba?

Yes, Cuba does have 3G possibilities. I know, I’m as surprised as you are but you will know from reading my guide to accessing WiFi in Cuba that the scene has been changing rapido since I visited Cuba in 2015. For example

● Prices for ETECSA WiFi cards have slashed (from $4.50 to $1.50)
● There are now a number of pay-for WiFi spots where you can log on to WiFi using these cards
● Many casas particulares (local houses where you rent a room with bed and breakfast) have access to WiFi for their guests (with said cards)

So it maybe is not that big of a surprise that I followed a traveller’s trip in Havana through their Twitter account. They were drinking rum in Havana and telling their friends around the world about it on Twitter. God bless the internet (and 3G roaming). You can also check out the reviews of Digicel Cuba Roaming SIM card on Amazon, where you can also purchase the SIM.

What is the Digicel Cuba Roaming SIM card?

Digicel Cuba Roaming SIM card is a pre-loaded mobile/cell phone sim card which works with unlocked phones (this is important, most phones require unlocking, contact your provider before going to Cuba). There are 3 different recharge plans available: 100MB, 300MB and 500MB depending on the level of data required for your trip. Each package includes free incoming SMS so you can receive texts from family, friends, and colleagues outside of Cuba at no extra costs. No contract with Digicel is required so you are not locked into a monthly fee. Unfortunately, Amazon does not ship to the UK, so this is for U.S readers only at this stage with plans to expand soon).

Where does 3G work in Cuba?

Digicel state that their 3G coverage is accessible in all 15 provinces of Cuba. Coverage
in the more populated areas has reported as the most efficient. As Digicel uses local Cuban networks, Digicel cannot guarantee actual speed connectivity.

»»» Read more: the 10 Havana top attractions you cannot miss

 

Cuba SIM card - Havana

Digicel Cuba SIM card instructions

1. SIM cards of all sizes (standard, micro, and nano) can be purchased via the Digicel website or Amazon. Visa and Mastercard credit or debit cards are accepted.
2. SIM is posted to the identified address with the Digicel Cuba Roaming mobile number printed on the packaging (GSM#)
3. Customer activates SIM in Cuba (only in Cuba) card by dialing *120#, then follows the steps for APN/Registration (iOS or Android)
4. The SIM is then Cuba roaming ready.
5. To check your balance dial *122*53# and a SMS text will be sent. This can only be accessed in Cuba.
6. Top ups can be made via the website and in shops in south Florida.

Help! I’m in Cuba and it doesn’t work

Never fear, help is here! Digicel have a designated helpdesk team to answer any enquiries via email Contact [email protected] for support. There is also a support customer service telephone number (407-499-2822) which you can find at the bottom of the page.

»»»Avoid the scams in Cuba with this popular guide

 

Pricing of 3G in Cuba

There are three package bundles for you to choose from. The level of pricing depends on the amount of Cuba SIM card data you require.

● 100MB for $25
● 300MB for $50
● 500MB + 40min worldwide calls for $100

To give you an benchmark of how much data you may need, Digicel states that with the 500 MB bundle you can access

● 2,000+ emails (send/receive)
● 30 hours of internet browsing time
● 500 posts and pictures
● 15,000 Whatsapp messages.
● 650 minutes of WhatsApp chat time
● 150 minutes of WhatsApp video time
● 15 hours of music streaming
● 40 mins for calls

Family and friends in Cuba can keep in contact with you at no extra cost to your package. Incoming SMS texts are free for each package level. Each plan has a lifespan of 30 days after the package is activated so you have just over one month to use your data for browsing (or calls for the larger package). When the tan fades as will your roaming chances as both SIM card and credit will expire if no top up takes place after 60 days. This is something to consider if you are a frequent Cuba visitor.

Can I use Whatsapp in Cuba?

Whatsapp is available in Cuba if you have your Digicel Cuba Roaming SIM Card activated before you leave you will have pre-loaded data to send Whatsapp messages, photos and make Whatsapp calls.

Tips on saving data and money

Our phones are our lives. They are the first thing we look at in the morning while checking the news (or Facebook) and the last thing at night when we set our alarms. However, regardless of holidaying in Cuba or living reality at home, many actions eat up our data so here are some tips for getting the best out of roaming in Cuba:

1. Kill your apps. Many of us are unaware that our apps run in the background even when we are not using our phones. It may be wise to uninstall any irrelevant apps while visiting Cuba. I would recommend installing a Spanish dictionary app like Spanish Dict! if your survival Spanish is as good as mine, malo. You can use this app in airplane mode, no 3G required. Maps.me is another useful app for getting around the likes of Havana, or go old school and use a map

2. Switch off automatic updates for apps and phone

3. Although cheaper than alternative options at rates as low as $0.17 per MB (depending on package plan), in comparison to major U.S carriers who charge $2.00 per MB, data usage is charged higher than what you are used to. Be cautious when uploading that image to Instagram, it will deplete your data and definitely save the everyday browsing/stalking for when you touch down back home

»»» Cuba is not as cheap as you think. Here’s our 3 week budget costs

 

Cuba 3G - Playa Ancon Cuba

Important details

● You cannot buy Digicel Cuba Roaming SIM Card in Cuba
● Your phone must be unlocked on the GSM 850/900 + WCDMA 900 frequencies
● 24/7 customer service is available (Amazon reviews seem content with support)
● Phone calls only available on 500 MB + 40 Minutes recharge plan
● Whatsapp call, Skype, FaceTime etc available on all plans
● 3G speed and cell phone service in Cuba is dependent on local networks – Digicel cannot guarantee actual speed connectivity
● You cannot send SMS texts but you can receive them

Contact Details

√ Website: DigicelCubaRoaming (DigicelCubaRoaming {dot} com)
√ Telephone: 1.407.499.2822 (CUBA)
√ Email: customercare {at} digicelcubaroaming {dot} com

Final words

Although it would be nice to switch off and enjoy a digital detox in Cuba, Digicel is aware that this scenario is not always possible for all holidaymakers. From your Cuba research you have probably heard about the varying quality of food or amusing daily scams tried upon us when trying to find the bus times, museum locations or salsa clubs – having 3G at your fingertips to make calls or quickly check reviews, times and addresses may be the tool in fighting that charming Cuban hustle!

»»» Disclaimer: Whilst I have experienced logging on to WiFi in Cuba, I have not had the opportunity to use 3G roaming with Digicel’s Cuba Roaming SIM. This is a paid advertisement written by me (Gemma) with the support of Digicel and impartial, external reviews to help you get the best out of your trip to Cuba. Please read our small print for more details.

Any questions? Ask in the comments below

Gemma and Craig full-time workers with a life-long travel habit. Flirting with 30 and let loose on the world! Gemma writes, Craig looks good in the photos.

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        Hi Dani. Response from Digicel:

        We expect to open the UK market, as well as Spain, Germany, and other European countries sometime soon, I can’t tell you a definitive date yet, but soon.
        Your reader is correct in saying that Amazon won’t ship it to the UK, or any other country outside of the United States, as of now.
        What can definitely be done from any country in the world is to reload the SIM Card as that is done in our website available everywhere.

        Sorry, that it is not available as of yet. When do you head to Cuba?

  1. I head to Cuba for Christmas from the UK and was wondering if there was any way of getting the SIM card to us in the UK.

    Thanks

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      There isn’t unfortunately Rachel. The way around would be to get it sent to someone in the U.S and for them to post to you I’m afraid. Have you read our wifi in Cuba post? You can access wifi throughout the country but you have to use the card (bought in Cuba) and sign in via the specific hotspots (there are lots). Hope that helps and enjoy your trip (more on our Cuba experience here)

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  2. Hi Gemma,
    I’m curious ud you got a confirmation regarding buying the card from eBay. I’m a Danish resident going to Cuba mid Jan 18 and I’m finding your article really useful, thanks a lot.
    Cheers,
    Christina

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  3. Hello 🙂

    I have been trying to buy this SIM card for the last month and it still out of stock. 🙁 I have contacted Digicel but they are unable to provide me with a restock date which is very unhelpful. Has anyone any other alternative as I am going to Cuba in March 🙂

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  4. I have used the cellomobile sim card rental which doesn’t need to be returned with my unlocked iPhone X and was very pleased. I had it shipped to me in New York before I left to Havana. Looks like they ship anywhere by DHL including Scotland.

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