Nowadays, having an eSIM to travel to Canada is one of the alternatives that travelers prefer, better than having to go around looking for a store to buy a local SIM card. In addition, with this chip, we can avoid paying expensive roaming fees, and we get the possibility of converting our cell phone to a dual SIM phone.
So, if you’re planning to go up north of the USA, you need an eSIM, not just any eSIM though, because we know that you’re only looking for the best eSIM for your device.
With this in mind, take a look at this review of the best eSIMs for Canada. We will give you extra information on other ways you can connect to the internet during your stay in this country.
Also read: The Best eSIM to Get When Travelling to Turkey in 2023
What is an eSIM for in Canada?
The eSIM is a new way to connect to the internet without sacrificing the design or functionality of your cellphone. This virtual SIM card is fully integrated into your device. This allows you to connect to the web, use all your favorite apps, check the online map, and many more functions. All the previously mentioned through a cellular data plan from the provider. Moreover, the carrier has agreements with different cellular operators to use their network, so you won’t have any extra charges.
Why is an eSIM necessary in Canada?
The main reason why an eSIM is necessary to travel to Canada is that it eliminates the need to search for physical SIM cards in airports or stores. But if that’s not enough, here are other reasons:
- You have the possibility of buying it from the comfort of your home or the area where you are right now.
- You avoid removing your SIM and can keep two numbers on your cellphone working at the same time.
- eSIMs are cheaper than paying for international roaming.
- This chip is easier to manage.
- It’s safer than a regular SIM card, as it will not be damaged by use.
- Provides internet connection upon arrival at the airport.
In Canada, you’ll likely have a hard time connecting to the internet. Depending on where you go, you might encounter a language barrier (English or French). But you solve this by buying an eSIM to travel to Canada before leaving your home.
What cell phones are compatible with eSIM?
Since 2018, all iPhone devices are compatible with eSIM. Some of them are:
- XS, XR, and up
- iPhone SE 2 (2020)
- iPads with 4G connectivity
- Samsung Galaxy S20 and up
- Galaxy Fold and up
- Galaxy Note 20 and up
- Galaxy Z Flip and up
Huawei cell phones compatible with the virtual eSIM are:
- Huawei P40
- P40 Pro
- Mate 40 Pro and later versions
As for Google Pixel, the following models are compatible:
- Google Pixel 3, 3a
- Pixel 4, 4 XL, 4a, 5, and recent versions
As for the Oppo brand, the only compatible models are:
- Oppo Find X3 Pro
- Oppo Reno 5A
If you have a Motorola device, for now, the compatible models are:
- Razr (2019) and up
- Razr 5G (dual SIM)
Other brands compatible with the eSIM card:
- Nuu Movil X5
- Gemini PDA
- Rakuten Mini
- Sony Xperia 10 III Lite
- Sony Xperia 1 IV
- Rakuten Big-S
- Rakuten Big
- Honor Magic 4 Pro
The best eSIM data plans for Canada
Ever since eSIM cards for traveling to Canada entered the market, several companies have begun implementing then as well in this country. However, not all of them offer the best services for travelers, so here we are going to detail some of the best: Holafly, Rogers, Telus, and Bell.
Holafly is a store specializing in international travel eSIM cards. For Canada, it offers two prepaid data plans with 10 and 20 GB to use for 30 days.
Certainly, this company stands out for letting travelers handle online purchasing, with a quick installation and activation process. After paying for the Canada eSIM, you receive a QR code that allows you to install the eSIM profile on your cellphone. Then, you can start browsing the internet in seconds!
Advantages of using a Holafly eSIM in Canada
- It has a fast online purchase process, it doesn’t require registering on its website or sending personal documentation to activate its services.
- High-speeded cellular connection in the main cities of Canada.
- No app download is needed for purchase or installation.
- Effortless eSIM setup.
- Immediate activation when connecting to the available cellular network in the area.
- Customer service available by chat and email 24 hours a day with a response time in less than 10 minutes.
Features not included in the Holafly eSIM
- You can’t share the eSIM cellular data with other devices.
- It’s only for cellular data use, so you can’t make analog calls with the eSIM. Although you can use other apps to do so.
Rogers is one of the main telecommunications companies in Canada. This Canadian company has enabled its eSIM card for the public and can be bought by going directly to its official stores or by calling.
Advantages of using an eSIM in Canada
- Includes a Canadian cellphone number.
- 5G network in Canada.
- They have a cellular app to switch from SIM to eSIM.
Considerations to contemplate of the Rogers eSIM for Canada
- It is not possible to buy your eSIM online.
- Customer service is available 11 hours a day over the phone (8 am to 9 pm) Canadian time.
Telus is one of the main providers in Canada, after Bell. This Canadian operator offers eSIM in postpaid and prepaid plans. It can be bought online from their website for $11 CAD. However, that’s the price of the eSIM without balance.
Advantages of using a Telus eSIM in Canada
- It’s possible to activate it with prepaid or postpaid plans.
- It can be bought online from their website.
- Includes a Canadian cellphone number.
Other aspects to consider the Telus eSIM for Canada
- All their prepaid data plans are for 30 days.
- Their prepaid data plans start with 500 MB for $30 CAD and up to 8 GB for $55 CAD.
Bell is a major Canadian telecommunications company. They offer eSIM with prepaid and postpaid plans. To get the Bell eSIM, you need to go to their physical stores during Canadian business hours. The price is similar to Telus eSIM on prepaid plans and free in postpaid plans.
Advantages of using a Bell eSIM in Canada
- It can be activated in prepaid and postpaid plans.
- Includes Canadian cellphone number.
Details to consider of the Bell eSIM for Canada
- Bell’s rates are high for its prepaid data plans.
- Their data plans start at $30 CAD for 500 MB up to 8 GB for $55 CAD.
- Its activation process can be quite difficult, and your personal and cellular information is required.
How to activate an eSIM in Canada
Following is the step-by-step for activating eSIM on iPhone and Android cellphones.
eSIM on Apple iPhone
To activate the Holafly eSIM, do the following >> Settings >> Cellular/Mobile data >> Add a new plan >> scan the QR code >> select the cellular data plan >> activate Data roaming and that’s it.
Telus allows you to activate the eSIM as follows: enter Settings >> Cellular >> Add cellular plan >> scan the QR code >> wait for the system notification >> add a name >> select as default line for data.
eSIM on Android
With Holafly, follow these steps: go to Settings >> Networks and Internet >> Connections >> SIM card manager >> Add cellular/mobile plan >> you have to choose the eSIM as default for cellular data >> activate Roaming and that’s it.
With Rogers, the eSIM is activated by visiting an official store or by calling customer service and requesting it. The eSIM code is sent to you by mail, along with the instructions to complete the installation.
Comparison of the eSIM for Canada and other alternatives to connect to the internet
Below, you can see a comparison of the eSIM for Canada and other alternatives to connect to the internet in this destination.
eSIM for Canada vs. Prepaid SIM card for Canada
An eSIM can be installed on any compatible cellular device without needing a physical slot. Is compatible with smartphones, tablets, laptops, and IoT devices.
A SIM card is removable and is inserted into a cellphone to find it on the network, allowing it to be used with the service provider’s signal. They can only be used on cell phones.
eSIM for Canada vs. Data roaming
An eSIM is a SIM card embedded in the device. It’s a virtual chip that stores all the information of your cellular data plan and can be used to connect to a local network abroad, thanks to an international provider. The eSIM only comes with data included.
Data roaming, on the other hand, is the service offered by your domestic cellular operator so that you can continue using your phone outside your home country. When you’re abroad, you may pay a high cost for data roaming, however, this allows your phone to support calls and SMS.
Pocket WiFi vs. eSIM for Canada
eSIM is a chip that can be virtually inserted into a device to enable cellular data service without the need for a physical card. It’s often used in smartwatches, cellphones, and other wearable devices.
A Pocket WiFi is a portable wireless router that supplies internet access to different devices through WiFi access points. It’s typically used when traveling to places with poor connectivity.
How much mobile data do you need to travel to Canada?
As for the cellular data you need to travel to Canada, you should know that this is something that depends largely on your regular data consumption.
If you are one of those who use social media most of the time, make video calls and check maps a few times a day, 10 GB may be enough for 30 days of travel.
What carriers support eSIM in Canada?
Cellular carriers that support eSIM in Canada are:
- Lucky Mobile
How much does it cost to connect to the internet on a cell phone in Canada?
In Canada, most cellphone companies offer data plans at high prices compared to other countries. For example, the amount of data they offer for $55 CAD is 8 GB.
Also read: Best eSIM For Travelling to Europe in 2023
Does eSIM work on 5G in Canada?
Yes. In Canada, there’s a significant deployment of 5G networks and companies allow you to enjoy this technology in SIM and eSIM cards.