The Best eSIM to Get When Travelling to Turkey in 2023

The Best eSIM to Get When Travelling to Turkey in 2023

Find out all about eSIMs in Turkey!

An eSIM for Turkey is essential so that you can enjoy your trip without worrying about losing access to the internet. If you’re one of those who use your phone a lot during your trips, an eSIM offers unlimited data so that you always stay connected.

What’s more, you can check maps, ook up tram or bus schedules and routes, move around the city without getting lost, make a reservation at a restaurant and share your travel experience on social media or with your loved ones at all times.

Looking for a prepaid eSIM that works in Turkey? Here are the best eSIMs you can use on your phone while traveling in Turkey.      

Also read: Best eSIM For Travelling to Europe in 2023

What is an eSIM?

Image credit: Adli Wahid

eSIMs are digital SIMs that allow you to connect your phone to a local internet service provider, without having to insert a physical SIM into the device. In short, an eSIM is an embedded chip that works with your phone’s software and that you can use to connect your device to a cellular network, without inserting a physical SIM.

This new SIM modality allows you to have a quality connection and several eSIM profiles from different operators on the same device.

Why is an eSIM necessary in Turkey?

Imagine not having to worry about carrying a SIM card every time you travel to Turkey. eSIMs make that possible, giving you the freedom to connect your smartphone or tablet to a Turkish cellular network

An eSIM for Turkey is necessary because it will provide cellular connectivity without requiring an additional physical SIM card. What’s more, this sidesteps the requirement of getting a physical SIM card in certain stores which require your personal information.

What cell phones are compatible with eSIM?

When it comes to iPhone models, all the models manufactured from 2018 and onwards are compatible with an eSIM. Some of them are iPhone XS, XR onwards, and iPhone SE 2 (2020). Plus, the iPads have 4G connectivity.

If we talk about Samsung, its cellphones compatible with eSIM are Samsung Galaxy S20 onwards, Galaxy Fold onwards, Galaxy Note 20 onwards, and Galaxy Z Flip onwards.

Moving on to Huawei, they have several cell phones that are compatible: Huawei P40, P40 Pro, Mate 40 Pro, and recent versions. The exception is the Huawei P40 Pro+, as it appears that its ceramic case doesn’t allow this integration.

In the case of Google Pixel, the cellphones compatible are Google Pixel 2, Google Pixel 3, 3a, Pixel 4, 4 XL, 4a, 5, and their newer models.

Regarding Oppo, Oppo Find X3 Pro and Oppo Reno 5A devices are supported.

Among its cellphones with eSIM, Motorola has the Motorola Razr (2019) and Razr 5G (dual SIM).

There are other brands with cellphones compatible with eSIM, such as the case of Nuu Movil X5, Gemini PDA, Rakuten Mini, Sony Xperia 10 III Lite, Sony Xperia 10 IV, Rakuten Big-S, Rakuten Big, Honor Magic 4 Pro, and the Xiaomi 12T Pro.

The best eSIM data plans for Turkey

turkey esim

Image credit: Anna Berdnik

When traveling to Turkey, you should know what are the best eSIM data plans for Turkey. With the implementation of this technology, there are different plans and providers according to the type of user. Here we will mention some of the most popular ones.


Holafly is a company that provides an internet connection through eSIM cards to travelers in more than 150 destinations around the world. This is thanks to its eSIM data cards for Turkey, which you can use on your cell phone, as long as it’s compatible, with the benefits of an unlimited data plan for the duration of the plan. This allows you to keep your WhatsApp number and check google maps, websites, and apps that you need during your stay in Turkey.

Advantages of using a Holafly eSIM in Turkey

  • Includes unlimited data from five days to three months
  • You don’t have to present documents to buy online.
  • If you travel to other countries in Europe, you can buy the eSIM for Europe.
  • The eSIM is delivered once you complete the purchase.
  • The installation and activation are fast.
  • You have customer service available 24 hours a day.

Features not included in the Holafly eSIM

  • Their plans don’t include a Turkish phone number, they only offer internet.
  • Cards with unlimited data don’t support sharing data with others and therefore can only be used on one cellphone.


Turkcell is the main cellular operator in Turkey. It has one of the best network coverages and also stands out in terms of cellular internet connection speed. It’s a suitable option to use in remote areas and small towns, where other providers don’t operate. Its services include voice plans, data, cellular and fixed networks, and business plans.

The Turkcell eSIM comes in two varieties: private and corporate. In both cases, it’s possible to convert the SIM to eSIM, as long as the cellphone is compatible with this technology. To achieve this, you can go to any of the Turkcell stores.

Advantages of using a Turkcell eSIM for Turkey

  • Offers Turkish local number.
  • You can buy a data package or also SMS and calls.

Considerations relating to the Turkcell eSIM for Turkey

  • It’s only available for purchase through its physical stores.
  • Doesn’t guarantee compatibility with Google Pixel cellphones.
  • To access its services, a passport is needed.


Vodafone stands out for the commercial offer of its voice and data plans and packages. This business group is one of the largest in Turkey and the world. Its rates are equal to the rest of its competitors. However, it offers its potential clients the opportunity to benefit from welcome and portability promotions.

To have an eSIM with Vodafone, you need to go to the nearest official store. There, the specialists of the carrier will help you with the configuration, as long as your cellphone is compatible.

Advantages of using a Vodafone eSIM for Turkey

  • Includes a data plan to browse.
  • You can convert a SIM to an eSIM in Vodafone stores.

Details to consider about  the Vodafone eSIM for Turkey

  • Currently, it can’t be purchased online, and it will be necessary to go to its official stores in Turkey.
  • It can be activated in individual and corporate plans.

Turk Telekom

This company offers one of the best cellular phone coverage services in Turkey. And this is because it rents the cellular network to the two main operators in the country. Türk Telekom offers eSIM for corporate and individual users in prepaid and postpaid plans. It offers different data packages, daily, weekly, and monthly from 100 MB to 10 GB. 

Advantages of using a Turk Telekom eSIM for Turkey

  • You can buy data, SMS, and minutes.
  • eSIM plans for customers in prepaid and postpaid plans.
  • Supports the renewal of the eSIM profile online in case of loss.

Other aspects to consider about the Turk Telecom eSIM for Turkey

  • To buy the eSIM, it’s necessary to go to its physical stores and show your ID. It’s not possible to buy the eSIM online for the first time.
  • Their prepaid packages don’t include unlimited data, in their weekly package the maximum amount of browsing is 10 GB and in their monthly package, it’s 8 GB.

How to activate an eSIM in Turkey

Image credit: Mar Cerdeira

Let’s see now, how to activate an eSIM in Turkey. This procedure may vary depending on the device you have, whether it’s an iPhone or an Android cellphone.

Apple iPhone

To activate the Holafly eSIM on iPhone, you must do the following: Go to Settings> Mobile data> Add eSIM> scan the QR code of the eSIM> wait for the installation to finish> choose the data plan> activate data roaming> wait for the device to connect to the internet and that’s it. 


In the case of Holafly, these are the steps to follow: confirm receipt of the QR code in the mail > go to Settings > Internet networks > SIM card manager > Add mobile plan > scan the QR code with the camera > check the eSIM as default for data > activate Data roaming.

If you buy an eSIM with Türk Telekom, this is what you need to do: after selecting the rate and signing the subscription agreement, you will see a QR code on the screen of the distributor, go to Settings on your cellphone > Cellular > Add plan > wait for the camera to open > scan the QR code > wait for the confirmation on the screen. 

Comparison of the eSIM for Turkey and other alternatives to connect to the internet

Image credit: Lewis J Goetz 

In the following comparison of the eSIM for Turkey, you’ll be able to learn about other alternatives to connect to the internet during your trip. These are options that you should know about, even more so, if you don’t have a cellphone compatible with eSIM technology.

eSIM for Turkey vs. Prepaid SIM card for Turkey

The eSIM for Turkey is a new type of SIM card, which, being digital, can be used on any network. With this chip, you can keep your same number, and you don’t have to change your phone or remove the SIM card you already have.  

SIM cards are the traditional type and only work with a local phone operator. Moreover, when you go to Turkey, you will need to take an pin tool with you to remove the SIM tray card and insert the new chip. On the other hand, your SIM card that you bring from home will be inactive, and you will only be able to use the Turkey SIM number. 

eSIM for Turkey vs. Data roaming

The eSIM is a new technology that is being developed to leave international roaming behind. With this virtual chip, you don’t have to pay high rates or fees because you can buy an eSIM with the data plan you want to use at the destination, without bills, and without surprises.

Data roaming is an additional service that you use with your cellphone while you are outside your home country, so you can make calls, send messages and use data, although, usually with high additional costs with your local network provider.

Pocket WiFi vs. eSIM for Turkey

The main difference between eSIM and Pocket WiFi is that the eSIM is a chip integrated into the device. That is, when traveling, you must only take your cellphone and activate the eSIM to have data at the destination. 

While a Pocket WiFi is an added device that you must carry in your pocket when traveling. In addition, this device can be bought or rented, but its costs are quite high, especially if you’re looking for one that offers you a quality connection.

How much cellular data do you need to travel to Turkey?

To avoid ending up without an internet connection in Turkey, you’ll be interested in knowing how much cellular data you need to travel to Turkey. If you’re one of those who has moderate cellular consumption, you may only need a 200 MB plan per day. 

However, to travel without worries, an eSIM with unlimited data may suit you. This way, you will be able to travel around the country, with a greater guarantee of being connected.

Also read: The Best eSIM to Use When Travelling to Japan

Which operators are compatible with eSIM in Turkey?

Finally, don’t forget to consider the operators that are compatible with eSIM for Turkey. These are the following:

  • Vodafone Turkey
  • Turkcell 
  • Turk Telecom 

These cellular operators have supported the use of eSIM for more than a year. However, they are usually focused on local customers in Turkey. 

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