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The Best eSIM For Belgium | Prepaid Data Plan Buyer’s Guide

What travelers need to know about buying a prepaid eSIM data plans in Belgium.

phones and technology

A prepaid eSim data plan is a cheap and simple way to get high-speed data while visiting Belgium and the rest of Europe—don’t waste money on your current plan’s expensive international data service option. So to help you find the best eSIM for Belgium, I’ve crunched the numbers and compared multiple plans to help you find the right data plan for your trip.

Short On Time? I recommend buying an eSIM plan from either SimOptions or Holafly. Both companies offer multiple affordable prepaid data plans—continue reading this article for my specific recommendations.

The Problems With Using Your Current Mobile Carrier’s International Data Package

Almost every mobile provider has an international data plan that they’re happy to sell you but there are two significant downsides:

  • They’re expensive
  • Service is often slow, inconsistent, and has limited data allowances.

For example, the AT&T International Day Pass costs $10/day. They also have their AT&T Passport plan, a monthly plan that’s either $70/month for 2GB of data or $140/month for 6GB. Then they charge an insane overage of $30 per GB.

And many T-Mobile customers get free “unlimited” international data but you’re only guaranteed 2g data speeds… which will struggle to load Google Maps or even email. You can pay more to get better speeds but then you’ll be charged a premium.

These “international data plans” are 5X as expensive as buying a prepaid eSIM data plan from a third-party provider—for example, eSIM data plans from Orange or Holafly will cost you around $2-$4/day.

For more in-depth information on international data plans and eSIM, check out my guide on How To Use Smartphones and Data Plans In Europe and my Guide To eSIM data plans in Europe.


Comparing The Best eSIM Data Plans For Belgium

eSIM Europe Data Plan

Belgium has three major mobile carriers (Proximus, Orange Belgium, and Telenet/Base) and three second-tier budget carriers (Carrefour Mobile Belgium, Lycamobile Belgium, and Vectone Mobile Belgium) but none of these companies currently offer any prepaid eSIM plans to short-term visitors and tourists. However, tourists can buy physical prepaid SIM cards in Belgium from the major carriers but you’ll need to register the card (passport is required for registration).

So, when it comes to prepaid eSIM plans, your only option is to buy a data plan that’s tailored for short-term visitors. These plans are much more “tourist-friendly” so you don’t have to mess with registration, weird translation issues, etc.

eSIM Plan Considerations

Each eSIM plan I’ve listed is slightly different so pay attention to the specific details—here are the main things to consider:

  • Data Allowance: Plans typically give you a set amount of mobile data (i.e. 5GB, 10GB, 30GB, etc.) but others give you unlimited data over a set amount of time (5 days, 15 days, 30 days, etc).
  • Plan Length: eSIM data plans can be valid anywhere from about 5 days to 90 days.
  • Mobile Hot Spot Tethering: Many eSIM plans don’t allow data tethering so you can’t always use your phone as a mobile hot spot.
  • Voice Calls and SMS Texting: Some eSIM plans are data only, meaning the plan doesn’t include voice calls or SMS texting. This isn’t much of an issue since you’ll probably not be calling people anyway.
    • NOTE: You can still use iMessage to “text” between iPhones but can’t send messages between iPhones and Android phones. Or you can download WhatsApp to send messages over data (which most Europeans do).

Holafly Belgium eSIM with Unlimited Data & European Phone Number

  • Prices For Unlimited Data (Check Holafly for details)
    • 10 Days: $34
    • 15 Days: $47
    • 20 Days: $54
    • 30 Days: $64
    • 60 Days: $84
    • 90 Days: $99
  • Service Speed: 5G/4G/LTE
  • Calls coverage: 60 minutes of credit make calls from all of Europe—except Iceland, Norway, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Ukraine, and Turkey. Comes with an Austrian phone number that can be used anywhere in the EU.
  • SMS: None
  • Data Tethering: No
  • Data service works everywhere in the EU

Holafly is a new Spain-based eSIM provider I used in Europe and had a great experience. Holafly sells both Belgium-specific plans and Europe-wide data plans.

Unlike other mobile data companies, Holafly gives you unlimited data and a local phone number with 60 minutes of credit for making/receiving calls from European numbers. I’m also a fan of how Holafly’s plans come in durations from 5 to 90 days—so you don’t have to over/underbuy for your particular trip.

Holafly isn’t an actual mobile carrier but they rent bandwidth from local mobile provider networks—the only downside is that you’re more likely to get less priority on the local network during peak usage times.

Holafly doesn’t allow data tethering in most cases so you won’t be able to use your phone as a mobile hotspot.

You can read my in-depth Holafly review to learn more about my experiences using Holafly.


Bouygues My European eSIM with Europe Calling

  • Price: $44.90 (Check SimOptions for details)
  • Data: 30GB
  • Data Tethering: Allowed
  • Service Speed: 4G/LTE
  • Calls: Unlimited within Europe and credit for overseas calls
  • Texts/SMS: Unlimited within Europe and credit for overseas SMS
  • Credit validity: 30 day
  • Phone Number: This eSIM card comes with a French phone number
  • Coverage: Anywhere within the European Union (except Switzerland)

Bouygues Telecom is a major French telecommunications company and they’ve recently released their own prepaid eSIM data plan to compete with the popular Orange Holiday Europe eSIM plan. I’ve personally used Bouygues prepaid data service on a previous trip to Europe and everything worked well for my needs.

There’s a lot to like about the Bouygues My European eSIM plan—especially since it comes standard with 30GB of data and unlimited calls/texts within Europe. I also like how this Bouygues eSIM plan is valid for 30 days so it’s an excellent option for longer trips.

This plan can also be used as a mobile hotspot which is a great bonus.


Orange Holiday Europe eSIM (50GB)

  • Price: $59.90 (Check SimOptions for details)
  • Data: 50GB
  • Service Speed: 4G/LTE
  • Calls: Unlimited within Europe and 120 min outside of Europe.
  • Texts/SMS: Unlimited within Europe and 1000 outside of Europe.
  • Credit validity: 28 day
  • Data Tethering: Allowed
  • Usable on any device (phones, tablets, hotspots…)
  • This eSIM plan comes with a French phone number that can still be used anywhere in Europe
  • Service works everywhere in the EU

Need tons of data? Consider the newly released Orange Holiday Europe 50GB eSIM data plan which is a beefed-up version of the Orange Holiday Europe eSIM. It has 50GB of data and it’s valid for 28 days (compared to 14 days with the Orange Holiday Europe plan). This eSIM also comes with many features you don’t find with other plans—including international voice calling and texts (it gives you an actual French phone number that works anywhere in Europe).

The Orange Holiday Europe eSIM plan also allows you to use your phone as a mobile hotspot so you can put that extra data allowance to good use. Orange is also one of the largest mobile companies in Europe so you’ll always get great coverage and high data speeds.


ORANGE HOLIDAY EUROPE ESIM FOR Belgium

  • Price: $49.90 (Check SimOptions for details)
  • Data: 20GB (they sometimes give you 30GB of data)
  • Service Speed: 4G/LTE
  • Calls: Unlimited within Europe and 120 min outside of Europe.
  • Texts/SMS: Unlimited within Europe and 1000 outside of Europe.
  • Credit validity: 14 day
  • Data Tethering: Allowed
  • Usable on any device (phones, tablets, hotspots…)
  • This eSIM plan comes with a French phone number that can still be used anywhere in Europe
  • Service works everywhere in the EU

The Orange Holiday Europe eSIM data plan is a great eSIM plan because it comes with many features you don’t find with other plans—including international voice calling and texts (it includes a French phone number that works anywhere in Europe). The Orange Holiday Europe eSIM plan also allows you to use your phone as a mobile hotspot.

This plan comes with 20GB of data but Orange often runs a special where they give you an extra 10GB. Orange is also one of the largest mobile companies in Europe so you’ll always get great coverage and high data speeds.

The potential downside to the Orange Holiday Europe eSIM is that it’s only valid for 14 days once activated so it’s not great for longer visits (but you can always buy a second plan).

I’ve personally used the Orange Holiday Europe plan while traveling through Europe and it worked flawlessly. Read my Orange Holiday Europe review to hear more.


ORANGE HOLIDAY ZEN ESIM FOR Belgium

  • Price: $29.90 (Check SimOptions for details)
  • Data: 8GB (they sometimes give you 15GB of data)
  • Service Speed: 4G/LTE
  • Calls: Unlimited within Europe and 30 min outside of Europe.
  • Texts/SMS: Unlimited within Europe and 200 outside of Europe.
  • Credit validity: 14 day
  • Data Tethering: Allowed
  • Usable on any device (phones, tablets, hotspots…)
  • This eSIM plan comes with a French phone number that can still be used anywhere in Europe
  • Service works everywhere in the EU

The Orange Holiday Zen eSIM is the budget version of the Orange Holiday Europe eSIM plan listed above. It comes with 8GB of data and has fewer voice minutes and texts, otherwise, it’s the same as the Orange Holiday Europe eSIM plan.

Most users will use more than 8GB of data while traveling for a week or two but light data users could easily use less than 8GB of data during a typical 10-14 day trip.


MORE TIPS ON USING YOUR MOBILE PHONE IN Belgium

I’ve written multiple articles about using smartphones and data plans in Europe and tips for how to buy a SIM Card For Europe but below are some more helpful tips about using your phone in Belgium.

GET A PORTABLE BATTERY CHARGER

I highly recommend a portable battery charger while traveling to ensure your phone doesn’t die in the middle of the day. I use Anker PowerCore 10000 because it’s tiny and affordable but there are multiple options.

TAKE STEPS TO LOWER YOUR MOBILE DATA USAGE

It’s extremely easy to unknowingly burn through a lot of data because many apps continue to use data in the background. Facebook, email, Instagram, Snapchat… those all constantly use data throughout the day without you knowing it. That’s it’s important to know how to limit your data usage.

USE AIRPLANE MODE AND BLOCK DATA TO SPECIFIC APPS

I’ll put my phone in Airplane Mode because that disables all data (but GPS still works in Airplane Mode). You can also disable data access to each individual app in the settings. I’ll go in and turn every off except for things like Google Maps or others that I’ll use more frequently — this way when I turn off Airplane Mode only those apps that will use data. Then I’ll turn Airplane Mode back on when I’m done.

DOWNLOAD OFFLINE MAPS

Google Maps lets you download entire city maps so they can be used offline. As an added bonus, GPS doesn’t use data so offline Google Maps works fairly well (but not all functionality works). Here is a good YouTube video that explains everything.


MORE EUROPE TRAVEL TIPS FROM THE SAVVY BACKPACKER

Check out more of my favorite articles to help you plan your trip to Belgium and the rest of Europe:

James Feess
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