How To Buy A SIM Card in Croatia – The Cheap and Easy Way
Grabbing a SIM card in a foreign country isn’t always an easy task. Depending on the nation, they might ask for a temporary address, a copy of your passport or other bureaucratic hoops to jump through. Thankfully, Croatia is not one of those countries.
Getting a tourist SIM in Croatia is so easy, I wondered if I should even write this article, as it may be the world’s shortest guide. Go to the nearest Tisak, and buy one. That’s it! (but I’ll explain in detail below with costs, speeds, data included, etc.)
Of course, there are many ways to get a SIM card in Croatia, including at the airport, but traveling during Covid had me in such a tizzy I didn’t even think of it. There were already too many things on my mind when flying into Split, like Croatia’s entry requirements including showing my proof of vaccination, proof of paid accommodation, etc. I completely forgot to check if SIM cards were still available after landing, which I’m told by other travelers that they are.
After I left the Split airport, I took pre-arranged private transportation down to the old city, so I didn’t need data to contact a ride. They dropped me off at the Central Square Heritage Hotel, which in my opinion is not only the BEST accommodation you can book in Split, but also has a Tisak right outside the front door.
Get a SIM at Tisak
Tisak is like 7/11, Circle K, or any other sundry/convenience shop around the world. There is literally one on every corner all throughout Split and Croatia in general, most of them being tiny kiosks similar to those you see in Manhattan.
Directly outside the Central Square Heritage Hotel, I simply asked the woman in the Tisak kiosk for a “Tourist SIM”. She gave me the Telemach SIM2GO for tourists.
Cost of Tourist SIM in Croatia
The cost for the SIM was 75 HRK which is just under $12 USD
How much data/minutes/SMS does the tourist SIM come with?
- 10 GB of data
- 200 local minutes
- 10 HRK to use towards SMS (which equals about 25 texts)
How do you active the SIM?
After I paid the woman at the Tisak kiosk, all I had to do was pop the SIM card into my phone. Bam. It was activated.
This was such a breath of fresh air as we’ve been in some countries where a cellular shop has to activate it for you, or you need to go through multiple steps to do it yourself, which can be confusing in a different language.
How long is the tourist SIM good for?
Can you top it up?
Yes. The Telemach tourist SIM can be topped up, which is a nice feature to not have to buy a new one and learn a new phone number. If you are going to be in Croatia for more than 30 days, or if you use an exceptional amount of data or minutes, you can add more.
You just send an SMS with the keyword “S” “M” or “L” to 13888, depending on what you need more of.
- “S” = 0.5 GB, 200 minutes and 200 SMS for 39 HRK ($6 USD)
- “M” = 2 GB, 500 minutes and 500 SMS for 59 HRK ($9 USD)
- “L” = 7 GB, 1000 minutes and 1000 SMS for 89 HRK ($14 USD)
If you just need minutes, send the keyword “100MIN” to 13855 for 100 more minutes for 15 HRK ($2 USD). If you just need more SMS, send the keyword “100SMS” to 13855 for 100 more SMS for 5 HRK ($0.75 USD).
How is the service?
Really good! We drove around the country between Split, Dubrovnik, Rovinj, etc., and never had any service issues. The connection was always fast and constant, which was good because our Airbnb in Dubrovnik was having some intermittent Wi-Fi issues, so the SIM was a nice backup for getting work done.
We drove from Croatia to Italy, passing briefly through Slovenia. The moment we were over the Slovenian border, the tourist SIM went completely out of service. I wasn’t sure if it would work, or text us with a roaming option add-on, but nothing. If you are driving to another country, be aware of this and download offline maps ahead of time if needed.
All in all, Croatia has been the easiest place to grab a tourist SIM in the world. No ID checks, no activations, and it’s super affordable as a bonus. Getting a SIM in Mexico is almost as easy, but Croatia takes the cake.