We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Manchester Airport

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
13 posts
54 reviews
Save Topic
Manchester Airport

Hello, I'll be flying into Manchester Airport in July and am looking to buy a sim card as soon as I land/before I board my train. Does anyone know if there's a shop I can buy one in the terminal? Have heard horror stories about the vending machine types. Many thanks!!!

North West England...
Level Contributor
1,825 posts
1 review
Save Reply
1. Re: Manchester Airport

W H Smith sell sim cards, they have a shop in all three terminal arrival halls and there is a small branch on the station.

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
13 posts
54 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Manchester Airport

Thank you irlgeo! Much appreciated. :)

sydney
Destination Expert
for Cambodia
Level Contributor
18,959 posts
84 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Manchester Airport

hi folks,

sorry to dig up an old thread ....

my 75yr old mum is heading to Manchester in July to join a Garden Tour. She got an ipad for xmas and has just about mastered opening & closing and we're now working on sending emails & taking photos. By July we hope she has managed a bit more. Tech savvy she is not! (as the 25 emails that managed to mysteriously find their way to her 'draft' box will attest)

She understands she will need a SIM card and I see that these are available at WH Smith branches in all 3 terminals (no idea which one she's landing at). Am I safe to assume someone at WH Smith will be able to install it for and get it going for her?

How much is she likely to need to pay? She will want email access, possibly Skype & maybe Facebook (these will depend on whether we can speed up the lessons a bit). Hopefully by July we will have set her up with the apps for both skype and facebook. (all a bit too much at this stage though)

many thanks in advance

cheers

helen

Manchester, United...
Destination Expert
for Bruges
Level Contributor
1,738 posts
27 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Manchester Airport

Unlikely that eh smith will set it up for her though

sydney
Destination Expert
for Cambodia
Level Contributor
18,959 posts
84 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Manchester Airport

Ok .. so I need to add that to the list of 'thngs to teach her'

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
Level Contributor
11,329 posts
82 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Manchester Airport

Does she really need a sim card? Plenty of places have free Wi-Fi these days.

If she needs one, and with data pre-loaded, I think she would be best going to a more specialist shop near where she's staying. All the major networks have their own shops - Vodafone, O2, three, etc. - and there are some large chains, the most numerous belonging to phones4u and carphone warehouse.

WH Smith is a newsagents/stationers etc., and as StockportBreaker says, there is very little likelihood of them setting it up for her, or having a pre-loaded data sim in stock. Whereas in the dedicated shops, they will be able to sort her out easily.

Sim cards are virtually free in the UK, so you will just pay for the data. Make sure she gets a pay as you go, not a contract!

Prices are low. Here is an example of a payg where she could get unlimited data (and some calls and text if she had a phone!) for £15 lasting for 30 days.

www.three.co.uk/Store/SIM/Pay_As_You_Go…

Edited: 03 January 2014, 11:17
sydney
Destination Expert
for Cambodia
Level Contributor
18,959 posts
84 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Manchester Airport

thanks Steve,

the group is meeting (and spending the 1st night) at the Crowne Plaza (at/near the airport). From memory her flight lands in the morning so I guess a walk around in the afternoon might be a good thing for her. Anything nearby that would be a better option than WH Smiths?

They are touring around all over the north of England (my idea of a nightmare- a bus full of Aussie grannies on a garden jaunt) and I can't remember what other cities/towns/hotels they are staying at. Do most hotels in the UK have free wifi or are they like Aussie ones and charge like wounded bulls for it? I'm thinking that the hunt for free wifi may be beyond her in terms of time/locations etc so having her own is a better option.

many thanks for the info so far.

cheers

helen

Manchester, United...
Destination Expert
for Manchester
Level Contributor
1,907 posts
321 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Manchester Airport

Crowne plaza definitely do charge for internet access, unless you have gold or platinum status on their IHG reward program.

Some hotels do offer free wifi some do not, it depends on the type of hotel. I find there is more free wifi about, especially in coffee shops and shopping malls etc.

Sale, United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Crete
Level Contributor
11,329 posts
82 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Manchester Airport

There isn't really anything much in the area, apart from other hotels and the airport. And most shops in the 3 airport terminals are airside. Very few (if any) landside in departures, and just a few in arrivals.

So if she wants a wander round anywhere, a train to Manchester would seem to be the only option - but probably not one you would want to suggest lol!

The business hotels do tend to charge for Wi-Fi, because they know that business customers are the only ones who will pay!!

However, they MAY have free Wi-Fi in the lobby, bars, restaurants etc. Why not ask - contact details are here:

cpmanchesterairporthotel.co.uk/contact-us.ht…

Manchester, United...
Level Contributor
6,978 posts
83 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Manchester Airport

Helen - IIRC other brands in the IHG group (Holiday Inn Express etc) are beginning to offer free wifi here, so it may be that by July this is extended to other brands such as Crowne Plaza. Free wifi at hotels was a topic on here fairly recently and does seem to be spreading so worth checking the individual hotels. If the hotels are on town or city centres there's almost certainly going to be a coffee shop from one of the big chains nearby & they normally have free wifi - as do many other individual cafes, some pubs, shops etc.

Good luck with the lessons - I admire your fortitude!