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Local NZ Sim Card

Mumbai, India
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127 posts
89 reviews
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Local NZ Sim Card

We are going on a conducted tour to NZ in May 2014 for 10 days and will land in Auckland and cover Rotorua, Queenstown, Franz Josef and Christchurch. Which is the best SIM Card operator which will cover our International Telephone calls to India from all these places and also Internet facilities and can you purchase the SIM Card from the Auckland Airport when you land. Also is it possible to top up the

credit at Departmental stores. Shall be glad if someone can let us know the details including costs, departmental stores etc. so that we are mobile as soon as we land in NZ. Will appreciate any advise. Thanks in advance.

New Zealand
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101 reviews
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1. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

I use 2Degrees Sim for NZ. They are available for purchase from supermarkets and top ups can be done at 7/11 stores, service stations, and corner stores. I can't remember if there is a booth at Auckland International terminal.

Sims cost around NZD5.00 and top ups can be bought for NZD10.00 or NZD20.00 etc.

I find it very cost effective for using mobile phone in NZ.

2. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

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Blenheim, New...
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871 posts
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3. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

There are three main providers in New Zealand, they are 2Degrees, Telecom and Vodafone.

First thing I would say is that data is expensive on all three, but could work out cheaper then paying what motel/hotels charge.

I quite like Vondafone, and I see these a add-on called "$2 for 60 minute", which allows a 60 minute call to India for just $2. I have not read the fine print but I assume each call costs $2 and can last up to 60 minutes, longer then 60 minutes and it gets expensive fast. , or you can get 120 minutes and 50 txt for $12 a month.

2 Degrees does have "India 120" which allows 120 minutes of calls to India for $10. Like with Vodafone, you would have to sign up for the package to get it... otherwise its the extremely expensive per minute charge.

I do not think Telecom has a call India plan (or at least not one I can find) but they do offer 1GB of free wifi data a day, you can access the free Wifi from most Telecom pay phones. Although Payphones have become quite scarea and you might have to stand on the footpath to use the Wifi.

Overall I think Vodafone is the best value, plus they offer bonus data every time you top up. They also have much better coverage then 2 degrees.

Edited: 04 May 2014, 00:45
Wanaka, New Zealand
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4. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

Actually vodaphone and 2 dregrees use the same towers in rural areas - at least they used to. I was on 2 degrees for 3 years and found it a frustrating network down here in the far South. Coverage is limited in places. I have switched back to Telecom for this reason. I couldn't even get 2 degrees coverage or vodaphone at my home 15km from Wanaka.

Blenheim, New...
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871 posts
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5. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

Most dairy/convenient stores, Supermarkets and probably petrol stations sell recharge vouchers. But I normally just top-up using my credit card on my phone..

Rough costs for Vodafone.

I use and recommend Vodafone Prepay FreebeeData.

Top up $40 and you get 1GB Data, and unlimited txt and calls to NZ numbers for a month. Plus $40 credit.

I just check my account and I do not think I can purchase the 120 minutes for $12 add-on..... but I do have access to 60 minutes for $2 to India as standard. Can also purchase 300mb for $3, but the data only lasts a day (So have to remember to buy it) .

On 2degrees

$20 for 1GB of data (lasts a month)

$10 for 120 minutes to India

Blenheim, New...
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871 posts
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6. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

Telly N, I believe they only share the basic network, but not the highspeed 4G networks.

Wanaka, New Zealand
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3,087 posts
21 reviews
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7. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

Whichever way they do it, 2 degrees is pretty useless down here unless you stay in main centres all the time.

Belluno, Italy
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8. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

I'm really interested in this topic. I've spent a couple of hours trying to realize which is the best option for tourists, basically people who are visiting NZ for some weeks and mainly need data access (to check reservations, activities, timetables,, TA app..:) and some voice traffic (to ring motels, info point,...). I wonder about if I could (once I have decided) buy the SIM online and get the order delivered to the first motel we'll stay.

Blenheim, New...
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871 posts
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9. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

7polo9. These not much between them Both Vodafone and Telecom have coverage gaps at times. I do not know which is better or worst in that regards.

Telecom has 1GB free Wifi if you are by their pay phones. But limited deals to call internationally.

For mobile data, $29 for 1.5GB, or $49 for 3GB (monthly).

Vodafone Prepay Freebee data is their best plan for travellers. Top up $40 and you get 1GB Data (last a month) Plus $40 credit which you can buy 300mb for $3 daily. So in theory you can get 1GB plus 3.9GB for $40 a month.

I do not really see the value in 2degree plans. They are comparable to Telecom but without the free wifi. I now see unused data/minutes carry over between months but not useful for travellers.

Edited: 04 May 2014, 02:17
Blenheim, New...
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871 posts
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10. Re: Local NZ Sim Card

Vodafone has stores in both Auckland and Christchurch airport, so can easily grab a Sim on arriving. Telecom has a Auckland airport store.

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