Traveling to Melbourne and wondering if you can buy a sim card at Melbourne International Airport on arrival? This is a complete guide for finding the best way to stay connected on your trip to Melbourne and finding the perfect Australia sim card for you.
Find out where to buy a sim card at Melbourne Airport, up to date prices as per January 2024, my recommendation, the best e-sim cards for Australia, a vlog about my arrival, more info about international sim cards and everything else you need to know.
Making sure I stay connected is one of my main priorities when planning a trip. Mostly these days I order an e-sim card online. If not, a local prepaid sim card is a great substitute and depending how much Gigabyte you need, prepaid sim cards are even cheaper.
Forget about high roaming charges and slow overseas data roaming plans. Find your prepaid or e-sim card with big data bundles and the best 4G/5G network connection.
Traveltomtom would like to visit every country in the world and everywhere I go I document what is the best way to stay connected. That is how on Traveltomtom you can already find more than 200 sim card guides from all over the world: Sydney, Brisbane, Auckland, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Thailand, Bangkok, Indonesia, Bali, USA, New York, Turkey, Qatar, Dubai, London, Europe, Asia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Vietnam and many more.
I also wrote a complete guide for buying a prepaid sim card in Australia in 2024 with a comparison of all the mobile internet providers and their 4G/5G coverage maps. Thos who are explicitly looking for e-sims check out my guide for the best e-sim cards for traveling to Australia in 2024.
So next time you are planning your adventure abroad come check out Traveltomtom for the latest prepaid and e-sim card advice for your next holiday destination. Bookmark me!
The best prepaid sim card deal for tourists at Melbourne Airport is an Optus sim card. Compared to Telstra and Vodafone they prepaid sim card deals they offer the best value.
For a trip to Melbourne that is totally fine. However, if you are going to travel around Australia Traveltomtom recommends a Telstra prepaid sim card. You can also buy a Telstra prepaid sim card at Melbourne Airport, though slightly more expensive.
Why is Telstra the best prepaid sim card for Australia in 2024? Check out my complete guide and explanation in the link.
Traveltomtom definitely recommends using e-sim cards when traveling to Australia. E-sim cards are so easy and convenient and with an installed e-sim card for Australia on your phone you are online as soon as the plane lands. More info below.
If you travel to multiple countries on your trip to the Pacific then it is worth looking into an international travel sim card. Check out my article about the best world sim cards with data in 2024 and find the one that covers the countries of your trip to for example Australia and New Zealand.
Best e-sim cards for Australia
E-sim cards are the easiest way to stay connected when traveling to Australia in 2024. But keep in mind they only work in e-sim compatible phones.
If your phone is e-sim compatible then you simply order an e-sim card for Australia on the internet, process the payment, receive a QR code, scan it, follow the simple steps and you are connected in just a couple clicks.
If this raises a lot of questions then check out my complete guide with everything you need to know about using e-sim cards when traveling to Australia in 2024, including a comparison of the best available tourist e-sim cards.
There are many e-sim providers on the internet, below you can find my recommendations. All trusted, tested and reviewed by Traveltomtom personally.
Airalo is a trusted e-sim card provider and they have the following Australia e-sim card plans. Here are the Airalo data-only e-sim card plans for Australia for 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $4.5 USD
- 2 GB data for 15 days = $8 USD
- 3 GB data for 30 days = $9 USD
- 5 GB data for 30 days = $12.5 USD
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $20 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $40 USD
Click here to order an e-sim card for Australia from Airalo.
The Airalo e-sim cards for Australia are from Yes! Go! and they operate on the Optus 4G/LTE network.
SimOptions is another trusted e-sim card provider. They sell international e-sim cards that are valid in up to 130 countries around the world.
Here are the international e-sim card plans from SimOptions for 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $9.90 USD
- 6 GB data for 10 days = $17.90 USD
SimOptions also sells the e-sim cards from Three HK that are valid in Australia as well.
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $24.90 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $34.90 USD
A third trusted e-sim card provider is Nomad and they offer also e-sim card plans for Australia. Here are the Nomad 4G/LTE e-sim card plans for 2024:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $5 USD
- 3 GB data for 30 days = $10 USD
- 5 GB data for 30 days = $12 USD
- 10 GB data for 30 days = $19 USD
- 15 GB data for 30 days = $25 USD
- 20 GB data for 30 days = $30 USD
Nomad also offers 5G ready e-sim cards for Australia.
- 30 GB data for 30 days = $80 USD
- 40 GB data for 30 days = $110 USD
- 50 GB data for 30 days = $125 USD
Click here to order an e-sim card for Australia from Nomad.
Before ordering an e-sim card make sure your phone is unlocked and e-sim compatible otherwise an e-sim card won’t work on your phone.
For a more detailed comparison of the best e-sim cards for Australia in 2024 click on the link for my guide, including all FAQ’s about e-sim cards.
A very modern and easy to navigate airport. International flights all arrival in Terminal 2 and when walking out you are greeted by huge letters saying MELBOURNE. There is only one exit into a spacious arrival hall. Melbourne Airport is not as busy as most airports in Asia, Europe and the USA.
Where to buy a sim card at Melbourne Airport
Buying a prepaid sim card for Australia on arrival at Melbourne Airport is very easy. There are 3 different stores and you can not miss them.
On your left hand side when walking into the arrival hall you will see Welcome Center. This store sells prepaid sim cards from Telstra and Boost. If you are Chinese or Vietnamese speaking this is your place to buy a sim card as they also offer services in these languages. The Welcome Center is NOT an official Telstra retail store, just a reseller.
The Welcome Center store is open from 06.00 am till 02.00 pm and from 5.30 pm till midnight.
On your right hand side you will find the official retail stores of Vodafone and Optus. These stores are both open from 6.30 am till 23.30 pm. All sim card shops at Melbourne Airport accept international credit cards payments.
If you arrive outside the opening hours there is also a vending machine for sim cards behind the Optus shop.
Prices Australia sim cards at Melbourne Airport
Mind you that prices and packages change constantly. Traveltomtom tries to keep this article as up to date as possible. New input in the comments below is always appreciated. Prices below are in Australian Dollar and per January 2024: $1 AUD = 0.68 USD and $1 USD is $1.48 AUD.
Buying a Boost sim card is only recommended when staying in Melbourne city. Their network is very limited outside the city and therefore not recommended for traveling in Australia.
- 40 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 28 days = $30 AUD - $20 USD
- 55 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 28 days = $40 AUD
- 140 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 365 days = $200 AUD - $137 USD
- 260 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 365 days = $300 AUD
A prepaid Telstra sim card is free when buying one of the below data packages:
- 30 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 28 days = $30 AUD - $20 USD
- 40 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 28 days = $40 AUD
- 200 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 365 days = $300 AUD - $200 USD
Telstra has the best 4G/5G network coverage in Australia, see my guide for the best prepaid sim card in Australia in 2024.
At the Vodafone store they offer a wide range of prepaid sim cards for Australia:
- 4 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 7 days = $10 AUD - $7 USD
- 8 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 14 days = $20 AUD
- 60 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 28 days = $25 AUD - $17 USD
- 150 GB data + unlimited calls/text for 365 days = $150 AUD
Vodafone is the most flexible when it comes to picking the right data package for your trip to Australia. Some have international minutes included as well, see the photo above for more info.
At Optus they only offer 2 prepaid sim cards for tourists at Melbourne Airport. They offer a 4G and a 5G sim card deal:
- 60 GB data (4G/LTE) + unlimited calls/text for 30 days = $25 AUD - $17 USD
- 60 GB data (5G ready) + unlimited calls/text for 30 days = $60 AUD
International minutes are also included to 35 different countries and unlimited international minutes to another 15 countries, see the photo above.
Best prepaid sim card Melbourne Airport
Traveltomtom always recommends buying a prepaid sim card from an official retail store and therefore the Welcome Center is not my first recommendation. However, for Chinese and Vietnamese speaking travelers this store is great as they have everything in Vietnamese and Chinese as well.
Although Telstra has the strongest 4G/5G coverage in Australia the prices for Telstra prepaid sim cards are also slightly more expensive or at least you get less data for the same money.
If you really want 5G then Vodafone claims to offer 5G on all their data packages and Optus only gives you 5G when you pay double the price. Mind you that the 5G network in Australia is still pretty limited to the cities.
Vodafone has the widest range of prepaid sim cards and the cheapest prepaid sim card deals for tourists. That said Vodafone has the weakest 4G/5G mobile data network in Australia.
For more info on the best 4G/5G network and a comparison of the best prepaid sim card for Australia in 2024 check my article in the link.
My conclusion for the best prepaid sim card for Australia at Melbourne Airport is an Optus prepaid sim card. They offer 60 GB data for $25 AUD which is about $17 USD only. The Optus 4G/LTE network coverage is stronger than the Vodafone network.
However, if you are going to travel around Australia then you simply want a Telstra sim card, trust me.
When comparing e-sim cards for Australia with local prepaid sim cards Traveltomtom comes to the conclusion that local prepaid sim cards offer more value for money. Meaning if you need a lot of Gigabytes then the prepaid sim card you buy in Australia are cheaper.
That said, if you just need a little bit of data then e-sim cards are the best way to stay connected when traveling to Melbourne. You arrange everything online and as soon as the plane lands you are already online and no need to visit a sim card shop on arrival.
Check out my comparison of the best e-sim cards for Australia in 2024 for more detailed info.
If you are wondering what it looks like arriving at Melbourne Airport and buying a prepaid sim card for Australia on arrival then watch my vlog above.
Buying a prepaid sim card for Australia online
If your phone is not e-sim compatible then you can still order an international prepaid sim card for traveling in Australia on the internet. These sim cards are valid in multiple countries around the world. After you ordered online, a physical prepaid sim card will be delivered to your home address before your trip to Australia.
On arrival it is plug and play.
SimOptions offers the following physical prepaid sim card for Australia:
1. Three Data Pack - $24.90 USD
- 10 GB data-only
- Valid 30 days
- Valid in 56 countries
- Incoming/outgoing calls not supported
2. Orange Holiday World - $49.90 USD
- 10 GB data-only
- Valid 14 days
- Valid in124 countries
- Incoming/outgoing calls not supported
- Data allowance varies per country
Also a last reminder that if your phone is e-sim compatible you can arrange everything online by simply ordering an e-sim card for Australia on the internet. Recommended e-sim providers for Australia are: SimOptions, Airalo and Nomad.
I hope all the above tips for buying a sim card for Australia were helpful for your upcoming trip to Melbourne. If you have any more questions then don’t hesitate to leave me a comment below and I will try to help you out.
Curious what it looks like trying to visit every country in the world? Go check out my Instagram account @traveltomtom and follow along. As of January 2024 I have visited more than 155 countries, so still a long way to go.
Enjoy your trip to Melbourne!
Some links in this article about the best sim cards for traveling to Melbourne are affiliate links. If you buy any of the products after using an affiliate link I will earn a small commission. This is at absolutely no extra cost to you.