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4G/5G data
mins
texts
/mo
Same coverage - massive savings!YOU SAVE:
T-Mobile
Magenta - $70/mo
$840/yr
AT&T
Unlimited Extra - $75/mo
$900/yr
Verizon
Play More Unlimited - $80/mo
$960/yr
$0$17.5$35$52.5$70
Monthly cost
Average monthly data usage is only between 3-5GB
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    Best GSM SIM Card

    How much is a GSM SIM card?

    Big wireless coverage at small prices: switch & save up to $600 a year
    99% coverage4G & 5G speedBring your phoneNo contracts
    US Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    500MB4G/5G Data
    $5per month
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    Tello Sim Card - Vertical
    1GB4G/5G Data
    $10per month
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    Mint Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    4GB4G/5G Data
    $15*per month
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    See Deal* 3 Months FREE: $45 for 6 mths service
    US Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    15GB4G/5G Data
    $20per month
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    See Deal* FREE 10-Day Trial
    Mint Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    Unltd4G/5G Data
    $30*per month
    Powered by:
    See Deal* 3 Months FREE: $90 for 6 mths service
    Boost Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    5GB4G/5G Data
    $5*per month
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    See Deal* 66% Off for 3 Months
    Lycamobile Sim Card - Vertical
    12GB4G/5G Data
    $5*per month
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    See Deal* Only $15 for 3 Months Service
    Mint Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    10GB4G/5G Data
    $20*per month
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    See Deal* 3 Months FREE: $60 for 6 mths service
    US Mobile Sim Card - Vertical
    25GB4G/5G Data
    $25per month
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    Tello Sim Card - Vertical
    Unltd4G/5G Data
    $29per month
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    Disclaimer: MoneySavingPro is a free price comparison service but we do not provide service directly. We do our best to keep all the information up to date but there may be some discrepancies between the price you pay.

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    Same coverage, massive savings!
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    CarrierNetworkDataPrice Annual 
    VerizonVerizon 4G & 5GUnlimited*$80/mo$960/yr
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    Cheapest GSM SIM card in 2022

    By Rob Webber - Last updated on

    Looking for a SIM card for your GSM phone? You've come to the right place.

    GSM (Global System for Mobiles) is one of the technologies used worldwide for cell phones and is used by AT&T and T-Mobile.

    There's a range of low-cost carriers, also known as MVNOs, that can save you money on your GSM SIM card. Powered by AT&T and T-Mobile networks, you'll receive the same quality coverage at half the price.

    Take a look below for a break down of carriers and plans available, to find the best GSM SIM card deal for you.

    Check Carrier Coverage

    Cheap GSM SIM cards

    Best prepaid GSM SIM card

    See Deal
    Tello SIM Card - Tello 1GB SIM kitTello SIM Card - Tello 1GB SIM kit
    Minutes
    Unlimited
    Texts
    Unlimited
    Data
    1GB
    Price
    $10
    Powered by:
    See Deal

    This Tello SIM kit includes unlimited mins, unlimited texts and 1GB data for $10 for 1 month of wireless service. Tello plans offer wireless coverage on the T-Mobile 5G and 4G LTE network. To learn more about why this is one of the best cell phone plans, check out MoneySavingPro's Tello review

    Review
    5

    Pros

    • No contract. No bulk buying.

    • 24/7 friendly customer support

    • 4G LTE/5G nationwide coverage

    • Free Hotspot & Wi-Fi Calling

    • Free international calls to 60+ countries

    Cons

    • No roaming

    • Coverage in rural areas

    Benefits

    • Service on the nationwide T-Mobile network

    • Money-back guarantee on phones (no refunds on plans)

    • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

    • Bring your own phone or choose from a modest selection of new or refurbished devices

    • Keep your current phone number

    • Use of your plan data as a mobile hotspot through your phone is allowed

    • Use your minutes to call Canada, China, and Mexico

    • Minutes to other countries available as add-on

    • 24/7 customer service

    Best GSM SIM card for unlimited data

    See Deal
    Mint Mobile SIM Card - Mint Mobile unlimited data SIM kitMint Mobile SIM Card - Mint Mobile unlimited data SIM kit
    Minutes
    Unlimited
    Texts
    Unlimited
    Data
    Unlimited
    Price
    $30** 3 Months FREE: $90 for 6 mths service
    Powered by:
    See Deal

    This Mint Mobile SIM kit includes unlimited mins, unlimited texts and unlimited data for $30 for 3 months of wireless service. Mint Mobile plans offer wireless coverage on the T-Mobile 5G and 4G LTE network. To learn more about why this is one of the best cell phone plans, check out MoneySavingPro's Mint Mobile review

    Plans
    PlanDataPriceView plan

    Mint Mobile 4GB SIM card

    4GB

    $15*

    * 3 Months FREE: $45 for 6 mths service
    View Plan

    Mint Mobile 10GB SIM card

    10GB

    $20*

    * 3 Months FREE: $60 for 6 mths service
    View Plan

    Mint Mobile 15GB SIM card

    15GB

    $25*

    * 3 Months FREE: $75 for 6 mths service
    View Plan

    Mint Mobile Unlimited SIM card

    Unlimited

    $30*

    * 3 Months FREE: $90 for 6 mths service
    View Plan
    Review
    4.5

    Pros

    • Offers the latest phones with 0% finance

    • Prepay months in bulk for more savings

    • Reliable network coverage

    • Works with most GSM phones

    Cons

    • No family plans

    • Minimum 3 months

    Benefits

    • Operates on the nationwide T-Mobile network

    • 7-day money-back guarantee

    • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

    • Bring your phone or buy a Mint Mobile device

    • Keep your phone number

    • Using your phone as a mobile hotspot is permitted

    • Free calling to Canada & Mexico, affordable rates to 160+ other locations

    • Flat-rate international roaming available as an add-on feature

    • Customer service by phone on weekdays and weekends, 24/7 by virtual chat

    Best GSM SIM card for families

    See Deal
    PureTalk SIM Card - PureTalk 4GB SIM kitPureTalk SIM Card - PureTalk 4GB SIM kit
    Minutes
    Unlimited
    Texts
    Unlimited
    Data
    4GB
    Price
    $19** 25% Off for 3 Months
    Powered by:
    See Deal

    This PureTalk SIM kit includes unlimited mins, unlimited texts and 4GB data for $19 for 1 month of wireless service. PureTalk plans offer wireless coverage on the AT&T 5G and 4G LTE network. To learn more about why this is one of the best cell phone plans, check out MoneySavingPro's PureTalk review

    Plans
    PlanDataPriceView plan

    PureTalk 2GB SIM card

    2GB

    $15*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    PureTalk 4GB SIM card

    4GB

    $19*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    PureTalk 6GB SIM card

    6GB

    $22*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    PureTalk 10GB SIM card

    10GB

    $26*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    PureTalk 20GB SIM card

    20GB

    $34*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    PureTalk Unlimited SIM card

    Unlimited

    $42*

    * 25% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan
    Review
    3.5

    Pros

    • 5G & 4G LTE coverage

    • 30-day risk-free guarantee

    • Multi-line discounts

    • 0% finance for new phones

    • US-based customer service

    • Supports eSIM

    Cons

    • There are cheaper plans out there

    • May slow speeds at busy times

    Benefits

    • Operates on the AT&T 5G & 4G LTE network

    • No contract, credit check, or activation fee

    • 30-day risk-free guarantee on plans

    • 14-day return policy on all new devices

    • Bring your own phone

    • Keep your phone number

    • Mobile hotspot/tethering permitted

    • International calling available as an add-on calling card

    • US-based customer support

    • Supports eSIM

    Best GSM SIM card for seniors

    See Deal
    Good2Go Mobile SIM Card - Good2Go Mobile 1GB SIM kitGood2Go Mobile SIM Card - Good2Go Mobile 1GB SIM kit
    Minutes
    Unlimited
    Texts
    Unlimited
    Data
    1GB
    Price
    $15
    Powered by:
    See Deal

    This Good2Go Mobile SIM kit includes unlimited mins, unlimited texts and 1GB data for $15 for 1 month of wireless service. Good2Go Mobile plans offer wireless coverage on the AT&T & T-Mobile 5G and 4G LTE networks. To learn more about why this is one of the best cell phone plans, check out MoneySavingPro's Good2Go Mobile review

    Plans
    PlanDataPriceView plan

    Good2Go Mobile 3GB SIM card

    3GB

    $10*

    * 50% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    Good2Go Mobile 0GB SIM card

    0GB

    $10

    View Plan

    Good2Go Mobile 6GB SIM card

    6GB

    $15*

    * 50% Off for 3 Months
    View Plan

    Good2Go Mobile 1GB SIM card

    1GB

    $15

    View Plan

    Good2Go Mobile 10GB SIM card

    10GB

    $35

    View Plan

    Good2Go Mobile 20GB SIM card

    20GB

    $45

    View Plan
    Review
    4

    Pros

    • 4G LTE coverage

    • No contract

    • No credit checks

    Cons

    • No unlimited data options

    • No app interface

    Benefits

    • Coverage on the nationwide AT&T & T-Mobile networks

    • Prepaid cell phone plans - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

    • Bring your own phone or buy a Good2Go Mobile phone

    • Mobile hotspot/tethering not supported

    • International calling to over 60 countries available as affordable plan add-on; calling to other countries via add-on calling card

    • Customer service available by phone 7am - 1am EST every day

    Best GSM SIM card for tablet data

    See Deal
    US Mobile SIM Card - US Mobile 2GB data only SIM kitUS Mobile SIM Card - US Mobile 2GB data only SIM kit
    Minutes
    0
    Texts
    0
    Data
    2GB
    Price
    $10* FREE 10-Day Trial
    Powered by:
    See Deal

    This US Mobile SIM kit includes 0 mins, 0 texts and 2GB data for $10 for 1 month of wireless service. US Mobile plans offer wireless coverage on the Verizon & T-Mobile 5G and 4G LTE networks. To learn more about why this is one of the best cell phone plans, check out MoneySavingPro's US Mobile review

    Plans
    PlanDataPriceView plan

    US Mobile 500MB SIM card

    500MB

    $5

    View Plan

    US Mobile 0GB SIM card

    0GB

    $8

    View Plan

    US Mobile 2GB SIM card

    2GB

    $12

    View Plan

    US Mobile 5GB SIM card

    5GB

    $15

    View Plan

    US Mobile 15GB SIM card

    15GB

    $20

    View Plan

    US Mobile 25GB SIM card

    25GB

    $25

    View Plan

    US Mobile Unlimited SIM card

    Unlimited

    $35

    View Plan

    US Mobile Unlimited SIM card

    Unlimited

    $45

    View Plan

    * FREE 10-Day Trial

    Review
    4.5

    Pros

    • Flexible, no contract plans

    • 24/7 customer service

    • 5G coverage available

    Cons

    • No international calling

    • Phone selection

    Benefits

    • Coverage on either the T-Mobile or Verizon network

    • Risk-free trial: Full refund within 14 days or before 1000 talk, text, or MB's is used

    • Prepaid - no contract, credit check, or activation fee

    • Bring your own GSM or CDMA phone or choose from a small selection of phones for sale

    • Keep your own phone number

    • Mobile hotspot use available as add-on option with unlimited data plans

    • International roaming plans available with eSIMs

    • Add-ons available for talk, text, and data, with rollover

    • 24/7 customer support

    Prepaid GSM SIM cards

    CarrierDataNetworkPrice
    US Mobile 500MB SIM kit500MBVerizon & T-Mobile$5* FREE 10-Day Trial
    Tello 1GB SIM kit1GBT-Mobile$10
    Mint Mobile 4GB SIM kit4GBT-Mobile$15** 3 Months FREE: $45 for 6 mths service
    US Mobile 15GB SIM kit15GBVerizon & T-Mobile$20* FREE 10-Day Trial
    Mint Mobile unlimited data SIM kitUnltdT-Mobile$30** 3 Months FREE: $90 for 6 mths service

    GSM SIM card benefits

    • Powered by the major US networks: GSM MVNOs provide wireless plans on the same major telecoms service you can trust. AT&T and T-Mobile are the two networks that run on GSM.
    • Save up to 50%: cut your cell phone bill in half and only pay for what you need.
    • No contracts: if you're not happy you can cancel at any time. No early termination fees.
    • Keep your phone: you can bring your own phone and keep your phone number with a hassle-free switch over. Saving even more money.

    Best GSM SIM card on T-Mobile

    Mint Mobile4GB plan* 3 Months FREE: $45 for 6 mths service

    Unlimitedmins

    Unlimitedtexts

    4GB

    4G/5G data

    $15/mo*

    Powered by: T-Mobile

    T-Mobile vs Mint Mobile comparison

    Keep your T-Mobile phone, number & coverage: Save $660 per year

    CarrierNetwork Coverage4G/5G DataPriceAnnual Cost
    T-MobileT-Mobile 4G & 5GUnltd*$70/mo$840/yr
    Mint MobileT-Mobile 4G & 5G4GB$15/mo$180/yr
    *Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$55/mo$660/yr

    Best GSM SIM card on AT&T

    Good2Go Mobile3GB plan* 50% Off for 3 Months

    Unlimitedmins

    Unlimitedtexts

    3GB

    4G/5G data

    $10/mo*

    $20/mo

    Powered by: AT&T & T-Mobile

    AT&T vs Good2Go Mobile comparison

    Keep your AT&T phone, number & coverage: Save $690 per year

    CarrierNetwork Coverage4G/5G DataPriceAnnual Cost
    AT&TAT&T 4G & 5GUnltd*$75/mo$900/yr
    Good2Go MobileAT&T 4G & 5G3GB$20/mo$210/yr
    *Don't waste money on unlimited data - Avg. data usage is only 3-5GBSavings$55/mo$690/yr

    What is a GSM SIM card?

    All GSM phones use a SIM card. This tiny card is sent by your carrier when you sign up for their cell phone plan. It stores all your phone information, like contacts and personal data. It also makes it super easy to switch carriers.

    If you're a frequent traveler, a GSM phone is ideal. You can purchase a local SIM for your unlocked device and save some extra dollars while you're away from home.

    Depending on your phone, there are three types of SIM cards;

    • Standard SIM
    • Micro SIM
    • Nano SIM

    The Nano SIM card is the most common and is used in newer smartphones like the latest Samsung Galaxy and Apple iPhones.

    Don't forget to check which size SIM card your phone uses before signing up.


    Which carriers are GSM?

    Below is a list of carriers compatible with the GSM network piggybacking off AT&T or T-Mobile. If you're not sure which network is the best for your area, use our coverage map to check.

    You'll be sent your GSM SIM card kit in the post with simple activation instructions to help you get started. If you're looking to bring your own phone, check on the carrier's website to make sure your phone is compatible.

    T-Mobile GSM carriers list

    CarrierNetwork(s)
    Boost MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    Boom! MobileVerizon & T-Mobile
    Consumer CellularT-Mobile
    FreeUP MobileT-Mobile
    Metro by T-MobileT-Mobile
    Mint MobileT-Mobile
    Red PocketAT&T, T-Mobile & Verizon
    Republic WirelessT-Mobile
    Simple MobileT-Mobile
    Straight TalkT-Mobile, AT&T & Verizon
    TelloT-Mobile
    TingT-Mobile & Verizon
    TracfoneVerizon, AT&T & T-Mobile
    Ultra MobileT-Mobile
    Unreal MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    US MobileVerizon & T-Mobile
    Gen MobileT-Mobile
    WingAT&T, Verizon & T-Mobile
    Good2Go MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    Hello MobileT-Mobile
    GoSmart MobileT-Mobile
    Reach MobileT-Mobile
    LycamobileT-Mobile
    Walmart Family MobileT-Mobile
    Speedtalk MobileT-Mobile

    AT&T GSM carriers list

    CarrierNetwork(s)
    Boost MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    Cricket WirelessAT&T
    FreedompopAT&T
    H2O WirelessAT&T
    PureTalkAT&T
    Red PocketAT&T, T-Mobile & Verizon
    Straight TalkT-Mobile, AT&T & Verizon
    TracfoneVerizon, AT&T & T-Mobile
    Unreal MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    WingAT&T, Verizon & T-Mobile
    Good2Go MobileAT&T & T-Mobile
    Black WirelessAT&T
    easyGO WirelessAT&T
    Airvoice WirelessAT&T
    Optimum MobileAT&T

    Switch to a cheap GSM carrier

    Some carriers lock a cell phone to their network. But if you want to unlock your phone, in most cases it's an easy fix. Then, you can use it across any network.

    If your current provider is one of the big three telecoms companies, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile or Sprint, you'll want to make sure your phone is fully paid off before switching.

    With an unlocked phone, you can switch carriers hassle-free. With a low-cost alternative carrier, there's no contract. So, if you sign up and it's not what you expected you're free to switch.

    Until a few years ago CDMA phones didn't use SIM cards, but they've now been built to use both CDMA and GSM. This makes it easier to change between the networks.

    Considerations when comparing GSM carriers

    • How much talk, text and data do you need? With a low-cost carrier, you can tailor a plan to your needs. By keeping track of your usage you can save money and easily update your plan if needed. Use our free tool to check your average data usage.
    • Bringing your own phone? If your phone is unlocked and compatible with a GSM SIM card this is a great way to save money.
    • Who offers the best coverage? You can use our coverage map to find out which network and carrier work best in your area.

    GSM vs CDMA

    CDMA and GSM technology was developed for old school 2G connectivity back in the early 90's. While the GSM network is used worldwide, CDMA is used mainly in the US.

    But there's a newer technology in town, LTE.

    As technology evolved, 4G LTE was created for data only. Still relying on GSM and CDMA for voice and text to fill in the gap when 4G was not available.

    So because LTE phones need a SIM card, and the latest CDMA handsets now include SIMs, it's easier than ever to switch with a CDMA carrier.


    GSM SIM card FAQs

    What is a GSM SIM card?

    GSM means Global System for Mobile Communications. All GSM phones have SIM card slots for storing phone information.

    Which carriers use GSM SIM cards?

    AT&T and T-Mobile use the GSM network. So any MVNOs running on these networks are GSM compatible.

    How do I know if my SIM card is GSM?

    If your current provider is AT&T or T-Mobile then your SIM card will be a GSM SIM card.


    Recap

    Saving money on your cell phone bill is easy with low-cost carriers. And with a great selection of plans there's something for everyone.

    GSM MVNOs make it easy for you to bring your own phone, as long as it's compatible. If you're not sure your phone is compatible you can find out with our IMEI checker.

    GSM SIM cards are great if you travel abroad as unlike CDMA, the GSM technology is used worldwide for cell service.

    If you're not sure which carrier has the best coverage for you, just pop your ZIP code into our coverage checker to find the best for your area.

    Rob Webber
    Rob Webber

    Rob has 15+ years experience in the US and UK running price comparison sites for cell phone plans, smartphone deals, TV, and internet. He loves thinking outside of the box to build tools that empower consumers to make more informed decisions.