About cellular data roaming options for your iPhone and iPad

Turn data roaming on or off, prepare for international trips, and more.

Turn off Data Roaming or prepare for a trip

Need to avoid roaming charges because you arrived at your destination without an international data plan? Turn off Cellular Data and Data Roaming.Open Settings and tap Cellular, or Cellular Data, or Mobile Data. Then tap Cellular Data Options and turn off Cellular Data and Data Roaming.

Still planning your trip? Here are three ways to prepare:

Shop roaming plans with your carrier

Before you go: To avoid fees and higher rates, call your carrier or visit online to shop international roaming plans.

After arrival: Open Settings. Tap Cellular, or Cellular Data, or Mobile Data. Then tap Cellular Data Options and turn on Data Roaming and other settings suggested by your carrier.

Shop roaming plans with Apple SIM

Before you go: If you have an iPad with an Apple SIM, you can browse cellular data plans from select carriers in more than 90 countries, regions, and territories. 

After arrival: Go to Settings > Cellular Data and buy a roaming plan that fits your needs.

Buy or rent local SIM cards

Before you go: You can usually2 buy or rent a SIM card for a specific country or region. Learn more from travel guides and websites related to the country or region.

After arrival: Replace your current SIM card with the new one. You'll need the original when you return home, so put your original in a safe place.

1. When you turn off Cellular Data and Data Roaming, the cellular-data icon shouldn't appear in the status bar. Learn more about cellular data settings and usage.
2. To use bought or rented SIM cards, you need an iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular), unlocked iPhone, or SIM-free iPhone.

     cellular data options on iPhone

Check your data usage

If you exceed the data-usage limits of your international data plan, you might run out of data or notice slower network speeds. To check data usage, open Settings and tap Cellular, or Cellular Data, or Mobile Data. Then look under the heading called, "Cellular Data Usage."

Learn more about cellular data usage.

Get help when you have roaming issues during international travel

  1. Turn on Airplane Mode for about 30 seconds. Then turn it off again and let your iPhone automatically select the best network. 
  2. If you see No Service in the status bar of your iPhone, open Settings and tap Cellular, or Cellular Data, or Mobile Data. Tap Cellular Data Options and make sure that Data Roaming is on. Then, to check that international roaming is turned on for your account, contact your carrier.
  3. If the date and time are wrong after you arrive, go to Settings > General > Date & Time. Make sure that Set Automatically is turned on.

Still need help? If so, here's what to do:

  1. Go to Settings > Carrier and turn off Automatic. Wait until available networks appear, which might take two minutes.
  2. Tap the carrier that you want.
  3. Go back to the main Settings screen and wait for your iPhone or iPad to connect to the network.
  4. If you still need help, try a different SIM card or contact your carrier for more information.

 

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