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Airalo vs Nomad eSIM: which is better in 2024?

Airalo vs Nomad

Airalo is a popular eSIM provider known for its broad global coverage and budget-friendly rates. Their eSIM cards are designed for various regions and this makes them a favourite among travellers. Airalo has received a lot of positive feedback from its customers because of the simplicity of their mobile application, competitive pricing, as well as the flexible plans.

Nomad is another top eSIM provider focusing on high-speed internet and a smooth user experience. Nomad has eSIMs for international and local users, with plan choices for local, regional, and global use. Customers value Nomad for its good network performance, compatibility with a wide range of devices and great customer service.

The criteria for selecting an eSIM are similar to those of selecting a regular SIM, namely, coverage, price, and compatibility as well as additional features. You should evaluate your requirements based on factors such as the countries you’re visiting, the amount of data you need, and the length of your trip. The quality of customer support and the simplicity of the activation process are also essential factors.

In this article, I will compare Airalo and Nomad eSIMs in terms of pricing and plans, coverage and network performance, device compatibility, user experience, customer support, and additional features.

Airalo vs Nomad eSIM: comparison

Both Airalo and Nomad provide excellent eSIM services but differ in their strengths and target audiences. Here’s a quick overview of what each eSIM service provides:

AiraloNomad
Rating4.7 ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆4.6 ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
💰PricingFrom $4.50/weekFrom $5.00/week
🌍Countries200+110+
🗼Cellular networks3G, 4G, 5G, and LTE3G, 4G, 5G, and LTE
📱CompatibilityiPhones, iPads, Android phones, Windows-based laptopsiPhones, smartphones, tablets, laptops, mobile routers
📞Phone callsYes (Discover + Global plan)No
🛜Mobile hotspotYesYes
🕑Customer supportEmail, live chat, blog, FAQs, knowledge baseTicket support, FAQ

Airalo stands out with its extensive global coverage, supporting over 200 countries. This makes it perfect for frequent travellers needing connectivity in many regions

It supports a wide range of devices, including windows laptops and provides active customer support through email, 24/7 live chat, blog posts, FAQs, and knowledge base. Plus, Airalo supports phone calls with its Discover + Global plan.

Nomad, on the other hand, provides its services in 110+ countries, offering competitive pricing starting from $5. It supports a broad range of devices such as mobile routers and offers ticket-based customer services. 

Nomad is ideal for those users who plan to save their money but do not want to sacrifice the internet speed and connection quality.

eSIM plans and coverage

Both Airalo and Nomad offer a variety of eSIM options, including local, regional, and global plans. Airalo covers over 200 countries, providing extensive global reach, while Nomad covers over 170 countries, focusing on high-speed connectivity. Both of these providers let users choose various amounts and lengths of internet data.

However, Airalo offers more flexible plans with a wider range of data options ranging from a day to several weeks or more. The pricing plans of each provider vary depending on the country, region, and service duration. Airalo is generally cheaper with more options for broad regions.

ProviderCountriesPlan typesFlexibilityPrice variation
Airalo⭐200+Local, regional, global⭐Highly flexible$4.50/week(1GB) for 7 days and up to $49.00 for 30 days
Nomad110+Local, regional, globalFlexible$5.00/week (1GB) for 7 days and up to $90.00 for 90 days

Nomad vs Airalo eSIM pricing

Both Airalo and Nomad offer competitive prices and unique packages for travellers. Although both providers have their strengths, Airalo tends to have more affordable rates for local eSIMs in various countries. This cost advantage combined with broader coverage make Airalo a better value for most people. 

In the table below, we show the prices of 7-day eSIM plans in popular travel destinations.

Local eSIM planAiralo 7-day planNomad 7-day plan 
eSim in Japan$4.50$11.00
eSim in UK$5.00$5.00
eSim in Canada$6.50$5.00
eSim in Australia$4.50$10.00
eSim in Singapore$4.50$9.00
eSim in Indonesia$5.50$6.00
eSim in Turkey$4.50$10.00

In Japan, Airalo is significantly cheaper at $4.50 compared to Nomad, which costs $11.00. For the UK, both Airalo and Nomad are priced equally at $5.00. In Canada, Airalo’s rate is $6.50, whereas Nomad offers a slightly cheaper option at $5.00.

Australia sees a substantial difference, with Airalo costing $4.50 compared to Nomad’s $10.00. Similarly, in Singapore, Airalo is more economical at $4.50 compared to Nomad’s $9.00. In Indonesia, Airalo remains the cheaper option at $5.50, while Nomad costs $6.00. Lastly, in Turkey, Airalo is priced at $4.50, while Nomad is considerably higher at $10.00. 

Airalo consistently offers lower prices than Nomad for a 7-day, eSIM plan across all listed countries. Let’s now look at the regional comparison to further understand the pricing differences between Airalo and Nomad.

RegionAiralo CountriesAiralo price rangeNomad CountriesNomad price range
Asia18+$5 – $18521+$5 – $45
Africa36+$27 – $5920+$11 – $45
Europe39+$5 – $18548+$5 – $52
North America3+$7 – $463+$7 – $53

Overall, Airalo’s eSIM plans are cheaper than Nomad’s across all countries and regions. Both providers have an impressive number of countries, plans and flexibility. But due to its slightly cheaper tariffs and somewhat more extensive network coverage Airalo is more suitable for travellers.

Nonetheless, Nomad has its merits particularly in prioritising Internet connection speed and user experience; therefore, the service remains rather competitive and worthy of consideration depending on your needs and circumstances.

Payment methods

Both Airalo and Nomad provide numerous payment options. These include credit and debit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Alipay. This makes the purchase of eSIM plans flexible and convenient for users.

Whether you are a fan of the traditional means of payment or modern online wallets, both providers cater to your convenience; hence making the purchasing experience as smooth as possible. By integrating popular payment systems like Alipay, these services are accessible to a wider audience.

Supported devices

Both Airalo and Nomad support a wide range of devices and this ensures compatibility for most users.

AiraloAiralo supported devices:
  • iPhones, including iPhone 15 Pro Max, iPhone XR, iPhone XS, iPhone 14
  • Android Phones such as Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, Huawei Mate 40 Pro, Xiaomi 14 Pro
  • Tablets
  • Windows-based laptops
NomadNomad supported devices:
  • iPhones including iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max
  • Android Phones such as Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, Google Pixel 6 Pro, OnePlus 9 Pro
  • Tablets
  • Laptops
  • Other Devices such as mobile routers

Both of them support the most frequently used and newest models – Apple iPhones, Samsung Galaxy, and Google Pixel. The incorporation of the Windows laptops is a plus for any user requiring connectivity across different types of devices. 

Nomad’s support for mobile routers can prove useful for users that demand high availability of the Internet in different locations.

Which one is faster, Airalo or Nomad eSIM?

The speed of Airalo’s and Nomad’s eSIMs is determined by the local carrier and the type of network used, be it LTE, 4G, or 5G. Both providers deliver internet with different connection speeds depending on the country of operations and carrier agreements.

To account for these differences, we conducted speed tests in several countries to provide a comprehensive comparison.

CountryAverage download (Mbps)Average upload (Mbps)
Japan48Mbps14Mbps
UK50Mbps12Mbps
Australia37Mbps8Mbps
Singapore54Mbps9Mbps

Airalo and Nomad eSIMs offer comparable average download and upload speed in the tested countries. The speeds are more or less the same between the two providers, so users can expect consistent performance when using the eSIM.

User experience

Airalo and Nomad have similar eSIM management and activation experiences but their interfaces and features do differ.

Airalo’s eSIM Activation Process:

  1. Download Airalo app: Available on Apple Store and Google Play.
    Airalo app
  2. Purchase an eSIM plan: Browse and select a plan depending on your destination.
    Airalo plans
  3. Activate eSIM: Follow the on-screen prompts to install the eSIM profile for use on your device.
  4. Connect: After installation, navigate to the cellular settings on your device and select the Airalo eSIM network.

Nomad’s eSIM Activation Process:

  1. Download Nomad app: Both iOS and Android compatible.
    Nomad app
  2. Purchase an eSIM plan: Select a plan depending on the required travel duration.
    Nomad plans
  3. Activate eSIM: Scan the QR code in the app or manually input the eSIM information in your device settings.
  4. Connect: Turn on eSIM networks on your device.

Customer support

Both Airalo and Nomad offer various customer support options that differ significantly in terms of approach and responsiveness. 

Customer supportAiraloNomad
Live chatYesNo
FAQYesYes
Email supportYesYes
Ticket-based supportNoYes
KnowledgebaseYesYes

With Airalo, customers have access to a live chat that helps users to seek help in real-time, which is especially convenient when dealing with an emergency. Also, Airalo has support through email communication and numerous informational resources such as blogs, FAQs, and a knowledge base

When I contacted them, Airalo’s live chat took a few minutes to respond, and the email support took about 2 hours. The quick response time extended to complex, technical questions, and the answers provided were concise and informative.

Conversely, Nomad mainly offers ticket-based technical support, which may not be as timely. There is no live chat option available in the app, but users can create tickets and check their FAQs and user guides.

When I contacted Nomad, they replied in 4 hours. While Nomad’s support team performed well in handling the complicated issues I had, the absence of a live chat means that customers have to wait longer for solutions in comparison to Airalo.

Overall, the presence of a live chat feature and faster response times make Airalo a more convenient option for users requiring assistance in real-time, especially when it comes to troubleshooting or emergencies. Nomad’s support is thorough but slower, which might be less ideal for users requiring immediate assistance. Airalo is the clear winner in this category.

Nomad vs Airalo eSIM: additional values

Both Airalo and Nomad offer great eSIM features, but here’s what you need to know to pick the best one for you:

  • Adding more data: Airalo makes it super easy to top up your data whenever you need more. So, you’ll never be stuck without the internet. Nomad doesn’t have as many top-up options. They pack a lot of data into their plans, hoping you won’t need to add more often.
  • Making calls: With Airalo’s Discover + Global plan, you can make regular voice calls in addition to using data and this is a big plus if you need to call people. Nomad doesn’t offer voice calls; it’s all about the data with them.
  • Sharing your data: Airalo lets you share your data through mobile hotspots. Nomad supports data sharing too, but through mobile routers, which is great if you need strong internet across several devices for heavy use.

If you want flexibility, easy data top-ups, and the ability to make calls, Airalo is the way to go. But if you need lots of high-speed data and plan to use it across many devices without worrying about topping up, Nomad is a fantastic choice.

Conclusion: which eSIM is better?

Overall, Airalo is the better eSim provider. It covers over 200 countries globally, with plans starting at just $4.50, perfect for both short trips and long stays. Plus, Airalo offers voice call services with its Discover + Global plan and excellent customer support through a live chat, email and FAQs.

Nomad is also a great choice, especially if you need high-speed internet for multiple devices, including mobile routers. But, it’s a bit pricier and their ticket-based support system might not be the best if you need quick help.


You may also like to read:
Nomad eSIM review
Airalo eSIM review
Saily Review 2024: eSIM by Nord Security
Best eSIM for travel in 2024
Best eSIM for Europe
Best eSIM for USA travel in 2024
How to get cheaper flights in 2024
How to book hotels cheaper in 2024


FAQ

What are the differences between Nomad and Airalo?

Nomad focuses on high-speed internet and seamless connectivity with strong network performance and support for mobile routers. Airalo offers broader global coverage, more competitive pricing, and additional features like voice calls and live chat customer support.

Which one is better Nomad or Airalo eSIM?

Airalo is generally better due to its extensive global coverage, competitive pricing, and flexible plans. It also supports voice calls and offers responsive customer service. Nomad is strong in high-speed data and seamless connectivity but is slightly more expensive.

Which eSIM is better for Europe, Nomad or Airalo?

For Europe, Airalo is the better choice due to its wider coverage across 39+ countries, competitive pricing, and flexibility in data plans. This makes it a more cost-effective and versatile option for travellers in Europe.

Can Nomad eSIM be trusted?

Yes, Nomad eSIM can be trusted. It provides reliable high-speed internet, supports various devices, and offers thorough customer support. Users appreciate its seamless connectivity and strong network performance.

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