Albania has now three operators left:
- Vodafone Albania
- One (previously Telekom Albania, formerly AMC)
- ALBtelecom (formerly Eagle Mobile, owned by TürkTelecom)
The services of Plus (owned by Plus Communications) were terminated in 2018 and the operator closed down.
Albania ended 2021 with 3.40 million SIM cards in use, compared with 3.19 million in the previous quarter and 3.43 million in 2020. According to data published by the Electronic and Postal Communication Authority, Vodafone Albania led with 1.49 million SIMs (-13.4% y/y), followed by One with 1.36 million (+15.1%) and Albtelecom with 550,191 (+4.3%).
2G/GSM is on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G/UMTS on 2100 MHz on all networks. 4G/LTE has launched in 2015 on all networks, but Plus. Licenses on 1800 and 2600 MHz (bands 3, 7, 20) were awarded to all three providers. In 2019 800 MHz (band 20) was given to Vodafone and One. 5G hasn't started yet.
In a benchmark test by Umlaut in 2021 One won with 895 points to be followed by Vodafone with 876 and ALBtelecom with 777 points. While Vodafone had a slightly larger coverage, download speeds of One were higher on average. OpenSignal confirmed these tests later and made Vodafone and One joint winners.
You can buy prepaid SIM cards in the shop of the providers showing a passport or photo ID for registration. You need to give your local address where you stay in Albania. eSIMs are not yet offered for prepaid.
Be aware that during summer time the mobile network operators may be very congested resulting in slow mobile internet speeds and limited coverage try to stick as more as possible on Wi-Fi networks.
Vodafone is still the market leader in Albania with good 2G and 3G coverage in the countryside. 4G/LTE has started in 2015. 4G/LTE is available in Tiranë, Gjiri i Lalëzit, Drimadhes, Durrës, Vlorë, Jalë, Dhërmi, Himarë, Sarandë, Fier, Elbasan, Shëngjin, Ksamil, Shkodër and Korçë.
Vodafone offers one prepaid plan to be added by different daily, weekly or monthly packages.
Their SIM card is sold in all Vodafone stores (store locator) as mini or micro SIM, other sizes can be cut.
Recharges can be made by sending the 12-digit code of the scratch card via SMS to 141 or through calling 142 from a Vodafone mobile number or through Vodafone e-top up. Check credit by sending a SMS for free with the text “Balance” to 141. Credit validity depends on the top-up amount.
If you top up online from 1000 Lekë and more you will gain 3 GB of free internet for 28 days.
A new SIM cards is sold for 800 Lekë and contains 300 Lekë initial communication time as well as 500 free SMS (valid towards Vodafone Club numbers for one month).
Data feature packages
Default rate for data is 0.976 Lekë per 10 KB.
For voice, SMS and data these monthly plans valid for 30 days are offered:
|Basic||100 mins||200||200 MB||600 Lekë|
|Start||400 mins||400||1 GB||1000 Lekë|
|Standard||1500 mins||1000||7 GB||1200 Lekë|
|Smart||3000 mins||1500||21 GB||1500 Lekë|
|Premium||3500 mins||2000||31 GB||2000 Lekë|
To check remaining allowances dial #123#. You can add up to 3 packs per month.
For data-only, they offer these plans:
|Ditore||100 MB||1 day||60 Lekë|
|Javore||1 GB||7 days||300 Lekë|
|Mujore||1 GB||30 days||500 Lekë|
|3 GB||1000 Lekë|
For additional data they offer:
- 300 MB to weekly packs: 100 Lekë
- 6 GB for 30 days: 800 Lekë
For the weekend (= Saturday 0.00h until Sunday midnight) they offer special options:
- 3 GB for one weekend: 200 Lekë
- 12 GB for 4 consecutive weekends: 600 Lekë
Activate by typing #123#.
For tourists Vodafone introduced a new offer in 2021 for 1500 Lekë with 15 GB plus 5 GB video (YouTube, Netflix, Twitch), 500 dom. mins, 100 dom. and internatl. SMS, 10 IDD mins all valid for 21 days. You can add another package for the same price. To check balance send empty SMS to 131 or go online. You can buy another package to extend or add local options. Note that there is no international roaming on this package.
According to the new roaming rules all domestic volumes are valid in the Western Balkans states: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia
Vodafone offers two data roaming bundles for Europe and beyond in Vodafone networks in Cyprus, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, BH Telecom Bosnia & Herzegovina, Mtel or Vivacom Bulgaria, A1 or Tele2 Croatia, SFR or Bouygues France, Vala Kosovo, A1 Macedonia, Telenor Montenegro, A1 Serbia, Si.mobil Slovenia, A1 Austria, Swisscom Switzerland, Proximus Belgium, Monaco Monaco, Rogers Canada and AT&T USA:
- 300 MB for 24 hours: 300 Lekë
- 1.5 GB for 10 days: 1300 Lekë
For the EU/EEA some further packages are offered, that are not worth the surcharge. To activate the bundle dial #123# -> 5 -> Roaming -> 1 (roaming bundles).
- APN: vodafoneweb
- Website (switch to English): https://www.vodafone.al
One (previously Telekom Albania, formerly AMC)
One was rebranded from Telekom Albania after it was sold by Deutsche Telekom in 2020 and is Vodafone's strongest competitor in Albania. In 2019 Telekom Albania was sold to an Albanian-Bulgarian group by the owners of Vivacom Bulgaria. In 2021 it was resold to Hungarian 4IG Group.
Its 3G network reaches already 91% of the country. They started 4G/LTE in 2015 on 1800 (B3) and 2600 MHz (B7) in Tiranë, Durrës, Elbasan, Shkodër, Fier, Vlorë, Korçë, Kamëz, Vorë, Lezhë, Peshkopi, Kukës and have reached most populated areas. It now has closed the gap and battles with Vodafone for the market leadership.
One's SIM card is available in all One Stores at least in all sizes: One shop locator.
Top-ups can be made in all One Shops through a recharge card, by credit card online on your One profile or app or through another mobile phone (mobile number) calling at +355681000141.
Data feature packages
The default rate for data is on all plans 9.994 Lekë per MB. One Albania offers different prepaid plans. These monthly combo packs are offered:
|Package||Data||Roaming Cap||Time||dom. Voice||Texts||Price||Extras|
|Ditore||400 MB||no roaming||1 day||50 mins||100 SMS||200 Lekë|
|Javore||1 GB||no roaming||7 days||300 mins||300 SMS||500 Lekë|
|AIl inclusive||15 GB||no roaming||21 days||500 mins||50 SMS||1500 Lekë||10 IDD mins,
5 GB for social & chat
|Unlimited S||200 MB||200 MB||30 days||100 mins||100 SMS||600 Lekë|
|Unlimited M||1 GB||1 GB||400 mins||400 SMS||1000 Lekë|
|Unlimited L||6 GB||2.06 GB||2000 mins||200 SMS||1200 Lekë||10 GB for music|
|Unlim. Beats||20 GB||2.57 GB||4000 mins||300 SMS||1500 Lekë||10 GB for music|
|Unlimited XL||30 GB||3.43 GB||4000 mins||500 SMS||2000 Lekë||10 GB for music|
All packages can also be bought through #100#.
For data-only they offer these plans without free roaming in the Western Balkans:
|Ditore||1 GB||1 day||200 Lekë|
|Javore||2 GB||7 days||400 Lekë|
|Mujore||2 GB||30 days||600 Lekë|
|8 GB||1200 Lekë|
For additional data they offer to monthly plans:
- 3 GB: 500 Lekë
- 5 GB: 600 Lekë
Like Vodafone and ALB Telekom, One offers a similar tourist plan. For 1500 Lekë you'll get with One 15 GB data, 5 GB extra for WhatsApp, Viber and social media, 500 domestic minutes, 10 international minutes and 100 domestic/international SMS, all valid for 21 days. You can add another tourist pack for the same price for more.
According to the new roaming rules all domestic volumes are valid in the Western Balkans states: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. Note the One imposes limits here called roaming cap in the table and bans certain plans from roaming.
One offers these data roaming bundles for Europe and beyond valid in Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Rep., Estonia, France, North Macedonia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, USA, Ukraine and the UK:
- 150 MB for 24 hours: 250 Lekë
- 700 MB for 7 days: 800 Lekë
- 1.5 GB for 14 days: 1500 Lekë
- APN: internet.t
- Website in Albanian and English: one.al
ALBtelecom (formerly Eagle Mobile)
State telco ALBtelecom has been merging the 3rd mobile provider that was previously called Eagle Mobile. It started with 3G in 2012. So the coverage is still limited and less then the two leading ones. 4G/LTE has started in 2015 in Tirana and is now available in many cities: coverage map.
ALBtelecom offers a standard voice plan for prepaid with data add-ons. They come in two sizes:
- for 100 Lekë: without any allowances
- for 500 Lekë: with 300 Lekë credit and 4 GB if you install the "Profili Im" app
They are sold in all ALBtelecom outlets (locator) at least as mini-SIM, other sizes can be cut to size.
The top-up online feature of Albtelcom works on some hours of the day if you top-up from 1000 Lekë and more you will get 4 GB as bonus.
Data feature packs
The default rate for data is 0.10 Lekë per 10 KB. These combo packs are offered valid for 30 days:
|Package||Data||Roaming Cap||dom. Voice||Texts||Price||Activation|
|Super Start||100 MB||150 mins||150 SMS||500 Lekë||START|
|Super 800||2 GB||1.2 GB||500 mins||500 SMS||800 Lekë||U800|
|Super 1100||4 GB||1.89 GB||3000 mins||500 SMS||1100 Lekë||U1100|
|Super 1300||12 GB||2.23 GB||2000 mins||1500 SMS||1300 Lekë||U1300|
|Super 1900||18 GB||3.26 GB||unlimited||1500 SMS||1900 Lekë||U1900|
Activation is by sending code to 131. Check balance by *100#.
The following data-only packs in up to 4G/LTE speed can be activated on the SIM:
|500 MB||24 hours||100 Lekë||ID100|
|1 GB||7 days||300 Lekë||IJ300|
|2 GB||30 days||500 Lekë||IM500|
|4 GB||750 Lekë||IM750|
|6 GB||1000 Lekë||IM1000|
|20 GB||1500 Lekë||IM1500|
|40 GB||3000 Lekë||IM3000|
Activation is by texting code to 138. Packages don't renew themselves. To check data consumption text 'Balance' to 138. For more data you can add:
- 2 GB for 30 days: 200 Lekë, activation: IE200
- 4 GB for 30 days: 400 Lekë, activation: IE400
They offer special weekend packs only valid from Saturday 0.01am to Sunday 11.59pm:
- 5 GB for one weekend: 200 Lekë, activation: W1 to 138
- 20 GB for 4 consecutive weekends: 600 Lekë, activation: W4 to 138
For nighttime use 11pm to 7am only they offer these packages:
- 5 GB for 7 nights: 100 Lekë, activation: N7 to 138
- 20 GB for 30 nights: 300 Lekë, activation: N30 to 138
They offer a Super Holiday Package for the 2021 season. For 1000 Lekë it includes 15 GB data, 1000 donestic minutes, 200 domestic SMS and 10 international mins all for 14 days. You can activate this package by "W100" to 131 on any Alb SIM or renew ahead of time. Not that there is no roaming on this packages. It works in Albania only. The IDD minutes are to Italy, Greece, Kosovo, Bulgaria, France, USA, Canada, Belgium, Germany, Turkey, England, China, Sweden, Spain, Romania, Poland and the Czech Republic. Balance check is by texting "Balance" to 145.
According to the new roaming rules all domestic volumes are valid in the Western Balkans states: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. Note the One imposes limits called roaming cap in the table and bans certain plans from roaming.
ALBtelecom offers a variety of roaming packages for data:
- 1 GB for 10 days valid in:
- Italy (on WindTre): 990 Lekë, activation: GigaRoaming Itali to 136
- Greece (on Wind): 990 Lekë, activation: GigaRoaming Greci to 136
- Turkey (on Türk Telekom and Turkcell): 990 Lekë, activation: GigaRoaming Turqi to 136
- Kosovo (on both operators): 990 Lekë, activation: GigaRoaming Kosove to 136
- Balance check: text "Balance" to 138
- APN: internet
- Website in English: https://www.albtelecom.al/en/individual/