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BasicsEdit

There are 3 mobile networks in Latvia:

  • LMT
  • Tele2
  • Bite

2G/GSM is on 900 and 1800 MHz. Bite uses EGSM 900 (operating only on the edges of the 900 MHz band, so some old phones might not be able to cover it). 3G is on 900 and 2100 MHz with all operators. 4G/LTE is on 800 MHz (B20), 1800 MHz (B3) and 2600 MHz (B7).

In 2019 Tele2 and Bite signed a network sharing agreement for Latvia and Lithuania. The two operators’ networks will be merged, forming a joint shared network. This joint network will be built out gradually starting 2021, with the full network scheduled for completion by December 2023. Each party will hold 50% ownership in the joint venture.

The networks offer prepaid voice and data plans under different brand names like Bites Karte, LMT Karte, and Zelta Zivtiņa (on Tele2 network). Network coverage and speeds are best with LMT and Tele2, but Bite is only slightly behind and all are generally on a good level. LMT started 4G/LTE in 2011 on 1800 and 2600 MHz and covers already more than 90% of the population, 70% by LTE-A. Tele2 and Bite started in 2014 with LTE and are only slightly behind. Bite For rural areas all providers use 800 MHz now too. Amigo was the only MVNO in the country on the LMT network, but ceased own operations in 2019.

Starter SIM card packs and recharges are available at their shops, newsstands, kiosks like the ubiquitous Narvesen convenience stores, filling stations, supermarkets and other places. You don't need to show an ID or do any registration to get a Latvian SIM card.

EU flag
Latvia is part of the EU, where from June 2017 new international roaming rules are enforced based on the 'roam like at home' principle. However, Latvian providers are mostly exempt from the new rules because of their very low domestic prices. They either disable most EU roaming, apply surcharges or give out hardly any roaming data at the domestic rate. For specifics about the new regulation check the European Union article and the remarks given specific for every provider below.

LMT (LMT Karte) Edit

Lmt

LMT stands for Latvijas Mobilais Telefons and is owned by Telia and the state of Latvia. Its network has the best 3G and 4G coverage, while its 4G/LTE reaches more than 90% of population in 2016, 70% on LTE-A: 2-4G coverage map

Availability Edit

Their prepaid SIM is dubbed LMT Karte. It's available from LMT service centres (locator), service stations, newspaper kiosks, post offices and some supermarkets. The starter kit costs between €1.50 and €3, although LMT service centres deny the existence of the €1.50 starter kit, which can mostly be found in supermarkets, sometimes old stock but with a long expiry date by which it must be activated.

To activate the SIM call 29202010 and follow the instructions. You will be given an option to change language into Latvian, Russian or English.

Please note, a newly activated SIM card has no access to 4G (LTE) network — the user has to request that feature explicitly (it's free of charge) by calling 076 and asking the support to enable the LTE access.

Recharging Edit

Refill vouchers are available for €1.42, €2, €3.50, €5, €10 and €20 all over the country. You can recharge online using international credit card (Visa or MasterCard) online through this page. Most EU credit cards are accepted.

Account validity time varies and depends on last recharge amount. When your credits lifetime has expired, you can only receive calls and SMS messages but not make or send them. After some more time (as grace period) if not recharged, your number will be terminated without any way to restore it.

Recharge

amount

Credit

validity

Number lifetime

(grace period)

€1 10 days 70 days
€2-€4 30 days 90 days
€5-€9 60 days 120 days
€10-€19 120 days 180 days
> €20 240 days 300 days

You can check your account balance and expiry date by dialing *120*# (for free).

Data feature packages Edit

Standard rate is 6.05 cents per MB. LMT sells only weekly data packages (that are valid for 7 days) for their LMT Karte:

dom. data dom. voice dom. SMS EU cap Price Activation Deactivation
100 MB unlimited unlimited no cap €2 NSA NSA-
1 GB 10 mins unlimited 551 MB €1.50 NIA NIA-
unlimited 10 mins unlimited 918 MB €2.50 NIPA NIPA-

For activation text SMS with code to 1626. After using the included data volume, speed is throttled to 64 Kbit/s for the rest of the month. You can buy another weekly pack anytime. All packages auto-renew after one week if not cancelled. To check data balance, text the letter 'i' to 1626. Overuse will be charged on the standard rate. LMT also offers monthly package with unlimited calls, SMS/MMS and unlimited internet in Latvia (8.93 GB in EU) cost €24.89. To activate package, send text MV to 1626

Note that all texts for activation and checks are charged at €0.0213 and EU roaming at domestic rates is capped according to table above. The EU cap is the max. share of domestic data volume to be given out without surcharges.

Mobile Broadband SIM Edit

Their data-only SIM is called "Priekšapmaksas mobilā interneta SIM karte" = prepaid mobile internet card. It's sold at their agencies or at Statoil or some Narvesen outlets:

  • SIM-only valid for 120 days, preloaded with a weekly package (max. 10 GB / EU cap: 2.03 GB): €5.65
  • 4G USB dongle and SIM card, preloaded like above: €14.99

You can activate these two packages on this SIM:

  • daily (for 24 hours): 1 GB domestic data (EU roaming cap: 514 MB): €1.40
  • weekly (for 168 hours): 10 GB domestic data (EU roaming cap: 2.03 GB): €5.65

To activate, text DI for daily or NED for weekly to 29202010. SIM is for data only and not for calls. After having used up volume, speed will be reduced to 64/16 Kbit/s. New packages can be booked ahead of time up to 1 GB per day or 10 GB per week.

EU roaming Edit

LMT has chosen not to opt-out from EU roaming rules, but to use a rigid FUP cap on all plans where only a small share is given out at domestic rates for roaming in the EU. This data volume is specified above for every package. All volumes outside these limits are charged by the standard roaming rate of 6.05c per MB. One further monthly package is offered for roaming data in the EU:

  • 800 MB for 30 days: €4.22 , for activation: text 'ICE' to 1688

There is also a pass available for the Channel Islands, Isle of Man, Faroe Islands, Switzerland, and Turkey, as well as certain other countries further afield:

  • 1 GB for 15 days: €12.99, for activation: text 'PAS1' to 1688

More info Edit

  • APN for LMT Karte: okarte.lmt.lv
  • APN for Mobile Broadband: internet.lmt.lv
  • Website in Latvian and Russian: http://www.lmt.lv

Zelta Zivtiņa (ZZ, by Tele2)Edit

Tele2
Tele2 is mostly on par with LMT on 2G and 3G covering 95% with 3G and 90% on 4G/LTE open for prepaid. They don't sell prepaid SIM cards under their own brand Tele2 but through the brand Zelta Zivtiņa better known as ZZ meaning goldfish. For a 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE coverage map click on: šeit

Availability Edit

ZZ

Zelta Zivtiņa - prepaid brand of Tele2

Zelta Zivtiņa SIM cards are available in their stores (shop locator) , newsstands, kiosks like Narvesen, petrol stations like Statoil or Lukoil and others for between €1.49 and €3.99. The SIM has a default rate of €0.36 per day for 30 MB. Extra data is charged at €0.07 per MB.

To check account balance and expiration date, dial *245#.

You can use online management website Mana ZZ (available only in Latvian and Russian), and official mobile app (in Google Play) to check your account and modify packages.

They sell three different plans:

  • ZZ TRIO: €3.90 with 150 domestic minutes, 150 SMS domestic SMS and 150 domestic MB. Activation: Text 'TRIO' to 1616.
  • ZZ VISI: €4.90 for 30 days with unlimited calls and SMS in Latvia. Activation: Text 'V' to 1616.
  • ZZ EIROPA: €6.99 for 7 days with 60 mins, 60 SMS and 200 MB data, that can be used in EU roaming too. Activation: text 'E' to 1616
  • ZZ VISI BEZLIMITA DATI: €4.49 for 7 days with unlimited data and unlimited calls and 1000 SMS, activation: text 'DATI' to 1616.

To disable automatic renewal of plans go online to your personal account or text 'STOPATA' to 1616.

Data feature packages Edit

You can add these monthly packages to wach plan valid for 30 days (except XS package - is valid 7 days):

Package Data Price Activation
XS 100 MB €0.99 XS
S 500 MB €2.99 S
M 1 GB €3.99 M
L 2 GB €5.99 L

For activation, text code to 1616. Speed is up to 100 Mbit/s on 4G/LTE. Note that all package allowances can only be used in Latvia, not for roam like at home in the EU (see below).

ZZ Data SIM Edit

Furthermore, they sell a data SIM starter pack for €4.99 with 5 GB included valid for 10 days, which is on 4G/LTE too. The starter pack including an USB modem is for €11.99 , which doesn't support Windows 10. Data volume can be checked by texting T to 1616 or in Mana ZZ selfcare or their ZZ app. The following data packages can be added via refill bought in any kiosk or petrol station:

Data Time Price
5 GB 2 days €1.50
5 GB 7 days €3
5 GB 14 days €5
15 GB 30 days €10
25 GB 60 days €20

This data SIM only works in Latvia and doesn't offer international roaming.

EU Roaming Edit

EU roaming is only included with 200 MB in their ZZ EIROPA plan and not in any other data pack. The other 'plan' it works is charge per unit (no plan at all). Data is charged at €0.0093 per MB. There is available roaming packages for these countries (all valid 30 days and cost €9.99 , to activate send SMS to 1601 with activation code):

  • 400 MB for Russia: activation: RUS4
  • 500 MB for USA: activation: USA5
  • 1 GB for Switzerland: activation: CH1
  • 400 MB for Turkey: activation: TR4

To activate all roaming packages, you must have activated ZZ EIROPA plan before.

More info Edit

  • APN for voice and data SIM: internet.tele2.lv
  • APN for data-only SIM: data.tele2.lv
  • Website in Latvian, Russian and English: http://www.zeltazivtina.lv

Bite (Bites karte) Edit

Bite-0

new logo

Bite is the smallest network in Latvia, but has good coverage and speeds in 3G on 900 MHz which is not so common worldwide. In 2016 private equity firm Mid Europa Partners sold Bite to funds affiliated with Providence Equity Partners.

Bite's 4G/LTE covers already 90% of population in 2016: coverage map. Bite is the local partner of Vodafone, but its prepaid product can only be used in Latvia.

Availability Edit

Their prepaid SIM cards called Bites karte starter kits are available only in Bite stores (list), however the refill tickets can be bought also in Rimi, Maxima, Narvesen and Statoil shops between €1 and €5, mostly with a balance of €2.

Buy your refill vouchers for €2, €3, €5 or €8 there.

After inserting a SIM card in your phone, use a PIN code written on the card. You should make a first call (does not need to complete) to activate the SIM card.

All-in-one packages Edit

There are available 2 combo plans in Bite, all valid 30 days:

  • Bite Priekšapmaksa: unlimited calls and SMS in Latvia, 100 MB in Latvia: €4.75 , activation: B2 LV
  • Bite Priekšapmaksa Eiropa: 100 mins and 100 SMS in Latvia, 100 mins and 100 SMS to other EU countries, 100 MB in Latvia and EU: €6.75 , activation: BITE EUROPE

If overuse intenet in EU, you'll be charged at €0.14 per MB. To deactiavte, add STOP after activation code.

Data rates Edit

The first 5 MB per month are free on Bites karte. You don't need to activate a package, as default rate is cummulative according to your consumption:

  • up to 100 MB: €1.42
  • up to 500 MB: €3.56
  • up to 2 GB: €6.40
  • up to 6 GB: €9.96
  • up to 10 GB: €12.09

After, you'll be charged €0.04 per MB. For social media you can add internet packages for €1 per app for 30 days: Waze, Facebook, Viber and Draugiem. You need to text the name of the app to 1600.

EU roaming Edit

Note that all prepaid plans of Bite (except Bite Priekšapmaksa Eiropa) only offer national options in Latvia, internatl. roaming is blocked and you can't use it outside the country.

More info Edit

Amigo Edit

Amigo

Amigo operated by ZetCOM was the only MVNO in the country. It used the network of LMT in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE (see above) until 2019.

In June 2019 Amigo suspended its own operations and moved all customers to its host network LMT. No new SIM cards are given out anymore and all clients are being transferred to LMT.

More info Edit

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