- 1 Basics
- 2 Telcel
- 3 Movistar
- 4 AT&T Unidos Mexico
- 5 Unefon
- 6 Virgin Mobile
- 7 Cierto
- 8 Aló
- 9 Maz Tiempo
- 10 QUBocel
- 11 weex
- 12 Flash Mobile
- 13 Oui Móvil
- 14 OXXO Cel
- 15 FreedomPop
Mexico has 3 mobile network operators:
- Telcel (by América Móvil)
- Movistar (by Telefónica)
- AT&T Unidos Mexico (incl. Unefon)
MVNOs are starting up of which Virgin Mobile, Cierto, weex, Aló, Flash Mobile, Oui Movil, Maz Tiempo and QUBocel are shown in detail. MVNOs still only play a minor role in Mexico so far with only 1.2% of the market share in 2017 but are growing rapidly.
Mexico is Carlos Slim country. The telco tycoon has made his fortune here controlling the landline market with Telmex and the mobile market with América Móvil. His mobile provider is not called Claro like anywhere else, but Telcel in Mexico. It has a huge market share of more than 2/3 of the nation's subscribers.
2G and 3G are on 850 and 1900 MHz on all operators except AT&T that doesn't have 2G and Movistar is shutting down 2G, while 4G/LTE has started with Telcel and AT&T mainly on 1700 MHz (AWS Band 4), Movistar on 1900 MHz (Band 2) AT&T has 3G and 4G only, both on 1700 MHz.
In 2016/7 both Movistar and AT&T signed roaming agreements with Telcel to alleviate their lower coverage. According to an OpenSignal report coverage and speeds are lower than in the US, but better than further south in Central America. 4G/LTE coverage is available to about 3/4 of the population on all three networks.
Since 2016 another 4G/LTE network is deployed known as "Red Compartida". It's based on 700 MHz and sold on a wholesale base only. In 2018 it covered around 1/3 of the population and 92% is planned for 2023.
In contrast to the US most (82%) of Mexican mobile subscriptions are prepaid. You can get a prepaid SIM card, which is called chip anywhere in Mexico, from the major operators and their outlets for less than $100 plus some credit on it. There is no need to show an ID or give any address, but to be safe, take it with you, when you buy the chip. Top-ups can be made anywhere by top-up cards or direct top-up giving the phone number (in Spanish! or write it down) at the checkout of supermarkets.
Telephone numbers in Mexico are dialed as 10 digits within the country: <number> and +52 <number> from other countries. Mobile phones in Mexico share the same regional codes with landlines and don't have separate initial digits as most other countries do. Both landlines and mobiles are 10 digits long and start with the digits 2-9. (Be aware that, prior to August 2019, to reach a mobile phone from outside of Mexico a 1 was added before the phone number code. Some signs - and some messenger accounts such as WhatsApp numbers that were signed up before mid-2019 - may still be in the form of +52 1 <number>.)
Please be aware that prices quoted in '$' in this article are in Mexican Peso (MXN, MX$), not US$.
In 2015 AT&T started a price war in North American roaming by including the US and Canada at domestic Mexican rates. Now, all providers offer data, texts and voice roaming in all of North America without surcharges. When going north it's cheaper to keep your Mexican SIM card instead of buying a new one in the US or Canada. However, included roaming in the US and Canada is not for permanent use. It may be suspended when you use it for more than a month outside Mexico without going back and your foreign consumption exceeds domestic Mexican use.
Telcel is still the top dog in the country (see above) with 73 million subscribers or a solid 65% market share in 2017. It's still seen a the dominant provider in the country, but is increasingly challenged by AT&T.
Its prepaid line is called Amigo. It has the best coverage on 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE at the highest rates: coverage checker. 4G/LTE was available in 2018 on 77% of the population with an average download rate of 26 Mbps.
SIM cards can be bought from local Telcel dealers and outlets you'll find almost everywhere in the country or here for triple-cut SIM cards. There are three types of amigo SIM; Amigo sin Limite for $149, Amigo por segundo for $79, and Amigo Express for $29. To activate, you need to recharge minimum $20 for Amigo sin Limite and $50 for Amigo por segundo and Amigo Express. Amigo sin Limite will come with some kind of promotion (e.g. monthly credit bonus) but makes sense only if you are using for several months. For most tourists, Amigo Express ($29) will do. If the retailer don't have the $29 chip, just go to the Oxxo convenience stores nearby. At the airport of Mexico City there is an official Telcel store open from 9am-7pm. Otherwise, you can walk in one of the many Oxxo convevience stores in the country and buy a chip without any registration.
In Mexico you can recharge at the ubiquitous Oxxo stores throughout the country that all sell top-ups for cash only. You hand over your phone number to the cashier and it’s automatically added to your phone. Amounts of $10-500 are available, all top-ups of $100 have a validity of 60 days. Telcel sends a confirmation by SMS.
Top-ups can be done online on the Telcel website. The official Telcel site now accepts international credit cards, and PayPal is not longer accepted. You may also use 3rd party agencies like ding.com recharge.com or others. Beware that there are scam sites and even established websites charge you about 10% commission. To check balance, type *133#.
Telcel totally renewed their prepaid plans called Amigo. They have now three base plans:
- Amigo sin límite (= Amigo without limits): combo plan with set allowances for data, mins and SMS plus some social media valid all over in Mexico, US and Canada.
- Amigo por segundo (= Amigo per second): plan with a lower default rate for data, calls and texts valid in Mexico, USA and Canada to be added by packages.
- Amigo Óptimo plus sín fronteras (= Amigo ultimate plus without borders): plan with a higher default rate for data, calls and texts valid in Mexico, USA and Canada to be added by packages combined to a top-up bonus scheme that makes it cheaper, if you use it more.
You can change between plans by typing *264. First change is free, further changes are for a $ 29 fee. All three plans include calling, texting and surfing to as well as roaming in the USA and Canada at the domestic rate and some social media.
Amigo sin límite
This plan has combo packages with set allowances that are not only valid in Mexico, but in the US and Canada too. They include data, unlimited calling in and between these countries and some social networks.
If you balance falls below $20, data are charged at $0.85 per MB in all three countries.
Packages will not auto-renew, but normally a top-up of the equivalent value directly translates into one of these packs. For additional data you can add regular data packages (see below at Data feature packages). All packages include unlimited WhatsApp and calls in/to Mexico, USA and Canada. Data is valid in MX, US and CAN:
|$ 20||1 day||100 MB||200 MB||SL20|
|$ 30||3 days||120 MB||300 MB||SL30|
|$ 50||7 days||400 MB||500 MB||SL40|
|$ 80||13 days||500 MB||1 GB||SL80|
|$ 100||15 days||1300 MB||unlimited||SL100|
|$ 150||26 days||2000MB||unlimited||SL150|
|$ 200||30 days||3000MB||unlimited||SL200|
|$ 300||33 days||4000MB||unlimited||SL300|
|$ 500||33 days||6000MB||unlimited||SL500|
For apps Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and SnapChat data are included only in Mexico, unlimited WhatsApp is included in MX, US and CA in all plans, but not for VoIP calls. All packages include unlimited calls and SMS in/to/from Mexico, USA and Canada.
For activation or renewal text code to 5050 or type *133#. For one-time activation use code, for recurring activation add 'R' at the end of the code. To check remaining allowances and validity, type *133#.
Amigo por segundo
All incoming calls in Mexico, the US and Canada are free. All calls and SMS into these countries cost the same domestic rate. Data is the same in Mexico, USA and Canada at $0.85 per MB as default rate. For better rates add data packages (see below) or check the Óptimo plan.
This plan is similar to 'por segundo', but it's combined with a bonus scheme. All rates are the same from, to and within Mexico, USA and Canada. But default rates are much higher like for data at $1.98 per MB. As a plus you can combine this (and no other) plan to a top-up bonus scheme. For every top-up, some bonus extra credit is given:
- $10:+$2, $20:+$4, $30:+$6, $50:+$10, $80:+$16, $100:+$50, $150:+$80, $200:+$200, $300:+$300, $500:+$500.
As the bonus credit is valid as long as the rest of the top-ups and can be used for all purposes (Update May 2018: bonus credit cannot be used to buy data packs, only to pay by the MB or for SMS/calls), the Óptima plan gets cheaper when you top-up a high value and add data bundles.
Data feature packages
For short-time use this plan can be added:
- Internet por tiempo: 2 hours of unlimited data for $ 15. Activation: text 'ILIM30' to 5050 or type *133. Data is valid in Mexico only, not abroad.
To all Amigo plans and options these data packages valid in Mexico, US and Canada can be added:
|$ 20||1 day||120 MB||200 MB: FB & TW||Int20|
|$ 30||3 days||150 MB||300 MB: FB & TW||
|$ 50||7 days||400 MB||500 MB: FB, TW, IG, SC||Int40|
|$ 80||13 days||600 MB||1 GB: FB, TW, IG, SC||Int80|
|$ 100||17 days||1.5 GB||Unlimited:
|$ 150||28 days||3 GB||Int150|
|$ 200||30 days||4 GB||Int200|
|$ 300||33 days||7 GB||Int300|
|$ 500||33 days||13 GB||Int500|
All packages include unlimited WhatsApp in Mexico, USA, and Canada while the social media allowances are only within Mexico.
For activation text code to 5050 or type *133#. The activation code is for once-off purchases, for recurring packages add 'recurrente' to the code. To stop auto-renewal text 'BAJA RECURRENTE' to 5050.
Note that included roaming of the packages in the US and Canada is not for permanent use. It may be suspended when you use it for more than 29 days outside Mexico without going back and your foreign consumption exceeds domestic Mexican use.
Telcel offers packages for roaming in their Claro networks in Latin America in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Rep., Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay:
- 150 MB for 24 hours: $ 129, activation: DPR15
- 750 MB for 30 days: $ 499, activation: 750US
- 2 GB for 30 days: $ 999, activation: 2000US
Their Latin American rates are not competitive compared to their North American rates. Activation is by text to 5050.
- Tethering is available without extra charges
- APN: internet.itelcel.com
- Username: webgprs
- Password: webgprs2002
- Website (mostly in Spanish): http://www.telcel.com
Movistar was the only real competitor of Telcel in Mexico until AT&T arrived in 2015. Although it doesn't have Telecel's or AT&T's coverage, it gives out data cheaper and suffers from less congestion as Telecel, as it cares only for 22% of the market in 2017: 2G 3G coverage map 4G coverage map.
Movistar has announced to shut down their 2G network on 1900 MHz within 2019 in order to free bandwidth for 4G and 5G. The 2G shutdown began in Feb. 2019 in Merida to be phased out totally by the end of 2020. For Movistar you need a 3G or 4G/LTE-abled device.
Movistar has expanded its 4G/LTE network to 23 new markets and 500 rural communities, via the deployment of 1700 new VTS stations including Aguascalientes, Cancun, Cuernavaca, Merida, Torreon, Veracruz and Villahermosa. It's still no.2 in the country with a market share of 23%.
In 2016 Movistar signed a national roaming agreement with the leading provider Telcel in 2G/3G for voice, text and data. National roaming on Telcel started in April 2017 with Movistar having much better coverage in about 1,500 towns where Movistar has yet to roll out own infrastructure. But roaming first excluded 4G/LTE and Movistar ended up with the lowest coverage and slowest speeds of all 3 providers according to network tests.
The starter pack called chip prepago can be bought in any Movistar dealer in Mexico, with most airports having one shop locator or many other stores like 7-11 and Walmart. The prepaid SIM card costs $60, sometimes free with top up of $100 or so.
Top-ups can be made in a lot of stores: Recharges of $10-500 are available giving you 10 to 90 days of validity. Alternatively, you can try topping up online via a 3rd party recharge service.
All Movistar plans, including prepaid plans, are throttled to 1 Mbps after 1GB/day of transfer (resetting every midnight CT).
Their current prepaid plans are called:
- Prepago Simple (Prepaid Simple)
- Prepago Ilimitado (Unlimited Prepaid)
The latter is a set of plans with higher allowances for social media, the first is the base plan to which internet packages can be added. Movistar gives high bonuses on recharges:
|$ 10||3 days||WA|
|$ 20||3 days||WA|
|$ 30||3 days||300 MB||200 MB WA, FB, TW||unlimited
to MX, US
|$ 50||7 days||500 MB||1 GB: apps|
|$ 100||17 days||1.4 GB||unlimited
|$ 150||20 days||2.1 GB|
|$ 200||30 days||3 GB|
Free WhatsApp(WA) allowance includes VoIP calls. Unused data is rolled over up to 4 GB if a new plan is bought.
Data feature packs
To their Prepago Simple plan you can add data packages and data packages with extra app allowances:
|250MB||1 day||$ 10|
|500MB||2 days||$ 20|
|750 MB||3 days||$ 30|
|1250MB||5 days||$ 50|
|2500MB||15 days||$ 100|
|3500MB||25 days||$ 150|
|4500MB||30 days||$ 200|
|Data packages + apps:|
|35 MB||1 day||$ 10||1 GB WA|
|100 MB||3 days||$ 30||1 GB
FB TW, WA
|200 MB||5 days||$ 60|
|450 MB||7 days||$ 80|
|750 MB||21 days||$ 120|
|1.5 GB||30 days||$ 200||2 GB
FB TW WA
|3 GB||30 days||$ 300|
Prepago Ilimitado plans include a combo plan with unlimited calls and texts to MX, USA and CAN, a data allowance, roaming allowance and some included apps:
|$ 10||1 day||15 MB||1 GB WA|
|$ 20||2 days||30 MB|
|$ 30||3 days||75 MB||1 GB
WA, FB, TW
|$ 40||5 days||150 MB|
|$ 75||15 days||200 MB||$ 75|
|$ 150||30 days||650 MB||$ 150||2 GB
WA, FB, TW
|$ 200||30 days||1.2 GB||$ 200|
|$ 250||30 days||1.5 GB||$ 250|
|$ 300||30 days||2 GB||$ 300|
- activate and/or change plans: USSD #100# then follow menu
- APN: internet.movistar.mx
- Username and password: movistar
- Website: http://www.movistar.com.mx in Spanish
AT&T Unidos Mexico 
AT&T, the telco giant from the US, bought both providers Iusacell and Nextel in 2015 and rebranded them. They have invested some billion pesos into improving their limited network.
AT&T Unidos has closed down its 2G/GSM network in 2017. So you need a 3G- or 4G-enabled device for AT&T like in the US. 3G is on 850 and 1900 MHz, 4G/LTE is on 850, 1900, 1700 and 2600 MHz which translates into bands 2, 4, 5, 7 and 66.
In 2017 they have covered the 2/3 of the population in 171 cities by 4G/LTE, and plan to cover more than 80% by 2018. They have only a 11% market share, but gained 1/3 of all users within the last year and own 42% of the national bandwidth: AT&T coverage maps.
In summer 2017 AT&T announced a national roaming agreement with dominant provider Telcel like Movistar has done before, but AT&T's agreement includes some 4G/LTE roaming too. This has expanded their coverage quite a lot and closed the gap to Telcel. The latest OpenSignal test in Nov. 2018 found AT&T leading in 4G coverage with 82%, but speed was slower at an average 15 Mbps. Telcel on the other hand covered 77% with 26 Mbps, Movistar 67% with 17 Mbps by 4G/LTE.
SIM cards when bringing your own device can be bought in many stores (locator). In Elektra, Coppel, Famsa, Walmart and Bodega Aurrera stores they are often for free with a mandatory top-up, in other places up for $100 or $200 with the according Más plan included.
They basically offer two plans:
- AT&T Más (AT&T More)
- AT&T por segundo (AT&T per second)
The por segundo plan always stays on the default rate of $0.85 per MB without the chance to add packages. So the only viable plan for data is called AT&T Más.
Reloads are available in denominations of $10, $20, $30, $50, $100, $150, $200, $300, $500 and $1,000 valid for 1-60 days depending on value. They are sold in stores all over Mexico.
You can recharge your credit online with the Mi AT&T app, available in the Google Play and Apple App Store, or the Mi AT&T website. Alternatively, you can also recharge through third-party websites, like UnDosTres.
AT&T Más plan
This the main prepaid plan called AT&T Más. Default data is at $0.85 per MB. The different allowances depend on the top-up made every month:
|$ 30||300 MB||3 days|
|$ 50||500 MB||5 days||$ 5|
|$ 100||1 GB||14 days||$ 10|
|$ 150||1.5 GB||28 days||$ 15|
|$ 200||2 GB||35 days||$ 20|
All plans include unlimited calls and texts. Voice, texts and data are valid in and to both the US and Mexico without surcharges. Canada has been excluded recently. Unlimited social apps (Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat) are added.
The bonus $ called Moneda is airtime and can be used for all other purposes.
Both Nextel and Iusacell brands have been discontinued by AT&T in 2016/7.
AT&T offers roaming packages for some Latin American countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Rep. Dominicana, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Trinidad & Tobago and Uruguay valid for 30 days:
- 60 MB:$ 119
- 100 MB: $ 149
- 250 MB: $ 299
- 500 MB: $ 499
- 1GB: $ 799
- APN: modem.nexteldata.com.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://www.att.com.mx/
Unefon merged with Iusacell in 2007, but kept its own brand. Back then, it was a CDMA-only operator, not compatible with GSM. In 2015 Nectel and Iusacell/Unefon and merged into AT&T. Unefon is kept as second brand for low-end prepaid users with a very similar portfolio to AT&T.
In 2016, AT&T Mexico shutdown their CDMA network in order to make way for LTE services. Today Unefon operates on AT&T's network in 3G and 4G/LTE. For all network information check AT&T above.
The prepaid SIM is sold for $ 80 in their shops and Waltmart, Elektra, Coppel and others (store locator). It may be cheaper in promotion or more expensive with credit pre-loaded.
Recharges can be made in 400,000 stores in Mexico and the US (locator) from $10.
They offer two plans for prepaid:
- Unefon por segundo
- Unefon Recargas Ilimitadas
Unefon por segundo stays on the default rate of $ 0.85 per MB without any packages offered-
Recargas Ilimitadas plan
In 2019 they've introduced their new Recargas Ilimitadas plan and replaced previous Unefon plans. To change to this plan dial *611 and choose option 6.
The layout is very simple: every day (24 hours) $10 are debited for "unlimited" services. You can place unlimited calls and texts from Mexico to MX, US and CAN. Though data use is more restricted: no roaming outside Mexico included, no hotspot use (tethering) and beyond 5 GB per day speed will be throttled to 1 Mbit/s. This will be reset on the next day.
Unefon has notified users that its unlimited data plan will be limited to 1 GB of data a day starting on 18 January 2019. The operator is set to stop new subscriptions to its 'Unefon Ilimitado' plan in the next few days, but existing users will be able to continue enjoying the benefits of the offer, albeit with a daily data consumption reduced from 5GB to 1GB. Anyone exceeding the limit will have their speed reduced to 500 Kbps.
You can use your balance for other services too, but it will be charged at an additional rate. When your balance falls below $ 10, every "event" will be charged at $0.50. To use this plan you need to top up at least $ 70 within a period of 30 days.
- APN: web.iusacellgsm.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://www.unefon.com.mx/
Virgin Mobile started in 2014 as second MVNO in the country and has grown to its largest. It uses the network of Movistar in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE (coverage map).
- 1.5 GB + 200 mins: $ 69
- 3 GB + unlimited mins: $ 99
- 5 GB + unlimited mins: $ 149
To activate, you need to register online or at the outlet and make a recharge.
You can top-up online by credit card $10-500 or at the outlets shown on the top-up site like Oxxo, 7-Eleven and many more starting at $20. Check balance by typing *188#.
Data feature packages
You can add one of these packages: <update>
All included voice minutes are to Mexico, the US and Canada too, but no roaming included. 50 SMS are added to each pack. All data outside of these packages are charged at $1 per MB. Packages are activated online or through their app.
- APN: internet.virginmobile.mx
- Website in Spanish: https://www.virginmobile.mx
Cierto by Ekofon is another MVNO that piggybacks on Movistar's 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE network. It started as first MVNO in the country in 2014 and offers reasonable rates for data.
Top-ups can be made at 20,000 points like 7-Eleven or Walmart or any Movistar reload will do too.
Data feature packages
Default rate is $ 0.85 per MB. These combo packs are offered with calls to Mexico, US and Canada and some other countries and a data quota:
|$ 10||3 days||1440 mins||20 MB||100 MB WA|
|$ 20||7 days||3360 mins||30 MB||100 MB WA|
|$ 30||7 days||3360 mins||60 MB||350 MB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 50||10 days||4800 mins||300 MB||500 MB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 60||10 days||4800 mins||330 MB||500 MB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 70||10 days||4800 mins||360 MB||500 MB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 80||10 days||4800 mins||400 MB||500 MB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 100||21 days||10,080 mins||800 MB||1 GB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 120||21 days||10,080 mins||850 MB||1 GB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 150||30 days||14,400 mins||850 MB||1.5 GB WA, FB, TW|
|$ 250||30 days||14,400 mins||2 GB||1.5 GB WA, FB, TW|
To activate bundles you need to log in your account or call *767. WhatsApp's VoIP is not included.
- APN: internet.cierto.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://cierto.com.mx
Aló was the first viable MVNO (or rather subsidiary) on the network of Telcel in Mexico in 2015. Unfortunately, it still doesn't have a good data deal yet and doesn't offer 4G/LTE, and therefore can't be recommended so far.
Their prepaid chip is sold for $29 in Telcel stores and many authorized dealers throughout the country with a $ 10 credit. You can activate it by a top-up of $10 or more. Top-ups can be made in all 7-Eleven stores from $10 to $500 giving 10 to 60 days of validity. To check balance, dial *611.
While Aló copies the default rate of Telcel at $0.85 per MB, it doesn't offer any of their data packages. So all data will stay at the high default rate. That's why it can be recommended for data use up to now.
- APN: internet.alo
- Website in Spanish: http://alo.mx/alo.html
Maz Tiempo is another MVNO on the Movistar network in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE that is on the market since 2014.
Data feature packages
Default rate is $ 0.85 per MB and these packages are offered including unlimited on-net calls and texts:
|Redes 15||$ 25||no||unlimited FB, TW, WA||15 days|
|Navega 500||$ 50||500 MB||unlimited WA||15 days|
|Navega 600||$ 75||600 MB||unlimited FB, TW, WA||15 days|
|Navega 1000||$ 100||1 GB||unlimited FB, TW, WA||21 days|
|Navega 1300||$ 150||1.3 GB||unlimited FB, TW, WA||25 days|
|Navega 2200||$ 200||2.2 GB||unlimited FB, TW, WA||30 days|
|Navega 3000||$ 299||3 GB||unlimited FB, WA, TW||30 days|
|Navega 5000||$ 499||5 GB||unlimited FB, WA, TW||30 days|
|Navega 10000||$ 899||10 GB||unlimited FB, WA, TW||30 days|
- APN: internet.maztiempo.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://www.maztiempo.com/
QUBocel is another MVNO that started in 2014 on the Movistar network in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE.
SIM cards are given out for free either online or in their few shops. Recharges can be made in 100,000 where you can top-up Movistar or online. Check balance by texting 'SALDO' to 777.
Data feature packages
They have these base plans with unlimited on-net calls and texts:
|$ 20||100 MB||100 MB WA||1 day||DIA|
|$ 50||300 MB||100 MB WA||7 days||SEMANA|
|$ 100||400 MB||500 MB WA, FB ,TW||15 days||QUINCENA|
|$ 200||1.5 GB||1 GB WA, FB, TW||30 days||MES|
For activation text code to 111. A day is calculated until midnight. You can add these data package valid for the rest of the running time of the base plan:
- 100 MB: $ 20 - activation: 100MB
- 250 MB: $ 50 - activation: 250MB
- 700 MB: $ 100 - activation: 700MB
- 1.5 GB: $ 200 - activation: 1500MB
Activation by texing code to 111. To check data balance text 'SALDO' to 777.
- APN: qbocel.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://qbocel.com/
weex is a new MVNO that has started in 2016 and piggybacks on the Movistar network in 2G, 3G and limited 4G/LTE. It's youth-oriented, but accessible to the general public.
All management like booking of packages can only be done through their app available for Android and iOS in Spanish. But they decided for whatever reason to geo-restrict distribution in Google and Apple Stores. As alternative to that, weex also offers maintenance of your connection via weex.mx/webapp , where you need to log in (directly or via facebook).
You can purchase their SIM card for $50 at outlets of 7-Eleven, Extra and Circule K or for free online to be delivered to a Mexican address. Users had a hard time finding this SIM card in stores. Only realistic way to find one is to try by chance or to have it delivered to a Mexican address. Most stores carry only Telcel SIM cards.
You can top-up your SIM at every of the 40,000 Movistar recharge points in the country as Movistar.
Data feature packages
Default rate outside of packages is $0.70 per MB. They customizable data plans valid for a week:
- 20 MB: $ 8
- 30 MB: $ 10
- 50 MB: $ 15
- 75 MB: $ 19
- 100 MB: $ 20
- 125 MB: $ 24
- 150 MB: $ 26
- 250 MB: $ 32
The also offer plans for 15 or 30 days.
They offer many different bundles to be used with special apps:
- for Facebook, messaging, Match, Twitter, Email, YouTube, SnapChat, Spotify, Netflix, games, minutes, SMS and Instagram. For details check this list.
- APN: internet.weex.mx
- Website in Spanish: http://weex.mx
Flash Mobile started in 2016 on the network of Movistar in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE (for details check Movistar above).
The SIM card is sold for $40 by some retailers and online. You can top-up from $100 by credit card online or go to any Oxxo kiosk, Walmart, Bodega Aurrera in the country.
Data feature packages
Default rate is $0.69 per MB. They offer these combo plans with unlimited calls, texts and social media included:
|$ 100||1 GB||15 days|
|$ 150||1.5 GB||30 days|
|$ 200||2 GB||30 days|
|$ 300||2.5 GB||30 days|
|$ 500||5 GB||30 days|
|$ 1000||10 GB||30 days|
Unlimited social media includes Facebook (no streaming), Facebook Messenger (no VoIP or video calls) , WhatsApp (with VoIP, no video calls), Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter. Activate through *444#.
- APN: apn.flashmobile.mx
- Website in Spanish: https://www.miflashmobile.mx/homepage
Oui Móvil is a MVNO that started in 2017 on the network of Telcel in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE (for details check Telecel above). It's based on an agreement with the Elektra Group.
That's why their SIM cards are exclusively sold in Elektra stores, one of Mexico's biggest retailers (store locator). They are free, but you need to activate one of their plans.
Recharges are by app with credit card or buying reloads in Elektra stores.
Data feature packages
Data by default is $ 0.75 per MB. All plans include unlimited calls and SMS to Mexico plus this data quato for 30 days:
|$ 29||500 MB WA|
|$ 40||100 MB||500 MB WA, 300 MB FB, TW|
|$ 60||300 MB||500 MB WA, 300 MB FB, TW, 200 MB SN, IG|
|$ 80||500 MB||500 MB WA, 300 MB FB, TW, 200 MB SN, IG|
You can add these data packages for more general data:
- for 7 days: $ 50: 150 MB, $ 100: 500 MB, $ 150: 750 MB
- for 14 days: $ 120: 1 GB, $ 200: 1.7 GB, $ 250: 2 GB
- for 30 days: $ 200: 1.5 GB, $ 300: 2.2 GB
Activation is through their app or by calling *311.
- APN: internet.mvne1.com
- Website in Spanish: https://ouimovil.com.mx
OXXO Cel is a new MVNO that started at the end of 2019. It uses the network of Telcel in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE through an agreement with FreedomPop. It's only sold in a limited area in Oxxo convenience stores.
Their SIM card is exclusively sold in the ubiquitous OXXO convenience stores with more than 17,000 branches in the states of Zona Metropolitana (Mexico City), Jalisco, Estado de México and Nuevo León. The SIM (“chip”) costs $29. To activate the chip, you need to purchase a top-up (“recarga”) of at least $50.
Top-ups can be made in Oxxo stores all over the country or online.
Data feature packages
The following data packages are available. (Data limits reflect increased/promotional limits which are ongoing as of May 2021.)
|Voice and SMS||Duration||Price|
|120 MB||300 MB||unlimited
|3 days||$ 30|
|800 MB||500 MB||7 days||$ 50|
|1 GB||1 GB||13 days||$ 80|
|2.6 GB||unlimited (only in Mexico), Attention: WhatsApp and FB Messenger blocked in USA||15 days||$ 100|
|4 GB||26 days||$ 150|
|9 GB||30 days||$ 200|
“Social networks” data currently includes most features of Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Twitter, and WhatsApp (according to the Terms and Conditions of the individual packages, which can be found via https://oxxocel.com/paquetes), but notably do not cover voice and video calling.
- Website in Spanish: https://www.oxxocel.com/
- APN: internet.mvne1.com
In 2017 FreedomPop from the USA started in Mexico as their 4th country of operations. It uses the good network of Telcel in 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE for voice, texts and data.
FreedomPop uses a business model called 'Freemium' that provides users with a limited amount of free data and phone service and makes money by selling devices and extra features like voice mail and faster data and by charging overage rates for data, texts and minutes after the free allotment is used up. More than half of all their customers buy add-ons for pay that are not so cheap after all.
As a freemium provider FreedomPop needs users to sign up for add-on services. They make it easy to add extra cost plans and services, but quite hard to remove them. When you order their 'free SIM', by default you get signed up for multiple offers and add-ons which are advertised as 'free trials'. However they are only free for the first month, if you don't cancel them before the month is up, they will automatically renew and you will be charged for subsequent months. To disable extra cost services you don't want: Go to My Account > Services and click the Deactivate link next to the services name. Note, that free customers don't get any customer support whatsoever.
The "free" SIM card is only available ordered online from Mexico to an Mexican postal address for a $50-60 fee depending on location. It needs to be linked to an international credit card and 3-4 days delivery time may expire. For their start in 2017 they only give out local numbers of Mexico City, Gualdarajara, Monterrey, Puebla and Toluca, but the nationwide Telcel network can be used.
Free Roaming in the USA and Canada
With the exception of the free 'Gratis' plan, users can roam in the USA and Canada for free using the data included with their paid package.This actually makes the SIM an interesting option for cheap prepaid data in the USA and Canada, though it's not clear if FreedomPop allows this on a long-term basis.
Users on the free plan will simply receive a "service not available" message (in Spanish) in the USA and Canada.
FreedomPop offers three monthly plans to choose:
- Plan Gratis: for free - 50 dom. mins, 50 dom. SMS, 50 MB data, 50 MB social networks
- Plan Access: $ 100 - unlimited voice and SMS to Mexico, USA, Canada, 350 MB data, 1150 MB social networks
- Plan Super: $ 150, for free in the 1st month - unlimited voice and SMS to Mexico, USA, Canada, 850 MB data, 1450 MB social networks
- Plan Mega: $ 200 - unlimited voice and SMS to Mexico, USA, Canada, 1050 MB data, 1950 MB social networks
- Plan Pro: $ 300 - unlimited voice and SMS to Mexico, USA, Canada, 2050 MB data, 2950 MB social networks
- Plan Ultra: $ 500 - unlimited voice and SMS to Mexico, USA, Canada, 4050 MB data, 2950 MB social networks
Social networks include only Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp. The Basic Plan is discounted for free in the first month only. It will be automatically enabled when ordering the SIM card. To keep your plan for free you have to manually disable this Basic plan in your account before it auto-renews after the first month is over.
For extra data FreedomPop offers these add-ons valid for the rest of the running time of the base plan:
- Megas 200: $ 20 - 50 MB data, 150 MB social networks
- Megas 550: $ 50 - 100 MB data, 450 MB social networks
- Megas 1200: $ 100 - 200 MB data, 1000 MB social networks
- APN: internet.mvne1.com
- Website in Spanish: https://mx.freedompop.com