Namibia is a country with a very low population density. But mobile phone coverage is quite good in populated areas and along the main highways. Some level of coverage is nearly always available throughout the country with exception to some National Parks (like Etosha), where you get data and phone services only in the rest camps.
In 2017 mobile coverage stands at 95% of population, but 4G is only available in large towns and some villages. Expect data speeds to be lower at other places.
Namibia has two major network operators:
- Telecom Namibia (TN mobile)
2G is on 900 and 1800 MHz, 3G on 2100 MHz only. 4G/LTE has started on both operators on 1800 MHz (B3) in major towns
Furthermore Paratus Telecom has a 4G/LTE network on 1800 MHz (B3) in Windhoek only and migrates its customers from WIMAX to TD-LTE 2600 MHz mostly for stationary use similar to Telecom Namibia's TD-LTE 2600 MHz home network in some towns.
Voice over IP (VoIP) can be used in Namibia over cellular data or WiFi.
All prices are without sales tax (V.A.T.) which is 15% in Namibia. So you'll need to add 15% to all prices given below.
MTC is the first mobile phone provider with the most customers in Namibia and a pretty good coverage: MTC coverage map . It's the recommended network for travellers. Coverage along the main (B) routes (at least for the routes tourists will travel) is very solid for voice/text, but data is only 2G (EDGE) outside of towns. 3G (UMTS) data is usually available when passing through towns of any size.
In June 2018 MTC has made 4G/LTE service available to its 2.2 million prepaid subscribers. MTC prepaid customers can now get internet service at significantly higher speeds and quality by accessing its LTE network service, which was only available to postpaid customers before. All customers accessing MTC's network with a 4G SIM card and a 4G-enabled device will automatically be supplied with the service.
You can find MTC shops called "Mobile Homes" in all shopping malls in Windhoek and also at the airport, when arriving at the Husea Kutako Airport (WDH). The airport shop is open between 6am and 9pm covering all international arrivals and is friendly and efficient (and seemingly trustworthy).. They also configure your phone and do all necessary setup.
You can get a prepaid SIM card called Tango for N$ 6.99. It can be used for voice and data. Tourists may be offered their MTC Traveller SIM card for N$ 19.95 with N$ 19 credit included. Micro- and Nano Sim cards are not always available, but the MTC shop at the airport cuts them for free.
You can find a list of "Mobile Homes": here Recharges can be bought throughout the country including street merchants.You can top up N$ 5-300 extending SIM life for 1 to 100 days depending on the amount. Check balance by typing *131#.
Data feature packages
After activation default tariff is N$1 per MByte. For data their bundles are all valid for 60 days:
|40 MB||N$ 13|
|80 MB||N$ 20|
|400 MB||N$ 85|
|800 MB||N$ 139|
|1.5 GB||N$ 235|
|3 GB||N$ 353|
|15 GB||N$ 1069|
To activate one of the packages, buy and activate sufficient credit (give it some slack), then send an dial *682# or *147# and follow the instructions. Add 15% taxes (VAT) to all packages. All bundles above are for 60 days. You can purchase multiple bundles.
Theirs are better combo option, called Aweh and are all valid for 7 days. Once data has been used, another Aweh package can only be activated after the end of day 7. To activate dial *682# or use MTC app.
- Aweh Gig: 1 GB data*, 100 mins, 700 SMS, 500 MB of WhatsApp: N$ 32
- Aweh Super: 3 GB data*, 100 mins, 700 SMS, 500 MB of WhatsApp: N$ 53
- Aweh O-Yeah(custom): 3 GB data, 100 MB of WhatsApp: N$ 29.56
*You can buy additional data(but expiration date remains the same) by dialing *682# and select Bundles->Data Bundles. Please note, doesn't work with "Aweh O-Yeah".
- APN: internet
- Homepage: http://www.mtc.com.na/
Telecom Namiba (TN mobile, formerly LEO, Cell One)
Telecom Namibia Ltd. Mobile was previously called LEO Mobile and Cell One and is also called TN Mobile. It's the smaller network with a slightly lower coverage and lower prices: TN Mobile National Footprint.
Telecom Namibia also runs a TD-LTE network on 2600 MHz (band 38) in some towns. This replaces their old WIMAX network and is intended for stationary home use mostly.
They offer two prepaid plans called 'Hola!' and 'Prepaid per Second' in their shops that have the same rate for data. Hola! has lower call rates per minunte, but a 30 second billing increment instead of Prepaid by second.
To top-up by voucher text the PIN to 124. To check balance type *124#.
Data feature packages
Data outside of bundles is N$ 0.90 per MB. These data bundles are on offer:
|20 MB||N$ 5||*130*20#|
|40 MB||N$ 10||*130*40#|
|60 MB||N$ 15||*130*60#|
|100 MB||N$ 23||*130*100#|
|300 MB||N$ 35||*130*300#|
|600 MB||N$ 99||*130*600#|
|1 GB||N$ 139||*130*1000#|
|2 GB||N$ 199||*130*2000#|
|5 GB||N$ 399||*130*5000#|
|10 GB||N$ 849||*130*10000#|
|20 GB||N$ 1049||*130*20000#|
|40 GB||N$ 1599||*130*40000#|
|50 GB||N$ 1999||*130*50000#|
|100 GB||N$ 3299||*130*100000#|
To all prices add 15% VAT. Recently TN has introduced "unlimited" data packages which are only limited by a FUP of 90 GB:
- unlimited for 24 hours: N$ 49 - activation: *130*49#
- unlimited for 7 days: N$ 299 - activation: *130*299#
- unlimited for 30 days: N$ 999 - actiavtion: *130*999#
To these rates 15% VAT are to be added for the final price.
Like MTC TN has combo packages as well which can be a better deal. Theirs are called Jiva and are all valid for 7 days:
- Jiva: 1.5 GB data, 100 mins, 700 SMS: N$ 30 - activation: *130*776#
- Jiva Plus: 2 GB data, 500 MB social media data, 100 mins, 700 SMS: N$ 35 - activation: *130*777#
- Jiva Surf: 2 GB data, 500 MB social media data, free surf at night (midnight-6am), 200 mins, 1000 SMS: N$ 40 - activation: *130*778#
- Jiva Supreme: 5 GB data, 1.5 GB social media data, free surf at night (midnight-6am), 200 mins, 1100 SMS: N$ 50 - activation: *130*779#
To all rates add 15% taxes.
- APN: internet
- Homepage: http://www.telecom.na/index.php/tn-mobile
Paratus Telecom holds licenses for 4G/LTE on band 3 (1800 MHz) in Windhoek and refarms its old WIMAX customers to 2600 TD-LTE (Band 38). It boast with the lowest prices for data in the country, but its network is limited to 4G/LTE and a very small area in the capital so far: 4G/LTE coverage area. That's why the are not recommended for travellers, but may be an option for stationary use in Windhoek. No voice calls or roaming are offered.
Their prepaid SIM card is called BYO and sold for N$ 95 in their stores. It contains 5 GB for 30 days.
Top-ups can be made through your online portal on their website by Visa and MasterCard.
Data feature packages
These prepaid bundles are offered for 30 days:
- 1 GB: N$ 15
- 5 GB: N$ 75
- 10 GB: N$ 150
- 20 GB: N$ 300
- 30 GB: M$ 450
- 40 GB: N$ 600
- 50 GB: N$ 750
- Website: https://www.paratus.africa/na/