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South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

United States
Level Contributor
50 posts
South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

Hello all!

We are traveling to South Afica and after much research have decided to order a sim card online beforehand from B4i.travel. You can take your unlocked cell phones and when you arrive at the airport you can visit the store in the terminal where they install the sim card and get you up and running. You receive your local number before leaving. I had a ton of questions before ordering and the Nationals Rental Manager has answered every one of them in a detailed and prompt fashion over email.

I like the convenience of not having to deal with RICA registration. I thought the prices much more reasonable that when we took our local phones to Europe through the AT&T network.

Let me know if anyone else has had a good experience with this company.

Thanks!

17 replies to this topic
Washington DC...
Level Contributor
4 784 posts
13 reviews
1. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

I've used them and found them fine. I emailed them a couple times to ensure I had my number ahead of leaving. BTW, as far as I know, you'll have to go through Rica Registration when you pick up your card. You'll need to present your passport to establish your identity; process doesn't take long.

Edited: 13 September 2017, 20:14
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
702 posts
16 reviews
2. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

We had nothing but trouble with buying from b4igo. You definitely pay a premium to buy the card and service before you leave home but the appeal is you SUPPOSEDLY get a number that you can give out to those at home and those you will be dealing with in South Africa. We bought before we left Canada - picked up our card (after a lengthy wait at the store in airport as they couldn't find our PAID reservation). Upon leaving the store we decided to try the phone - no service. Returned to the store where we waited again while they 1.Said we had not paid for any service until I produced the receipt and they phoned B4igo and found they had credited our service to another number. They corrected it and we were on our way - used the data a bit off and on but couldn't receive our phone calls and couldn't get or send text messages. We checked with Voda phone who explained the problems, said they corrected them and then a couple of days later found they hadn't changed anything. They aren't that motivated to help as they have already sold the service to B4igo and and B4igo says they can't help it's a Vodaphone problem! Two weeks in we find out that they had given us the WRONG # for the service - which we had given out to everyone! Their response was it was a typo and sorry!!! We would have had better, cheaper and faster service if we had waited until we arrived to buy the card and service.

Edited: 14 September 2017, 00:45
United States
Level Contributor
50 posts
3. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

Rats! I thought I was going to bypass the RICA certification. Glad it won't take long.

I'm trying to make reservations and everyone wants the local SA number. How long ahead of time did you receive your number?

United States
Level Contributor
50 posts
4. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

What a nightmare! Do you have any suggestions on what to do that would be better? We will be taking unlocked iPhones. We arrive very late at night and will only have transportation from the airport to hotel. I will need the number right away to check on the health of loved ones back home.

Washington DC...
Level Contributor
4 784 posts
13 reviews
5. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

If I remember correctly they'll send it within 2 weeks of your leaving. I emailed to make sure I'd get it...it was important to me to be able to leave the number with my family. Otherwise, I simply would have purchased a SIM on arrival.

Leeds, United...
Destination Expert
for Western Cape, Cape Town Central
Level Contributor
5 279 posts
625 reviews
6. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

I have never been asked for a local number when making reservations and I've made lots of reservations over the years.

Restaurants do ask but I either give them my uk number or the number of the accommodation where I'm staying.

You pay a big premium for this service but it's handy if you do need a local number before you leave. Otherwise just get a sim when you land. The registration process takes 5 minutes.

Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
702 posts
16 reviews
7. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

You do get the number but you won't get the actual SIM card until you go to the shop on landing. We didn't arrive until 10:30 pm and as the shop was shut we had to go back the next day ( we were aware of this ahead of time). We had stayed in the Hotel in the Airport so it wasn't that much of a problem and it would have been ok IF everything had worked as it should. I would wait until you arrive, buy a SIM card at a convenience or grocery store and call home with the number - MUCH cheaper.

United States
Level Contributor
50 posts
8. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

Thank you to those who posted their suggestions and experiences. Very helpful!

Washington DC
Level Contributor
4 posts
6 reviews
9. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

Hi, We are visiting South Africa in October and I'm really only interested in having internet access in case we get lost and local phone for things like dinner reservations in Cape Town for about 4 days so the B4i.travel card seems too expensive for my needs. Am I correct in assuming that the consensus is that I can buy a SIM card at most convenience stores once I arrive? What can I expect to pay for a minimal plan? I have to say that we have travelled many places and made do with no access and gotten along fine. This would be a little luxury. Thanks in advance for any advice.

Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
40 posts
10. Re: South Africa B4i.travel Sim Card

Anyone knows if Woolworths in Cape Town airport sell sim card? And do RICA registration?

Thanks

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