The Ultimate Newbie Guide to Thailand

Mobile Phones & SIM Cards in Thailand

Access to mobile phone calling and text messaging is not only handy, but also easy and inexpensive in Thailand with SIM cards being sold everywhere including thousands of convenience stores.

Mobile Phones
Thailand used two GMS bands: 900MHz and 1800MHz (same as Australia, Europe, Africa, most of Asia and some of Latin/South America). If you come from North America and some countries in Latin/South America you should have a quad-band phone.
The phone must be Un-Locked to accept a prepaid SIM card. Many phones can be unlocked in Thailand for ฿3-500.
Purchasing a ready to use cell phone in Thailand is quite cheap with new basic phones being available for as little as ฿600 (~$20). Used phones are also available.

SIM Cards
There are three main service providers in Thailand all offering prepaid SIM cards. AIS (12Call), True (TrueMove) and DTAC (Happy). In typical tourist areas all offer good reception and reasonable calling prices.
If you are in Thailand for just a short time and plan to make just a few local calls and text messages it hardly matters which one you choose. If on the other hand you want to maintain your number between trips (extended expiration), Internet access, extensive calling, and/or international calling you may want to do a bit of research.
It is very tough to say which is best as each have different key features and promos are a dime a dozen. As a starting point this summary may be of value.
AIS (12Call): Possibly lowest cost local calls and text messaging and shortest expiry (unless signing up for a promo that will likely increase per minute cost).
True (TrueMove): One year expiry from last Top-Up and usually least expensive international call options.
DTAC: Least expensive Internet access.

Promotions
All of the companies have countless and ever changing promotions. For example most will offer a week of free calls or text messaging for a discounted price and some of these are valid for certain hours (like day-time or night time). Other may include WiFi for a day, discount calling to a pre-defined group of people.
Note that some promotions are only advertised in Thai language, so asking a Thai girt to help may be beneficial.

Dialing instructions
The table below details the dialing instruction and commands/requests offered by each company.
Where a  is displayed the HTML version of this page provides additional information by holding the cursor over the icon. If viewing as a forum post click to link to HTML version.

Feature

AIS (12Call)

True (True Move)

DTAC (Happy)

Web Site

Click Here

Click Here

Click Here

Call Center

1175 (฿3/Call)

1331 (฿3/Call)

1678   (฿3/Call)

GMS Frequencies

900MHz & 1800MHz

900MHz & 1800MHz

900MHz & 1800MHz

3G

900MHz & 2100MHz

850MHz & 2100MHz

850MHz & 2100MHz

       

Top-Up 

120PIN

123PIN

100PIN9

Emergency TopU

 

 

1109 (฿60, ฿2 fee)

Check Balance

121

123

1019

Check Data Bal

1393

1233

10149

Check SMS Bal

See balance above

 

10129

Get WiFi User/PW

388

Text “wifi” to 9433  

 

Internet Switch

 

 

ON: 104719
OFF: 104729

Get Own Number

545

833

1029

Change Language

700 , 9, 9, 5, 1 (EN)

9304

N/A. Use 9 before for EN

Extend Expiry

5009
฿30 for 30 days

9344
3 baht per call

113DAYS9
30, 90 or 180 days  (฿2/30)

 

 

 

 

Check Int'l Rates

0050CC

 

004+CC+NUM 

Lowest Rates International Calls

00500+CC+NUM
As low as ฿3/min

00600+CC+NUM
As low as ฿1/min

04+CC+NUM
As low as ฿3/min

International Roam

125

93213 , 1

1189

 

 

 

 

Check Promotion

777

835

1039

Change Promotion

777 (฿30 fee per change)

9305 , 1 (? fee)

1003 (? fee)

 

 

 

 

Transfer Balance

1401NUMBAHT
฿10, ฿20, ฿50 or ฿100 (฿3 fee)

 

112NUMBAHT
฿20-200 (฿2 fee)

Transfer Expiry

1402NUMDAYS
5, 10 or 20 days (฿3 fee)

 

 

Top-Up for Friend

700 , 1, NUM, PIN

123PINNUM

 

 

 

 

 

Call Me Back

700 , 9, 4, NUM

 

114NUM9

The Ultimate Newbie
Guide to Thailand

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