Porto – known for Port wine, for having a river splitting the metropolitan area & for being a UNESCO World Heritage site.
While Lisbon may be a more popular travel destination, many travelers who visited both cities say they enjoy Porto more.
But that is probably because of Porto's wine 🤪.
Anyway, writing a list of all the cool things to do in Porto would require another blog post (or a dedicated Porto blog), so I will save you from that because you want to know what SIM card and eSIM options are available at the airport.
So, what SIM cards are available at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport?
You can get a Vodafone Portugal SIM card for 20 EUR (21.15 USD) or 30 EUR (31.70 USD) at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport.
For SIM cards sold at an airport, these prices are not bad at all!
Anyway, let's see what Vodafone Portugal has to offer at the airport.
Original publication: 28th of February 2022. Last updated: 18th of February 2023.
Table of Contents
Mobile Operators in Portugal
Before I tell you about the SIM card and eSIM options you have at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, you first need to know about all the mobile operators in Portugal.
Portugal has three mobile operators and seven Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) offering prepaid services easily accessible to tourists:
- NOS Portugal
- Vodafone Portugal
- Lycamobile Portugal (Vodafone Portugal MVNO)
- Moche (MEO Portugal youth sub-brand)
- Nowo (MEO Portugal MVNO)
- UZO Portugal (MEO Portugal MVNO)
- WOO (NOS Portugal MVNO)
- WTF (NOS Portugal youth sub-brand)
- Yorn (Vodafone Portugal youth sub-brand)
Sure, there are some online-based MVNOs, but they are not available to tourists.
For more information about Portuguese SIM cards, check out my Portugal SIM card buying guide.
Alright, back to what Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport has to offer to us.
Where to Buy a SIM Card (or eSIM) at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (OPO)?
At Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, you have two places selling Portuguese SIM cards: Vodafone Portugal and Lycamobile Portugal.
The Vodafone Portugal store is located in the arrivals hall of the airport's sole terminal.
Across the Vodafone Portugal store, the Xpress Market sells Lycamobile SIM cards from a vending machine.
The name may be misleading: it is not even a store – it is just a collection of vending machines selling food and electronics.
Unfortunately, during my latest visit, the Lycamobile Portugal vending machine was empty (just like the other vending machines).
So I cannot tell you what Lycamobile Portugal offers at the airport (but you can let me know if you know).
Be aware that the Relay kiosk across the door you pass to enter the arrivals hall does not sell any SIM cards.
So you have to go to the Vodafone Portugal store or Xpress Market to get a Portuguese SIM card at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport.
What SIM Cards does Vodafone Sell at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (+Prices)?
Vodafone Portugal sells two SIM cards at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport: Vodafone Travelers (20 EUR) & Vodafone Go Total (30 EUR).
I will list all the prices in EUR (Euro).
To convert EUR to your currency (let's say GBP – (British) Pound (Sterling)) with up-to-date exchange rates, use the Wise Currency Converter tool.
Disclaimer: the SIM card prices mentioned in the guide were current when I was in Portugal – the offering and prices may have changed since then. To see Vodafone Portugal's current starter packs, check out my Portugal SIM card buying guide
Vodafone Portugal is the smallest mobile operator in Portugal.
It also has the slowest (5G NR) speeds and the worst coverage in the country.
However, compared to some other countries in Europe, Vodafone Portugal performs well.
At Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, you have this Vodafone Portugal store that you cannot miss – even when you enter the arrivals hall.
Vodafone Portugal sells two SIM cards at the airport: a data-only SIM card (Vodafone Go Total) and a tourist SIM card (Vodafone Travelers).
Fortunately, these SIM cards are sold at regular prices – you do not pay a tourist tax at the airport.
The cheapest SIM card sold by Vodafone Portugal is its Vodafone Travelers SIM card.
It includes 10 GB of data (with 5G NR access), 500 minutes/SMS & 30 international minutes/SMS to the EU/EEA, Angola, Australia, Brazil, Canada, New Zealand & the United States valid for 30 days, all for just for 20 EUR.
For all the tourist SIM cards I have seen and used, Vodafone Portugal's is rather generous.
Moreover, as mandated by European Union (EU) law, you can use your allowances (data, minutes & SMS) in other EU member states for free.
Yeah, that is one of the perks of prepaid SIM cards sold in the EU – you can (often) roam for free in other EU member states.
However, the roaming allowances are usually not as generous as the domestic ones.
But in the case of the Vodafone Travelers SIM card, you can use all your allowances in the EU.
Remember that the 500 minutes/SMS can only be used when calling from Portugal to another Portuguese number – not from Portugal to another EU member state.
However, you can use your full allowance when in another EU member state, let's say Spain, to call within Spain, to call back to Portugal, or to call to another EU member state (let's say Italy).
This is important to remember when you get a regular Vodafone Portugal SIM card (not sold at the airport).
But Vodafone Portugal is generous and allows you to call for up to 30 minutes or send up to 30 SMS from Portugal to the EU/EEA, Angola, Australia, Brazil, Canada, New Zealand & the United States.
Okay, I have said the EU quite often now, and even introduced a new term: European Economic Area (EEA) – which countries are part of the EU/EEA?
Vodafone Portugal considers the following countries to be part of the EU/EEA:
- Czech Republic
- French Guiana
- Saint Barthélemy
- Saint Martin
- United Kingdom
Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that the United Kingdom is no longer part of the EU due to Brexit.
Some European mobile operators, like Vodafone Portugal, still include the United Kingdom in their free EU roaming zone (for the time being)… so that is why.
Okay, that is enough about the Vodafone Travelers SIM card – what about the Vodafone Go Total SIM card?
Vodafone Go Total is a standard data-only SIM card (not exclusive to tourists), which includes “unlimited data” (with 5G NR access) for 30 days for 30 EUR.
Unlike the Vodafone Travelers SIM card, the Vodafone Go Total SIM card is for local use only (so no EU use).
You will notice that I put unlimited data in brackets.
That is because your speeds will be throttled to 50 Mbps (even on 5G NR).
Moreover, your speeds will be throttled even more (10 Mbps) if you use more than 200 GB within 30 days.
Honestly, 50 Mbps is fast enough for general data browsing – even for watching videos on 4k or HD live streaming from your device.
The only mistake I made was buying this SIM card for speed testing purposes because I could take full advantage of the Vodafone Portugal network.
I already paid for this mistake, so you can buy me a coffee with the money you saved from avoiding this SIM card 😏.
Lastly, can you get a Vodafone Portugal eSIM at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport? No, you cannot.
While Vodafone Portugal does have eSIMs, they are not sold at the airport – you would have to go to a normal Vodafone Portugal store.
But if you want to learn about all recommended eSIM options for Portugal, which many Phone Travel Wiz can vouch for too, check out my Portugal eSIM comparison guide (with one option also offering unlimited data in the country).
Also, be sure to read my Vodafone Portugal review if you are interested in getting a Vodafone Portugal SIM card.
Should You Get a SIM Card at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport (OPO)?
I do recommend getting a SIM card at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport from Vodafone Portugal. The prices are not inflated, and the allowances are useful and generous.
However, there are cheaper options out there if you can wait until getting into Porto itself.
For example, a basic Vodafone Portugal SIM card, called Vodafone You Cartão SIM, is sold for 9.90 EUR with 9.90 EUR credit or 5 GB and unlimited social media data 1 & 500 minutes/SMS for 28 days in Vodafone Portugal stores and resellers, including grocery- and electronic stores.
Sure, you do not get the same international calling and texting perks as the Vodafone Travelers SIM card, but I do want to inform you cheaper options are available.
But besides that, there is nothing inherently wrong with the Vodafone Portugal SIM cards sold at Porto-Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport.
So I have nothing more to add 😶.
But be sure to read my Vodafone Portugal review to learn more about its SIM cards.
Portguese SIM Card Reviews
I tried out the SIM cards of the Big Three and Lycamobile Portugal in Portugal.
You should read those reviews.
>>> MEO Portugal Review | NOS Portugal Review | Vodafone Portugal Review | Lycamobile Portugal Review <<<
Check out my reviews page if you want to read all the other reviews I have written, including other European SIM cards.
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