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SIM Cards in Puerto Rico: The Best Prepaid Plans | 2024 Guide

Puerto Rico – known for its beaches, coral reefs & the Spanish culture with an American twist.

The island is an unincorporated and organized United States territory.

What that means is beyond the scope of this guide, but it is somewhat part of the US.

But what can you even do in Puerto? A lot.

El Yanque National Forest is a fantastic trail with various waterfalls.

The Castillo de San Cristóbal is a large Spanish fort.

And you have nothing to do at night, visit Bahía Bioluminiscente to see glowing fish or organisms in the bay.

Quite some exciting things to do in Puerto Rico, huh?

For Caribbean standards, Puerto Rico is an inexpensive travel destination.

This makes SIM cards and mobile data average as well (for regional standards).

That is why I recommend local SIM cards to enjoy local rates.

But how much do SIM cards cost in Puerto Rico?

You can get a Puerto Rican SIM card for free from Claro and Liberty (formerly AT&T) in their stores and from resellers, including electronic stores. However, you are required to purchase a plan (starting from 19 USD). You may be able to get a SIM card at San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU).

Okay, free SIM cards with a catch with a minimum of 20 USD – almost the same as in Canada and the United States itself.

Now you may be thinking, why not use my American (USA) SIM card in Puerto Rico – I can use it here for free!

In many cases, you can. However, speeds can be painfully slow (2G speeds).

So yeah, get yourself a local SIM card.

In this guide, I will tell you everything you need to know about buying a SIM card in Puerto. Let's do this.

Buying a SIM Card in Puerto Rico Guide (logos of Claro & Liberty)

Original publication: 18th of December 2021. Last updated: 15th of January 2024.


Table of Contents

Can You Buy a SIM Card in Puerto Rico?

You can buy a Puerto Rican SIM card from Claro or Liberty (formerly AT&T) as a tourist if you are 18 years old or older. There is nothing preventing travelers from buying a SIM card in Puerto Rico.

You do have to comply with the SIM card registration regulations.

Moreover, your phone has to support the frequencies used in Puerto Rico.

Finally, your phone needs to be unlocked (SIM-lock free) to use a Puerto Rican SIM card.

Where Can You Buy a SIM Card in Puerto Rico?

You can get a Puerto Rican SIM card in the official stores of Claro and Liberty (formerly AT&T) and from resellers, including grocery stores, pharmacies & electronic stores. You may be able to get SIM cards at San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU).

You can expect to pay the following for Puerto Rican SIM cards:

  • Claro Puerto Rico: free, but plan purchase required (minimum of 18.99 USD)
  • Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T): free, but plan purchase required (minimum of 25 USD)
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Can You Use Your Phone in Puerto Rico?

Puerto Rico uses GSM technology for mobile communications primarily. CDMA phones will not work in Puerto Rico. However, almost all phones use GSM anyway.

You also need to be aware of the ITU Regions to determine whether your phone will work in other parts of the world.

Although there are three ITU Regions, you only need to know these two terms: American frequencies and European frequencies.

Puerto Rico uses American frequencies, which are used in the Americas (North-, Central– & South America + the Caribbean – ITU Region 2).

Phones sold in the Americas typically have no issues when using their phone in other ITU Region 2 countries.

In Africa, Asia (including the Middle East), Europe & Oceania (ITU Regions 1 & 3), they typically use European frequencies, meaning phones bought in those regions can be used in countries using European frequencies without issues.

ITU Regions Map by Phone Travel Wiz

If you purchased your phone in the Americas (ITU Region 2), you should not experience any issues with using your phone in Puerto Rico.

If you bought your phone in Africa, Asia, Europe, or Oceania (ITU Regions 1 & 3) and have a low/medium-end device without Tri-Band or Quad-Band support, then there is a possibility you cannot use your phone when in Puerto Rico or can only use slower networks (3G or 2G).

If you have a medium/high-end device with Tri-Band or Quad-Band support, you can use your phone in Puerto Rico (to some extent) – also on 4G/LTE and 5G NR.

Mobile Operators, Networks & Frequencies in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has two mobile operators offering prepaid services:

  • Claro Puerto Rico
  • Liberty U.S. Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

The following frequencies are used in Puerto Rico:

  • 2G: 850 MHz & 1900 MHz
  • 3G: 850 MHz & 1900 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 12, Band 14, Band 17 & Band 29), 850 MHz (Band 5), 1700 MHz (Band 4 & Band 66), 1900 MHz (Band 2) & 2300 MHz (Band 30)
  • 5G NR: 850 MHz (through DDS)

You can learn more about frequencies in the video below.

To check whether your phone will work in Puerto Rico, check out this page by Kimovil or this one by Will My Phone Work (outdated, unfortunately, but extremely user-friendly – useful for phones launched in or before 2019. It does not check for 5G NR compatibility).

Again, make sure your phone is unlocked. Otherwise, you will not be able to use any SIM card except the one from your home operator (meaning you have to roam internationally or buy another unlocked phone that does support the frequencies listed above).

If you want to learn how international roaming works, this guide explains it in-depth. If you wonder why it is often so expensive to roam, this article explains the hidden reason they do not want you to know.

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VoLTE & VoWiFi in Puerto Rico

Both VoLTE (Voice over LTE (4G) – also known as HD Voice) and VoWiFi (Voice over WiFi – also known as WiFI calling) are available in Puerto Rico.

However, not all mobile operators in Puerto Rico offer VoLTE and VoWiFi.

The following mobile operators offer VoLTE and VoWiFi in Puerto Rico:

  • Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

Claro Puerto Rico does not offer VoLTE or VoWiFi (yet).

This means that when you make a call with Claro Puerto Rico, your phone will downgrade to 3G (or 2G when 3G is not available) instead of staying connected to 4G/LTE.

This is also why you often cannot use mobile while calling if not connected to WiFi.

VoWiFi is, as the name implies, calling on a WiFi connection as opposed to on a cellular network.

5G NR in Puerto Rico

5G NR Connectivity Illustration by Phone Travel Wiz

Commercial 5G NR has been available in Puerto Rico since 2019, with AT&T US extending coverage to the territory. Liberty, then AT&T, started rolling out 5G NR in 2020. the same counts for Claro Puerto Rico.

Best SIM Card in Puerto Rico

If you want to buy the best SIM card in Puerto Rico, I recommend going with Claro or Liberty (formerly AT&T). Both mobile operators have extensive coverage, but Liberty has the best 5G NR coverage. Claro offers cheaper plans than Liberty.

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Best eSIM in Puerto Rico

Unfortunately, none of the mobile operators offer eSIM to prepaid customers in Puerto Rico yet.

Note that the Puerto Rican mobile operators require your identification (passport) for (future) eSIMs and physical SIM cards (will be discussed later).

However, you can also get a travel eSIM from various eSIM providers.

The list below is not exhaustive – many more providers have eSIMs for Puerto Rico.

But these are the ones I have tried and had pleasant experiences with.

Moreover, they are reasonably priced, which I find very important (you will not see me recommending an eSIM I would not buy myself).

So here are the five best eSIMs for Puerto Rico:

Because this is the SIM card buying guide for Puerto Rico, I will not spend too much time about travel eSIMs here and throughout this guide (but I will still do here and there).

If you want to learn more about the best eSIMs for Puerto Rico, you better check out my Puerto Rico eSIM buying guide.

It is as helpful and comprehensive as this guide but about eSIMs instead 😜.

Buying an eSIM for Puerto Rico Guide (logos of Holafly, Island Hopper, Discover+, Boricua, Alosim & Airalo)

SIM Card Registration in Puerto Rico

SIM card registration, with the use of your passport information, is mandatory in Puerto Rico. This will be done at the point of sale.

Moreover, you can have up to five active prepaid SIM cards in Puerto Rico (at least for Claro).

This restriction applies to both Puerto Rican citizens and non-citizens (including migrant workers and tourists).

Puerto Rico Mobile Internet Prices & Insights

Flag of Puerto Rico

The Caribbean is not known for being a cheap travel region.

With many luxurious resorts and PRISTINE beaches, it is somewhat understandable why the region is a bit high-class (with some exceptions, like the Dominican Republic and Haiti).

But unlike the Dominican Republic and Haiti, mobile data rates are not that low in Puerto Rico.

So, what are the mobile data rates in the territory?

The average price for 1 GB of data in Puerto Rico is 4 USD, around the Caribbean average of 4.44 USD. The world average is 4.07 USD.

Compared to 2019's numbers, the average cost of 1 GB of data decreased by 72.6%.

Normally, I show you some data about mobile data speeds about the particular country I am covering.

Unfortunately, there is not much aggregate data about mobile download and upload speeds in Puerto Rico.

I can say, however, is that mobile data speeds are reasonable in the territory.

With hurricanes frequently ravaging Puerto Rico destroying towers, coverage and speeds can be slower than usual.

Especially the first few months after a hurricane terrorizes the territory.

With free SIM cards, average mobile data rates, decent download speeds, and extensive territory-wide coverage, you should have a smooth network experience in Puerto Rico.

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Using an American (USA) SIM Card in Puerto Rico

Buying a SIM Card in the United States Guide (logos of T-Mobile, AT&T, Black Wireless, Boost Mobile, Consumer Cellular, Cricket Wireless, FreedomPop, Good2Go Mobile, Google Fi, GoSmart Mobile, H2O Wireless, Lycamobile, Metro by T-Mobile, Mint Mobile, NET10 Wireless, Red Pocket Mobile, Simple Mobile, Straight Talk, TracFone, Ultra Mobile & Unreal Mobile)

AT&T & many mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs, including Boost Mobile USA, Cricket Wireless, Google Fi, H2O Wireless, Lycamobile USA, Metro by AT&T (formerly MetroPCS), Mint Mobile, Straight Talk, TracFone & Ultra Mobile) allow you to use your American SIM card in Puerto without additional roaming fees.

Puerto Rico (and the U.S. Virgin Islands) are considered native or extended coverage by AT&T.

Verizon does not have native coverage in Puerto Rico (and the U.S. Virgin Islands, for that matter).

While AT&T have coverage in Puerto Rico, not all their plans include the islands.

The same counts for the MVNOs – they are less likely to include Puerto Rico (for free).

Moreover, speeds can be excruciatingly slow – basically useless (at 2G speeds).

This guide will not cover AT&T – only the actual local mobile operators.

But it may have slightly different offerings in Puerto Rico to meet the demand of the territory.

If you are still interested in AT&T, you can read more about what it has to offer in my United States SIM card buying guide.

Currency in Puerto Rico

10 US Dollar Note
© U.S. Currency Education Program

Puerto Rico use the US Dollar with the symbol USD (which will be used throughout this guide).

Prices in Puerto Rico are listed in just $.

For up-to-date USD:your currency (let's say Euro) exchange rates, use the Wise Currency Converter tool.

If your credit/debit card charges you foreign exchange fees, get yourself a Wise Borderless Account and Debit Card.

Their fees are MUCH lower than banks and credit card companies charge you (and Wise is transparent about their fees, unlike banks).

I have saved literal THOUSANDS of Australian Dollars and Euros, my main currencies, when using Wise abroad when traveling compared to my debit and credit cards.

Open a Wise account for FREE!

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Puerto Rican Prepaid SIM Cards

Below, I will guide you through Claro Puerto Rico & Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T), and go through:

  • Background information
  • Mobile coverage
  • SIM card types, prices & availability
  • Recharge/top-up information
  • Combo plans, data plans & special packs (such as social media packs) 

With that being said, let’s see what Puerto Rico has to offer.


Claro Puerto Rico

Claro Logo New
© Claro

Claro Puerto Rico, just Claro, is the other mobile operator in Puerto Rico.

Claro, as a company, is active in Central America and South America.

Claro uses the following frequencies:

  • 2G: 850 MHz & 1900 MHz
  • 3G: 850 MHz & 1900 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 12) & 1700 MHz (Band 4)

This is what you will learn about Claro:

* Coverage
* How to Get a Claro SIM Card & SIM Card Price
* Topping Up Options & Methods + Balance Check
* Plans & Packages

Coverage – Claro Puerto Rico

Claro has extensive coverage throughout Puerto Rico.

4G/LTE is available throughout the whole island.

Below is Claro's coverage map produced by Speedtest:

SIM Card Price – Claro Puerto Rico

You can get a Claro SIM card for free in Claro stores (1/2/3). However, you are required to purchase a plan upon retrieval. You may be able to get a SIM card at San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU).

  • Find out how much SIM cards cost in every country, including data-only SIM cards and tourist SIM cards, offered by each mobile operator + information about starter benefits (lookup tool)
SIM Card Prices Worldwide Tool by Phone Travel Wiz

Claro has no eSIMs.

You can consider getting a travel eSIM for Puerto Rico, which can, in specific scenarios, be cheaper than getting a SIM card from Claro.

Especially if you get a Latin (Central- and South) America-wide eSIM (for when you visit at least two or more supported Latin American countries) or a global eSIM (for frequent travelers visiting multiple continents).

In my Puerto Rico eSIM buying guide, I analyze various eSIM options of eSIM providers I have tested extensively worldwide.

But I will introduce them here quickly:

  • Airalo: Boricua Mobile (Puerto Rico only) & Discover+ (130 countries worldwide + up to 200 worldwide minutes & 200 worldwide SMS) – use code FEB15 (15% off – first-time users only) or FEB10 (10% off)
  • Alosim: Puerto Rico – use code PTW (5% off – no limits)
  • Holafly: Puerto Rico & South America (14 countries) – all variants in both options include unlimited data – use code PHONETRAVELWIZ (5% off – no limits)
  • Nomad: Global (109 or 139 countries, depending on the variant) – use code ADU123 (3 USD off – first-time users only)

Once again, check out my Puerto Rico eSIM buying guide to learn more about these eSIM options.

Buying an eSIM for Puerto Rico Guide (logos of Holafly, Island Hopper, Discover+, Boricua, Alosim & Airalo)

For now, I will continue with Claro.

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Top-Up, Recharge & Balance Check – Claro Puerto Rico

Claro top-up vouchers are sold in Claro stores (1/2/3), grocery stores, corner shops & electronics shops throughout Puerto Rico.

To top up your Claro SIM card, dial *7246 (*PAGO) and follow the instructions.

You can also tell the salesperson how much credit you want, your phone number, pay, and they will top up your SIM card with the POS system.

Dial *88 or *125# to check your Claro balance.

You can also top up and check your balance on the Mi Claro PR (My Claro PR) app (Android/iOS).

Packages, Plans, Bundles & Offers – Claro Puerto Rico

Claro has three data-featured prepaid plans:

All Claro plans can be activated on the MiClaro Puerto Rico app.

I will list all the prices in USD (United States Dollar).

To convert USD to your currency (let's say AUD – Australian Dollar) with up-to-date exchange rates, use the Wise Currency Converter tool.

Wise Currency Exchange Banner
© Wise

Click on the links above to jump to the plan you are interested in.

Planes de Renta por Minuto/Rent Per Minute Plans – Claro Puerto Rico

The Planes de Renta por Minuto/Rent Per Minute Plans are combo plans with data (without 5G NR access), minutes & SMS.

Planes de Renta por Minuto/Rent Per Minute Plans can be activated on the MiClaro Puerto Rico app:

PriceDataLocal MinutesLocal SMSValidity
10 USD500 MBUnlimitedUnlimited10 days
12 USD4.5 GB1100 minutes 11000 SMS 21 month

1 shared with the United States minutes
2 shared with United States SMS and unmentioned select international countries

Claro Puerto Rico Planes de Renta por Minuto Rent Per Minute Plans
Planes de Renta Mensual Prepago/Prepaid Monthly Rental Plans – Claro Puerto Rico

The Planes de Renta Mensual Prepago/Prepaid Monthly Rental Plans are combo plans with data (without 5G NR access), minutes & SMS.

Planes de Renta Mensual Prepago/Prepaid Monthly Rental Plans can be activated on the MiClaro Puerto Rico app:

PriceDataLocal MinutesInternational Minutes 1Local SMSInternational SMS 1
15 USD3 GBUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited1 month
20 USD8 GBUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited1 month
29 USD29 GBUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited1 month
39 USD39 GBUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited1 month
50 USD50 GBUnlimitedUnlimited 2UnlimitedUnlimited 21 month

1 for the United States
2 also for Canada & Mexico

Claro Puerto Rico Planes de Renta Mensual Prepago Prepaid Monthly Rental Plans
Planes Dominicanos/Dominican Plans – Claro Puerto Rico

Planes Dominicanos/Dominican Plans are combo plans with data (without 5G NR access), minutes & SMS.

Planes Dominicanos/Dominican Plans can be activated on the MiClaro Puerto Rico app:

PriceData 1Local MinutesInternational Minutes 2Local SMS 1Validity
50 USD5 GBUnlimited200 minutesUnlimited1 month

1 also for the United States
2 for the Dominican Republic

Claro Puerto Rico Planes Dominicanos Dominican Plans

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Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

Liberty Logo
© Liberty

Liberty Puerto Rico, just Liberty and formerly AT&T, is one of the mobile operators in Puerto Rico.

AT&T (from the United States) decided to sell its Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands division in 2017.

While it took years for the rebrand to complete, it has finally happened.

However, Liberty still uses some of AT&T's features, such as online top-ups.

Liberty uses the following frequencies:

  • 2G: N/A – shut down on the 31st of December 2016
  • 3G: 850 MHz & 1900 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 12, Band 14, Band 17 & Band 29), 850 MHz (Band 5), 1700 MHz (Band 4 & Band 66), 1900 MHz (Band 2) & 2300 MHz (Band 30)
  • 5G NR: 850 MHz (n5 – through DDS)

This is what you will learn about Liberty:

* Coverage
* How to Get a Liberty SIM Card & SIM Card Price
* Topping Up Options & Methods + Balance Check
* Plans & Packages

Coverage – Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

Liberty has extensive coverage throughout Puerto Rico.

Most of Puerto Rico is already covered by 5G NR.

Below is Liberty's coverage map produced by Speedtest:

However, click here to see Liberty's official coverage map.

SIM Card Price – Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

You can get a Liberty SIM card for free in Liberty stores. However, you are required to purchase a plan upon retrieval. You may be able to get a SIM card at San Juan-Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (SJU).

  • Find out how much SIM cards cost in every country, including data-only SIM cards and tourist SIM cards, offered by each mobile operator + information about starter benefits (lookup tool)
SIM Card Prices Worldwide Tool by Phone Travel Wiz

Liberty has no eSIMs.

You may want to get a travel eSIM for Puerto Rico, which can be cheaper than getting a SIM card from Liberty (in some cases).

Especially when getting a Latin (Central- and South) America-wide eSIM if you do not stay in just Puerto Rico or a global eSIM valid for up to a year if you want one eSIM to work practically worldwide.

My Puerto Rico eSIM buying guide analyzes various eSIM options of eSIM providers I have tested extensively worldwide.

Here is a quick introduction to them:

  • Airalo: Boricua Mobile (Puerto Rico only) & Discover+ (130 countries worldwide + call and text feature) – use code FEB15 (15% off – first-time users only) or FEB10 (10% off)
  • Alosim: Puerto Rico – use code PTW (5% off – no limits)
  • Holafly: Puerto Rico & South America (14 countries) – these eSIMs have unlimited data – use code PHONETRAVELWIZ (5% off – no limits)
  • Nomad: Global (up to 139 countries) – use code ADU123 (3 USD off – first-time users only)

For more information, such as the prices and data allowances, check out my Puerto Rico eSIM buying guide.

Buying an eSIM for Puerto Rico Guide (logos of Holafly, Island Hopper, Discover+, Boricua, Alosim & Airalo)

But let's continue with Liberty for now.

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Top-Up, Recharge & Balance Check – Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

You can top-up your Liberty SIM card in Liberty stores (1/2) or online.

Packages, Plans, Bundles & Offers – Liberty Puerto Rico (formerly AT&T)

Liberty has only one data-featured prepaid plan: Unlimited Plans (combo), which has data (with 5G NR access in some plans), minutes & SMS.

All Liberty plans have to be activated in-store.

Unlimited Plans have to be activated in a Liberty store (1/2):

PricePlanData 1Local/International Minutes 2Local/International SMS 2Validity
20 USDPlan 4 GB4 GBN/AN/A1 month
30 USDPlan 8 GB8 GB 3N/AN/A1 month
40 USDPlan 16 GB16 GB 3UnlimitedUnlimited1 month
45 USDUnlimitedUnlimited 3UnlimitedUnlimited30 days

1 guaranteed “high-speeds” (unthrottled when the network is busy) until allocated data is exhausted; for unlimited data, until 22 GB
2 also to Canada & Mexico data roaming, calls & texts
3 with 5G NR access

Unused data will roll over to the next billing cycle.

Liberty Puerto Rico Unlimited Plans

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The Preferred Way to Stay Connected When Traveling in Puerto Rico

Getting a SIM card from Claro or Liberty (formerly AT&T) would do you well when considering a Puerto Rican SIM card.