Skip to Content

2 Best Prepaid SIM Cards & eSIMs in Suriname: Buying Guide

Suriname – known for being the smallest country in South America, one of the two South American nations where they drive on the left & for having only one cinema.

Anguilla can learn from Suriname – those in Anguilla have to go to Sint Maarten if they wish to go to a cinema.

Back to Suriname – it is a popular travel destination for the Dutch due to historical links.

But why do the Dutch, and other travelers, go to Suriname?

First, the temperature is always pleasant – especially for those from the Northern Hemisphere having to endure a cold winter.

But the country also has a lot of attractions.

As the majority of the country consists of rainforests, the nature in Suriname is stunning.

You also have plenty of hiking trails to explore.

The historic inner city of Paramaribo is exciting to see compared to modern Paramaribo.

If you like to see sea turtles, head to Braamspunt or Marapica Beach.

See, there is no reason to be bored in Suriname.

While Suriname is comparatively an inexpensive travel destination, it is always a good idea to find ways to keep your travel expenses even lower.

That is why you should get a local SIM card to enjoy local rates – much cheaper than international roaming.

Fortunately, SIM cards are cheap in Suriname

You can get a Surinamese SIM card for 70 SRD (2.90 USD) from Telesur and Digicel in their stores and from select resellers, including electronic shops and grocery stores. SIM cards are also available at Paramaribo-Zanderij/Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport (PBM).

Would it surprise you that Suriname has the fastest mobile download speeds in South America?

Yes, not Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, nor Peru – the smallest nation in South America has the fastest median speeds in the region.

Quite impressive, I would say.

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

Buying a SIM Card in Suriname Guide (logos of Telesur & Digicel)

Original publication: 28th of December 2019. Last updated: 2nd of June 2022.


Table of Contents

Can You Buy a SIM Card in Suriname?

Anyone living in or visiting Suriname can buy a Surinamese SIM card from Telesur or Digicel in their stores or from resellers without any restrictions.

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

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

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

Where Can You Buy a SIM Card in Suriname?

You can get a Surinamese SIM card in the official stores of Telesur and Digicel or from third-parties, like grocery stores and electronic shops. They are also available at Paramaribo-Zanderij/Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport (PBM).

You can expect to pay the following for Surinamese SIM cards:

  • Telesur: 70 SRD
  • Digicel Suriname: 70 SRD

TIP: Check out my SIM card prices lookup tool for a detailed overview of SIM card starter pack benefits (for Surinamese SIM cards and SIM cards worldwide).

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Can You Use Your Phone in Suriname?

Suriname uses GSM technology for mobile communications. CDMA phones will not work in Suriname. If your phone has a SIM card slot, then it supports GSMA (99% of the phones do support GSM nowadays).

Traditional European frequencies are used in Suriname which are mostly used in ITU Regions 1 and 3 (Africa, Asia (including the Middle East), Europe & Oceania).

The Americas (North-, Central– & South America + the Caribbean – ITU Region 2) use American Frequencies, which differ from the European ones.

ITU Regions Map
By Maximilian Dörrbecker (Chumwa) – Own work, using this file by Denelson83, CC BY-SA 2.5

If you bought your phone in Africa, Asia, Europe, or Oceania (ITU regions 1 and 3), you should not experience any issues with using your phone in Suriname.

If you purchased your phone in the Americas (ITU Region 2) 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 Suriname 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 Suriname (to some extent) – also on 4G/LTE and 5G NR (Telesur only).

Mobile Operators, Networks & Frequencies in Suriname

Suriname has two mobile operators offering prepaid services:

  • Telesur
  • Digicel Suriname

The following frequencies are used in Suriname:

  • 2G: 900 MHz
  • 3G: 850 MHz, 900 MHz & 2100 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 28), 1800 MHZ (Band 3) & 2100 MHz (Band 1)
  • 5G NR: 3500 MHz (n78 – Telesur only)

You can learn more about frequencies in the video below.

To check whether your phone will work in Suriname, check out this page by Will My Phone Work (may be outdated or inaccurate at times).

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.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

5G NR in Suriname

Commercial 5G NR has been available in Suriname since November 2019. It is available on the Telesur network. Digicel has no 5G NR yet, and it is unknown when it will launch its 5G NR network.

Best SIM Card in Suriname

If you want to buy the best SIM card in Suriname, I recommend going with Telesur. It has the best coverage and the fastest speeds (more than double Digicel's). It currently offers 5G NR to prepaid customers too.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Best eSIM in Suriname

Unfortunately, none of the mobile operators offer eSIM to prepaid customers in Suriname (yet).

However, you can get the Suriname (Pondocom) from Airalo with 1 GB of data valid for 7 days.

Suriname Pondocom eSIM Airalo
© Airalo

With this eSIM, you can skip Suriname's SIM card registration scheme entirely and use it immediately upon arriving in Suriname!

SIM Card Registration in Suriname

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

Suriname Mobile Speeds, Mobile Internet Prices & Insights

Flag of Suriname

South America is a relatively inexpensive travel region, especially compared to the Caribbean.

This is also visible when you look at the mobile data rates in South America.

So what about Suriname? Are mobile data low here?

They are average.

The average price for 1 GB of data in Suriname is 1.94 USD, around the South American average of 1.97 USD. The world average is 4.07 USD.

But you might have noticed something weird in the image above… the Falkland Islands – what is going there?

Long story short for now (but you can learn more about it in the Falkland Islands SIM card buying guide), but anyone living there is being scammed by the local mobile operator.

If I included the Falkland Islands‘ figures in the South American average, the average cost of data would be 5.25 USD instead of 1.97 USD.

So yeah, I do not include it in the average.

What about mobile data speeds?

Are they fast in Suriname? The fastest in South America.

Suriname's median mobile download speed is around 32 Mbps.

The median mobile download speed has gone up by 60% within a year.

Thanks to Telesur launching 5G NR back in 2019 and rolling it out in the big cities in the past year, including Paramarido (capital city), Lelydorp & Nieuw Lickerie.

With low SIM card prices, decent nationwide coverage (in populated areas only – not in rainforests), fast mobile download speeds (in cities), and low mobile data rates, you should have a decent network experience in Suriname.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Currency in Suriname

50 Surinamese Dollar Bank Note
© Central Bank of Suriname/Centrale Bank van Suriname

Suriname uses the Surinamese Dollar with the symbol SRD (which will be used throughout this guide).

However, prices are often listed as just $. For example, 25 SRD = $25.

For reference, below are some exchange rates between SRD and USD (US Dollars):

  • 1 SRD = 0.05 USD
  • 10 SRD = 0.50 USD
  • 100 SRD = 4.70 USD
  • 1000 SRD = 46.80 USD
  • 10 000 SRD = 467.90 USD

For up-to-date SRD:USD exchange rates, search SRD to USD on Google, or replace USD with the currency you use.

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 Euros, my main currency, when using Wise abroad when traveling compared to my debit and credit cards. Open a Wise account FREE!

Wise Signup Banner

Surinamese Prepaid SIM Cards

Below, I will guide you through Telesur & Digicel Suriname, and go through:

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

With that being said, let’s see what Suriname has to offer to us.


Telesur

Telesur Suriname Logo
© Telesur

Telesur is the largest mobile operator in Suriname.

It also has the best network performance and the fastest speeds.

In 2019, it had almost triple the average download speed compared to Digicel Suriname.

It is unknown whether this is still the case (hopefully not for Digicel Suriname), but Telesur still has a faster network.

It has also rolled out 5G NR, improving speeds, bandwidth & latency even more.

Telesur uses the following frequencies:

  • 2G: 900 MHz
  • 3G: 900 MHz & 2100 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 28), 1800 MHZ (Band 3) & 2100 MHz (Band 1)
  • 5G NR: 3500 MHz (n78)

This is what you will learn about Telesur:

* Coverage
* How to Get a Telesur SIM Card & SIM Card Price
* Topping Up Options & Methods
* Plans & Packages
* APN/Internet Settings

Coverage – Telesur

Telesur has the best coverage in Suriname.

You should not expect any coverage in the dense rainforests – like neighboring French Guiana (Guyane) and Guyana.

Even then, 4G/LTE reception is still limited – 5G NR is even rarer.

Below is Telesur's coverage map:

SIM Card Price – Telesur

You can get a Telesur SIM card for 70 SRD with 10 on-net or local minutes in Telesur stores (1/2). They are also sold at Paramaribo-Zanderij/Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport (PBM).

Telesur SIM cards get deactivated if there has been no activity for 3 months (no top-up for 3 months or no activity for 3 months).

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Top-Up, Recharge & Balance Check – Telesur

Telesur top-up vouchers are sold in Telesur stores (1/2), kiosks, gas stations & grocery stores.

To top up your Telesur SIM card, dial *131*VoucherCode#.

For example, if your voucher code is 123456, you would dial *131*123456#.

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 *132# to check your Telesur balance.

Packages, Plans, Bundles & Offers – Telesur

Telesur has one data-featured plan: Internet op Mobiel (Internet on Mobile). It is a data-only plan.

Text the Activation Code to 4040 to activate Internet op Mobiel:

PriceDataValidityActivation Code
16 SRD150 MB12 hoursNet 12
31 SRD1.5 GB1 dayNet 1D
62 SRD3 GB3 daysNet 3D
156 SRD7 GB7 daysNet 7D
469 SRD22.5 GB30 daysNet 30D
1870 SRD90 GB30 days50GB
Telesur Suriname Mobiel Internet Mobile Internet Plans

APN/Internet Settings – Telesur

  • Name: Telesur
  • APN: win.teleg.sr

Note: leave anything not mentioned above untouched.

Jump back to the Table of Contents.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange


Digicel Suriname

Digicel Logo
© Digicel

Digicel Suriname, just Digicel, is the smaller mobile operator in Suriname.

Digicel, as a company, is active in many Caribbean nations, Central America & Oceania.

Digicel uses the following frequencies:

  • 2G: 900 MHz & 1800 MHz
  • 3G: 850 MHz
  • 4G/LTE: 700 MHz (Band 28) & 1800 MHz (Band 3)

This is what you will learn about Digicel:

* Coverage
* How to Get a Digicel SIM Card & SIM Card Price
* Topping Up Options & Methods
* Plans & Packages
* APN/Internet Settings

Coverage – Digicel Suriname

Digicel has decent coverage in populated areas throughout Suriname.

You should not expect any coverage in the dense rainforests – like neighboring French Guiana (Guyane) and Guyana.

Even then, 4G/LTE reception is still limited.

Below is Digicel's coverage map:

SIM Card Price – Digicel Suriname

You can get a Digicel SIM card for 70 SRD with 1.5 GB for 3 days in Digicel stores and from resellers. They are also sold at Paramaribo-Zanderij/Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport (PBM).

Digicel Suriname SIM Card
© Digicel Suriname

You may have to dial *122# to activate your Digicel SIM card if your SIM card does not work upon purchase.

Dial *100# to access the Digicel menu.

Dial *129# to see your Digicel phone number.

Digicel SIM cards get deactivated if there has been no activity for 120 days (no top-up for 120 days or no activity for 120 days).

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Top-Up, Recharge & Balance Check – Digicel Suriname

Digicel top-up vouchers are sold in Digicel stores, kiosks, gas stations & grocery stores.

To top up your Digicel SIM card, dial *121*VoucherCode# or dial *121# and follow the instructions.

For example, if your voucher code is 123456, you would dial *121*123456#.

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.

You can also recharge online with (international) debit and credit cards.

Dial *120# to check your Digicel balance.

You can also top up and check your balance on the Digicel app (Android/iOS).

Digicel App
© Digicel

Packages, Plans, Bundles & Offers – Digicel Suriname

Digicel has three data-featured plans:

All Digicel Plans can be activated by dialing *100#.

Prepaid Prime Bundles – Digicel Suriname

The Prepaid Prime Bundles are combo plans with data, data for select Digicel apps, minutes & SMS.

Digicel Suriname Prime Bundle Apps
© Digicel Suriname

The following Prepaid Prime Bundles are available, which can be activated by dialing *100#:

PricePlanAny Use DataListen More (Music) DataListen More (Radio) DataWatch More DataPlay More DataShare More DataStore More DataValidity
31 SRD1 Day Digicel Prime Bundle0.8 GB1 GB1 GB1 GB1 GB1 GB1 GB1 day
62 SRD3 Day Digicel Prime Bundle1.5 GB3 GB3 GB3 GB3 GB3 GB3 GB3 days
176 SRD7 Day Digicel Prime Bundle3.5 GB7 GB7 GB7 GB7 GB7 GB7 GB7 days
404 SRD30 Day Digicel Prime Bundle 7 GB30 GB30 GB30 GB30 GB30 GB30 GB30 days

You can download any Prime Bundle app by visiting the links below:

Digicel Suriname Prime Bundles
Dataplannen (Data Plans) – Digicel Suriname

The Dataplannen (Data Plans) are data-only bundles.

Dial *100# to activate Dataplannen:

PriceDataValidity
30 SRD800 MB1 day
60 SRD1.5 GB3 days
390 SRD7 GB30 days
Digicel Suriname Dataplannen Data Plans
7 Dagen Facebook Plan (7 Day Facebook Plan) – Digicel Suriname

The 7 Dagen Facebook Plan (7 Day Facebook Plan) is a data-only plan exclusively for Facebook.

It gives you unlimited Facebook data for 7 days charged at 10 SRD. Activation is by dialing *100#.

PriceFacebook DataValidity
10 SRDUnlimited7 days

APN/Internet Settings – Digicel Suriname

  • Name: Digicel
  • APN: web.digicelsr.com

Note: leave anything not mentioned above untouched.

Jump back to the Table of Contents.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange


Other Ways to Stay Connected When Traveling in Suriname

The cheapest way to get online in Suriname is to get a SIM card from one of the mobile operators. However, that is not your only method of staying online.

Below are some other options to consider.

International Roaming

Roaming is the most convenient way to stay connected.

You do not have to buy a new SIM card, and people at home can easily reach you on your current phone number.

However, roaming has many downsides as well. It can be insanely expensive.

Learn more about roaming.

International/Travel SIM Cards

International SIM cards or travel SIM cards are SIM cards made for travelers.

The rates charged are often lower than international roaming, but they are almost always higher than what local operators will charge you.

Get to know more about international and travel SIM cards.

Mobile Hotspots (Pocket WIFI)

Mobile hotspots, or pocket WIFI, are small devices that connect to the local mobile operators of the country you are visiting.

Mobile hotspots are ideal for families or those traveling in a large group, as they allow you to connect multiple devices to one hotspot without the need of each traveler having to buy a SIM card.

You can either buy a mobile hotspot or rent one.

Free WIFI Networks

Nothing beats free, right? Paying nothing to stay connected may be the best option.

Until you remember that free hotspots are not available everywhere (especially when on the move) and that free connections are often extremely slow.

Just make sure to protect your internet traffic with a VPN when connected to open WIFI connections. It is worth it.


The Preferred Way to Stay Connected When Traveling in Suriname

Getting a SIM card from Telesur would do you well when considering a Surinamese SIM card.

Local Prepaid SIM Cards in Other South American Countries

Planning on visiting other countries in South America? Check out my South America SIM card buying guide covering other South American destinations, such as:

Next Steps to Enhance Your Travel Experiences

Looking for the next steps to enhance your phone travel experiences? Here is what to do:

Support Phone Travel Wiz

It takes a lot of time to analyze, translate, and review the SIM card options worldwide (especially to test them out).

Your support helps me keep producing impartial content by eliminating the need to recommend international SIM cards as the best local SIM card (but some of them CAN be useful).

Every Ko-Fi donation, one-time or monthly, helps me to spend more time creating local SIM card buying guides.

Support Me on Ko-Fi Orange

Check Out My Resource Page

Looking for the best companies and gadgets to enhance your travel experience? 

Check out my travel resources page for the best companies to use when you travel!

Save money with international SIM cards, on plane tickets, bus rides, cruises, and accommodation.

Besides that, I also list services and items I use to make my life easier – and I believe they will help you too!

Start Your Own Online Business – Make Money While Traveling

Do you want to learn how I started an online business that allows me to generate income while traveling?

In my starting an online business guide, I tell you which tools, services, and products I have for this site and my YouTube channel.

If I can start a business about something I am passionate about (phone travel), then you can do it too!

Learn About Your Phone Travel Options

You can buy local prepaid SIM cardsinternational SIM cardsmobile hotspots, or roam internationally.

Each of these options has its pros and cons. Learn more about them, and find the best option for you.

Phone Travel Tips, Tricks & Hacks

I have written many articles with tips and hacks to save money on mobile costs while abroad. You surely want to check them out!

Sign Up for the Phone Travel Wiz Newsletter

Get updates related to the newest guides, videos & recommended products and services.

Moreover, I send you many tips and tricks on saving money while traveling every now and then.

Let's Be Social

Did you know that I have a YouTube channel covering everything you need to know about traveling with your phone?

A lot of useful videos are uploaded multiple times a week, and you do not want to miss out on them!

Learn More About Who Adu Actually Is

Who is the guy behind Phone Travel Wiz? Well, find out on the Ernest Adu about page!