Excited to travel to Cameroon soon? I can imagine! I visited the country for almost 2 weeks and had an amazing time. Don't let high roaming charges ruin your trip to Cameroon. This is your guide on how to stay connected with everything you need to know about buying a sim card for Cameroon. Find out where to buy a sim card, the best e-sim cards for Cameroon, the best 4G/5G network, up to date prices as per October 2023, my recommendation, a vlog about my experiences, info about international sim cards for Cameroon and more.
Being a full time world traveler and nomad I roam around the world for many years. Since I am on a journey to travel to every country in the world I also made it to Cameroon. It is a challenging country to travel, especially if your French isn’t good, but looking back at my trip to Cameroon, it was amazing!
Buying a local prepaid sim card is mostly the cheapest way to stay connected when traveling abroad. Therefore it is the first thing I do whenever I get to a new country if I did not order an e-sim card online already yet. In total Traveltomtom wrote almost 200 sim card guides from all over the world: Dubai, France, Paris, UK, London, Gabon, Sao Tome & Principe, Ethiopia, Turkey, Istanbul, Belgium, Brussels, USA and many more.
Why buying a sim card for Cameroon
We all want to avoid high roaming costs and when traveling to Cameroon but please don’t rely on public WiFi. It is often non-existing or not working properly. Also keep in mind that browsing the web on public WiFi is through an UNSECURED connection, so the use of a VPN in these cases is recommended.
Traveling without a working data connection on your phone is going to be challenging these days. Think about getting directions from Google Maps, find nearby restaurants, hotels, supermarket or simply staying in touch with friends and family back home, translation apps or even emergencies, it all requires a data connection.
Therefore I recommend you buying a prepaid sim card in Cameroon on arrival or get yourself an international sim card with coverage in Cameroon or an e-sim card for Cameroon.
Traveltomtom recommends an Orange sim card for Cameroon. They have the most extensive 4G network in the country and by far the best prices. For around $5 USD you get 1 GB per day for 7 days. Great deal, right?
There are also international sim cards with global coverage. Not all are worth it, but some are ok! Check out my comparison of all the international sim cards for traveling in 2023.
Best e-sim cards for Cameroon
The easiest way to get internet on your phone when traveling to Cameroon in 2023 is an e-sim card. Unfortunately there are not many options yet for buying a Cameroon e-sim card, but I did find one:
- 1 GB data for 7 days = $9.5 USD
Click here to order an e-sim card for Cameroon directly online or get more info.
You can also opt for a physical sim card for traveling in Cameroon. You can order an international sim card that covers Cameroon. You order online, receive it at your home address before your trip and bring it along. Plug and play! For $49.90 USD you get a physical prepaid sim card with 10 GB data in Cameroon. Click on the link for more info.
Where to buy a prepaid sim card in Cameroon
Douala International Airport
The most convenient place to buy a sim card for Cameroon is at the airport on arrival. When arriving at Douala Airport you can’t miss the MTN, Nexttel and Orange shop in the Arrival Hall. Click here for a complete guide for buying a sim card at Douala Airport.
Buying a sim card at the airport is definitely recommended when your French is not the best. At the airport the staff of the sim card shops speaks fairly good English.
Yaounde International Airport
The same counts for Yaounde International Airport. There you can also find 3 sim card shops in the arrival hall: Nexttel, MTN and Orange. They all sell prepaid sim cards on the spot and you are connected in no time.
Douala Grand Mall
We do not recommend you to buy a sim card on the streets. For the simple reason that a Cameroon sim card officially need to be registered on your name and you want thing to be set up properly. Whenever you missed the opportunity to buy a Cameroon sim card at the airport head to for example the Douala Grand Mall. Here you find
Although much more quiet than the chaotic streets of Cameroon, long lines at phone stores in Cameroon are not uncommon. Another reason why we recommend to buy a Cameroon sim card at the airport or get one online before your trip.
Prices prepaid sim card in Cameroon in 2023
All the below info and prices are updates in October 2023 and prices are in Central African Franc: $1 USD = 619.1 CFA and 1,000 CFA = $1.62 USD.
Nexttel is by far the smallest mobile internet operator in Cameroon. Their prices are good compared to MTN and Orange but they also have a much smaller 3G/4G network. More about it later!
A Nexttel sim card costs 100 XAF = $0.17 USD and you can choose from one of the above data packages. Nexttel only offers monthly packages, valid for 30 days!
The most common Nexttel sim card deal for Cameroon is the 1.05 GB per day for 30 days, which means 30 * 1.05 GB = 31.5 GB. Every day at midnight you get another GB. Total price is 9,000 XAF = $16 USD. For more prepaid sim card deals from Nexttel have a look at the photo above.
MTN offers so called tourist plans, but I feel like they also charge tourist prices. The sim card is free when activating one of the above 3 packages shown in the picture.
- 5,000 XAF = 250 MB / day + 2,500 XAF calling credit to all networks for 7 days - $9
- 10,000 XAF = 1 GB / day + 5,000 XAF calling credit to all networks for 7 days - $17
- 20,000 XAF = 1 GB / day + 10,000 XAF calling credit to all networks for 30 days - $35
Also included is credit for calling MTN numbers + sms. This is a big plus for MTN, their packages includes data + voice.
But as you can see MTN is much more expensive than Nexttel. They offer basically the same prepaid sim card deal for 7 days and Nexttel offers this for 30 days. But wait till you see the Orange prepaid sim card deals.
At Orange they are very flexible when it comes to the duration. They offer data packages per 3 days, 7 days, 15 days and 30 days! Sounds like a winner as not everyone is traveling to Cameroon for 30 days.
- 2,650 XAF = 1 GB per day for 7 days - $5
- 5,250 XAF = 1 GB per day for 15 days - $9
- 10,000 XAF = 1 GB per day for 30 days - $17
See the photo above for much more Orange Cameroon sim card deals.Also great plus about Orange is that they offer an e-sim card for prepaid costumer. It costs 250 XAF extra ($0.5).
As you can see Orange is much cheaper than MTN!
Best 3G/4G/5G network in Cameroon
Unfortunately there is no 5G in Cameroon as of October 2023. According to news articles they are predicting to roll it out towards the end of the year beginning of 2023, but let’s see.
That said, I was pretty content with the 4G coverage of my Cameroon sim card. Below I will show you the 3G/4G coverage maps for Cameroon per provider and let’s guess which sim card for Cameroon I chose!
Nexttel 3G/4G coverage map
MTN Cameroon 3G/4G coverage map
Orange Cameroon 3G/4G coverage map
From the above data we can clearly see that Orange has the best mobile network in Cameroon. One of the main reasons why I recommend an Orange sim card for traveling in Cameroon. Also this shows why I do NOT recommend a Nexttel sim card for tourists in Cameroon.
Best sim card for Cameroon in 2023
I gave it away already a couple times, but it is a very easy conclusion after comparing the prices for prepaid sim cards, the available data packages and the 3G/4G network strength that Orange is the best sim card in Cameroon in 2023. For less than $10 USD you get 1 GB data per day for 15 days!
Buy a sim card for Cameroon online
There are not that many good options for buying a Cameroon sim card online, but I found one that I can recommend and that is an Orange Holiday World sim card for $49.90 USD that gives you 10 GB data for 14 days. You can order this sim card for Cameroon directly online through this link. It work based on plug and play, meaning it is automatically activated from its first use. The sim card will be shipped to your home address before your trip.
Another option is an e-sim card for Cameroon with 1 GB data for 7 days for $9.5 USD. Click on the link to order it directly or find more info.
I hope all the above tips for buying a sim card in Cameroon were helpful. Let me know below in the comments if you have any more questions and I am more than happy to help you out. Also about traveling in Cameroon.
Interested in what I did when visiting Cameroon then head over to my Instagram channel @traveltomtom and see my posts and my highlights. There you also find my road to visit every country in the world. As of October 2023 I have traveled to more than 135 countries around the world.
Enjoy your trip to Cameroon!
Some links in this article about the best sim cards for Cameroon are affiliate links. If you buy any of the products after using an affiliate link I will earn a small commission. Don’t worry this is at absolutely no extra cost to you.