Abu Dhabi - Post Report Question and Answers

Do you have any recommendations regarding mobile phones? Did you keep your home-country plan or use a local provider?

Google Fi works here, but they cut off your data if you are overseas longer than six months straight. I recommend getting a local SIM from Virgin mobile because you can prepay for 12 months and save 50%. We have 200 local minutes, 200 international minutes and 5GB data for under US $40 per month... - Feb 2020

I have a pre-paid 1-year contract with Virgin that gives me 2MB per month (it was some kind of special to get a 1 MB bonus), which is plenty for me. We pay around $20-25/month. Etisalat will be more expensive. - Jun 2019

Local provider, it's easy and works well. - Sep 2017

The embassy uses the national svc Etisalat, a 4G provider. Du is another state owned provider and the "competition" is a joke. Pick one and move on. You'll need a passport and/or an emirates ID to get service though. - Jun 2015

They're everywhere. You'll have to have one, and you can find endless places to buy them at the malls. - May 2013

There are two companies, Etisalat and Du, with the latter being less expensive. You need to show residence ID to buy a handset. Top-up cards are easy to purchase in shops or from street vendors. - Jul 2012

You will need one and use it frequently. I can't remember the last time my home landline rang, in fact. There are only a couple providers, and the cost isn't outrageous. - Aug 2011

You can buy a phone and SIM service in the country. All phone networks are monitored by the UAE Ministry of Interior and there are only a couple of telecom providers. Blackberries are tolerated but UAE Ministry of Interior was trying to ban them in 2010, as they were having trouble bugging them. Some internet sites and articles are blocked. Remember, despite the glitzy hotels and buildings, this is a police state with no human rights. - Jul 2011

Emiratis love their gadgets, especially their cell phones and must always have the latest and greatest. Handsets can be bought everywhere. Carrefour and Plug-Ins usually have the most competitive prices. All phones are unlocked. There are only two service providers: Etisalat and Du. You can buy prepaid cards from either or you can sign a contract. It is cheaper than the US because virtually all business is done via cell phone. - Nov 2010

Everyone here has one. - Jan 2010

They are everywhere, easy to get, and there is only one company-owned by the government. - Aug 2009

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