We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cell Phones in Uganda

Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
5 posts
5 reviews
Save Topic
Cell Phones in Uganda

My wife and I will be in Uganda for three weeks early next year, partly touring and partly on business in and around Kampala. I'd like to have a cell phone while there, and am wondering if anyone could recommend a relatively inexpensive, pay-as-you-go service for both voice and data use. I have an unlocked iPhone 3GS from the US I could use, if it is compatible with the local network.

Oakland, CA
Level Contributor
1,022 posts
252 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

Mobile phone provider shops are omnipresnt. You will be amazed by the frequent use of mobile phones, and it seemd like neary everyone i met wanted to be my "Facebook Friend"

I don't spcifically about the iPhone ( with Ugandans' love of IT, i'm sure there is a plan /sim card available) but if not, you can easily by a cheap unlocked phone when you buy your plan/sim card. .You dont have to buy a lot of time at first--it is incrediby easy to top it up, anywhere in the country.

There is a stand (I think it is MTN) as soon as you exit from the Entebbe airport, but if you want to wait, there aer numerous places in kampala

Have a great trip , m xing business with fun!

Kampala
Level Contributor
1,882 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

MTN is very nice.

Other network providers including Orange, Warid and Airtel work well within Kampala city, Along Kampala Road, there are many MTN outlets.

Kampala
Level Contributor
3,256 posts
90 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

MTN can be very annoying.. but then so can the rest of them! Don't you think the network has been bad lately UGS?.

We are all on MTN; does your iPhone take a microSim, or the normal size one? My son got an iPhone 4 for his birthday, and we were able to get quite easily the microSim at MTN in Forest Mall, Lugogo - without too much hassle. Don't go to Kampala Road if you can help it, not for the faint-hearted. If you can take the normal sized one, you can buy anywhere as Cali says, there are kiosks everywhere.

Airtime (credit) is very expensive for phone calls though, so most people rely pretty well on SMS - until you don't get an answer and then you have to call for it. But limit your chat, to essential conversation only.

Hope this helps!

Kampala
Level Contributor
1,882 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

I think most of the networks have not been good of late.

Three of my networks i.e. MTN, Warid and Orange have been so slow.

And since MTN has a wide coverage, I would definitely give my first priority to MTN.

Shelly

If you are referring to Internet, I think Orange is faster than any other network now a days.

Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
5 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

Thanks, all. i have a standard sized SIM so I should be all right. All I need is to be able to make the odd call and get email when I have coverage out and about.

Kampala
Level Contributor
45 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

With data i would suggest orange and voice MTN.

Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
5 posts
5 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

Thanks.

Kampala
Level Contributor
3,256 posts
90 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

UGS, I didn't really mean data, I just meant SMS and voice.

Chris, FWIW, I also have no problem picking up emails, FB, internet etc, from my phone even using 2G. There are quite a lot of wifi places in Kampala too.

Kampala, Uganda
Level Contributor
139 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

orange telecom may do you good.

Baltimore, Maryland
Destination Expert
for Washington DC
Level Contributor
2,171 posts
250 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Cell Phones in Uganda

MTN has the most coverage through the country even in some rural area. You can easily purchase a phone and sim at Lugogo or garden city mall. Given many tourist places are off the beaten track I would recommend MTN.