If you are, like myself, a keen traveler of the world you will sooner or later have to discover Romania. Once I go to a foreign country, I started making a habit out of getting myself a prepaid and easy to top up sim card (got quite the collection already) and I recommend you do the same, when you get to Romania, to safe yourself some money. Romanian mobile operating network is quite developed and you will have no problem to get yourself a prepaid (pay-as-you-go) sim card, to top up prepaid credit online and offline, to get yourself started. Since the big players entered the market, such as Orange Romania and Vodafone Romania, the market got quite competitive, so that today, all the mobile network providers offer you great deals when you top up prepaid credit/minutes online in Romania and in many cases you get bonus credit/minutes when you top up your prepaid sim card.
Here we are going to explore the different providers that offer prepaid (pay-as-you-go) sim cards and the top up bonus minutes/credit you get for a 10 € top up.
Orange Romania is the biggest mobile provider in Romania, with over Ten million subscribers. Currently they offer you 0.60 € of credit for each prepaid top up. Vodafone Romania is the second biggest provider with about 7.6 million subscribers and they give you a 0.40 € bonus credit per top up. Cosmote Romania has around 6.5 million clients (operates also on CDMA, good for American phones) and most of their customers have prepaid (pay-as-you-go) sim cards. With Cosmote Romania you will get 50 minutes/sms per prepaid top up. Digi.Mobile Romania is the smallest provider (1.3 million customers) and is not specialized in prepaid (pay-as-you-go) minutes, so I couldn’t find any information on whether they give you bonus minutes/credits when you top up.
All mobile network providers’ give you more credit/minutes per top up the higher the amount is, that you top up your prepaid sim card with.
Vodafone is the only provider that lets you top up your prepaid credit/minutes online thru their website. For the others you will have to do it in one of their shops or buy prepaid top up cards. Alternatively you can use some service providers such as fonmoney.com to top up your prepaid credit/minutes. They will charge you between 7% and 10% fee per online prepaid top up. There are others, like ezetop and transferto, but they charge up to 25% and 50% fee per online prepaid top up. It is obviously a lot more convenient to top up prepaid credit online, especially when you are in the countryside or on the go.
Getting a prepaid (pay-as-you-go) sim card in Romania is in general as easy as buying chocolate. All the mobile network providers have retail stores all around the country. There you can buy and top up prepaid credit or you just top up prepaid credit/minutes online in Romania. All the prepaid sim cards come already charged with prepaid credits or minutes so you won’t have to top up straight away. You should note that all the mobile network provider will shut your prepaid card down once you haven’t done a top up for a couple of months and your minutes/credit can expire one months onwards from your last prepaid top up. Some providers allow you to carry your prepaid top up credit or minutes forth, for a small fee of around 1 €. This might be interesting to you, if you want to keep your number without making a top up on a regular bases.