Senegal Roaming

Connie is headed out to Senegal. Here’s the mobile operator. I need to get her the right SIM card for her tri-mode phone. Wow, is this complicated. Fortunately John did some research on Spanish SIM cards and such, but Senegal is a little bit farther afield. Here is what I recommend

  1. Sentel GSM – Services. This is the core carrier over in Senegal. So first thing is to determine what kind of service is available. I love the coverage maps on gsmworld. BTW
  2. Sentel. This is the carrier and is owned by Millicom. They are 98% prepaid over there, so getting a prepaid card over there shouldn’t be too hard. I’m going to try to find out where that would be, although that might be a hassle for Connie.
  3. Telestial or Planetomni. Getting a global SIM card. The best seems to Swisscom’s $1/minute anywhere in the world deal. Otherwise, she need a prepaid SIM *and* a calling card.
  4. 10-10 Phone Rates. An incredibly great web site for dial around service. Right now 1016868 looks like the cheapest long distance for me to call Connie
  5. IdT Calling Card. I’ve used IDT, but they cost $2/month and have a $25 minimum so you end up spending $1 on calls and then wasting the $25. They charge $0.85 to/from Senegal. Wow, the Swisscom deal is sounding better! The other problem is that IDT doesn’t have a Senegal local access number, so you can’t call back
  6. Sonatel Senegal. One of the two GSM providers. They even have a web site.
  7. Calling to Senegal. Here’s how one local does it.
  8. Calling to Senegal. These guys say they’ll do it for $0.18.
  9. Nobelcomm. These appear to underlie most of the commercial offers. They charge $1.05 per minute
  10. Alize Prepay. It’s in French, but here’s the prepay plan for a local Senagal phone. It is 531 FCFA per minute to Western Europe and 236 FCFA to another phone in Senegal. That’s 610 FCFA to the US dollar, so quite reasonable