Getting connected with mobile data when you land in a new country is important these days for communication, maps and navigation, ride-hailing apps, and more. That’s why one of the first things savvy travelers do upon arrival at Tashkent International Airport is buy a local SIM card. Here’s a detailed guide on where and how to purchase SIM card at Tashkent International Airport.

SIM card at Tashkent International Airport

I. Where to Buy a SIM Card at Tashkent International Airport

SIM card at Tashkent International Airport

There are a handful of stores and kiosks at Tashkent International Airport‘s arrivals area that sell local SIM cards from leading providers like Beeline and Ucell. The most convenient and reliable option is to visit the Beeline store located just past customs and baggage claim.

  • All four main cellular operators in Uzbekistan (Ucell, Mobiuz, Beeline, Uztelecom/Uzmobile) have desks in the arrival hall at Tashkent International Airport where you can purchase a SIM card.
  • The desks are located right after you exit customs and collect your luggage in the main arrival hall. Look for signs indicating the different cellular providers.
  • Other Shops and Kiosks: There are a couple of smaller kiosks in the arrivals hall that also sell SIMs from providers like Ucell. The plans and rates are generally the same, but there may be a smaller selection and English assistance is less certain.

II. Tashkent SIM Card Options and Costs

When buying a SIM card at Tashkent International Airport, you’ll have several data package options to choose from. Here’s an overview of what the main providers Beeline and Ucell offer:

Operator Plan Data Minutes Price
Ucell Cordial Welcome 10GB 45,000 minutes 50,000 UZS (~$5)
Mobiuz Tourist SIM Lite 3GB 200 minutes 21,000 UZS (~$2)
Tourist SIM 8GB 400 minutes 42,000 UZS (~$4)
Beeline Welcome 1 5GB 500 minutes 25,000 UZS (~$2.5)
Welcome 2 20GB 1,000 minutes 50,000 UZS (~$5)
Welcome 3 50GB 2,000 minutes 100,000 UZS (~$10)
Uztelecom Travel 5 6GB 500 minutes 55,000 UZS (~$5.5)
Travel 10 12GB 1,000 minutes 110,000 UZS (~$11)

So as you can see, deals start around $5 per month for 1 to 2GB which is enough for basics like maps, texting, Uber and some web browsing. Power users will want to spend $10+ for 5GB and up.

When it comes to network coverage and performance, Uzbek carriers like Beeline and Ucell have very solid 4G LTE infrastructure around major cities and population centers. Speeds will be fast enough for everyday use. Just don’t expect the blazing rates you may get in places like Seoul or Tokyo.

III. What You Need to Prepare for Getting a SIM Card at Tashkent International Airport

To ensure the process of purchasing and setting up your SIM card at Tashkent International Airport goes smoothly, here are three key things to take care of ahead of time:

1. Passport

You will absolutely need your passport when buying a SIM card in Uzbekistan. Both to purchase the card, and then provide for activation and registration per local regulations. Be ready to give the shop assistant your passport details including name and passport number.

2. Device and SIM Size

Double check that the device you’ll be using like a smartphone or tablet has an empty SIM slot, and that you know whether it requires a standard or micro/nano SIM card. iPhones typically need nano SIMs for example. The airport shops do stock all sizes.

3. Cash

Have some Uzbek Som cash on hand to pay for your SIM card. While some shops may accept credit cards, cash is widely preferred especially for smaller amounts under $10 or $20. ATMs and currency exchange counters are available in case you need to withdraw or exchange money.

Tourist Service Center at Tashkent International Airport
Tourist Service Center at Tashkent International Airport

IV. eSIM as an Alternative to SIM Card at Tashkent International Airport

If you have an eSIM-compatible device like newer model iPhones and Android devices, then using an eSIM for data is an alternative to getting a plastic SIM card in Uzbekistan. Some benefits of eSIMs:

  • Convenience: You can sign up for data plans online without visiting a physical store. Just lookup providers that offer eSIM service globally like Uzbekistan eSIM offering both Beeline and UCell eSIM for tourists to Uzbekistan. We provides 3 – 10 GB high speed data in 7 days, 14 days, and 30 days. Don’t hesitate to contact to choose the right one.
  • Flexibility: It’s possible to change eSIM profiles or update your identity online while traveling to different countries or regions. No need to configure multiple physical SIMs.
  • Multi SIM Capabilities: eSIMS allows you to simultaneously operate a local data plan AND your regular home SIM card. Great to activate your home cell number for call-texting.

On the flip side, local physical SIM cards tend to offer larger data packages at lower prices. But if convenience is a priority, the eSIM data plan is worth checking out.

V. FAQs about SIM Card at Tashkent International Airport

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about getting connected with SIM cards in Uzbekistan upon landing at Tashkent airport:

Are SIM cards available 24/7 at Tashkent airport?

Yes, you can purchase a SIM card 24 hours a day at the airport. The Beeline shop and other kiosks are open 24/7.

How long does activation and setup take?

Expect the entire process of purchasing a SIM, selecting a data pack, activating it, and setting up your device to take roughly 10-15 minutes if everything goes smoothly.

Can tourists get prepaid SIM cards?

Yes, travelers are able to purchase prepaid SIMs at Tashkent airport as long as you provide your valid passport details either when you purchase the card or during activation.

Do SIM cards work all over Uzbekistan?

The major providers like Beeline and Ucell have networks that cover the most populated areas and cities nationwide. But there still may be some remote dead zones in rural areas.

VI. Final Words

Getting set up with a local Tashkent SIM card or eSIM when you land is one of the best ways to stay connected during your visit. Just look for the main Beeline shop after baggage claim to pickup an inexpensive prepaid SIM good for calling, texting and 4G LTE data throughout your travels. Bon voyage!