Globacom Limited, popularly known as GLO, is one of the top mobile network operators in Nigeria. Founded in 2003, GLO provides a wide range of telecommunication services including mobile voice, text messaging, mobile internet, and international roaming.

With an extensive network covering 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, GLO offers reliable connectivity across most parts of Nigeria. This makes GLO SIM cards a great option for tourists visiting Nigeria, allowing them to stay connected with high-speed internet access and affordable calling rates.

Glo sim cards feature picture

I. Quick Facts about GLO

  • Founded: 2003
  • Company Name: Globacom Limited
  • Services: Mobile voice, SMS, mobile internet, international roaming
  • Subscribers: Over 55 million (February 2023)
  • Coverage: 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory
  • Network of Stores & Agents: Over 100,000 including exclusive GLO World stores, dealers, and agents

II. Why GLO When You’re Exploring Nigeria – Coverage and Speed

1. GLO Network Coverage in Nigeria

GLO Network Coverage in Nigeria
GLO Network Coverage in Nigeria. Source

With over 30,000 base transceiver stations across Nigeria, GLO provides extensive population and geographical coverage. Its mobile network reaches major cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt as well as rural and remote areas.

This widespread coverage makes GLO a reliable choice for tourists exploring different parts of Nigeria without losing connectivity. You can stay connected while visiting top attractions in the south like Lekki Conservation Centre or northern destinations like Yankari Game Reserve.

2. GLO Speed

GLO Speed

Note: MTN is for Upload speed, Blue is for Download speed

In addition to coverage, GLO sim cards also offers high mobile broadband speeds leveraging 3G, 4G and 4G LTE technology.

Average download speeds on the GLO mobile network range from 8 – 35 Mbps while upload speeds range between 8 – 10 Mbps. These fast speeds allow you to make HD calls, stream videos or music, and use bandwidth-intensive apps without buffering or lag.

So with a GLO SIM card, you don’t have to compromise speed for coverage across Nigeria. Both local and international tourists get to enjoy a smooth mobile internet experience.

III. GLO Connectivity Options for Travelers to Nigeria

Visitors to Nigeria have two main options to connect to GLO while in the country:

Connectivity Option Pros Cons
Physical SIM Card Purchase - Easy to buy locally - Must purchase upfront
Prepaid Local SIM Card - Inexpensive short term option - Must purchase upfront
Esim Plan from GLO - No need to change SIM cards - Plan must be purchased in advance
Roaming with Foreign SIM - Use existing SIM card - Very expensive roaming rates
Hotel/Cafe WiFi - No need for mobile plan - Unreliable connectivity
Portable WiFi Hotspot Rental - Takes prepaid SIM hassle away - Extra cost per day

In summary: 

GLO Sim cards offers various options for travelers to get mobile connectivity during visits to Nigeria. Purchasing a physical SIM card locally provides the most budget-friendly option but requires changing SIM cards. Prepaid local SIM cards are also inexpensive for short trips but have the same changing SIM inconvenience.

A more seamless option is buying an eSIM plan from GLO in advance. This avoids changing SIMs since activation is done digitally. However, eSIM plans must be purchased upfront which makes them comparatively more expensive than prepaid cards for short stays.

IV. Best GLO SIM Cards for Tourists & Cost

Plan Price (USD) Validity Data Voice Minutes SMS
Glo Simple $1.71 7 days 150MB data + social media bundles 30 minutes 30 SMS
Glo Value $3.43 14 days 500MB data + social media bundles 60 minutes 60 SMS
Glo Plus $6.86 30 days 1GB data + social media bundles 120 minutes 120 SMS
Glo Max $13.71 60 days 2.5GB data + social media bundles 300 minutes 300 SMS

Here are some key points:

  • There are 5 different prepaid plans offered by GLO – Glo Ready To Go, Glo Simple, Glo Value, Glo Plus and Glo Max.
  • The plans range in price from $0.45 to $13.71 based on data, minutes and SMS allowance.
  • Higher priced plans generally have longer validity periods, more data, minutes and SMS allowances compared to lower priced plans.
  • Customers can choose a plan based on their budget and usage requirements in terms of data, talktime and SMS needs for the validity period.

V. Does GLO Support eSIM in Nigeria?

GLO doesn’t yet provide dedicated tourist eSIMs in Nigeria. However, visitors can purchase a GLO eSIM from international eSIM providers like Airalo.

These providers partner with local operators to offer eSIMs globally. So through Airalo, you can get a cloud-based eSIM with a Nigerian (+234) phone number and GLO service.

The eSIM activation is handled by the provider so you simply install the eSIM profile and start using mobile data. It’s easy to set up even before arriving in Nigeria for seamless connectivity.

Besides, esimnigeria.com, which is operated by GIGAGO, provides some very handy electronic SIM (eSIM) options to consider if you are looking for an alternative to using the local networks in Nigeria. The website offers a range of reasonably priced eSIM packages for staying connected in Nigeria.

Plan that may interest you

Nigeria eSIM 7 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 7 Days Plan
From $9.50
Nigeria eSIM 15 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 15 Days Plan
From $17.50
Nigeria eSIM 30 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 30 Days Plan
From $24.50

VI. Where can You Buy an GLO SIM cards and eSIM?

1. Where to Buy GLO SIM cards in Nigeria

Buy GLO SIM cards in Nigeria
Buy GLO SIM cards in Nigeria. Source

As Nigeria’s second largest telecom company, GLO SIM cards are easy to find across the country. You can purchase a tourist SIM pack from:

  • GLO stores – Over 600 exclusive GLO outlets and zones sell prepaid SIM packs in cities like Lagos and Abuja. Staff can help set up the connection.
  • Dealers/Agents – Authorized GLO dealers have kiosks at malls, markets and high streets. Over 100,000 agents across Nigeria also sell SIM cards.
  • Airports – NAIA Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt airports have GLO counters or vending machines selling SIMs.

2. Where to Buy GLO eSIM in Nigeria

Since GLO doesn’t directly offer tourist eSIMs yet, you have to purchase them from international eSIM providers like Airalo.

Airalo has a range of Nigeria eSIMs with GLO service and (+234) phone numbers. Packages are priced affordably starting under $10 for 1GB data plans.

You can order a GLO Nigeria eSIM for next day delivery before you travel. Or have it instantly emailed if you need connectivity as soon as you land in Nigeria.

VII. How to Activate GLO SIM cards/eSIM in Nigeria

1. How to Use GLO SIM Cards in Nigeria

  • New SIM – Buy an unregistered SIM kit from stores/outlets. It includes SIM card + NIN PUK code.
  • Insert SIM – Switch phone off and insert Nano/Micro/Regular SIM card.
  • Turn It On – Restart phone and SIM will start detecting network.
  • Add Bundles – Dial *777# to activate plan or recharge vouchers to add data and calls.

2. How to Activate GLO eSIM

  • Order eSIM – Go to Airalo website and purchase Nigeria eSIM with GLO service.
  • Install Profile – Scan QR code or share via email. Click on profile link to add eSIM on phone.
  • Connectivity – eSIM icon will appear in settings. Data/calls will automatically work.

No documents or activation steps needed. Just connect seamlessly once in Nigeria!

VIII. GLO Call & SMS Rates

GLO Call plan On-net Call Rate (USD/sec) Off-net Call Rate (USD/sec) On-net SMS Rate (USD) Off-net SMS Rate (USD)
Glo 11k/sec plan $0.0000015 $0.0000015 $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo BEREKETE 10X Varies based on recharge bonus Varies based on recharge bonus $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo 22X Varies based on recharge bonus Varies based on recharge bonus $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo Jollific8 Varies based on recharge bonus Varies based on recharge bonus $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo Yakata Varies based on recharge bonus Varies based on recharge bonus $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo Infinito $0.0000015 to friends/family, $0.0000035 others $0.0000035 $0.0053 $0.0053
G-Bam $0.00000120 to friends/family, $0.0000015 others $0.0000015 $0.0053 $0.0053
Glo Bounce Rates vary depending on package Rates vary depending on package $0.0053 $0.0053

Here are some key points about the Glo call and SMS rates:

  • Several plans like BEREKETE 10X, 22X, Jollific8, Campus Booster and Bounce do not specify fixed call/SMS rates as the rates vary depending on data packages or recharge bonuses.
  • Plans are tailored to suit varied needs – calls, friends/family, data etc. So customers must evaluate benefits against their usage patterns.
  • Rates are subject to change by Glo, so subscribers must confirm latest call/data benefits of their plan via the official Glo mobile app or website.

IX. Useful USSD Codes for GLO SIM Cards/eSIM

Check your GLO account, opt into plans and monitor usage with these codes:

  • *123# – Check SIM number
  • *225# – Check airtime balance
  • *777# – Buy bundled plans
  • *127*0# – Check data balance
  • *127*2# – Check call minutes used
  • *123*recharge card PIN# – Recharge credit

Save these codes to easily manage your GLO SIM cards or recharge. Works the same whether you have the GLO physical SIM or eSIM.

X. How to Top-up GLO SIM Cards/eSIM

Adding more credit is easy with GLO prepaid SIM cả·/eSIM. You can recharge using:

  • Vouchers – Enter recharge PIN using *123# code
  • Debit card – Recharge online via GLO website
  • Mobile banking apps – Bank apps like Firstmonie, OPay let you recharge phone credit
  • USSD recharge – Dial *777*Amount# to recharge (e.g. *777*100# for 100 Naira credit)
  • Mobile Transfer – Dial *223# to transfer credit from another local phone number

This keeps your account active so you can renew data/airtime plans and make calls.

XI. Alternatives to GLO

1. Other Main Local Mobile Operators

While GLO has great coverage, you can also consider these networks:

  • MTN – Leading provider with extensive 4G coverage and speeds up to 25Mbps.
  • Airtel – Reliable connectivity spanning all states. Up to 400 Mbps 5G speeds in Lagos/Abuja.

All offer prepaid SIM cards at airports and tourist SIMs with temporary numbers. MTN has eSIM support through Airalo. Ensuring flexible options.

2. Buy an eSIM from eSIM provider like esimnigeria.com

Travellers visiting Nigeria can have an easier connectivity option when traveling by purchasing an eSIM plan from Esimnigeria.com. As the top digital SIM provider in the country powered by GIGAGO, they offer affordable data packages on reliable networks without long term contracts or deposits required.

Once purchased, an email is quickly sent with a QR code for activation. From there, surfing the high-speed network is just a scan away on your device after downloading the QR code, eliminating the hassle of changing physical SIM cards. It’s truly a seamless process to have cellular access while on the go thanks to this hassle-free solution of simply ordering and scanning to connect.

GiGaGo Partner & Enjoy your Benefit

Switch to digital with esimnigeria.com

XII. FAQs about GLO

Is GLO eSIM available in Nigeria?

GLO doesn’t provide dedicated eSIMs yet. But you can purchase a GLO Nigeria eSIM from providers like Airalo.

Can I use GLO SIM card for international roaming?

Yes, GLO has roaming partnerships worldwide allowing you to use the same SIM abroad. Enable roaming before travel and pay standard roaming rates.

How long is GLO SIM card valid for tourists?

GLO prepaid SIM packs like weekly and monthly plans auto-renew as long as there’s account balance. For postpaid, submit ID docs for 1-2 year validity.

Does GLO need ID registration to buy SIM?

Tourists can buy prepaid SIMs from stores without ID or passport for short stays under 2 months. Long stays may require registration.

How to check GLO number?

Tourists can buy prepaid SIMs from stores without ID or passport for short stays under 2 months. Long stays may require registration.

XIII. Final Words

For stable connectivity through your Nigeria trip, a GLO nano SIM or eSIM is a great choice. With wide 4G coverage, fast speeds and affordable data rates – you can stay connected across 36 states. Pick up a prepaid pack conveniently at the airport or order an eSIM before your arrival.