Traveling to a new country can be exciting, but also stressful if you can’t stay connected. Having internet access and a working phone is critical for using maps, translation apps, rideshares, and more. For visitors to Malta, GO SIM Cards and eSIM are the top choice for many travelers. This guide will cover everything you need to know about getting and using GO SIM cards and eSIM plans to enable connectivity during your trip.

GO SIM cards and eSIM featured image

I. Quick facts about GO

Go SIM Cards and eSIM

GO is the main mobile network operator in Malta with the best coverage across the islands. Some key facts:

  • Founded in 1997
  • Has a 4G LTE network covering 99% of Malta
  • Fast typical speeds of over 50 Mbps down and 15 Mbps up
  • Popular with both locals and travelers
  • Owned by Tunisie Telecom
  • Uses standard EU phone frequencies.

When visiting Malta, GO SIM cards and eSIM will provide the fastest data speeds and broadest coverage for staying connected during your trip compared to alternatives like Epic Malta.

II. Malta GO Coverage and Speed in Malta

There are two main factors you should consider when think about mobile operator: coverage and speed.

1. GO Coverage in Malta

GO coverage map
  • GO Malta offers fast 4G LTE connectivity reaching average download speeds of 50+ Mbps in most areas during testing. 
  • GO offers extensive coverage throughout Malta, including major towns, cities, and rural areas.
  • The network coverage spans across the Maltese Islands, providing service to both urban and rural locations.
  • You can expect reliable coverage in most areas, including popular tourist destinations.

2. GO Speeds

  • GO provides high-speed internet access to its customers.
  • The exact speed may vary depending on the specific plan and location.
  • GO offers different broadband packages, including options for fast download and upload speeds.
  • The network infrastructure is designed to support high-speed internet services, allowing for smooth browsing, streaming, and online activities.

III. GO connectivity options for travelers to Malta

Here’s a table comparing the pros and cons of GO connectivity options for travelers to Malta:

Connectivity Options Pros Cons
Mobile Data Plans - Convenient and portable connectivity - Limited data allowances may be restrictive for heavy internet usage
- Wide coverage across the Maltese Islands - Speeds may vary depending on location and network congestion
- Can be easily purchased and activated - International roaming charges may apply
Public Wi-Fi - Free or low-cost access in public spaces - Coverage may be limited to specific areas or establishments
- Suitable for light internet usage and basic tasks - Security risks associated with using unsecured public Wi-Fi networks
- Ideal for quick browsing and checking emails - Speeds may be slower during peak usage times
- Available in hotels, cafes, restaurants, and tourist areas  
Portable Wi-Fi - Provides a dedicated Wi-Fi hotspot for multiple devices - Additional device to carry and charge
- Allows for flexible and shared internet access - Limited battery life may require frequent recharging
- Can be rented or purchased with different data packages - Coverage may be dependent on the strength of the mobile network signal
- Works well for groups or families traveling together  
SIM Card - Offers flexibility to use your own unlocked device - Initial setup and activation process may require time and assistance
- Provides local phone number for calls and messaging - May require purchasing a separate SIM card for each traveler
- No reliance on public Wi-Fi or hotel networks - Limited coverage in remote or rural areas
eSIM - Convenient and hassle-free activation - Limited support for eSIM by certain devices and carriers
- No physical SIM card required - Availability of eSIM plans and packages may be limited
- Easy to switch between multiple eSIM profiles - Compatibility with older or non-eSIM devices may be an issue
- Offers flexibility to use local and international data plans - Not all mobile networks support eSIM functionality

For frequent or longer-term visitors to Malta, GO’s monthly travel eSIM plans provide reliable connectivity on flexible terms. But the Prepaid Go SIM card can also work well with some discipline around top-up amounts and expiry dates.

IV. Best GO SIM cards for tourists & cost

Selecting the right GO Malta SIM card hinges on your specific needs for the duration of your trip, considering the array of SIM card choices and plans available.

Below options make it easy to decide GO prepaid SIM best-suited for your travel needs in Malta:

Prepaid PlansData AllowancePrice (USD)Calling (Local/International)RoamingTextValidity
€5 Prepaid SIM CardN/A$5Pay-as-you-go rates applyPay-as-you-go ratesN/A180 days
€10 7-Day Data Pack6GB$11Pay-as-you-go rates applyPay-as-you-go ratesN/A7 days
€20 30-Day Data Pack5GB$22Pay-as-you-go rates applyPay-as-you-go ratesN/A30 days
€25 30-Day eSIM Plan25GB$28Pay-as-you-go rates applyIncluded in EUN/A30 days
€30 30-Day eSIM Plan with Roaming25GB$34Pay-as-you-go rates applyIncluded in EUN/A30 days

Consider getting an eSIM from providers like esimmalta.com if you plan to use a lot of data. They often offer cheaper data packages than GO.

V. Does GO Malta support eSIM?

Yes, GO offers eSIM connectivity options for the latest iPhones and Android devices. Their eSIM plans are designed specifically for travelers needing temporary connectivity and come with 1-month terms.

You can sign up for a GO Malta travel eSIM completely online by:

  1. Selecting your desired plan amount for data & terms
  2. Entering passport/ID details during checkout
  3. Downloading the free GO app to activate your plan

No need to find and swap physical SIM cards. GO’s eSIM setup only takes a few minutes so your device works immediately upon arrival.

Before buying eSIM, check your devices are compatible with eSIM or not, detailed in eSIM Compatible Device List.

VI. Where can you buy a GO SIM cards and eSIM

1. Where to buy Physical GO SIM Cards

go-operator
  • GO Retail Stores: GO has several retail stores located throughout Malta where you can purchase physical GO SIM cards. 
  • Authorized Resellers: There are authorized resellers and distributors of GO products and services in Malta. These include mobile phone shops, electronics stores, and convenience stores. 
  • Malta International Airport: If you’re arriving at Malta International Airport, you may find kiosks or stores within the airport terminal that sell GO SIM cards. 
  • Online: GO may also offer the option to purchase SIM cards online through their official website. 

2. Where to buy GO eSIM Plans

gO sim cards and eSIM

For GO’s eSIM monthly plans for travelers, signup is handled completely online through their website at gomobile.mt/esim. eSIM plans cannot be purchased in person. However, GO’s retail stores can assist with technical support questions on eSIM activation.

Purchasing online ahead of departure ensures connectivity upon arrival. But last-minute signups work too as activation is quick through their app.

VII. How to activate Malta GO SIM Cards and eSIM

Activating your GO SIM cards and eSIM is quite fast and convenient with both online and in-store options:

1. Activating Prepaid GO SIM Cards

To start using your GO Prepaid SIM card purchased in Malta:

  1. Insert the SIM and turn on your phone
  2. Select “Activate” from the SIM toolkit popup
  3. Follow prompts to select prepaid bundle and enter info
  4. Choose data pack or calling bundle to enable service
  5. You will receive activation texts confirming setup

If you don’t get the SIM toolkit popup to activate, you may need to restart the device or manually initiate activation by dialing *131#

2. Activating GO Malta eSIM Plans

To activate an eSIM plan ordered through GO Malta online:

  1. Download the GO app on your device
  2. Login using details from your eSIM purchase receipt
  3. Scan your passport/ID page for verification
  4. Follow in-app steps enabling eSIM profile and plan
  5. Confirm data connectivity to finish activation

The GO app manages your eSIM profile and notifications if add-ons or plan renewals are needed. Support is available via GO shops or the app too.

Please check your detailed instructions below:

VIII. Malta GO Call & SMS rates

GO Malta Tourist SIM cards include local and international minutes, along with texts. Standard overage rates apply once you exceed the specified limits.

Service Rate (USD per minute/SMS)
Local Calls $0.10
International Calls (selected countries) $0.25 - $0.50 per minute
SMS (Local) $0.05
SMS (International) $0.15 - $0.25 per SMS

Unlimited calling options are also available on most top-up voucher durations. Or GO’s monthly eSIM plans include unlimited Malta calls and calls to 50 other countries.

IX. Useful USSD codes for Malta GO SIM Cards and eSIM

USSD codes allow checking your account or data usage balances by dialing special number combinations. Some handy GO Malta prepaid USSD check codes:

  • *131# – prepaid balance
  • *139# – check data balance
  • *149# – outstanding data pack info
  • *135# – activate bundles menu

eSIM users can check balances and data usage in the GO app too while having connectivity.

Monitoring data balances ensures you don’t accidentally incur overage fees if exceeding plan amounts before recharging. The above codes make this easy while out exploring Malta.

X. How to top-up Malta GO SIM Cards and eSIM

1. Topping Up Prepaid GO SIM Cards

  • Online top-ups require signing up for a MyGO self-service account using your SIM number. Payments can then be made via credit card for data packs, calling bundles, and various validity durations.
  • In-person top-ups are done by purchasing scratch-off voucher cards from GO shops, which offer the widest selection, or other retailers like corner stores. 

2. Renewing GO eSIM Plans

  • For eSIM connectivity, no manual top-up action is required. By default, GO will automatically renew your monthly plan unless you cancel service or signup was noted as one-time only.
  • You can manage autopay settings and disable renewals in the GO app if desired. To extend shorter term plans again, new checkout would be required.
  • The app provides expiration reminders as your monthly eSIM term nears the renewal date. Continuing service ensures continuous connectivity while visiting.

XI. Alternatives to Malta GO

While GO is the top choice for many visitors thanks to broad LTE coverage, Epic or Melita Malta exists as an alternative. 

Other options like purchasing a roaming package from your home mobile carrier tend to be far more expensive daily. Or buying eSIM plans from esimmalta.com, which provides a range of data plans for tourists. 

Enjoy 1-3GB of high-speed data per day with esimmalta.com 5-day eSIM plan. Prices start from $5/day: 

Malta eSIM 7-Day Plan lets you use up to 3GB of data per day for 7 days. Prices start from just $5/day: 

best Malta eSIM data plans

XII. FAQs about GO in Malta

Is registration or ID required to get GO SIM card?

Yes, you need to show your valid passport when purchasing any GO SIM card in Malta for verification and registry requirements.

Can I use a GO SIM card in my dual SIM phone?

Yes, GO SIM cards work in dual SIM devices allowing you to keep your home country plan active via the other SIM slot. eSIM would enable this configuration too.

How long does a GO SIM card last without use?

GO prepaid vouchers typically expire 30 days from activation if no topping up occurs. To avoid waste, recharge more data/minutes before that deadline.
For GO monthly eSIM plans, service automatically renews each month by default if not cancelled.

Can I use my SIM card in other European countries?

By default GO SIM cards only allow usage when physically within Malta. But GO’s eSIM plans offer affordable EU roaming to also use your connectivity when visiting Gozo or elsewhere in Europe.

XIII. Final words

Staying connected with mobile data and voice service in Malta is readily available thanks to provider options like GO. Their network enables speeds faster than typical connectivity in Asian regions along with great value. Both prepaid GO SIM cards and eSIM plans suit short term travelers and longer stays with easy signup. Following this guide, you’ll be set for reliable connectivity during your travels across Malta.