3G data plans in Vietnam are cheap and widely available however there are some tricks to getting the best value and technically switching your overseas iPhone or iPad to work in Vietnam, so I have put together this iPhone iPad 3g Data access guide for Vietnam to help you stay connected while in the country.
At the moment by far the best value 3G data plan in Vietnam is sold by Vinaphone with their 1,7 or 30 day plans with their very generous data limits.
|Plan||Data included||Cost Vietnamese Dong (VND)||Aprox Cost AUD/USD|
|1 day access||250mb||12,000||$0.60|
|7 days access||1.5Gb||80,000||$3.80|
|30 days access||3.2Gb||200,000||$9.50|
SIM Unlock iPhone (Before you leave your home country)
Before you leave on your trip to Vietnam it is important to ensure that your iPhone is sim or carrier unlocked, to do this (before you leave your country) call up the mobile phone carrier on which your iPhone plan is with and ask them to sim unlock your iPhone. In Australia at least most carriers will do this free of charge provided you are on a post-paid plan.
In Vietnam Purchase SIM/Micro SIM and Recharge Vouchers
When you arrive in Vietnam head to your nearest mobile phone shop (don’t worry there are at least half a dozen on every street corner) and pickup a Vinaphone pre-paid SIM card, one of these will set you back approximately 65,000 VND (AUD/USD $3) and include 50,000 VND credit. Micro SIMs have been widely available in Vietnam for well over a year now, so a SIM cutter is not required.
In addition to the SIM/Micro SIM you will also need 1 or possibly more Vinaphone pre-paid recharge vouchers depending on the plan you decide to sign up for, since my trips to Vietnam are normally for extended periods I usually get 3-4 X VND 100,000 recharge vouchers, which is usually enough to cover me for 30 day of data plus any calls I might make.
To add credit to your phone scratch the panel to revel the charge code and follow instruction on the voucher to add the credit
Enabling GPRS Data & 3G Data Plan
After you have inserted the Vinaphone SIM/Micro SIM into your iPad or iPhone it is now time to enable GPRS data as well as your desired data plan.
Note if you intend to use this SIM on an iPad you will need to do this step from a regular phone/iPhone and then insert the SIM into your iPad, as you cannot send SMS/Text messages from an iPad.
To enable data on your SIM text GPRS ON to 888
To enable your desired 3G data plan text the corresponding code below
1 day unlimited text U1 to number 888
7 days unlimted text U7 to number 888
30 days unlimited text U30 to number 888
Enabling the Vinaphone APN Carrier Profile
Finally the last step in configuring your iPhone or iPad for 3G data in Vietnam is to set the Vinaphone APN Data Carrier settings, on an iPad this is easy as the Cellular Data Network is viewable, however on most carrier supplied iPhones these settings are hidden, however if there is a will there is a way (see below), but first how to do this on an iPad
On your iPad (or iPhone where this option is not hidden) go to
- Select Settings.
- Select General.
- Select Network.
- Select Cellular Data Network.
- Under Cellular Data Option (enter the following)
- Under MMS Option (enter the following)
MMS Max Message Size:
MMS UA Prof URL:
- Click Network Tab up the top to save
For an iPhone where the Cellular Data Network screen is hidden, you will first need to find somewhere with Wi-Fi internet access, most hotels and an increasing number of cafes have complimentary Wi-Fi internet access, once you are connected to on the internet go to the below URL
To automatically set the Vinaphone APN follow the directions and screenshots below
Select Custom APN
Change Country to Viet Nam and Carrier to Vinaphone
Finally click Create Profile
Install Profile page select the Install button
There will be a final prompt confirming that you really want to set the Vinaphone APN click Install Now
If you have a Pin/passcode on your iPhone you will need to enter it now otherwise you will now be rocking with Unlimited Vietnam 3G Data on your iPhone or iPad.
Congratulations you should now be rocking with 3G Data on your iPhone or iPad in Vietnam!
Removing the Vinaphone APN Carrier setting
After you have left Vietnam and want to enable either the APN of your home country carrier or that of another country on your iPhone simply go to Settings | General | Profile APN Carrier Settings (near bottom of screen) and the select Remove
You will be asked to confirm if you really want to remove the profile and again if you have a PIN or Passcode on your iPhone you will be prompted to enter it, and your iPhone will be set back to your original APN Carrier setting.