The Iliad serves as a major telecommunications service providing mobile phone service, home internet, and many other additional services. Iliad has disrupted the Italian marketplace through its arrival in 2018 to offer cheap alternatives to the low-cost competitors of the incumbent operators such as TIM and Vodafone.

This complete guide will help you out if you are in Italy and need to get associated with an Iliad SIM card or Iliad eSIM. As part of this, we will discuss on Iliad’s coverage, speeds, SIM cards, eSIM, and costs.

Iliad SIM Cards & eSIM

1. Quick Facts About the Iliad in Italy

Iliad is a French telecommunications company with its Italian mobile network which began to operate in 2018. However, it was inexpensive and had easy to understand plans which helped it to become popular fast.

Quick facts about the Iliad in Italy:

  • Iliad is the fourth biggest mobile operator in Italy with more than 9.5million consumers.
  • The Iliad offers a range of prepaid and postpaid mobile plans, all having free unlimited calls and SMS to Italy numbers.
  • On the same note, the Iliad provides data options that start from 1 GB and span up to 150 GB monthly.
  • In terms of prices, Iliad is one of the competent providers in Italy. For instance, a 150 GB prepaid plan of Iliad is available for Є9.99 (USD 10).
  • In most places of Italy, the Iliad’s network coverage is quite extensive, although not as much compared to the major operators’ networks.

In general, the Iliad is an excellent choice for consumers seeking an affordable mobile airtime package that allows unlimited calls and messaging. While taking a plan with the Iliad, consumers need to be aware that it has limited network coverage and less customer service.

Iliad logo

2. Italy Iliad Coverage and Speed in Italy

Iliad may be newer than the incumbent Italian operators, but they’ve quickly rolled out nationwide coverage that makes them a great choice for tourists. Here’s an overview of Iliad’s network reach across Italy and the speeds you can expect:

2.1. Iliad Coverage in Italy

Italy Mobile Operator Coverage
Italy Mobile Operator Coverage

Iliad’s 5G coverage ranked as the second best in Italy, according to Opensignal Mobile Network Experience Report for Italy May 2023. The difference is about 3%. ILIAD users have 1.17% higher activity with 5G compared to FASTWEB users: 2.8%.

Shortly stated, Iliad provides a perfect solution for 5G coverage on the Italian market. Here is a table of the 5G coverage of the four major mobile operators in Italy:

Mobile Operator 5G Reach (May 2023)
Fastweb 6.5
Iliad 6.1
WindTre 5.7
TIM 4.3

2.2. Iliad Speed in Italy

Italy Mobile Operators Speed
Italy Mobile Operators Speed

As per the Opensignal Mobile Network Experience Report for Italy of May, 2023, Iliad has thirds fastest 5G download speed in the country. Fast web users achieve an average of 5G download speed at 35.6 Mbps while Iliad users get 31 Mbps, 4.6 Mbps slower.

In all, the Iliad would be useful for those consumers that want fast 5G speed in Italy.

Here is a table of the 5G download and upload speeds of the four major mobile operators in Italy:

Mobile Operator 5G Download Speed (Mbps) 5G Upload Speed (Mbps)
Fastweb 35.6 10.7
Vodafone 33.9 10.5
Iliad 31 9.5
TIM 33.2 9.9

3. Iliad Connectivity Options for Travelers to Italy

Iliad caters for its residents and visitors with its prepaid plan on their network. Here are the two main options tourists have for getting Italy Iliad service:

Connectivity Option Description
SIM Card Prepaid or postpaid SIM card that can be used in your phone.
eSIM Digital SIM card that is embedded in your device.
Mobile Hotspot Device that creates a Wi-Fi network that you can connect your devices to.
Pocket Wi-Fi Small device that you can carry with you and use to connect to the internet.

Which connectivity option is best for you?

The best connectivity option for you will depend on your needs and budget.

  • If you are only going to be in Italy for a short time and you need a lot of data, then an eSIM is a good option.
  • If you are going to be in Italy for a longer period of time or you need more data, then a SIM card is a good option. 
  • Mobile hotspot allows you to have internet access on multiple devices and offers internet connection in poor cell service areas.
  • In case you are looking for an internet connection while on the move then pocket Wi-Fi will be good.

4. Best Iliad SIM Cards for Tourists & Costs

Iliad only offers prepaid plans on their Italian network. The SIM costs around 10 USD with the first month of service included. You then choose a suitable plan. Here are the Iliad SIM Card plan along with current pricing:

Iliad SIM Plan Price (USD) Data Local Calls Messages Validity Total Cost (USD)
Voice Only ~ 5 USD 40 MB Unlimited Unlimited 30 days ~ 15 USD
Data 300 ~ 14 USD 300 GB - - 30 days ~ 24 USD
GIGA 100 ~ 8 USD 100 GB Unlimited Unlimited 30 days ~ 18 USD
GIGA 150 ~ 10 USD 150 GB Unlimited Unlimited 30 days ~ 20 USD

5. Does Iliad Italy Support eSIM?

Yes, Iliad launched eSIM support in October 2020. This allows compatible iPhones and Android phones to use data plans through Iliad’s mobile app instead of physical SIM cards. 

To use the Iliad Italy eSIM service, you’ll need:

  • iPhone XS or newer
  • Android phone with eSIM capability
  • Iliad Italy app installed (available on iOS App Store and Google Play)

Then you can purchase and activate an Iliad Italy eSIM entirely digitally through their app. Support includes dual SIM configurations with one eSIM line and one physical SIM card. Iliad eSIM has the same plans as Iliad SIM Card, so you can check the plan above to choose.

6. Where Can You Buy an Iliad SIM Card and eSIM?

There are several ways to get Iliad service when visiting Italy, whether you want a standard Iliad SIM card or Iliad eSIM.

6.1. Where to Buy an Iliad SIM Card in Italy

You have a few options for purchasing an Iliad Italy SIM card:

  • Online – Order directly from Iliad Italy’s website for delivery in Italy or abroad. But you need ID to buy. Not recommended.
  • Iliad Store – Visit an official Iliad store in cities like Rome, Milan, Turin, Naples, etc. Find an Iliad store near you.
  • Iliad Point – These partner retailers have Iliad SIMs available across Italy.
iliad store
Iliad store

Prices are the same online or in-store. Just check coverage at your destination and order the right SIM card for your phone.

6.2. Where to Buy an Iliad Italy eSIM

You can purchase the Iliad eSIM on, in our Stores and Corners, or with the support of our consultants at 177.

You need the Italian Fiscal Code to register Iliad eSIM. You will be able to download your eSIM from the email you will receive once you have completed the subscription or from your Personal Area, so it will be immediately available!

If you want to use eSIM on your trip to Italy, you can consider Italy eSIM from

Get an eSIM plan from and say goodbye to roaming fees. Plans from $6 with 1-3GB data daily. Buy now for instant access upon arrival.

7. How to Activate an Iliad Italy SIM Card & eSIM

Activating your Iliad SIM card or eSIM is fast and easy. Here are the steps for each:

7.1. How to Activate an Iliad Italy SIM Card

  1. Insert the Iliad SIM card into your unlocked phone.
  1. On Android, APN settings may need entered manually:
    • APN: iliad
    • Username: iliad
    • Password: iliad
  2. Power on your phone and you’ll get a text to confirm activation.
  3. You may need to call 400 or get help from Iliad support if the SIM isn’t automatically activated.

Once working, you can recharge additional data packs as needed through the Iliad app or website.

7.2. How to Activate an Iliad Italy eSIM

  1. Install the Iliad Italy app on your iPhone or Android phone.
  1. Create an account and login.
  2. Choose your Iliad prepaid plan in the eSIM tab.
  3. Follow prompts to install the Iliad eSIM profile on your device.
  4. Activation occurs digitally through the app within minutes.

You’ll then manage your Iliad eSIM plan using their app. Be sure to download Iliad eSIM profiles before any overseas travel.

8. Iliad Italy Call & SMS Rates

Iliad Italy prepaid plans include generous call and text allowances:

Destination Call Rate (USD) SMS Rate (USD)
Italy Free Free
European Union $0.26 $0.11
United States and Canada $0.33 $0.13
Rest of the world $1.09 $0.33

Please note that these are just estimates and the actual rates may vary depending on your exchange rate.

9. Useful USSD Codes for Iliad Italy SIM Cards

USSD codes let you check your account or enable features by dialing special numbers from your Iliad SIM card. Here are some of the most useful Iliad Italy USSD codes:

  • Via Phone – call 400 and listen to the remaining credit details. Or text “Credit” then send to 400 to receive free SMS.
  • Via Internet – Visit the website and login to your Iliad customer account.

So dial these codes directly from your Iliad Italy SIM to check usage, add credit, enable features, and more.

10. How to Top-Up an Iliad Italy SIM Card or eSIM

When your data allowance runs low, you’ll need to add more credit to continue service. There are a few ways to top-up an Iliad SIM card or Iliad eSIM:

  • Automatic Top-Up – Enable this in the Iliad app and your plan will renew each month.
  • Iliad Website – Log in to your account dashboard and choose your top-up amount.
  • Iliad App – Go to the Recharge section and choose a data pack or plan amount.
  • Vouchers – Purchase top-up vouchers locally and enter the code online.
  • USSD Top-Up – Dial *139*AMOUNT# to add that amount of credit.

So recharging online or through the app is easiest. Vouchers and USSD top-up work as well. Your new data balance appears immediately.

11. Alternatives to Iliad Italy

While the Iliad is a top choice for great value connectivity, there are other operator options in Italy:

  • TIM – Italy’s largest operator with widespread coverage and fast speeds. But more expensive.
  • Vodafone – Multinational telecom with great networks across Italy. Also pricier.
  • WindTre – Formed by the merger of Wind and 3 Italia. Mid-range prices and coverage.
  • italy-esim.comVirtual network provider with pay-as-you-go Italy eSIM data options.

So Iliad stands out with unmatched prices and strong coverage almost everywhere. But other operators and providers work well too if needed. 

12. FAQs About Using Iliad in Italy

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about getting Iliad service in Italy:

Does the Iliad have good coverage in Italy?

Yes, thanks to a network sharing agreement, Iliad has excellent nationwide 2G/3G coverage right away. Their own 4G/5G network now reaches 99% of the population in Italy.

How fast is the Iliad’s network in Italy?

In real-world tests, Iliad’s average download speeds are around 60 Mbps on 4G with peak 5G speeds up to 500+ Mbps in some areas. Fast and reliable.

Can I use an Iliad SIM across Europe?

No, Iliad SIMs only provide service within Italy. But they do allow roaming in Europe and worldwide with add-on passes.

How do I check my data balance on Iliad?

Dial 400 from your Iliad SIM to check your available data, calls, texts, and expiration date.

13. Final Words

Hopefully, this guide has provided everything you need to know about getting connected with Iliad in Italy. Their prepaid SIM card and eSIM plans offer outstanding value with excellent coverage across the country.

Their ultra-competitive rates, ease of activation, and great performance make Iliad the 1 choice for many tourists visiting Italy. Pick up a SIM card on arrival or activate an eSIM before your trip for smooth connectivity.