How to Activate International Roaming Facility On BSNL Prepaid Mobile Number ?

Few months back BSNL launched the International roaming facility for all the prepaid customers. Earlier it was available for only postpaid subscribers and also, those who wish to get the facility have to deposit some amount for that too.

Now, BSNL added the facility for its prepaid subscribers also and it is available in all the circles in India. Initially the service is available in 14 countries which includes Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman, USA, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Myanmar, Ukraine, Mozambique and Ethiopia.

The service is being provided to all the prepaid subscribers without any deposit or rental. Only thing users need to do it to get the International Roaming facility enabled SIM card for their number to get the service activated.

Read: Jio Becomes the Best Mobile Network in India For International Roaming Services

How to enable the International Roaming Facility on BSNL Number ?

Though the service is activated free, BSNL customers have to do one thing to get it activated. Existing prepaid customers need to get a duplicate SIM card for their number to get it activated.
Unlike other providers such as Airtel, Jio etc, BSNL was not provided their customers with the SIM card that supports International Roaming Facility.

In Order to get International Roaming facility on any SIM card of any network, the SIM card support dual IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity), but existing BSNL sim card only supports single IMSI. Therefore subscribers need to get the new sim. But make sure that, you are not getting the latest 4G SIM card, as the new BSNL 4G SIM doesn’t support International Roaming. You can check more details here.

How to get Dual IMSI SIM for BSNL Number ?

  1. Go to the nearest customer care center of BSNL with any valid ID card.
  2. Ask them to provide duplicate SIM card for the number, don’t forget to mention, you need new SIM for International Roaming.
  3. Pay a charge of Rs. 10 for issuing the duplicate SIM.
  4. The SIM card will be activated within few minutes and your old SIM card will get disconnected.
  5. Now, the IR facility is enabled on your BSNL Prepaid Mobile Number.

Read: Comparison of BSNL Annual Plan 2099 and Plan 1699 With 4GB Data Per day, Unlimited Calls and Caller Tunes

Note: Make sure with the customer care, that you are provided with Dual IMSI SIM Card. unless the roaming will not work. Now, you can use your BSNL mobile number in the above mentioned 14 countries.

Some subscribers informed us that, you need to submit the Passport copy to get the IR enabled SIM card. We contacted the customer care to clarify it. Passport copy is not mandatory to get the new dual IMSI sim card. You can get it with any valid photo ID card.

If you are an NRI and have only passport as the valid Indian ID card, then you can use your passport for getting the SIM card.

Please note, the service will be activated free and in order to make and receive calls while you are abroad, you have to pay for it and it vary from countries. Only incoming SMS will be free, all outgoing and incoming calls and outgoing SMS will be charged as per the tariff applied to corresponding countries.

72 thoughts on “How to Activate International Roaming Facility On BSNL Prepaid Mobile Number ?”

  1. Can I use IMSI prepaid SIM in India for local calls (at local call rates) and carry the same abroad (designated countries) and use it to receive FREE SMS from India ?

    Reply
  2. My BSNL international prepaid SIM card in USA is not working even though after registering with t mobile the local partner for USA

    Reply
  3. My bsnl sim is not working in saudi but my airtel sim is working fine and i am receiving text messages also. I didnt change sim or opt for international roaming in bsnl. Can i do anything from here to make my sim active again?

    Reply
    • Not possible Nowfaul. Existing BSNL prepaid SIM card will not work in the International location, You need to collect a new SIM card from Customer care in India to enjoy the service in Saudi.

      Reply
  4. Can you tell me how long do i have before my sim cancel itslef and how can i avoid that? Is there any recharge pack for extending my sim’s validity? Its already been 90 days on march 29. I do want that number. Thanks in advance.

    Reply
    • Just recharge for Rs. 35 if the SIM is Airtel, Vodafone or Idea and you will get 28 days validity for incoming and outgoing. Also you will get additional 90 days to keep your number with you. After 90 days you can repeat the same.

      Reply
  5. My BSNL SIM is not active in qatar but my IDEA SIM is working here and receiving messages and calls also in my IDEA SIM. Im not changing international roaming option before entering here.what can i do for getting messages from BSNl SIM.

    Reply
    • You need to reach any customer care office in India and collect the duplicate SIM for your number that supports International Roaming. With your current prepaid SIM, it will not be possible.

      Reply
  6. I have a post paid mobile connection. I am traveling to UK from 11/6 to 21/6. I wanted to activate international roaming for this period with data connection. How should I proceed. Kindly advise

    Reply
    • Since you are using postpaid sim, no need to get a new SIM card. Just call the customer care 1500 and ask them for the International Roaming activation. Normally on postpaid connection IR is activated by default.

      Reply
  7. I am travelling from India to USA via Dubai. Currently I have a BSNL prepaid connection. What should i do to get International Roaming activated in my sim so that I can get incoming and outgoing calls from Dubai and USA?

    Reply
    • First you need to get a international roaming enabled sim, if you are a prepaid user. Otherwise no need to take a new SIM and no special recharge. If prepaid, then you need to recharge with Rs.58 voucher to receive and make calls. Incoming SMS will be free always without any recharge.

      Reply
  8. Im using bsnl international sim in saudi arabia 2 month finish but today network unavailble provider is zain ksa no network now what solution?

    Reply
      • I am at Kuwait and I can’t return to India until next March, What should I do to keep my number active? If recharge helps, let me know how much I want to recharge?

        Reply
        • Which connection you have ? Is it BSNL ? Then first you need to have the SIM working in Kuwait, if its not working there, then there is a chance of getting disconnected if you are not using it for more than 90 days.

          Reply
  9. Hi, I have a prepaid BSNL sim of Madhya Pradesh and now I am in Karnataka and I urgently need Dual SIM for international roaming facility. Can I collect it in Karnataka ?

    Reply
  10. Hi I am Travelling to Germany for a Month on a Business trip, I came to know that BSNL is not having roaming support in Germany. is it true? I have collected the BSNL INR SIM (International Roaming SIM) today, how long does it take to activate?

    Reply
    • Hi Murali,

      BSNL doesn’t have IR service in Germany right now. regarding the SIM activation, it will be completed within 1 hour. Once your old SIM gets disconnected, you can insert the new SIM card.

      Reply
  11. Hi,
    I am using international roaming sim in Dubai.If i do not recharge my sim, my sim signal i get continue or not

    Reply
  12. I want to fly Ksa could i get this BSNL SIM to Ksa?
    I am using only for incoming bank messages. I am no using data or call IC/OC.
    I WANT to use only for incoming messages so how much should i need to recharge? Kindly suggest me.

    Reply
    • You can use Rs. 58 IR pack, You will be getting free incoming SMS whereas the outgoing SMS, Outgoing and Incoming calls will be chargeable. Some users are complaining that they are unable to receive SMS from other mobile numbers while in IR. But, i think, Bank SMS and OTP you can receive without any issue.

      Reply
  13. I am having one bsnl international roaming sim which is active in saudi arabia; even though I am getting messages normally, calls are not getting. what is the pre requirement for receiving calls, any plan has to activate or keeping particular minimum balance?

    Reply
    • You need to activate IR pack which will cost Rs. 58 per month. Also, once the IR recharge is done, to make and receive calls, you need to have talktime balance in the main account. The incoming and outgoing calls will be charged at IR rates. So you need to have enough balance in your account.

      Reply
    • Is that a 4G SIM or old 3G SIM itself ? I think the new 4G prepaid sim doesn’t have dual IMSI option which will not work in international roaming.

      Reply
  14. I have International roaming enabled in my prepaid sim and I used to recharge with Rs 168 for 90 days international roaming . How can i check the expiry date of this 90 days or till what date this will be valid? Otherwise if I am recharging for Rs 58 for 30 days plan , how can I know the expiry date for the same ?

    Reply
    • Hi Kannan, Not sure about the USSD code, but you can try *124*2# or *124*3#. You will get all the details of the currently activated STV there.

      Reply
  15. Hi, I didn’t know that I have to activate my bsnl sim for IR, so I came to UAE, is there anyway to activate IR while staying here?

    Reply
    • If you are having regular 3G or 4G SIM, it cannot be activated. 1st you need to collect Dual IMSI SIM card from India.Then only you can activate IR on your number.

      Reply
    • I think there is no direct option available. You may contact customer service center and request them for the same. But i am not sure, is there any option available for customers for that.

      Reply
  16. My BSNL International Roaming service is not working in USA. While I was in India, I had walked into BSNL customer care and swapped my normal prepaid 4G SIM with the International Roaming 4G SIM. The active Plan on this SIM is BSNL498. The Expiry shows up as 20/01/2021. The Status shows up as ACTIVE. I also see that the Network is T-Mobile. But, nothing is working. What should I do to get this to work ? What am I missing here ?

    Reply
  17. Can we get SMS working on a WIFI service for BSNL. Currently the user is in USA and looking for options to enable SMS. Or any options to fwd, this to another number.,

    Reply
    • SMS service needs International Roming enabled and it is not related to any WiFi Service. You need network coverage and balance in your account to send sms.

      Reply
  18. Hi Vipin can you advise me about How can I bring bsnl IMSI prepaid SIM card from india because right now I m in Ethiopia
    Do they give IMSI SIM card to my family member

    Reply
    • Currently, i think it is not possible. If the SIM is registered in your name, then you need to personally reach the CSC and collect the new dual IMSI SIM card.

      Reply
  19. I’m using my bsnl sim in uae, I didn’t collected the dual imsi sim before leaving india. But now I’m not receiving any sms like otp for some app registered under this number. How can I activate this international roaming from uae. I cannot go back to india only for collecting this sim especially during this Covid time.

    Please advise any alternative solution to do this from uae.

    Reply
  20. Hi vipin,How are you.first up all i say thank to u.
    Im using BSNL sim since 2009.
    Now I’m in dubai.i have 4G bsnl sim.but didn’t buy duplicate sim before leaving india.In UAE my bsnl sim no network coverage.Any other options?

    Reply
    • Hi Riyaz,

      I can understand the issue. I too faced the same once. Actually it is one main issue with BSNL. They are not doing things in the right way. Actually, if you are having a BSNL 4G SIM, then the international Roaming will not work. Because the dual IMSI option is not available in new 4G SIM. If you take a duplicate SIM for international roaming, then 4G will not work on that.

      BSNL should have release the 4G SIM with dual IMSI enabled. Unfortunatly they didn’t. So if you need IR on your BSNL SIM, you need to take a duplicate 3G SIM. Hope in the coming days, they release dual IMSI 4G SIM.

      Reply
  21. I am not receiving any incoming SMS & OTP. kindly let me know how I can get SMS & OTP.
    How to identify the sim 3G,4G or 5G, because at SIM card’s agents or store providers not explain about any thing just collect document and issue the SIM card. Kindly educate the customers too about settings weather National and International. Now every one roaming World. The communication is very important. Step by step settings
    Publish and give along with the SIM card. Thank you

    Reply
    • Hi Malathi,

      In the BSNL SIM card, it is printed like 3G or 4G. So you can check whether your SIM is 3G or 4G. But the most strange thing with BSNL is that their 3G and 4G prepaid SIM card is not available with dual IMSI option, hence International Roaming will not work on those SIM cards.

      If a customer request for International Roaming enabled SIM card, then what they are doing is providing with a 3G, Postpaid printed SIM card for the prepaid number (number still prepaid). This is because BSNL has only International Roaming enabled SIM card printed as Postpaid.

      The most frustrating thing is that if you collect a new 4G SIM card, then International Roaming will not work.

      if you need IR, then 3G SIM needed, if you need a 4G SIM card, then IR will not work.

      BSNL should release a new 4G Prepaid and Postpaid SIM card with dual IMSI enabled at least.

      Reply
  22. MR.VIPIN THANK U FOR Q & A

    I AM MOHAMED KAMARUDEEN FROM SAUDI ARABIA, IF I RECHAGE 58 RS SENT TO SMS IS POSSIBLE ,RIGHT NOW MY BSNL SMS INCOMOING AVAILABLE IN KSA, I WANT ACTIVATE MOBILE BANKING THAT’S WHY I NEED SEND SMS .PLESE REPLY.
    MY EMAIL . THANKING YOU

    Reply

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