Cambodia is a captivating Southeast Asian destination known for its rich cultural heritage, ancient temples, and warm hospitality. As a tourist, having access to the internet can make navigating this beautiful country much easier. Whether you need to book accommodations, plan your itinerary, or simply stay connected with loved ones, a reliable mobile internet connection can be a lifesaver. In this blog post, we’ll explore the importance of internet connectivity for tourists traveling in Cambodia.

The Mobile Internet in Cambodia

I. Mobile Internet Coverage and Speed in Cambodia

1. Cambodia Mobile Internet Coverage

Cambodia Mobile Internet Coverage
Cambodia Mobile Internet Coverage. Source: Opensignal

According to recent reports, Cambodia’s mobile internet coverage extends to over 90% of the population, with a strong presence in urban areas and major tourist destinations. However, coverage may vary in remote or rural regions, so it’s always advisable to check with your chosen mobile operator for the most up-to-date coverage information.

  • Metfone: Metfone is the largest mobile network operator in Cambodia. It operates under the Metfone brand and has blanketed Cambodia with its 4G LTE network, providing coverage to all cities, towns and most populated villages nationwide. 
  • Smart: Smart is the second largest provider and has been rapidly expanding its network footprint in recent years. It touts 4G LTE coverage in all provinces and a majority of the country’s districts. Smart is focused on boosting connectivity in tourist hotspots and more remote provincial areas. Data speeds are consistent in cities but more variable in the countryside depending on tower density. Smart also provides 3G connectivity for wider coverage in very rural locations.
  • Cellcard: As the smallest of the top three mobile operators, Cellcard has taken a different strategic approach by prioritizing network quality over scale. This has enhanced data speeds notably in key areas. Cellcard’s coverage encompasses Phnom Penh and the most populated parts of Cambodia, though it lags competitors in rural reach.

2. Cambodia Mobile Internet Speed

Cambodian Median Country Speeds
Cambodian Median Country Speeds

Internet speeds in Cambodia have improved substantially in recent years, with the adoption of advanced mobile technologies like 4G LTE. However, it’s important to note that internet speeds can vary depending on factors such as network congestion, location, and mobile operator.

Based on the latest Speedtest Global Index data, Cambodia’s mobile internet speeds still lag behind some of its neighbors. Cambodia ranked 98th globally in 2024, with a median download speed of 26.40 Mbps

National Ranking:

  • Vietnam: Ranked in 58th with median speed of 26.58 Mbps
  • Laos: Come in at number 76th with a median download rate of 32.15 Mbps

Overall, while Cambodia has shown progress in improving its mobile connectivity over the past year, it remains near the bottom of Southeast Asian rankings. Slower internet hinders Cambodia’s digital transformation at a time when connectivity is fueling economic growth in the region.

II. Mobile Internet in Cambodia: Connection Options for Tourists

As a tourist visiting Cambodia, you have several options to stay connected to the internet. Each option has its own pros and cons, so it’s essential to evaluate them carefully based on your specific needs and travel plans.

Connectivity Options for Travelers to Cambodia

OptionProsConsPrice Range (USD)
Free Public Wi-Fi– No additional cost
– Widely available in cities and tourist areas
– Limited coverage and reliability
– Potential security risks
– Slow speeds during peak hours
Pocket Wi-Fi (Mobile Hotspot)– Portable and convenient
– Shared internet access for multiple devices
– Better security than public Wi-Fi
– Rental fees
– Battery life limitations
– Potential coverage gaps
$5 – $15 per day
eSIM– Convenient installation without physical SIM card
– Compatible with many modern smartphones
– Affordable data plans
– Requires an eSIM
-compatible device
– Limited selection of mobile operators
$5 – $20 for data packages
Local SIM Card– Affordable data plans
– Wide coverage from local mobile operators
– No roaming charges
– Need to purchase and activate SIM card
– May require unlocked phone
$2 – $10 for SIM card and data packages
International Roaming– Convenience of using your home carrier
– No need for a new SIM card
– Expensive roaming charges
– Potential coverage gaps
– Data limits and throttling
Varies by home carrier and roaming plan

As you can see, each option has its advantages and disadvantages. Tourists will want affordable and reliable connectivity options. Free public Wi-Fi is widely available in cities and attractions, making it suitable for quick checks. However, speeds are often slow and security can’t be guaranteed. Pocket Wi-Fi rentals that allow sharing one mobile hotspot between multiple devices provide better coverage but it’s most suitable for groups/families.

For a hassle-free SIM purchase, find the best place to buy Cambodia SIM card before your arrival.

Our recommendation: For hassle-free travel, an Cambodia eSIM is the most cost effective choice, with coverage from Cambodia's mobile operators with multi-day packages starting from as little as $5.

III. Mobile Internet Rates in Cambodia

Mobile internet rates in Cambodia are generally affordable, especially when compared to international roaming charges. However, prices can vary depending on the mobile operator, data package, and validity period.

Connectivity OptionPrice Range
Free WiFi (hotels, cafes, etc)Free
Public/Outdoor WiFiFree
Cellular Data SIM $1-2 for daily packages, $5-10 for 1-2GB monthly plans
Domestic RoamingSimilar to SIM rates above, $2-5/day for roaming between Cambodia and SEA countries
Pocket WiFi/Mobile Hotspot Rental$5-15/day for 1-5GB plans, $15-30/day for unlimited data plans
International SIM with Data$5-10 for 1GB eSIM packages, $10-15 for 2GB travel SIMs
Satellite Internet$100+/month for plans from Starlink, Hughesnet, etc.

Please note that these prices are subject to change, and it’s always recommended to check with the mobile operators or eSIM providers for the latest rates and promotions.

So in summary, mobile data is quite affordable compared to a few years ago and most travelers and locals can stay connected with budget-friendly daily/weekly plans. A local SIM card or eSIM is highly recommended for affordable, flexible and widespread internet access during travel around Cambodia.

IV. Best Mobile Operators in Cambodia

When it comes to choosing a mobile operator in Cambodia, there are several reputable options to consider. Each operator has its strengths and weaknesses, so your choice may depend on factors such as coverage, network speed, customer service, and pricing.

OperatorCoverageSIM Price RangeProsCons
SmartWide nationwide 4G/3G/2G coverage~$5Largest network, widespread coverage even in rural areasCan be more expensive than competitors
MetfoneExtensive 4G/3G coverage of major towns and cities$1-10Affordable data prices, good speeds in urban areasCoverage not as widespread as Smart
CellcardNationwide 3G/2G network, expanding 4G coverage$1.5-10Cheap SIM prices, regular data promotions3G/2G only in many rural areas

Overall, Metfone may be preferable for those traveling extensively outside cities due to wider rural coverage on its 4G/3G networks. Metfone and Cellcard are good lower-cost options for urban usage.

Bonus Tips:

When choosing a mobile operator in Cambodia, it is advisable to consider such as some important factors to choose the best option for your needs.



Can I use my home SIM card in Cambodia?

Yes, you can use your home SIM card in Cambodia, but you will be subject to international roaming charges imposed by your home carrier. Roaming charges can be expensive, so it’s generally more cost-effective to use a local SIM card or eSIM while in Cambodia.

Do I need an unlocked phone to use a local SIM card in Cambodia?

Yes, your phone needs to be unlocked (not locked to a specific carrier) to use a local SIM card in Cambodia. Most modern smartphones sold in recent years are typically unlocked, but it’s always best to check with your carrier or device manufacturer.

How do I activate a local SIM card or eSIM in Cambodia?

To activate a local SIM card in Cambodia, you typically need to purchase the SIM card from a mobile operator’s store or authorized reseller. They will guide you through the activation process, which may require providing some personal information and purchasing a data package.
For eSIMs, the activation process is often done through a mobile app or website provided by the eSIM provider or mobile operator. You’ll need to follow the instructions to scan a QR code or enter an activation code to activate the eSIM on your compatible device.

Can I use mobile data in Cambodia to make voice calls or send text messages?

Yes, with a local SIM card or eSIM in Cambodia, you can use the mobile data connection to make voice calls and send text messages through various apps and services like WhatsApp, Skype, or Telegram. However, keep in mind that these services may consume more data than traditional voice calls or SMS.

Is it safe to use public Wi-Fi networks in Cambodia?

While public Wi-Fi networks can be convenient, they often lack proper security measures and can put your personal information at risk. It’s generally recommended to avoid transmitting sensitive data or accessing important accounts over public Wi-Fi networks. If you must use public Wi-Fi, consider using a virtual private network (VPN) for added security.

VI. Conclusion

Staying connected to the internet while traveling in Cambodia can significantly enhance your overall experience. By understanding the mobile internet landscape, including coverage, speeds, and connectivity options, you can make an informed decision on the best solution for your needs.

By following the tips and insights provided in this blog post, you can ensure a seamless and connected travel experience in Cambodia, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the country’s rich culture and breathtaking landscapes while staying connected with loved ones and accessing essential information.