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Bobclark1964 (Offline)
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Default Working in Italy. - 07-01-2012, 13:35

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Originally Posted by Effendi View Post
A little guide on how to buy a prepaid card in Italy and the most common issues.

CODICE FISCALE

In order to buy a prepaid sim-card in Italy you must register to the Italian tax system. The only way to do so is to have a CODICE FISCALE.

Smart dealers will generate one for you, but many will not so it's better if you arrive here in Italy well prepared.

Here is a very well done blog with all the detailed instructions about this issue:
How to create an unofficial Italian codice fiscale code to use for making online purchases - Blog from Italy


WHERE TO BUY

Once you have your passport and your personal Codice Fiscale you are ready to go to Italy and buy a prepaid sim-card. But of course you need to find a shop which will sell you one.

At most airports in Italy you WON'T find any phone shop. That's very strange for a phone-addict country such as Italy, but so it is. So it's most likely that you will need to go to the city centre and find a shop there. Often there are some shops at bigger railway stations and you will surely find more than one at shopping centres. In the main pedestrianized streets in the centre you will surely find some as well.

Here are some seach engines for official mobile carriers shops:
TIM
Vodafone
Wind
3
COOP Voce
Poste Mobile

Nòverca is available online or at Panorama shopping centres.
MTV Mobile offers are available at TIM shops.


HOW TO ACTIVATE THE CARD

You have to do nothing. The dealer will do everything for you.
Vodafone and 3 sim-cards are preactivated, TIM sim-cards usually are active after a couple of hours. With Wind it can take longer, officially also 48 hours, but usually they are active in few minutes, but you could be unlucky and wait even a couple of days. No idea about MVNOs, but usually they work as their network operator.


This is very easy. Any phone shop and any Tabacchi shop has refills. Most of them don't have scratch cards anymore but they will simply ask you for your number and the amount in euros you want to refill. So just pay attention to tell them the correct number, that's all.
If you find a scratch card you then will have to scratch it and follow the instructions written on the back. Usually you have to call a number or send an SMS with the code, it depends on the operator.

You are not buying "minutes" like in the US, you are buying credit (euros) which you can use for everything you can do with your mobile (calls, messaging, data, options, etc...).
Hi there,
I am working in Italy for a while and need a pay as u go sim for the 3 network, this is seeming impossible to do, is there anywhere i can just log on and order one ? i note the comments re tax reference ect, seems like a hell of a fuss for a few months! Cheers, Bob
   
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9eor9 (Offline)
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Default Refill from abroad / also PayPal - 13-03-2012, 15:16

I found 3 facilities to recharge italian SIMs from abroad (even with PayPal).
The websites are in german, the companies are situated in Südtirol.
These shops also sell italian Prepaid SIMs.

www.messaxio.com (costs 5€ fee) ("Ricarica/Aufladung")

SaveonRoaming.net - Ihr Spezialist für mobiles Internet - Prepaid SIM-Karten Italien - Guthaben für alle italienische Provider aufladen costs 3,90€ fee ("Guthaben aufladen")

www.elektrohaller.it (only TIM, "TIM Wertkarten")
   
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MYprepaidgsm (Offline)
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Default 20-04-2012, 05:31

Where is the closest place to buy a mega internet prepaid sim card for data after you landed in rome, italy airport?
   
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hdelagrange (Offline)
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Default 10-07-2012, 17:54

I'm having the same problem with a Tre card. I could register on the site and even top up with paypal and/or Visa, but in the end the transaction is always rejected - even when the site says it's ok and done. Afew minutes later there's an sms saying the transaction could not go trough.
The 133 can not be reached from outside italy, also theid international number doesn't work.
What a shame.
   
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Mom (Offline)
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Default 03-08-2012, 21:19

Hi, All!

I hope that I am dong the right thing. I have posted this question elsewhere
but wondering if it doesn't belong here. Hope Effendi or another helpful reader can help me!

I have some questions which seem foolish but I still do not understand some basic concepts.

I have two daughters about to go off to Italy for four months. I plan to send them with unlocked cells and then activate SIMS --- probably TIM or Vodafone. They will be using texting and some calls (to other non TIM/Vodafone cells). We have not yet decided on adding internet for their phones --- that will depend on costs.

I have studied this site and the TIM/Vodafone websites, (---I do not understand Italian) but am still not sure on the plans. My questions are related to whether or not you build your own packages/bundles to meet your needs.
I really don’t understand what you get when you activate a SIM and then how you add features that you need. I also don’t understand if you can combine packages.
I can use some specific examples here but I would appreciate any general help.

I will use Vodafone as an example:
1. Do you start with activating your SIM and choosing a rechargeable plan like Vodaphone12? Do you then add options to meet your needs?

2. If you pick a package like Square Smart it includes almost everything but does not consider phone calls to national numbers. So, if you want to call another national number, what do you do. Do you have to have another plan or do you get charged by another rate? or do you get charged the rate of the Vodafone12 if that's what you start with?


Using TIM as my example:
1. Again, do you start with activating your SIM and choosing a rechargeable plan like Vodaphone12?

2. Do you need to pick a basic plan like TIM12 and then can you add a texting option like TUTTO COMPRESO RICARICABILE SMS (text)?

3. Can you combine a voice plan and a text plan?
--- like TUTTO COMPRESO RICARICABILE (voice) + TUTTO COMPRESO RICARICABILE SMS (text) ?

4. If we wanted to add a data package for internet, like TIMxSMARTPHONE, could you add it to either of the above as with the example in #1 or #2?

5. There is also a new option on the TIM website called TIM YOUNG for text and internet. Is this for prepaid users? How do I get charged for calls? Do I pick an option for calls?

Thanks so much for anything you can do to point us in the right direction!
   
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hdelagrange (Offline)
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Default 06-08-2012, 14:32

Using TIM as an example:

1. Yes. You buy a SIMcard for 10 euros and it comes with the TIM12 plan preinstalled.
2. Indeed - you can text the option, but usually in the shop they will add it for you. You really need to go to a shop. There is an imprssive amount of paperwork that they perform. It took about 15 minutes in my case. Make sure you have a codice fiscale. No codice, no simcard.
Make sure that for the plan you want there's enough credit on the simcard. The included 10 euro won't bring you very far in terms of mobile data. If the credit is enough, you can activate a plan, through the SMS codes or one of the other options.
3. I have no idea. There's a mobile site where you can log in with your new mobile number and review and manage your options.
4. Yes. I added it when I bought the sim. If you hve enough credit, you can add it with sms messages, but it is an expensive process - the messages you send are charged, and you'll send a few, e.g. at least one to change the language in English
5. It is for prepaid indeed. They renew the option every month and use the credit that is on the card -reload on time. If there's not enough credit, the option will not be renewed and you fal lback to the standard prices. Once there's enough credit, it will autoamtically renew itself unless you asked to stop it through one of the many options.

In general, all over Europe, when you buy a regular SIM, you can call and text anywhere. Only the price is different according to the plan you use.

You can surf the TIM website in more or less understandeable English if you use chrome and the translation option.

The best you can do is walk into a TIM or Vodafone (or WIND) shop and let them help you. You'll need a salesperson for the sim anyway. Mostly they can help you in English.

Last edited by hdelagrange; 06-08-2012 at 14:40.. Reason: typos, adding information
   
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groutchmeuh (Offline)
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Default 02-04-2013, 12:19

Quote:
Originally Posted by Effendi View Post
A little guide on how to buy a prepaid card in Italy and the most common issues.....
Here is a very well done blog with all the detailed instructions about this issue:
How to create an unofficial Italian codice fiscale code to use for making online purchases - Blog from Italy.......).
Hi and thanks for this wealth of information.
But the link seems to be dead:
I could not retrieve it through other searches either.
Do you have a clue ?
Thanks.
Grout.
   
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Holdcroft (Offline)
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Default 24-06-2013, 17:32

The Internet Archive Wayback machine has a cached version of the blog on how to create a Codice Fiscale. Try this:

How to create an unofficial Italian codice fiscale code to use for making online purchases | Blog from Italy
   
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wco81 (Offline)
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Default 13-05-2014, 23:35

Does anyone know if TIM will swap regular SIMs for nano SIMs and transfer the credit over?

Or should I try cutting my regular SIM?
   
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marciphoto (Offline)
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Default 28-06-2014, 17:42

I have been trying to generate a codices fiscal.it but keeping getting an incomplete data error message.

I'm not sure what I am doing wrong. Any suggestions?
   
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