• The best deal is with Free Mobile (be careful "Free" is a French brand, it does not mean a free of charge service*), which gives you unlimited worldwide calls plus 50 GB of web time for just 19.99€/month with no time commitment (sans engagement)…
    • you can only order it on-line, the site is only in French, and it takes around 2 weeks for the SIM to arrive in the mail, and you need an address in France, which could of course be your hotel.
    • you can also order at an automated machine (there are some at newsagents ("Maisons de la Presse" and "Mag Presse") if you can (I don't remember if a French ID card is needed, maybe an international passport is OK)

here is a map of all the automated machines

It is enough if you stay in big cities and you will have 50 GB of 4G/month which is more than enough for tethering (I guess you know what it is: your mobile acts as a wifi hotspot thanks to Internet coming to it via its 4G/3G antenna) And you can cancel your plan after 1 month or when you leave France.

You can take a subcription for a limited duration (1, 2, 3...6 months) on an automated machine.

  • Other mobile operators are starting to match the deal, so by the time you read this you might be able to get almost the same deal from a phone store here in France, like the Orange, SFR or Bouygues "boutiques".
  • And people can call over 4G with Google Hangouts Android iOS, Apple Facetime iOS only, WhatsApp, Skype or maybe facebook messenger.
  • or Orange if you go to the countryside, the beaches or the mountains (Orange and its low-cost brand Sosh have the best network coverage).
    • Orange sells data only SIM cards that are cheaper than Data+voice.
    • 80€ = 2 GB including a Huawei E5573 4G/3G router during 14 days of Internet all over Europe that you can top-up.
    • buy if you try to order it online you will need a French credit card :-( stupid)
    • And Orange blocks inserting a data only SIM card in a mobile phone :-(
  • Bouygues Telecom (in a Bouygues shop)
    • data only (no calls, no text messages)
      • 10 GB of data (no calls, no text messages) = 17€
      • 20 GB of data = 27€
      • 40 GB data = 43€
  • Bouygues currently offers 5€ SIM card (unlimited calls and text messages) and 500 MB of 3G/4G during 3 days.
  • 40€ = unlimited calls + unlimited text messages + 2 GB 4G/3G data

but you will need to purchase a 40 EUR package to get a larger 2GB allowance.

  • Lyca Mobile (MVNO on the Bouygues network)

  • SFR is not competitive (more expensive than Bouygues and a worse network) but feel free to add their informations

You will need to pay 3.99 EUR from a SIM from SFR and their 5 and 10 EUR tariffs offer pretty measly data allowances (source?)

However, their 10 and 30 EUR options give you 1 and 2GB of data respectively (source?).

France has 4G and 3G coverage in most areas including countryside and mountain locations.

Also, be aware that you will need to present your passport when purchasing a SIM card in France (except on Free automated machines when I tried 6 months ago).

Purchasing a SIM is best done in main branches, as doing so in other locations can result in delays with the activation of the SIM.

MNOs such as Orange, SFR, Bouygues have locations throughout the country including several airports. Free has less shops than its competitors (only in city centers of main cities, not in suburbs and malls).

*even if it was partially the case at its foundation as an ISP

Customer Service Modifier tous les jours de 8h à 22h du lundi au samedi, de 8h à 20h du lundi au samedi, de 8h à 20h

Sources Modifier