How to Setup a Mobile Phone in Thailand
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To save you a whole bunch of confusion, sifting through websites written in Thai, and trial-and-error I will give you exact directions on how to setup your unlocked mobile phone for use in Thailand with AIS.

This article will help you implement a voice/data pre-paid plan by entering their unique prepaid plan codes.

New Registration Law in Place July 31, 2015

Cell phone carriers have been tasked by the government to facilitate the collection of personal details (name, passport number, nationality, etc.) to obtain a mobile phone number.

Common Thai Mobile Plan Information

  • Incoming calls are typically free (even for a while after you let your plan expire)
  • Text messages are usually not included with the cost, so use a chat app
  • Data plans are “unlimited”; top speed until a certain amount of usage, and then capped at Edge speeds from there on in
  • Some plans also include unlimited city-wide WIFI with your purchase and will SMS you with your login information after you purchase your plan

AIS has better reach, data speeds, and performs better than other competitors in rural areas. CAMP in Maya Mall also uses AIS WIFI, and is your best WIFI option in terms of a coworking space (that likely won’t close like the infamous Coffee Monster did) which is why I am focusing strictly on them.

Lastly, as you know most phone plans are subject to change, however as of March 2017 they’re working just fine.

Setting Up Hardware

First, turn your phone off, insert your SIM, and power up. Once your phone boots up you will need to put credit onto your phone before you can activate a plan. If you are asked for a SIM security code, the default is 0000.

Let’s look at plans first, then refill codes, and then finally plan codes.

How to Set Up AIS Voice and Data Plans (in English)

AIS 01

AIS Balance Refill

Once you’ve selected a plan, you can purchase balance refill vouchers from 7-Eleven. They come in different denominations so you may need to use more than one voucher before activating a plan.

To add the credit voucher dial *120* then the 16-digit code on your voucher, the # sign and press <Call/Send>. e.g. *120*1234567898765432# SEND

After that, your balance will appear on screen. Repeat with another voucher if needed until you have enough to activate your plan.

You can also check your balance on-screen anytime by entering *121#.

AIS Prepaid Plan Activation

This one is simple! All you need to do to activate an AIS prepaid plan is type the code that corresponds with your plan above.

For example;

If you’d like the to activate the plan with 500 outgoing minutes, 3 GB high-speed data (unlimited after that 3 GB runs out, just slower) then type in the following code;

*777*54# SEND

And you’re finished!

Before your plan expires, AIS will send you an SMS message informing you the day and exact time your next month will try to activate. This makes it easy to ensure you’ve topped up your balance prior. If you miss your window and it gives up, no worries –just re-enter your plan code after your next refill.

Have your own plan codes you’d like to share? Let everyone know in the comments!

This an excerpt from Digital Nomad Escape Plan: From Cubicle to Chiang Mai, Thailand. Download it today, and keep it for later.

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