There are many Uruguay mobile operators for consumers to choose from. This guide provides a detailed comparison of the main Uruguay mobile operators to help you determine which service provider is most suitable based on coverage, speed, price and key factors other.

Uruguay mobile operators

I. List of mobile operators in Uruguay

1. Main mobile operators in Uruguay

Uruguay has three mobile operators. They offer comprehensive options. For faster speeds, networks nationwide are being upgraded from 4G to 5G.

  • Antel – A state-owned company that provides fixed and mobile telecommunications services. Antel has around 2 million mobile subscribers.
Antel Mobile Operator in Uruguay
Antel Mobile Operator in Uruguay. Source
  • Movistar – Owned by Spanish telecom giant Telefónica. Movistar is the largest mobile operator in Uruguay with around 2.3 million subscribers.
Movistar Mobile Operator in Uruguay
Movistar Mobile Operator in Uruguay. Source
  • Claro – Owned by Mexican telecom group América Móvil. Claro has over 1.8 million mobile subscribers in Uruguay.
Claro Mobile operator in Uruguay
Claro Mobile operator in Uruguay

All operators provide reliable connectivity but Antel is the best of them. Antel is one of the state-owned companies and has the largest mobile subscribers.

2. Mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) in Uruguay

There are several smaller MVNOs in Uruguay including:

  • Tuenti: Provides prepaid and postpaid packages using Movistar’s network. Target younger customers with affordable plans and additional data allowances.
  • Supertel: Offers prepaid mobile plans using Claro’s network infrastructure nationwide. Plans focus on value without long-term commitments.
  • Wom: Prepaid MVNO partners with Movistar. Plans have no expiration date or maintenance fees. Known for its social media and messaging packages.
  • Más Móvil: Postpaid MVNO operates on Antel’s network. Plans include various extras like music streaming and online backup.
  • Bq Móvil: Cheap prepaid brand using Claro’s 2G and 3G networks. Basic voice and data plans are more affordable.
  • Puntomovil: MVNO offers contract-free mobile plans through Movistar’s network. The plan focuses on popular data for social media usage.
  • Cetenet: Prepaid MVNO provides basic connectivity through Claro’s infrastructure. The very low price focuses on users with limited budgets.

MVNOs rent network capacity from major operators and often offer lower-cost plans. However, their coverage and speed depend on the underlying network.

II. How to choose the best mobile operator in Uruguay

How to choose the best mobile operator in Uruguay
Mobile Experience Awards in Uruguay

Here are some key criteria to consider when choosing the best Uruguay mobile operators:

  • Coverage: Carriers need to have widespread 4G/LTE coverage nationwide as well as deploy 5G in major cities to ensure quality connectivity wherever needed.
  • Package offerings: Choose a carrier with flexible packages such as prepaid, postpaid, and data-only to suit different usage needs and budgets. International roaming facilities are very useful for tourists.
  • Customer service: Outstanding online and retail support is available to help answer questions, troubleshoot problems, or manage plans and accounts.
  • Value for money: Consider aspects such as call/data speeds, additional benefits, and bundle discounts to make an informed choice on overall cost-effectiveness.
  • Device Selection: A wide selection of the latest smartphones and mobile devices along with attractive upgrade programs enhance the overall experience.

Note 💸

It is best to choose a plan from an operator that offers affordable options such as eSIM providers. Investigate prepaid international roaming add-ons or a data-only eSIM that ensures worry-free connectivity throughout your trip. Comparing plans and reviews online will assist in choosing the most suitable operator.

III. Best Mobile Operators in Uruguay- Detailed Comparison

Uruguay mobile operators
Uruguay mobile operators. Source

Let us do a thorough side-by-side analysis of Uruguay’s three main mobile service providers: 

Operator Coverage & Speeds English Support Prices & Plans Other Factors
Antel Extensive nationwide 4G/LTE coverage including rural areas. Beginning 5G rollout in major cities. Consistently delivers high speeds. Limited English support primarily through website. Offers affordable prepaid and postpaid plans. Plan bundles provide good value. Regular promotions. Widest retail presence. Most reliable network. Market leader for over a decade.
Movistar Strong 4G network in urban areas and major transport routes. Lagging in 5G rollout. Phone and online support available in English. Competitively priced plans to rival Antel. Family plans and BYOD options available. Aggressive promotions. Large smartphone selection.
Claro Broad LTE coverage of populated regions. Early stages of 5G deployment. English customer support via phone/chat/email. Variety of affordable prepaid and postpaid tariffs. Data-centric plans is popular. Reliable network quality. International roaming facilitation with partner operators.

Antel would be a good choice for tourists in Uruguay:

  • Largest network with nationwide 4G coverage including rural areas
  • Early 5G deployment in major cities means fast speeds
  • The wide retail footprint for purchase and assistance access
  • Reputation for quality services and affordable plans
  • Network dominance ensures seamless coverage while traveling
  • Popularity among locals means help is easily available

Overall, Antel’s broad network and footprint make it most suitable for tourists due to reliable connectivity everywhere in Uruguay.

IV. Where to buy SIM cards from Uruguay Mobile Operators?

Travelers have several options for purchasing a local Uruguay SIM card both before arrival or once in the country:

  • Online storesMovistar, Claro, Antel all have online stores that send SIM cards abroad pre-activated and ready for travellers.
  • Retail Stores – There are provision stores (tiendas) throughout Uruguay to visit. However, a local ID may be required for postpaid plans.
  • Newsstands/kiosks – Many small shops and kiosks sell simple prepaid SIMs from a variety of operators. Activation is done online.
  • Airport counter – When landing in Carrasco International Airport, head to the Claro or Movistar counter to purchase your travel SIM package upon arrival. 

When buying, have your passport ready. SIM cards in Uruguay require registration by law. Data/call top-up services are widely sold at the above locations.

V. Do Uruguay mobile operators offer eSIM?

30 Days
30 Days

Overall, the three major operators Antel and Claro currently offer eSIM services in Uruguay. As the largest operator, Antel provides reliable connectivity and has invested in digital infrastructure like eSIM. Besides, Claro and Movistar support eSIM technology, allowing seamless connectivity through digital SIM profiles. These provides travelers and subscribers a convenient digital SIM option for reliable mobile access without needing a physical card.

Let me summarize the key benefits again without focusing on compactness:

  • Convenience – eSIMs are embedded and digitally managed, no need for physical SIM cards.
  • Multi-SIM capability – Some eSIMs allow multiple cellular plans on one device.
  • Remote provisioning – eSIM plans can be downloaded and activated over-the-air.
  • Security – eSIMs offer more security as they can’t be swapped between devices easily.
  • Reliability – No movable parts means less wear and tear for eSIMs.
  • Global roaming – eSIMs make managing international roaming easier.
  • Device bonding – Cellular plans can be permanently tied to a device with eSIM.

Plan that may interest you

Uruguay eSIM 7 Days Plan
Uruguay eSIM 7 Days Plan
From $9.90
Uruguay eSIM 15 Days Plan
Uruguay eSIM 15 Days Plan
From $18.90
Uruguay eSIM 30 Days Plan
Uruguay eSIM 30 Days Plan
From $26.50

Consider using an eSIM from a top eSIM provider in Uruguay – which offers diverse plans for any traveling goals.  

Switch to digital with


Which network has the best coverage in Uruguay?

Antel has the best nationwide 4G coverage in Uruguay covering 99% of the population. It performs very well in rural areas, where rivals Movistar and Claro may struggle.

Which mobile network is the cheapest?

When it comes to minimizing costs, Simple Mobile MVNO has the most affordable prepaid options but data is very limited. Antel’s prepaid plans offer a more reasonable amount of 2-8GB for only a slightly higher cost.

Does Claro or Movistar offer unlimited data?

Yes, Claro’s postpaid “Claro Infinito” plan offers unlimited data with no restrictions. Speed ​​reduction begins after 22GB is used up. Movistar has an unlimited data plan but speeds decrease more slowly.

Can tourists easily buy SIM cards?

Yes, all major operators sell starter SIM packages for travellers. Many airport kiosks and stores have these options available for quick activation and no residency required.

Do carriers provide eSIM services?

As of the end of 2022, all mobile providers are expected to add eSIM support in 2023.

VII. Conclusion

In summary, Antel ranks as the best performing mobile network in Uruguay thanks to its excellent nationwide 4G coverage, class-leading rural reach, and class-leading download/upload speeds. However, Antel lacks strong English support.

For foreign travelers needing English support, Movistar stands out for its multilingual customer service team and website/app. Movistar also offers a number of very competitively priced data plans.

Meanwhile, Claro ranks highly for offering unlimited data plans at affordable prices. But its network capacity and rural coverage are more limited than market leader Antel, which affects speeds.

So in the end – Antel for superior connectivity, Movistar for visitor support needs or overall value, and Claro for heavy data usage. Review their coverage maps based on your travel plans to decide which carrier best suits your mobile requirements while in Uruguay.