Resources for Travel

Mobile Communications

What is the cheapest, most effective and efficient way to communicate while travelling? We will be pleased to advise you on the cheapest form of communication at your chosen destination(s).

Here is a list of recommended networks, as well as the complete list. 

There are some who would opt for phone cards and hired phones. In India, Reliance India Mobile phone cards are recommended. In countries that do not use the standard 800/1800/1900 Mhz (or Triband) GSM system, prepaid cards with a phone, for which you will have to pay a deposit, are more economical (due to the need for a special handset). CDMA and other specific system handset destinations include: Japan, USA, S. Korea and Canada. However, Limited dual-band GSM coverage using special handsets are being / will be introduced progressively in major cities, in these countries too.

The largest mobile provider in Sri Lanka is Dialog Axiata PLC, a subsidiary of Axiata Group (formerly Telekom Malaysia).

Other providers available are Etisalat | Mobitel | Hutch | Airtel (click for more information)



1.  Dual Number SIM cards

Line 1 (existing number) and Line 2 allows you to have your 2nd number (another mobile number) with the same features as in Line 1 with rental of LKR 100 per month. Once you obtain your Line 2 SIM, you can transfer your existing Roaming connection to the second number. In this way, you could give out only the second number to those whom you would like to keep in touch with while roaming and avoid unnecessary calls. Note: Caller Line Identification (CLI) is not supported while roaming, with a few exceptions.

Diverting calls (from Line 1 to Line 2) or (from Line 2 to Line 1) is free of charge while in Sri Lanka.

Cost Dual SIM card + Local Call Deposit LKR 3,000

2. Call Home Facility

a) What is Call Home / SMS home?
This is a new feature introduced by Dialog GSM, which enables you to call at the cost of an incoming call while roaming + a fixed premium. SMS Home is a feature which allows you to SMS a Dialog phone in Sri Lanka for just Rs. 5 + taxes.

Calling Sri Lanka as normal from UK while roaming
LKR 310 per min. (approx)

Calling Sri Lanka using Call Home from UK
LKR 10 + incoming call tariff in UK (if any) + local taxes per min.

b) How do I use Call Home?
Simply dial *#100*+94xxx xxx xxx#
(Underlined is the number in Sri Lanka including the area code)
Replace + with 00 if above is not successful

c) How do I use SMS Home?
Simply dial *#101*+9477x xxx xxx# or failing which *#101*009477x xxx xxx#

(Underlined is the Dialog number in Sri Lanka)
You will get a blank screen to type in your SMS, then press send.

Please note:
* This feature is network dependent and is not supported by all networks. If you face any difficulties using this facility, then please try switching to a different network.
* This is not supported in UAE, and is not practical in India roaming rates are much higher than local rates.
* The above tariffs exclude Taxes, MSL & Service charge totalling 20%. 

Download list of networks supporting this feature

3) Call Screening

This service will simply filter all your unwanted incoming calls while roaming, and allow up to 10 important numbers that you would like to receive calls from while roaming since CLI is not supported.

Registration Fee: LKR 500
Monthly rental: LKR 50

a) How can I get it activated?
All you have to do is fill in the Call Screening form, attach your NIC copy and call over at the Value Added Service Counter. Alternatively, call the roaming hotline 0777-999777 to activate the service, and then try the following instructions after the service has been activated.

i. How to add the 10 numbers to my Profile
CS<space>ADD<space><mobile number 1><, or space><mobile number 2>...<mobile number 10> and send to 8892

ii. How to delete numbers
CS<space>DEL<space>< mobile number 1><, or space><mobile number 2> and sent to 8892

iii. How to setup reply SMS for those who tried to reach you
CS<space>REPLY<SPACE><message> and sent it to 8892

iv. How to delete an SMS reply message
CS<space>REPLY<SPACE>DEL and send it to 8892

v. How to view my profile (list of numbers entered)
CS<space>PROFILE and send it to 8892

vi. How to Switch CALL SCREENING On and Off
CS<space>ON and send it to 8892 (prior to depature)
CS<space>OFF and send it to 8892 (upon arrival)

Please note:
The above service works only while roaming.
You need to Divert "All Calls" to +94777012012 in order for it to work prior to leaving Sri Lanka.

4) Missed Call Alert

For whatever reason your phone is unreachable while you are roaming, Missed Call Alert by SMS will tell you exactly which number you missed the call from, and when. Therefore, you are guaranteed never to miss another call, even when your phone is switched off while roaming.

How to Activate Missed Call Alert
Simply divert your calls to +94777012012

How to De-Activate Missed Call Alert
Select "Cancel All Diverts" from your phone menu

For more information, please contact:

5) Roaming

To activate Roaming, dial #103# before leaving and select option 2 before leaving.

6) Data Roaming

Here is the Data Roaming FAQ

Automatic International Roaming
Dialog Axiata PLC
International Roaming Service Center
475, Union Place, Colombo 02, Sri Lanka.
Roaming Hotline: +94 777 999777 or #103# and select option 2
Fax: +94 114 717 142

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Tourama (Pvt) Ltd
3/1, 304 Union Place,
Colombo 2, Sri Lanka.
Tel: (+94 11) 2326181