Cheap mobile phones in Germany

The cheapest way to get mobile access is to buy a SIM only contract and then use this with an existing (unlocked) phone or alternatively buy a new phone outright. The best SIM card provider in our view in terms of price and quality is Simply which we highlight below. We also provide details on the cheapest way of buying a mobile phone with a contract and find Dein Handy to be the best supplier.

How much data do I need when buying a mobile contract in Germany?

The first decision that needs to be made is how much data you will need. Data usage on mobiles is rising fast which is mainly driven by faster download speeds (4G/LTE etc) and also more people sharing and viewing data heavy videos on Facebook, YouTube etc.

Thankfully going over your data allowance in Germany will not cost you more

Many people get worried that if you go over your data allowance you will receive a big bill. However, in Germany that will not happen and instead if you go over your allowance the mobile companies will not charge you more, instead they will reduce your data speed to a very low level where you can really only send whatsapp’s etc.

Data allowance suggestion

In terms of data allowances, we suggest the following:

  • If you watch short video clips on social media (e.g. Facebook), videos on YouTube and maybe have a Spotify music account we would suggest a data package of at least 5gb a month
  • If you watch fewer videos and maybe do some music streaming then 5gb should be sufficient.
  • If you watch almost no videos and only moderate music use then 3-5gb should be enough.
  • Anything less than 3gb we would advise only for basic browsing, emails and whatsapp.

What is the best German SIM card?

After our review of the German SIM only market we have found that the company Simply provides by far the most competitive product. This is due to several key reasons:

  • It is the cheapest relative to its data allowance
  • All contracts are on a monthly contract (i.e. not 12 or 24 month contracts).
  • Mobile speeds are 50mb/s using an LTE connection.
  • All contracts include a European data roaming allowance

Simply Tel tariff comparison

 

Choose Your Plan
  •    Data allowance
  •    Contract length
  •    Call minutes included
  •    Text messages included
  •    Data speed
  •    One off fee

Simply LTE 500

6.49/ month
6.49/ month
  • 500mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • 4G LTE 50mb/s data speed
  • €19.99 connection fee

Simply LTE 1500

9.99/ month
9.99/ month
  • 1500mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • 4G LTE 50mb/s data speed
  • €19.99 connection fee

Simply LTE 3000

12.49/ month
12.49/ month
  • 3000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • 4G LTE 50mb/s data speed
  • €19.99 connection fee

Simply LTE 5000

19.99/ month
19.99/ month
  • 5000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • 4G LTE 50mb/s data speed
  • €19.99 connection fee

Simply LTE 10000

34.99/ month
34.99/ month
  • 10000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • 4G LTE 50mb/s data speed
  • €19.99 connection fee

Comparison vs Lebara vs LycaMobile vs Mobilcom Debitel

The other popular SIM only contracts in the market are those from Lebara and LycaMobile (these are mainly targeted at foreigners) and then also Mobilcom Debitel. As you can see below, Simply is the most competitive.

Choose Your Plan
  •    Data allowance
  •    Contract length
  •    Call minutes included
  •    Text messages included
  •    One off fee

Mobilcom Debitel Allnet 5gb

22.98/ month
22.98/ month
  • 5000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • -
  • €39.99

Lebara Allnet 5GB

24.99/ month
24.99/ month
  • 5000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • -
  • -

Lyca Simple XXL+

49.99/ month
49.99/ month
  • 3000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • -

Simply LTE 5000

19.99/ month
19.99/ month
  • 5000mb
  • 1 month
  • Unlimited calls
  • Unlimited texts
  • €19.99 connection fee

 

How to buy a mobile phone with a contract in Germany

If you do want a new phone and you want to have this on a monthly contract (i.e. pay more overall but spread this over 24 months) then we have listed below various providers. The main three mobile providers in Germany are o2, Vodafone and Telekom. However, given their dominant position in the market with strong brands, they tend to also be the most expensive. Alternatively we would recommend a company called DeinHandy which allows you to select what phone you want and it will automatically find you the best tariff for this phone.

Dein Handy is the cheapest way of getting a mobile phone contract in Germany

Below we use an example of an Apple iPhone 6S 32GB with a mid range data package to show you the price difference amongst the providers. As you can see, DeinHandy is significantly cheaper against the online rates of the big mobile companies. If we were to compare this to the retail high street shops of the big 3 the price difference would be even greater.

Choose Your Plan
  •    Tariff name
  •    Data allowance
  •    Contract length
  •    Price per month
  •    Price per month (Phase II)
  •    One time cost
  •    Average monthly cost

Vodafone

62.24/ month
62.24/ month
  • Red M
  • 3000mb
  • 24 Months
  • €58.49
  • -
  • €89.88
  • €62.24

o2

51.82/ month
51.82/ month
  • o2 Free M
  • 3000mb
  • 24 Months
  • €44.99 for 12 months
  • €54.99 for final 12 months
  • €43.99
  • €51.82

Simply

39.53/ month
39.53/ month
  • LTE 3000
  • 3000mb
  • 1 Month
  • €12.49
  • -
  • €649
  • €39.53

Dein Handy - Otelo

40.57/ month
40.57/ month
  • Allnet-Flat XXL
  • 4000mb
  • 24 Months
  • €34.99
  • -
  • €133.99
  • €40.57