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How to Call Your Family in Mexico from the US: The Quick Guide

Staying connected
How to Call Your Family in Mexico from the US: The Quick Guide
Staying connected

The best Mexican and US prepaid mobile plans for staying in touch with friends and family in Mexico

If you’re spending some time in the US or you’ve recently moved from Mexico to the US, you probably have many questions about staying in touch with friends and family at home. Can you keep your Mexican phone number? If you get a US SIM card, will you be able to call Mexico from the US? Will you be reachable when you’re in Mexico? Here, you’ll find the fast, safe, and simple answers to all important questions about staying connected.

Will your Mexican SIM card work in the United States?

Yes. When you enter the US, your Mexican SIM card will still work. You can use it to make calls to US or Mexican phones. Receiving calls is also not a problem. However, depending on your prepaid plan and your usage, there might be additional costs to consider. That’s why if you’re planning to stay long-term in the United States, you’d need to make sure you have a suitable Mexican prepaid plan. Or, you might want to consider getting a US SIM card.

Do you need a US SIM card?

If you’re on a short-term stay in the US, or you’re often traveling between the US and Mexico, you probably won’t need a US SIM card. However, that ultimately depends on your current prepaid plan and how you’re planning to use your phone.
  • Are you staying in the US temporarily? And are you mainly going to use your phone to keep in touch with friends and family in Mexico?

Then you don’t really need a US SIM card. Most Mexican mobile operators, including Telcel and Movistar, offer the same rates for calling and texting domestically in Mexico, as they do between the US, Mexico, and Canada.


Receiving calls while abroad is also free with some prepaid plans such as Telcel Amigo Sin Limite. If your Mexican prepaid plan has good terms, then you’re covered. NOTE: Mexican prepaid plans, such as Telcel Amigo Sin Limite or Movistar’s prepaid plans, aren’t a long-term solution. To keep using these plans, your phone needs to be used within Mexico at least every 29 days. In case your stay in the US is longer than that, your service could be discontinued.
  • Are you moving long-term to the US? Or are you planning to use your phone for work within the US?

Then it might be a good idea to have a US phone number. Although it might not cost extra for you to call from a Mexican number to a US number, others within the US might be charged extra to call you. Asking people to incur such extra costs could be inconvenient in a business context.


If you do decide in favor of a US SIM card, there are US prepaid mobile plans that include low-cost international calls (see below). These could be a good solution for staying in touch with family in Mexico.

Some of the best Mexican prepaid plans for use within the US

If you’re keeping your Mexican SIM, here are some suitable prepaid plans to consider for staying in touch while in the US.
  • Telcel Internet Amigo

As its name suggests, this is a data-only plan valid for use within Mexico and the US. That’s a zero-effort solution for keeping in touch with family in Mexico, because you don’t have to worry about rates for calls or texts. Instead, you can keep in touch with your family via WhatsApp, Messenger, Skype, or another tool you prefer. These tools are free, so you only have to pay for the mobile data they use. With Telcel Internet Amigo, you can choose between 1.6 GB, 2.5 GB, 3.5 GB, 5 GB, or 8GB of data. You can buy your Internet Amigo recharge online on Recharge.com within seconds. Depending on the amount of data you choose, your recharge is valid for 15-33 days after top-up.
  • Unefon Illimitado

This plan is well-suited for people who spend time in both Mexico and the US. It allows unlimited calls and messages between Mexico and the United States. It also offers unlimited data usage – however, the mobile data in this plan is only usable within Mexico. Top up Unefon Illimitado on Recharge.com – available from as low as MXN 29.99.
  • Movistar Paquetes

Movistar offers a variety of prepaid plans. Most of them have short-term validity (from 1 to 30 days). That’s why they’re best-suited for short-term travels to the US, or when you need some extra room in your existing prepaid plan. Some Movistar plans include a fixed amount of minutes and texts between Mexico and the US – these can be a good option at least for the beginning of your stay abroad. Choose between 50, 100, or 200 minutes and texts between Mexico and US, and buy your Movistar recharge easily on Recharge.com.

Related products

The best US prepaid plan for calling Mexico

If you decide to get a US SIM card, here’s one of the best prepaid plans you can use to stay connected with loved ones in Mexico.
  • Simple Mobile (previously Telcel America)

Telcel used to have its own brand on the US market, until early 2021. Since then, Telcel America has been part of the Simple Mobile family. And it continues to offer great conditions for international calls. Getting a Simple Mobile SIM card means you have a US number and can make unlimited calls within the US and from the US to Mexico (+ 68 other countries). Keep in mind that there is a limit of 20 unique international numbers you can call per month. You can easily recharge Telcel America / Simple Mobile online.



How can you recharge your Mexican or US cell phone?

Whatever your prepaid mobile carrier or plan is, you can easily buy your mobile recharge online. Check out all Mexican mobile carriers and US mobile carriers on Recharge.com to find the right recharge. You can also recharge someone else’s phone – in Mexico or anywhere else. Send call credit, data, or bundles to friends and family and stay connected at all times.

Written by

Kristina Kalpaklieva