Most phones will work in the Turks and Caicos without difficulty. Depending on your mobile operator, you may need to activate international roaming before you depart. GSM coverage is provided by the two local telecommunications companies (Flow and Digicel), and Flow provides coverage for CDMA (Verizon and Sprint phones).
You have the option to buy a local prepaid SIM if you’re mostly interested in data access and local calls.
Before You Arrive
Decide if you want to roam or buy a local SIM. If you’re roaming, contact your provider to set up international roaming. Sometimes it’s enabled by default, but not always.
Buying A Turks and Caicos SIM Card
You’ll need an unlocked GSM phone to buy a local SIM card. Many new GSM phones are quadband (which means they use all 4 GSM frequencies: 850, 900, 1800, 1900). If you only have a dual-band or tri-band phone, choose the appropriate local provider.
You’ll need to provide an ID to purchase a local SIM card.
Digicel launched eSIMs in January 2023.
You can purchase an eSIM via through providers such as Airalo on the Apple App Store.
The local area code is +1 (649). Dialing to the Turks and Caicos Islands is the same as dialing to the United States. A local number, such as 946-2801 (the government switchboard) would be dialed as +16499462801. On mobile phones, simply hold the ‘0' key down to enter a ‘+’.
Dialing from the Turks and Caicos to a foreign number requires the full international area code.
The Turks and Caicos is connected to the internet via a single submarine fiber-optic cable (Arcos-1), which links the US and several Caribbean countries. Local ISPs provide service of up to 600 Mbps.
The top-level domain (TLD) for the Turks and Caicos Islands is .tc.
On Providenciales, nearly every hotel and villa provides free Wi-Fi wireless internet. Most cafes and restaurants provide free Wi-Fi in addition.
On other islands, Wi-Fi is less common.
Providenciales, Grand Turk, and some areas on the other islands have high-speed 4G coverage. In some less populated and remote areas on the other islands, you’ll only be able to access mobile internet via painfully slow EDGE (Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution, a 2.5G technology).
Neither local carrier supports 5G.
Free Facebook Usage
Digicel offers free internet and data for limited Facebook use. If you connect through the app, or by visiting the m.facebook.com site, you’ll be presented with an option to connect for free (videos and external links are not included). It’s recommended that you read and understand the privacy concerns, as certain usage data will be shared with the network (Digicel), and your profile picture, name, and other information may be used automatically in adverts on 3rd party websites.
There is no censorship of the internet in the Turks and Caicos Islands. The internet censorship program of the United Kingdom is not implemented in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Local Telecom Companies
Telecommunication companies in the Turks and Caicos are regulated by the Turks and Caicos Telecommunications Commission. This government agency has adopted an industry-led approach, whereby the commission regulates spectrum licensing and allocation, with local companies largely self-regulating without involvement or oversight of the commission.
Cellular Coverage Map
Older Phones, Electronics and Equipment such as Cell-Range Extenders
The GSM standard uses 4 main frequencies: 850 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, and 1900 MHz. New phones are usually quad-band, which means they work on all frequencies. Older phones are typically dual-band or tri-band. Many other types of electronics, such as cell-range extenders, usually only work on two frequencies.
Flow uses the 850 MHz and 1900 MHz frequencies, while Digicel uses 900 MHz and 1800 MHz. If you have an older phone or specialty equipment, make sure you select the right operator if you’re buying a local SIM card.
Beginning in early 2018, Digicel began installation of fiber to the home (FTTH) throughout the islands of Providenciales and Grand Turk. The first customers were connected in June 2018. Flow followed shortly thereafter with their own FTTH offering.
All local fixed line services are provided by Flow (formerly Cable and Wireless), and use the prefixes 941-XXXX and 946-XXXX. The remaining number prefixes are cellular services.
|Grand Turk||946-XXXX (any)|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||431-XXXX||Postpaid|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||432-XXXX||Postpaid|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||433-XXXX||Postpaid|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||441-XXXX||Prepaid|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||442-XXXX||Prepaid|
|Flow (formerly IslandCom)||443-XXXX||Prepaid|