Mobile Phones

Mobile operators and networks

The mobile phone network in Bulgaria is extensive and almost the whole country has mobile phone reception.

Areas with poor or no reception are usually high in mountains or in remote areas. There are three mobile phone service providers:

As in most countries, buying a mobile phone can involve a dizzying array of choices between not only the network and the option of a contract or a ‘pay-as-you-talk’ system, but also a wide range of tariffs covering connection fees, monthly subscriptions, insurance and call charges.

If you want to use a foreign mobile in Bulgaria, you can buy a SIM card that will give you a Bulgarian mobile number and allow you to make and receive calls and text messages, although you may need to get your phone ‘unlocked’ from the network in your home country (this can be done cheaply at most mobile phone shops).

The most popular SIM card is from Mtel, which is cheap and reliable for local calls (although all cards are expensive for international calls).

 Unless you absolutely have to, don’t use your mobile phone from an overseas network to make calls in Bulgaria, as the cost will be astronomical.


The basic Mtel contract costs 9.6 lev (€4.80) per month and allows you to talk ‘free’ for 20 minutes. After that, calls cost 0.30 lev (€0.15) to another Mtel mobile and 0.48 lev (€0.25) to other networks (including landlines).

This is an extract from Survival Books’ Living in Bulgaria.

This article is an extract from Buying a Home in Bulgaria
from Survival Books.

Does this article help?

Do you have any comments, updates or questions on this topic? Ask them here: