On our Data Calculator, we try to help you see how much data you’ll use over your overseas trip.
Still feel that there isn’t enough data and you’d like to maximize the amount of data you can use?

At SIMCARD.SG, here are some tips on how you can reduce and minimize your data usage, while keeping your smartphone usable.

General Tips

Use Google Chrome's Data Saver Function

Don’t want to download Opera Max? If you use Google Chrome, you can also save data usage on Chrome by turning on the Data Saver.
Click here to see how to Switch Data Saver on in Chrome

Minimize Video Streaming

Video Streaming (Netflix, YouTube, etc.) is one of the easiest and fastest way to use  up any data allowance that you have; simply avoid them if possible.
Consider downloading the videos and storing them on your phone before watching them, or perhaps, avoid them all together! 🙂

Review Installed Applications

The application that you keep on your phone and never use could be using up your data allowance without you knowing!

Applications can consume data in the background to keep themselves up to date.
Review your background application usage and disable them if necessary.
Online games and many social media applications (i.e. Facebook) tend to use up data in the background.

On Android, go to Settings > Wireless and Networks > Data Usage
On iPhone/iOS, go to Settings > Cellular / Mobile and also check Background App Refresh in Settings > General

Automatic Updates/Backups

The Apple App Store and Google Play Store may sometimes set themselves to automatically download and update content on your phone by default.
Disabling the auto-update functionality will help you save a lot of data usage. However, you may need to be diligent enough in updating your apps manually when on WiFi.

Some applications, such as Dropbox, Google Photos or even your phone, may be set to automatically backup or download content over a data connection. You should change this to download only over a Wi-Fi connection.

Tips for iOS Devices

Apple iPhone / iPad

  1. Disable iCloud Backup over Cellular/Mobile Data.
    Check this by going to Settings > iCloud > iCloud Drive then scroll to the bottom and check
  2. Disable Automatic App Updates over Cellular/Mobile Data in the Apple App Store.
    Check this by going to Settings > iTunes & App Store.
    At the same time, make sure you are set to deliver Automatic Downloads over Wi-Fi only.
  3. Only enable Background App Refresh for applications you use (i.e. WhatsApp, Telegram, etc.)
    Check this by going to Settings > General > Background App Refresh
  4. Disable Wi-Fi Assist. Wi-Fi Assist is a feature introduced by Apple to use mobile data connection when Wi-Fi is weak, providing seamless connectivity. Hence, it may use up your data even when you think you are on Wi-Fi.
    Check this by going to Settings > Cellular / Mobile > Scroll to the bottom and disable Wi-Fi Assist
Tips for Android Devices

Android Phones / Tablets

Install Opera Max

Opera Max is an application that can help you save data tremendously, while also improving your privacy and security.
It compresses data before downloading it to your phone and can help you save up to 50% of your data usage.

Download and Turn on Opera Max and enable Mobile Savings to start saving data immediately!

Download on Google Play

Application Specific Tips

Commonly installed applications and how to save data while using them!


Facebook is a massive data user on our mobile phones. In fact, we’d recommend using Facebook Lite (Android Only) over the regular Facebook application. However, if you want to use the Facebook application, here are some steps that you can take to reduce your data consumption.

  1. Turn on “Data Saver” mode on the Facebook Application (Click on the 3 Horizontal Bars beside the Notifications/Globe Icon and swipe down to Help & Settings)
  2. If your Facebook App does not have the Data Saver mode, look for the option to turn off Auto-Play for Videos

Google Maps

Did you know you can actually download and save Google Maps on your phone? This reduces the loading time and allows your phone to consume significantly less data than it would while downloading Google Maps.

Check out the Download Areas and Navigate Offline Guide on Google Maps help – this applies to both Android and iPhone/iPad devices.


We love sharing our travels on Instagram, but it is also an application that consumes a lot of data.

You can easily have Instagram consume lesser data by doing the following:

  1. Click on your profile icon (at the bottom)
  2. When your profile loads, click on the 3 horizontal dots that appear on the top right to open the settings menu
  3. Swipe your screen down until you see the “Settings” and the “Cellular Data Use” option
  4. Select “Use Less Data”


WhatsApp will automatically download photos and videos to your phone. This will use up a lot of data if you are in many group conversations where your contacts may share many pictures or videos with you!

Turn off Auto-Download and set it to download automatically only when on Wi-Fi to save data.
Simply go to WhatsApp > Settings > Data Usage and change auto download to Wi-Fi only.

WhatsApp Help: Configure Auto-Download on Android
WhatsApp Help: Configure Auto-Download on iPhone