Mobile applications are not yet so popular in the telecommunications industry in Uganda and most people still use USSD codes to access a variety of services.
In this article, we look at the main USSD codes for telecoms operating in Uganda. With these USSD codes, you can access most of the services you need, including promotional offers.
In Uganda, apart from checking airtime balance (*131#) for Airtel, MTN and Africell and launching the mobile money menu (*165# and *185#) for MTN and Airtel, USSD codes change from one service provider to another.
We shall present the USSD codes for telecom operating in Uganda in two ways; tabular and essay format.
The table is a summary while the essay is more detailed.
USSD codes for telecoms in Uganda
MTN USSD codes
MTN has a pretty long list of services. However, the services have been summarized into one USSD code: *160#.
When you have an MTN SIM card and dial *160#, here is what each option that pops up leads to:
Option 1 — My Paka Paka voice bundles and Data (MBs) [special offer]
Option 2 — voice bundles and internet bundles (A variety of offers, including international bundles)
Option 3 – Borrowing airtime
Option 4 — Mobile Money menu, which can also be accessed through *165#
Option 5 — MTN Yang (special data offer)
Option 6 — ME2U, airtime sharing
Option 7 — My Account, all details about your SIM card number and how to activate some services like; call me back, who called service, Roaming, Loyalty points, MTN Cash Back and, lastly, MTN Elite, a program designed for MTN’s most valued and loyal customers.
Option 8 — Device bundles [promotion]
Lastly, for MTN, if you want to pay the social media tax, you dial *165*2*8#
|*151*3#||Activate MTN Zone|
|*165# or *185#||Mobile Money|
Airtel Uganda Codes
For Airtel, the USSD codes have been summarized with *175# for data and *149# for voice calls.
After dialing *175#, these are the options:
Option 1 — Top packs; bigger data packages from daily to monthly
Option 2 – Regular data bundles (daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly) and other special offers like Data Pakalast, Tooti, auto-renew and postpaid bundles
Option 3 — data voucher, but the airtime cards were scrapped off
Option 4 – checking data balance
Option 5 — sharing data from one user to another
Option 6 – buying data for another number
Option 7 — Automatic settings to any phone
Option 8 — roaming
Option 9 – An extra option dubbed More, and it includes LTE free data, Free 20MBS, Mifi data, phone data, switch, sim check, roaming data once more 2G offers and smartphone offers.
For the voice bundles, the USSD code is *149# and this includes: daily, weekly and monthly voice bundles.
The voice bundle packages are divided into My Pakalast (includes SMS and data as well), Pakalast@1000/-, weekly plans, Kawa@500/-, Kyabise (includes SMS and data as well), monthly plans, night bundles, Power Tooti. There is also an extra option (others) that includes more special offers.
To pay OTT tax using an Airtel SIM card, dial *185*2*5#
Africell Uganda USSD codes
Africell Uganda has two main USSD codes — *133# and *134#.
*133# is used for buying data and *134# is used for voice bundles.
When you dial *133#,
Option 1 — mobile internet packages
Option 2 — pay go services to activate roaming settings
Option 3 — unlimited internet packages
Option 4 — Happy Hour; buy a bundle at 500/- and use it for 1 hour from the time it is subscribed
Option 5 — Happy night bundles from 12am to 6am
Option 6 — paying OTT tax
Option 7 — Reserved for the Special Wednesday bundle each week
Option 8 — Triple data bundle package
Option 9 — checking data balance
Option 10 — purchasing the StarTimes bundle
For voice bundles, you will dial *134#.
Option 1 — Tokota Nnyoo for unlimited voice calls: Tokota Nyoo @500/- for 20 Minutes, 20MBs and 20SMSs valid for 24 hrs and Unlimited Tokata valid for 24 hrs.
Option 2 — Paka Boom, special offer for every region in Uganda
Option 3 — International Calls to most destinations
Option 4 — Super Combo: calls, SMS and data at weekly, daily and monthly packages
Option 5 — Ofwono Tooti; 30 minutes of calls at Shs500
Option 6 – SMS bundles
Option 7 – Supermix; data, voice and SMS bundles at different prices
Option 9 — checking all the voice bundle balances
|*131#||Check Airtime credit|
If you don’t want to use the USSD codes, there are a number of mobile apps that can help you buy airtime and data bundles for every telco in Uganda, including those not mentioned in this article.