Switching mobile phone deals

First thing's first, if you're planning on switching your mobile phone deals then you need to find a suitable plan to switch to. Take a look at our mobile phone deal finder to find the best deal for you. If you're not sure which handset to go for, then our choosing the right handset guide will help you on your way. Take a look at the relevant section below, depending on your situation;

Switching mobile phone provider and keeping your number

If you're signing up to a deal online through our mobile phone deal finder AND you are switching to a new provider you'll need to contact your current provider and tell them you want to switch. You should ask them for your PAC (port authorisation code). This will allow your new network to move your telephone number over from your old network. When you do this they will probably get you to speak with someone from their retentions team who will try to offer you a better deal, although the likelihood is that you will not get a better deal than you will from us.

Once you have your PAC, you can click through to the deal that you're interested in. Follow the sales process on the deal providers website where you will be asked to enter your PAC code. If you don't provide your pack as part of the sign up process don't worry, just call your new provider once you've received your new handset or SIM card and they will do it over the phone. Once your new provider uses this code to request your telephone number (usually within 7 days), your old contract will end on the day the number transfers over.

You should be aware that your old provider will probably require a 30 day notice period. If you get your PAC and port your number to your new provider within a week, you will still need to pay the line rental with your old provider for the fill 30 day period. ALSO - your PAC is normally only valid for 30 days, so if you leave it too late, your new provider may not be able to port your number if it is no longer valid. Even if your give your new provider your PAC on day 28, if it takes them 7 days to process it, it will be invalid by the time they try to use it.

You would normally expect your new provider to inform you of the day/time that your number will be ported over. You can expect a short period of time during the porting process where both/none of your numbers work, but don't worry as this is normal. Remember to follow all instructions as given to you by your new provider and don't forget to back up your phone book.

Switching mobile phone provider and keeping your number

If you're changing to a new mobile phone provider and don't wish to keep your number then you can do this with minimal effort. Simply call up your old provider and tell them you wish to cancel. When you do this they will probably get you to speak with someone from their retentions team who will try to offer you a better deal, although the likelihood is that you will not get a better deal than you will from us.

Your old network provider will probably expect your to give notice, which is normally around 30 days. Once you've done this, simply find yourself a new deal with our mobile phone deal finder, follow the sales process with one of our deal providers, sit back and wait for your phone to be delivered. Simple!

Get a new deal with the same mobile phone provider

If you're signing up to a new deal through our mobile phone deal finder the bad news is that you can't keep your current telephone number. For some reason mobile phone providers don't have any provisions for doing this. You'll either need to go to a different provider if you want to keep your number, in which case follow the steps above titled "Switching provider - and keeping your current phone number". If you are wanting to stay with your current provider then follow the steps above titled "Switching provider - and getting a new phone number".

Hint and tips
If you want to get a new phone deal while you are still locked into a contract (ie in month 9 of a 18 month contract), then try to reduce your mobile phone package as far as you can. If you try and get our a contract early, your mobile phone provider will (and are quite entitled to) charge you line rental for the full duration of your contract. As in the example above, you have already completed the first 9 months, and if you cancel now, your phone provider will charge you the remaining 9 months line rental but you wont get to use it.

If you are paying 30 per month and have this reduced to 25 per month, over a 9 month period you would save 45. Most people wouldn't go to the extremes of switching mid way through a contract, but if you only have a couple of months left, it may be worthwhile paying off the line rental and signing up through one of our deal providers for a much better deal.

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