Need guidance in choosing a Pay Monthly (Sim Only) contract

Hi all, 

I have been happily using Pay as You Go on the Three (3) network for over 10 years now without issue. For the last few years I have been getting their 'All You Can Eat 90' Add On every three months, where I pay £90 for Unlimited Data, Unlimited Texts and Unlimited minutes. This has always served me very well and I have been happy on Pay As You Go. 

Unfortunately, my Add On runs out tomorrow and since I last purchased it in December Three seemingly have stopped offering this option. The only option they have similar is a £35 Add On Sim for 'All You Can Eat Data' that I can buy from Amazon, not Three? Very confusing! 

I have come to the conclusion that I would be better off - reluctantly - shifting to a Pay Monthly option, as this would be easier than purchasing a Sim from Amazon each month and appears to be cheaper also. 

I have always preferred Pay As You Go as I have never had any form of credit contract before. I suffer quite badly from anxiety - especially surrounding things like this. My neurodiverse condition possibly heightens this! I will only proceed if it is easy to set my spend cap at Zero, so that I do not accrue any extra charges. At the moment, if I try to call a premium number on PAYG it simply says I do not have enough credit. I hope that this will be similar if I set a £0 spend cap? 

Having looked at my Data Usage since December 14th, I have used 375GB, which is pretty typical of my usage over the last few years. I therefore feel that I may not need the All You Can Eat tariff, and would suffice with a 12 month 150GB/250GB per month contract. I'm conscious that the prices being offered are going to increase by CPI + 3.9% in a matter of weeks. Unfortunately, I can't wait that long to top up so I am going to have to just accept that. 

I have had a look online and Three offer a 12 Month Sim Only deal for 250GB Data for £20 (possibly around £23 after April) per month or unlimited data for £24 (£27 after April) per month. I assume that these come with unlimited calls and texts, as my current plan does but I will check this in store before I commit. 

I am completely new to the idea of a Pay Monthly changing their Add On range. I am quite anxious about it all, so I would appreciate your advice and insights surrounding Pay Monthly Sim contracts. Would you say the 250GB contract (£20 per month) is good value? Has anyone else on here been with Three for Pay Monthly and could share their experiences? 

Also, and something that I would be open to, I have noticed that other networks also offer Pay Monthly contracts and I have not ruled out the idea of changing networks. Three have had my custom now since 2009, but I know that loyalty does not always pay. I see below that 02 offer a 150GB per month Sim for £25 per month. A bit more expensive than Three but allows for 25GB of European Roaming for free, something that I would now need to pay for under Three. I travel to Europe about six times a year, so I was really annoyed to see that Three have introduced a charge for Go Roam. This 02 contract also seemingly offers perks like Apple Music that the Three one does not.

I am in all honestly so confused, and a little anxious and apprehensive about it all. Could you please give me some tips and advice about Pay Monthly contracts in general and if you know of the best one that would suit my needs?

Thanks so much for any insights or advice - sincerely, a very confused poster! 


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Comments

  • Browntoa
    Browntoa Posts: 49,270
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    I'm on O2 SIM only, currently out of contract but they are normally very good at matching online only deals via uSwitch that are normally only available to new customers. 

    Currently roaming in Spain 
    I'm a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the Shopping and Freebies, Phones and TV and Over 50s boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing . All views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
  • zagfles
    zagfles Posts: 20,198
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    edited 13 March 2023 at 8:34AM
    Why do you think you need a contract? What about Smarty - £20 a month for unlimited data, calls and texts or £17 if you can cope with a 200GB limit, and on the 3 network so coverage should be the same https://smarty.co.uk/#plans



  • matelodave
    matelodave Posts: 8,573
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    Before changing networks, make sure that you can get the service.

    Where I live I get a good signal and decent speeds with Three, a reasonable signal and just about adequate speeds with EE and virtually nothing with Vodafone or O2
    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
  • zagfles - I'd much rather not have one! Thanks, will take a look. How has your experience been with Smarty? Do you just essentially top up each month then? Rather than a Direct Debit? 
  • zagfles
    zagfles Posts: 20,198
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    DavidGold said:
    zagfles - I'd much rather not have one! Thanks, will take a look. How has your experience been with Smarty? Do you just essentially top up each month then? Rather than a Direct Debit? 
    I don't use them myself, I don't need much data, but I know people who do and they're happy with them. Not sure what options they have for topping up.

  • matelodave
    matelodave Posts: 8,573
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    I've got Smarty (on the Three network) and pay £6 a month for unlimited calls, texts and 4gbit data which is more than enough for me. They take a DD once a month.

    As my phone has dual Sims and we go away a lot I've also got a 1p Mobile (EE) which takes £30 for a year. Costs 1p for calls, 1p for texts and 1p per mb which works out ever so expensive for data, but its a handy back-up if we are in a dead zone for Three.

    The snag with 1p is that there's a minimum spend of £2.50 a month and so if you don't use £2:50 worth of service they still debit you for £2.50.
    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
  • Cisco001
    Cisco001 Posts: 4,002
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    Superdrug mobile or smarty both use Three network.
    They are £20 for unlimited date. 


  • geordiejon
    geordiejon Posts: 159
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    been with three for many years, i am now on a sim only contract on dd and i have never had any problems with them, i have just renewed my contract and i would say your best course of action if you feel confident is to ring them and explain your situation and ask for a contract that will fit your needs at their best price (be prepared to haggle).
    i actually got a contract at the same price of smarty.
  • WelshPaul
    WelshPaul Posts: 530
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    SMARTY do not do pay monthly accounts and you cannot pay via direct debit. SMARTY offers prepaid plans that automatically renew each month and payment is taken via credit and debit card payments. You cannot get into debt with them and there are no credit checks either.
  • TrueGreen
    TrueGreen Posts: 16
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    edited 19 March 2023 at 7:05PM
    I'm with 3 mobile sim only though I only need 12gb, unlimited calls, texts and pay £11 a month direct debit, and asked them to block using any extra data so I know I won't go over. 
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