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  • FIRST POST
    • Paddy Landau
    • By Paddy Landau 4th Aug 18, 8:00 PM
    • 32Posts
    • 29Thanks
    Paddy Landau
    SIM-only, no data, for only occasional use is so hard to find
    • #1
    • 4th Aug 18, 8:00 PM
    SIM-only, no data, for only occasional use is so hard to find 4th Aug 18 at 8:00 PM
    SIM-only deals have become so expensive!

    I'm looking, on behalf of someone else, for a SIM-only deal.

    He makes calls and texts only on the rarest occasion, so he wouldn't use even 10 minutes and 10 texts in a month. Less, typically. He would, on the other hand, receive calls and texts. Definitely no premium calls or texts.

    No data at all is required.

    It used to be possible to purchase a "bundle" of calls and texts that wouldn't expire for six months, or in Virgin Mobile's case, never if you made a call or text at least once every six months. So, £5 could easily last a year for this person.

    But now, the cheapest that I have found is £4 per month, which comes to £48 per annum. I know that it's not much money for most people, but for him, it is.

    Have you come across something that would suit his purposes, please?
    A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. (Anon.)
Page 1
    • Chino
    • By Chino 4th Aug 18, 8:18 PM
    • 620 Posts
    • 338 Thanks
    Chino
    • #2
    • 4th Aug 18, 8:18 PM
    • #2
    • 4th Aug 18, 8:18 PM
    But now, the cheapest that I have found is £4 per month, which comes to £48 per annum.
    Originally posted by Paddy Landau
    You evidently haven't been looking very hard, as even only a cursory search shows this:
    https://www.three.co.uk/Store/SIM/Pay_As_You_Go

    For the "Free SIM" option (the most relevant option for you, I would imagine), note the requirement to "Call, text or use some data at least once every 6 months to keep active."
    • gsmlnx
    • By gsmlnx 4th Aug 18, 8:58 PM
    • 1,152 Posts
    • 864 Thanks
    gsmlnx
    • #3
    • 4th Aug 18, 8:58 PM
    • #3
    • 4th Aug 18, 8:58 PM
    Or the O2 Classic Pay As You Go , which is very similar to 3's offering. https://www.o2.co.uk/help/pay-as-you-go/classic-pay-as-you-go
    • its_all_over
    • By its_all_over 4th Aug 18, 10:11 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 105 Thanks
    its_all_over
    • #4
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:11 PM
    • #4
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:11 PM
    SIM-only deals have become so expensive!

    I'm looking, on behalf of someone else, for a SIM-only deal.

    He makes calls and texts only on the rarest occasion, so he wouldn't use even 10 minutes and 10 texts in a month. Less, typically. He would, on the other hand, receive calls and texts. Definitely no premium calls or texts.

    No data at all is required.

    It used to be possible to purchase a "bundle" of calls and texts that wouldn't expire for six months, or in Virgin Mobile's case, never if you made a call or text at least once every six months. So, £5 could easily last a year for this person.

    But now, the cheapest that I have found is £4 per month, which comes to £48 per annum. I know that it's not much money for most people, but for him, it is.

    Have you come across something that would suit his purposes, please?
    Originally posted by Paddy Landau
    Maybe you should have been searching for pay as you go rather than sim only.

    The 2 best pay as you go offerings for a low user have been mentioned by other posters, you just need to check whether Three or o2 is better for coverage where you are.
    • ValiantSon
    • By ValiantSon 4th Aug 18, 10:35 PM
    • 2,536 Posts
    • 2,525 Thanks
    ValiantSon
    • #5
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:35 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:35 PM
    SIM-only deals have become so expensive!

    I'm looking, on behalf of someone else, for a SIM-only deal.

    He makes calls and texts only on the rarest occasion, so he wouldn't use even 10 minutes and 10 texts in a month. Less, typically. He would, on the other hand, receive calls and texts. Definitely no premium calls or texts.

    No data at all is required.

    It used to be possible to purchase a "bundle" of calls and texts that wouldn't expire for six months, or in Virgin Mobile's case, never if you made a call or text at least once every six months. So, £5 could easily last a year for this person.

    But now, the cheapest that I have found is £4 per month, which comes to £48 per annum. I know that it's not much money for most people, but for him, it is.

    Have you come across something that would suit his purposes, please?
    Originally posted by Paddy Landau
    What you are looking for is easily found. You want Pay As You Go. Try Three, who offer a very cheap PAYG SIM. Credit doesn't expire and costs are 3p/min and 2p/text. To keep the account active you just need to send one text every six months. https://www.three.co.uk/Store/SIM/Pay_As_You_Go
    • ValiantSon
    • By ValiantSon 4th Aug 18, 10:38 PM
    • 2,536 Posts
    • 2,525 Thanks
    ValiantSon
    • #6
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:38 PM
    • #6
    • 4th Aug 18, 10:38 PM
    Or the O2 Classic Pay As You Go , which is very similar to 3's offering. https://www.o2.co.uk/help/pay-as-you-go/classic-pay-as-you-go
    Originally posted by gsmlnx
    Less good. O2 require a top-up every six months, which will cost a minimum of £10, while Three only require you to use the phone, so a minimum cost of 2p. Only worth considering if they can't get a Three signal.
    • Paddy Landau
    • By Paddy Landau 5th Aug 18, 9:20 AM
    • 32 Posts
    • 29 Thanks
    Paddy Landau
    • #7
    • 5th Aug 18, 9:20 AM
    • #7
    • 5th Aug 18, 9:20 AM
    You evidently haven't been looking very hard, as even only a cursory search shows this:
    Originally posted by Chino
    Don't be horrible. We spent ages searching. We also contacted a few places — including Three — and none of their Sales people mentioned those options.

    Maybe you should have been searching for pay as you go rather than sim only.
    Originally posted by its_all_over
    Ah, that would explain why we didn't find those options! Though, why on earth Three didn't mention their offering is beyond me. Maybe they were pushing their pay-monthly offering?

    Thank you so much, people, for now we have something sensible to work with!
    A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. (Anon.)
    • gsmlnx
    • By gsmlnx 5th Aug 18, 11:57 AM
    • 1,152 Posts
    • 864 Thanks
    gsmlnx
    • #8
    • 5th Aug 18, 11:57 AM
    • #8
    • 5th Aug 18, 11:57 AM
    Less good. O2 require a top-up every six months, which will cost a minimum of £10, while Three only require you to use the phone, so a minimum cost of 2p. Only worth considering if they can't get a Three signal.
    Originally posted by ValiantSon
    I've been on this tariff since January and only topped up at the start. Phone is still working and no warnings from O2 yet about the lack of top up.
    Also I cannot find in the T&C's any mention of a 6 month top requirement. There is a requirement to use the phone for a chargeable activity in a six month period
    7.1. If you do not carry out any chargeable activity at least once in any 6 month period your Mobile Phone will be disconnected and you will lose any remaining credits balance on your Account. If you wish to be re-connected after this time you will be given a new Mobile Phone number.
    https://www.o2.co.uk/termsandconditions/mobile/on-pay-and-go-our-service-terms-are-worth-a-read
    • Mister G
    • By Mister G 5th Aug 18, 12:14 PM
    • 869 Posts
    • 513 Thanks
    Mister G
    • #9
    • 5th Aug 18, 12:14 PM
    • #9
    • 5th Aug 18, 12:14 PM
    I too have been on O2 Classic PAYG since January, with only one £20 initial top up. All still working fine.

    If you look here

    https://community.o2.co.uk/t5/Pay-As-You-Go/Classic-PAYG/m-p/1117692

    it looks like you can go 999 days without topping up. However, you must use the phone (make a chargeable call) at least every six months.

    I think that O2 are on the case and will be adjusting the Ts & Cs to reflect this, as it is rather ambiguous at present.
    • Paddy Landau
    • By Paddy Landau 5th Aug 18, 1:32 PM
    • 32 Posts
    • 29 Thanks
    Paddy Landau
    I contacted both Three and O2, armed with my new knowledge!

    O2 confirmed that:
    • You need to make a chargeable call at most 180 days since your last call
    • You need to top up at most 999 days since your last top-up
    The only significant difference between O2 and Three, as far as I can tell, is that O2 has a number of public WiFi access points that an O2 client may use free. Therefore, O2 seems like our best bet as coverage for both is good in our area.

    Thank you again, everyone.
    A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. (Anon.)
    • Mister G
    • By Mister G 5th Aug 18, 2:09 PM
    • 869 Posts
    • 513 Thanks
    Mister G
    Thank you for getting the situation with O2 Classic PAYG clarified.

    Hopefully O2 will update their website, because it's completely wrong at the moment with regard to the top-ups.

    https://www.o2.co.uk/help/pay-as-you-go/classic-pay-as-you-go
    • Herongull
    • By Herongull 5th Aug 18, 2:52 PM
    • 1,330 Posts
    • 755 Thanks
    Herongull
    I think Three PAYG requires a smartphone - at least 3G whereas AFAIK O2 doesn't have that requirement.

    There is also 1p mobile, where calls texts and data each cost only 1p!
    https://www.1pmobile.com

    But 1p mobile requires a topup every every 120 days, so that would out £30 a year so too much for your friend but may be useful others.

    Another one that some people might find useful is Whitecalling
    https://www.whitecalling.com. It is not nearly as cheap as 1pmobile: text 6p and calls either 4p or 7p depending on whether landline or mobile BUT it has FREE voicemail and FREE calls and texts within network, so might suit families or friends who want to keep in touch and just use their phone for other calls occasionally. I don't think you have top it up at certain intervals, just make a couple of chargeable calls or texts every couple of months.
    • its_all_over
    • By its_all_over 5th Aug 18, 10:06 PM
    • 179 Posts
    • 105 Thanks
    its_all_over
    Thank you for getting the situation with O2 Classic PAYG clarified.

    Hopefully O2 will update their website, because it's completely wrong at the moment with regard to the top-ups.

    https://www.o2.co.uk/help/pay-as-you-go/classic-pay-as-you-go
    Originally posted by Mister G
    I also contacted o2 months ago and they confirmed as above, the representative from the complaints department said they would be sending feedback to get to the website fixed but it seems things move very slowly at whoever controls the o2 website.
    • macman
    • By macman 6th Aug 18, 8:55 PM
    • 42,803 Posts
    • 18,046 Thanks
    macman
    One further point about Three. It will only work with a 3G handset, not 2G. So if your friend has an old Nokia or similar, it's a non-starter. All modern phones and smartphones are 4G or 3G.
    Since you say no data is required, I'm guessing he may well be using an old pre-3G handset.
    Re o2, what is the relevance of public wi-fi hotspots if your friend is not going to be using any data? He won't be able to use them for calls or texts.
    Last edited by macman; 06-08-2018 at 9:00 PM.
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • pmduk
    • By pmduk 6th Aug 18, 9:04 PM
    • 9,607 Posts
    • 7,252 Thanks
    pmduk
    I think Three PAYG requires a smartphone - at least 3G
    Originally posted by Herongull
    To clarify, Three does require a 3g phone, but not necessarily a smartphone. The vast majority of phone sold within the last 5 years will probably be 3g-compatible.
    • Paddy Landau
    • By Paddy Landau 7th Aug 18, 8:29 AM
    • 32 Posts
    • 29 Thanks
    Paddy Landau
    Since you say no data is required, I'm guessing he may well be using an old pre-3G handset. … what is the relevance of public wi-fi hotspots…
    Originally posted by macman
    No data because he needs to save costs. He has a decent phone that a relative gave him as a gift, so he can use WiFi.
    A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. (Anon.)
    • macman
    • By macman 7th Aug 18, 1:38 PM
    • 42,803 Posts
    • 18,046 Thanks
    macman
    Right: so he does in fact have a 3G handset?
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • Paddy Landau
    • By Paddy Landau 7th Aug 18, 3:10 PM
    • 32 Posts
    • 29 Thanks
    Paddy Landau
    Right: so he does in fact have a 3G handset?
    Originally posted by macman
    Fairly modern, compatible with 3G and 4G.
    A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle. (Anon.)
    • Chordeiles
    • By Chordeiles 20th Aug 18, 8:46 AM
    • 115 Posts
    • 52 Thanks
    Chordeiles
    try giffgaff
    For occasional use giffgaff works very well indeed. Probably for more than occasional use too. I used to do a £10 top-up every 4 or 5 months, I'll admit that most outgoing calls were to my wife who was on giffgaff too, hence calls free within three months (I think) of last top-up.
    As my data use has crept up I got a contract with a reseller of EE, but I still keep a giffgaff SIM in slot 2 of a dual-SIM 'phone as there are a few places I go (including where I live !) where EE coverage isn't good. With use this infrequent I have to keep an eye open for emails from giffgaff telling me I'll lose my number (and credit) if I don't use it soon !
    But one significant drawback of giffgaff is that it throws away your answerphone greeting (replaces it with the default) if you didn't let the answerphone grab a call for a few months !
    Last edited by Chordeiles; 20-08-2018 at 8:51 AM.
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