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Thread: Tracfone expired - minutes lost?

  1. #1
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    Tracfone expired - minutes lost?

    Hello,

    I used to be a faithful Tracfone user but some customer service issues sent me elsewhere. I have, however, kept a Tracfone active for my elderly in-laws. She has always been extremely prompt in contacting me when it was near expiration, but somehow it slipped her mind last month. The phone has over 1,000 units on it, and it shows the expiration date was 9/21/2010.

    Are the minutes gone for good or is there still a 30 day grace period?

    Thanks for any info!

  2. #2
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    There is officially a zero-day grace period, but usually (unless the phone number has since been re-registered) you may be able to "fix" the phone online.

    Start by entering your serial number here. Cross your fingers. Remember that you can buy as many service days in advance as you could possibly want, and they all roll over into eternity. Keep crossing your fingers.
    http://www.tracfone.com/case_select_...k=tech_support

    In the event this does not work, you may be directed to contact customer support. Still a good chance you'll be able to keep your minutes, IMHO. But if your inlaws don't use the minutes, it also isn't a heavy loss.

  3. #3
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    There is a 60-day grace period to recover the minutes on a TracFone, but you may have lost the phone number. Call Executive Resolutions at 1-800-876-5753 and tell them you want to reactivate the phone with the same number if possible.

    From the Trac TOS:
    "If your Service is deactivated, your TRACFONE can be reactivated by purchasing and adding any TRACFONE Prepaid Wireless Airtime card. However, once reactivated, your TRACFONE will be assigned a new phone number. Airtime which remained at the time of deactivation will remain on your TRACFONE if it is reactivated within 60 days from the deactivation date. However, airtime which remained at the time of deactivation will be lost if your TRACFONE Service remains deactivated longer than 60 days."

  4. #4
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    You should be able to reactivate the Tracfone...

    and recover the minutes since it has been less than a month.
    The phone number I'm not sure about. It might be too late.

    If you make an account online at Tracfone.com you can see your phone's expiration date and phone number and if it's "active" or not.

    If they have that many minutes accumulated and it's hard to remember when they have to renew, you could sign them up for the "service protection plan" from Tracfone, you pay $5.99 a month to keep the service going without any minutes being added.

    https://www.tracfone.com/direct/ValuePlans

    That should save you a bit of money too since the cheapest tracfone card is $20and the yearly card is $100 and especially since they don't need the additional minutes.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mommusic View Post
    and recover the minutes since it has been less than a month.
    The phone number I'm not sure about. It might be too late.

    If you make an account online at Tracfone.com you can see your phone's expiration date and phone number and if it's "active" or not.

    If they have that many minutes accumulated and it's hard to remember when they have to renew, you could sign them up for the "service protection plan" from Tracfone, you pay $5.99 a month to keep the service going without any minutes being added.

    https://www.tracfone.com/direct/ValuePlans

    That should save you a bit of money too since the cheapest tracfone card is $20and the yearly card is $100 and especially since they don't need the additional minutes.
    IMO, I think the Service Protection Plan is a bad deal to keep service running. Adding the $20 airtime card runs $6.67/month and gives you 60 minutes (x2 w/DMFL). So you only save $.68 a month and get no minutes for it. Even if you don't normally use the minutes you might need them someday, and for pocket change a month I'd rather stack the minutes.

    Were it me, dealing with an elderly relative, I would buy 4 $20 cards and add them all at once. If I were doing it today, I would note that it is Oct. and next year, sometime in Sept. I need to do the same thing. This gives you a month-long window to get around to adding the cards, is easy to remember, and doesn't cost any more than adding the minutes JIT (technically it does w/ regards to inflation and the interest that money could be earning, however at this low a dollar amount I'd say the benefit to your relatives outweighs any potential downside).

    Good luck.

  6. #6
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    The service protection plan cost nothing until it is needed (because someone forgot to add a card). If you never forget to add a card, you will never be charged anything. You do have to give them a credit card number. Assume they will varify the credit card will actually accept the charge before adding 30 service days to the phone, you must make sure the credit card account stays open as long as you want the service plan to work.

    If you re-activate the phone on line, no where will you find the option to get the old number back. As stated above you must speak to a CSR to try and retrieve the old phone number, time is not on your side.
    Last edited by Tracfancier; 10-15-2010 at 09:18 PM.

  7. #7
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    Thanks, all.

    She's had this phone for several years, and this time just hadn't used it in quite awhile and realized when they were going to go out of town for the day that it had expired.

    I usually buy the $20 PINs from Callingmart using a code and end up getting them for $18ish, so really they are a better deal - and as was mentioned, she gets minutes and not just time. There have been a couple of times her daughter that lives overseas has come to visit, and she's let the daughter use the phone for a week (since she doesn't have US service) and that is apt to result in a few hundred minutes being used, so I figure she might as well have as many minutes as she can have on it.

    I have PagePlus myself, and that would actually be a little better deal for her I think, but we've already got so much 'invested' in those Tracfone minutes that I hate to cut bait at this point.

  8. #8
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    Another way for them to use up the minutes...

    that are already paid for, is for her to call her daughter overseas from her tracfone. That way she is not paying for long distance charges on her landline.
    http://www.tracfoneild.com/?AID=ILDHPB
    It does not cost anything extra to call international on your Tracfone and there is an access number to call and then it's the same call rate than USA.
    I agree, if you use and want the extra minutes with the amount you pay, then it's better to get the cards. I use callingmart too.
    But it might be good idea to set up the service protection "just in case" as Tracfancier pointed out.

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