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Thread: Can I keep my phone # if I switch from postpaid to prepaid?

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    Can I keep my phone # if I switch from postpaid to prepaid?

    My Mom's 2-year contract is about to expire. Since she doesn't use the phone much, she is thinking of switching to prepaid. But she wants to keep the phone #. Is there any way to keep the phone # when switching from postpaid to prepaid? Thank you.

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    One other question. Assuming it is possible, if I want to avoid the termination fee, I would wait until after the contract has expired, right? But if so, how long do I have a "right" to the phone number after the contract expires?

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    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    One other question. Assuming it is possible, if I want to avoid the termination fee, I would wait until after the contract has expired, right? But if so, how long do I have a "right" to the phone number after the contract expires?
    Yes, wait until its expired, and you always retain the right to it unless you cancel or don't pay your bills.

    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    Is there any way to keep the phone # when switching from postpaid to prepaid?
    Yes, just call up postpaid customer service, they can do this for you (convert you from postpaid to prepaid).

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    FWIW, it's been US law for some years now, and was pretty big news when it passed: you can *always* keep your phone number when changing carriers or plans. Doesn't matter what you are changing from or to. But of course, if your contract has expired, it's not your number any more, and they *will* give the number to someone else, so don't wait too long before making the switch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumpphone View Post
    But of course, if your contract has expired, it's not your number any more, and they *will* give the number to someone else, so don't wait too long before making the switch.
    What are you talking about? If your 24 month contract expires, you just go month to month and as long as you continue to pay your bills you get to keep your number.

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    Quote Originally Posted by djchen View Post
    What are you talking about? If your 24 month contract expires, you just go month to month and as long as you continue to pay your bills you get to keep your number.
    In the original post he mentioned that his Mom does not use the phone very much and that is why they are considering prepaid.
    Last edited by SnowyWhite; 01-07-2011 at 08:16 PM.
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    I know why their considering/switching to prepaid. However, his comment seemed to refer to postpaid; he said "if your contract expires, its not your number anymore."

    On prepaid, if you have no available balance, then yes you will lose your number. On postpaid, as long as you pay your bills, you always get to keep your number, in contract or not.
    Anyways, I was just trying to clear up the confusion there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    My Mom's 2-year contract is about to expire. Since she doesn't use the phone much, she is thinking of switching to prepaid. But she wants to keep the phone #. Is there any way to keep the phone # when switching from postpaid to prepaid? Thank you.
    As long as the agreement (contract) is completed there will be no extra cost. Yes, it's very possible to change from contract to prepaid. You call 611 and tell the CSR you wish to convert your account to prepaid. The tech people will change your account. It can take up to 24 hours, but when I had it done January 12 it only took about 15 minutes (you get a text message telling you that your account has been converted.) You also get a $5 credit for switching. You'll have to re-record your voicemail and also re-apply any filters you have through my.t-mobile.com. You'll keep the phone number and use the same SIM. All that will change is the way you're billed with you now paying in advance for service instead of receiving a statement every month.
    Moderator yahoogroups forum T-Mobile-US http://groups.yahoo.com/group/T-Mobile-US

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    Quote Originally Posted by djchen View Post
    What are you talking about? If your 24 month contract expires, you just go month to month and as long as you continue to pay your bills you get to keep your number.
    I was considering month-to-month a form of contract, and was thinking of the contract "expiring" as meaning "discontinued". I guess that's not the way most people use the terms, though. What I really meant is that if you actually *cancel* or *break* the contract by stopping paying, you'll lose the number. Sorry for the confusion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumpphone View Post
    I was considering month-to-month a form of contract, and was thinking of the contract "expiring" as meaning "discontinued". I guess that's not the way most people use the terms, though. What I really meant is that if you actually *cancel* or *break* the contract by stopping paying, you'll lose the number. Sorry for the confusion.
    I've never heard anyone think that month to month was a "form of contract." The point of a contract is it's a term that you are bound to do something. In the case of cellphone service it's that you are bound to that company that you will pay your charges for however long the term is. You'll only lose the number if you don't pay your charges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Telekom View Post
    I've never heard anyone think that month to month was a "form of contract."
    I'm betting you've never been a landlord and had to deal with the legality of leases :-). A month to month agreement is still a contract - a written document specifying terms of service. It stipulates how much you pay and what you get for that. The fact that it happens to be a month to month agreement instead of a two year agreement really has no bearing on its legal status as a contract. It's still that document that specifies how much you pay for the service and what you get for it, and still that document that is examined in court in the case of dispute. That's what a contract is.

    Of course, I realize now that when people in the postpaid cell world talk about contacts, they only mean the initial period of the contract before it goes month-to-month. Same with renters, for that matter. That's cool, and I totally understandable why people would do that. Anyhow, no matter. I was confused by the word "expired" and thought they meant they were letting it *lapse*. Clearly, I was mistaken. My bad. Won't happen again.

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    Hang on a second.

    So should I call a little bit before the contract expires to let them know that I want to switch to a prepaid plan so that I don't lose the phone number between the time that the contract expires and the time that I let them know I want to switch from post-paid to prepaid?

    I've never done anything like this before and am very concerned with

    #1 Keeping the phone number.

    #2 Not incurring any cancellation fees for ending the contract early.

    Thank you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    So should I call a little bit before the contract expires to let them know that I want to switch to a prepaid plan so that I don't lose the phone number between the time that the contract expires and the time that I let them know I want to switch from post-paid to prepaid?
    No, not necessary.

    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    I've never done anything like this before and am very concerned with

    #1 Keeping the phone number.

    #2 Not incurring any cancellation fees for ending the contract early.
    First, find out what day your contract ends and just call in that day. Tell Postpaid CS that you want to convert your account to prepaid. They'll handle it all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by laorulez View Post
    Hang on a second.

    So should I call a little bit before the contract expires to let them know that I want to switch to a prepaid plan so that I don't lose the phone number between the time that the contract expires and the time that I let them know I want to switch from post-paid to prepaid?
    You fooled me before with your use of the word "expired", so let's be a little more careful with our terminology. Unless there is something unusual going on in your case, contracts don't *expire*, ever, unless you cancel them or stop paying. All that happens is that the initial 2-year locked is over and then it turns into a month to month agreement. You don't lose your number unless your contract really has expired, but again, your contract is not ever going to expire unless you go out of your way to make that happen.

    So I agree with those saying to go ahead and wait for the end of the original lock-in period - which is *not* the same as "expiring" - before trying to change plans. That's how you void cancellation fees. As long as you don't actually go out of your way to *cancel* your contract before converting to prepaid, you won't lose your number.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumpphone View Post
    You fooled me before with your use of the word "expired", so let's be a little more careful with our terminology. Unless there is something unusual going on in your case, contracts don't *expire*, ever, unless you cancel them or stop paying. All that happens is that the initial 2-year locked is over and then it turns into a month to month agreement. You don't lose your number unless your contract really has expired, but again, your contract is not ever going to expire unless you go out of your way to make that happen.

    So I agree with those saying to go ahead and wait for the end of the original lock-in period - which is *not* the same as "expiring" - before trying to change plans. That's how you void cancellation fees. As long as you don't actually go out of your way to *cancel* your contract before converting to prepaid, you won't lose your number.
    You have a weird understanding of what a contract is.

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