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Thread: Review of UK Mobile (prepaid) services for visitors / students

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by jarrodpd View Post
    I have a chip in pin card, my friend went to Italy and said his card worked and that I wouldn't need a chip in pin. Luckily I have one though. Is it possible to buy three vouchers online? I'm wanting the 10Gb £15 data plan for my iPad.
    No you won't be able to get it, as it is a contract deal. You need pay as you go

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    Quote Originally Posted by jarrodpd View Post
    So I can order the free sim online and have it shipped to the hotel, but I need a UK credit card to top up?
    You need UK credit card only if you want to topup online otherwise your US credit card will be fine

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    You can't get a contract plan, even a 1 month one, without a UK credit or bank account. If you need to top-off online you and don't want to buy a voucher at a grocery store, you can purchase a prepaid UK credit card too. For a voucher the cashier will give you a receipt with a code, and you can type the code in on-line or on your phone to top off.

    So my advice is to have the sim shipped to the hotel, then walk to a Sainsbury / Tesco / etc. to get your voucher. They are everywhere and within easy walking distance is most every city in the UK (and even villages)

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    Review of UK Mobile (prepaid) services for visitors / students

    Quote Originally Posted by farhan.cma View Post
    You need UK credit card only if you want to topup online otherwise your US credit card will be fine

    Sent from my GT-I9300 using HoFo mobile app
    Once I get the itinerary of the hotel I will probably find a tesco or other grocery like someone mentioned above, so far all I know is that it's somewhere in Wales. Thanks for everyone's help.

    ^HSPA+ 42mbps---------------------------------------------- ^LTE

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    Quote Originally Posted by keason View Post
    You can't get a contract plan, even a 1 month one, without a UK credit or bank account. If you need to top-off online you and don't want to buy a voucher at a grocery store, you can purchase a prepaid UK credit card too. For a voucher the cashier will give you a receipt with a code, and you can type the code in on-line or on your phone to top off.

    So my advice is to have the sim shipped to the hotel, then walk to a Sainsbury / Tesco / etc. to get your voucher. They are everywhere and within easy walking distance is most every city in the UK (and even villages)
    I agree with Keason, let me add this further to what has already been said. Prepaid debit card will definitely incur charges extra which bank card doesn't, certain % of topup is deducted, some have maintenance charges etc and it can't be used to get a contract either.

    For prospective students, you can open a bank account (savings account is of no use, so get current account) there, you will require letter from your college/uni (Tier 4 sponsor), after that you will be fine to go for monthly contracts and can upgrade to 24 months while atleast being with Three for 3 months, from my experience as ex-employee of Three, use on monthly basis for 6 months to be on a safer side and avoid deposit which is minimum of £75 and varies with the phone.

    Sent from my GT-I9300 using HoFo mobile app

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    Quote Originally Posted by farhan.cma View Post
    I agree with Keason, let me add this further to what has already been said. Prepaid debit card will definitely incur charges extra which bank card doesn't, certain % of topup is deducted, some have maintenance charges etc and it can't be used to get a contract either.

    For prospective students, you can open a bank account (savings account is of no use, so get current account) there, you will require letter from your college/uni (Tier 4 sponsor), after that you will be fine to go for monthly contracts and can upgrade to 24 months while atleast being with Three for 3 months, from my experience as ex-employee of Three, use on monthly basis for 6 months to be on a safer side and avoid deposit which is minimum of £75 and varies with the phone.

    Sent from my GT-I9300 using HoFo mobile app
    So say I got this plan "http://store.three.co.uk/view/searchSimOnly?tariff=3031&intid=3storetslp1269", this wouldn't be considered prepaid? Also has anyone tried putting in a simcard to an iPad and purchased data through the cellular tab? Does that also require the UK bank card?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jarrodpd View Post
    So say I got this plan "http://store.three.co.uk/view/searchSimOnly?tariff=3031&intid=3storetslp1269", this wouldn't be considered prepaid? Also has anyone tried putting in a simcard to an iPad and purchased data through the cellular tab? Does that also require the UK bank card?
    That is a one month contract plan, so you need a UK bank card/credit history. Purchasing time through the cellular tab should work since three is an official carrier, but you run into the credit/bank card issue again (UK credit card required!)


    There are three stores all over the place, many near/in the larger tube stops & train stations, plus independents. If you are concerned about directions w/o data, I suggest downloading a GPS app (e.g. pocket earth) that has downloadable maps, plus the tube app if you will be in London.

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    Quote Originally Posted by keason View Post
    That is a one month contract plan, so you need a UK bank card/credit history. Purchasing time through the cellular tab should work since three is an official carrier, but you run into the credit/bank card issue again (UK credit card required!)


    There are three stores all over the place, many near/in the larger tube stops & train stations, plus independents. If you are concerned about directions w/o data, I suggest downloading a GPS app (e.g. pocket earth) that has downloadable maps, plus the tube app if you will be in London.
    I have free roaming on my phone and iPad but it is throttled. So I would prefer high speed data, plus I'm sure T-Mobile(my carrier) has a fair usage.

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    For phone you will be best with Giffgaff, trust me, great coverage and pretty good if not great speed

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    Quote Originally Posted by farhan.cma View Post
    For phone you will be best with Giffgaff, trust me, great coverage and pretty good if not great speed

    Sent with the HoFo App
    I'm not worried about phone. It will connect to whoever has the best signal, it has free roaming in 110+ countries for data and SMS. I'm going to have the calls forwarded. I need a big data bucket for Instagram and sending emails with attachments.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jarrodpd View Post
    So I can order the free sim online and have it shipped to the hotel, but I need a UK credit card to top up?
    You don't need a credit card to top up. Simply go to any store, service station or other business displaying the top up symbol. Pay the cash and use the top up card which is linked to your SIM. Some networks do not use a linked top up card. You buy a voucher and key in the number.
    SEMPER IN MERDA SVM. SOLVM PROFVNDVM QVOD VARIAT.

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    Just spent 3 weeks in UK &. Italy. I used Three Network prepaid in both countries. 3 UK now has a "321" rate. 3 pence/min. voice, 2 pence per text and 1p per mb of data. (approx $0.045, 0.03 & 0.016). Roaming is currently more expensive at 24.7 pence/minute for voice. Forgotten the rate for text. (Sent only 1 in Europe) I relied upon free wi-fi for data when in Italy. There are no charges for incoming calls & texts in uk. European roaming rates are capped at 24.7 pence per minute by the EU. In addition. The EU is moving toward the elimination of all roaming charges in the near future. Icing on the cake. Online, my account shows a balance with the annotation "does not expire". Just great, since I hope to be back there next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smuggler View Post
    Just spent 3 weeks in UK &. Italy. I used Three Network prepaid in both countries. 3 UK now has a "321" rate. 3 pence/min. voice, 2 pence per text and 1p per mb of data. (approx $0.045, 0.03 & 0.016). Roaming is currently more expensive at 24.7 pence/minute for voice. Forgotten the rate for text. (Sent only 1 in Europe) I relied upon free wi-fi for data when in Italy. There are no charges for incoming calls & texts in uk. European roaming rates are capped at 24.7 pence per minute by the EU. In addition. The EU is moving toward the elimination of all roaming charges in the near future. Icing on the cake. Online, my account shows a balance with the annotation "does not expire". Just great, since I hope to be back there next year.
    Hi, you will lose your number if you don't recharge your account or make a chargeable call or text within 6 months. I also lost one of my three lines I had in UK when I was student there. So still have 2 lines with me. I have set in calendar when to make a chargeable text. It is in their terms and conditions of every network and is imposed by government, I used to work in 3 store.

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    Quote Originally Posted by smuggler View Post
    You don't need a credit card to top up. Simply go to any store, service station or other business displaying the top up symbol. Pay the cash and use the top up card which is linked to your SIM. Some networks do not use a linked top up card. You buy a voucher and key in the number.
    So no matter how I get money in the account I can still sign up for the one month 10Gb £15 plan?

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    Quote Originally Posted by farhan.cma View Post
    Hi, you will lose your number if you don't recharge your account or make a chargeable call or text within 6 months. I also lost one of my three lines I had in UK when I was student there. So still have 2 lines with me. I have set in calendar when to make a chargeable text. It is in their terms and conditions of every network and is imposed by government, I used to work in 3 store.

    Sent with the HoFo App
    Correct! Should have mentioned that. I/we also have a T-Mobile (UK) paygo account with the same limitation. About every 5 months I send a text from one phone to the other. Chargeable transaction which extends the account for another 6 months.

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