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Thread: How to port landline number to TF

  1. #1
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    How to port landline number to TF

    I need to port my landline number OUT of ATT and I have several questions.

    (1) I plan to port it to tracfone. I've been using TF for many years and I'm fine with the phone parts. I also know that TF has lousy customer service. How likely it is that TF would screw this up (and caused me to lose my landline number, which would be really bad?)

    (2) I have a previously-activated LG K31 rebel. It no longer has services, and my plan is to buy a 30-day card to reactive this phone + transfer the landline to it. What are the magic words I should use when I do online chat with the TF customer service reps?

    (3) How long would the porting take?

    (4) Do I need to do anything with ATT before/after the port? E.g. do I need to tell them in advance where I'm porting my landline number? After TF does its thing, do I need to call ATT to terminate my landline (or is that automatic?) And if I do have to call ATT afterwards, how long should I wait? (e.g. after my K31 has the landline number?)

    (5) In case this matters: I plan to move the landline number to google voice; TF is just an intermediate step. How might this after the porting? E.g. do I have to wait 30/60/90/etc days before I can port from TF to GV?

    (6) Anything else I might have overlooked? I really need to keep the landline number so I don't want to screw this up. (e.g. if TF is not the way to go, then what are my options --- while keeping the cost down?) Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
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    The following info is based on my experience from porting my wife's Verizon's postpaid service to TF in 2013.

    (1) TF didn't screw up my port-in.

    (2) through (4) You need your AT&T account number and PIN. You don't need to tell AT&T that you're terminating service, they'll know when your number has been ported out.

    Buy a 30-day card, then Chat with TF to activate the K31. Tell the rep you want to port in your landline number from AT&T. The rep will ask for that phone number, account number, PIN, and a contact number (different from the number being ported in). TF will take care of the porting process (providing all the info to AT&T to get the number released by AT&T). Once the number has been released to TF, TF will contact you (by phone in my case) to complete the activation of the K31. In my case, the whole process took 3 business days.

    I have never ported a number out of TF, so I don't know how long you have to wait (if any) before porting out of TF.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaOn View Post
    (3) How long would the porting take?

    (4) Do I need to do anything with ATT before/after the port? E.g. do I need to tell them in advance where I'm porting my landline number? After TF does its thing, do I need to call ATT to terminate my landline (or is that automatic?) And if I do have to call ATT afterwards, how long should I wait? (e.g. after my K31 has the landline number?)
    Porting to a different carrier takes more time, and from a landline maybe even longer. Like @hpham stated it might be 2-3 days.

    Do NOT tell AT&T anything, or you may loose the phone number. That account will close down after the number is ported out.

  4. #4
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    Several years ago, I also ported an ATT landline to TF/Verizon. It ended up taking several weeks-- caused by ATT throwing out nitpicking obstacle after obstacle and not releasing my number- badly delaying the port.

    One of the many pretty good TF customer service people I worked with over the weeks joked that it seemed like ATT just didn't want to let go of my account. Guess they must have really needed that 40 bucks a month ;-)

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    They didn't want to lose a clean phone number to another company.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for everyone's comment. I ordered the 30 days card from ebay, but then I saw @ChasHam's pose:

    Quote Originally Posted by ChasHam View Post
    Several years ago, I also ported an ATT landline to TF/Verizon. It ended up taking several weeks-- caused by ATT throwing out nitpicking obstacle after obstacle and not releasing my number- badly delaying the port.

    One of the many pretty good TF customer service people I worked with over the weeks joked that it seemed like ATT just didn't want to let go of my account. Guess they must have really needed that 40 bucks a month ;-)
    What if ATT take more than 30 days to release my landline number --- would my new TF run out of days before it is even activated?!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaOn View Post
    What if ATT take more than 30 days to release my landline number --- would my new TF run out of days before it is even activated?!
    Your TF line won't be activated (and the clock starts ticking) until the number has been ported in to TF.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hpham View Post
    Your TF line won't be activated (and the clock starts ticking) until the number has been ported in to TF.
    Thanks -- it's good to hear that!

    Follow-up question: How do I find the account # and PIN of this new/temporary tracfone? I have never set up online account with TF (and I'd rather not to). When I googled this, some people say that the account # is the SIM card number, others said that it's the IMEI, and everyone says that the pin is the one I use to log into TF (which I will not have). Is this info (account # + pin) something I should ask the customer service person when I do the initial porting? Thanks!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaOn View Post
    Follow-up question: How do I find the account # and PIN of this new/temporary tracfone? I have never set up online account with TF (and I'd rather not to)!
    There's no reason not to set up a TF accout. It's free and you can choose the PIN when setting up your account. Like you've found out, there's conflicting info on which is the account number (SIM # or IMEI). It's best to ask a rep to give you the account number. You'll need the account number and PIN when later porting from TF to another provider.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SaOn View Post
    Thanks -- it's good to hear that!

    Follow-up question: How do I find the account # and PIN of this new/temporary tracfone? I have never set up online account with TF (and I'd rather not to). When I googled this, some people say that the account # is the SIM card number, others said that it's the IMEI, and everyone says that the pin is the one I use to log into TF (which I will not have). Is this info (account # + pin) something I should ask the customer service person when I do the initial porting? Thanks!
    If you are using a TracFone phone the account number the phone's IMEI, for BYOP SIM's it's the last 15 digits of the SIM ID. The only PIN is the voicemail PIN which you choose when you set up your voicemail. For online account access, TracFone uses a user name and password combo that you set up when you activate the online account. I think they may text you a temporary 2FA PIN as part of the online account setup.
    Find and compare prepaid plans at https://prepaidcompare.net

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yeswap View Post
    If you are using a TracFone phone the account number the phone's IMEI, for BYOP SIM's it's the last 15 digits of the SIM ID. The only PIN is the voicemail PIN which you choose when you set up your voicemail. For online account access, TracFone uses a user name and password combo that you set up when you activate the online account. I think they may text you a temporary 2FA PIN as part of the online account setup.
    Some people do not want to use any two-factor authentication. Do people have a choice?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by joseg2016 View Post
    Some people do not want to use any two-factor authentication. Do people have a choice?
    Setting up an online accout is optional. If you don't set one up you do't have to deal with the PIN.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yeswap View Post
    Setting up an online accout is optional. If you don't set one up you do't have to deal with the PIN.
    Something to wonder about. If person wants to port number to a different carrier, the new/different carrier may require to know the PIN for the number the person wants to port. I wonder then, if person never did set up their online account with the carrier person wants to leave, does the new carrier still require PIN from the current account?

  14. #14
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    With TF history of poor customer service I would not use them for the intermediate port. I recently ported a land line to Google Voice. I ported to a $15 T Mobile prepaid plan and then to GV. Went well.

    Sent from my Lenovo TB-X606F using Tapatalk

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rojniles View Post
    With TF history of poor customer service I would not use them for the intermediate port.......
    I'm no TF fanboy-- but most of their customer service reps I've dealt with over the last 10 years or so have been OK to pretty good. Sure, it's hard to understand a lot of them through their Spanish accents-- and once in a while, you get a clunker who should be sweeping the floor rather than talking to customers. Overall, my preference is to use Chat rather than talking on the phone, especially for simple, straightforward issues.

    The truth is that customer service in most large companies is awful these days, in part because many have outsourced the function to places like India-- and those folks are really hard to understand. My particular peeve is when you can't even call customer service directly...like Comcast. There, you have to make a call-back request online after wading through pages of problem classification questions-- many of which are either vague, confusing or at least 10 degrees off-point from the issue you're trying to resolve!

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