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Thread: Has anyone successfully re-activated Tracfone AT&T BYOP number with rewards points?

  1. #1
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    Has anyone successfully re-activated Tracfone AT&T BYOP number with rewards points?

    So here's the situation -

    Tracfone BYOP AT&T phone number expired about a month ago. It had some airtime balance but not a lot.

    The number hasn't been ported out. The sim is sitting in a non-Tracfone GSM phone. From what I've read here, Tracfone gives you a grace period of 60 days to revive your phone number by adding airtime.

    1. Can I re-activate the number by adding airtime purchased with rewards points? Or does it need to be a credit-card purchase?

    2. Will a new AT&T sim card be required, or will the existing sim just get back into operation? I don't really need to use the phone or the airtime, I just want to have a number that can possibly be ported out.

    3. Will the re-activated number have any problems getting ported out?

    4. Will I be able to do the re-activation online on my own, or will Chat need to get involved? I hope I can do this without having to involve Chat.

    Thank you very much to anyone who can help!

  2. #2
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    Short answer: You can't (re)activate a line using reward points.

    Long answer: When you redeem points for a time card, TF site asks which phone number you want to apply it to. If a phone is not active, it doesn't have a working phone number. Therefore, you can't apply the time card (obtained using points) to it.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by hpham View Post
    Short answer: You can't (re)activate a line using reward points.

    Long answer: When you redeem points for a time card, TF site asks which phone number you want to apply it to. If a phone is not active, it doesn't have a working phone number. Therefore, you can't apply the time card (obtained using points) to it.
    Thanks hpham.
    Is the phone number definitely lost? I ask because Tracfone has been sending me notifications telling me to activate that number by adding airtime. Which makes me think that they've still kept that number "alive", because how will I be able to add airtime to a number if it doesn't exist?

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    If the number has been recycled and you "add" airtime, you would be adding airtime to someone elses phone.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by sillyette View Post
    Is the phone number definitely lost? I ask because Tracfone has been sending me notifications telling me to activate that number by adding airtime. Which makes me think that they've still kept that number "alive", because how will I be able to add airtime to a number if it doesn't exist?
    The number may be "preserved", but it's not "alive", meaning if you call that number you'll get a message that it is not in service.

    I don't know how TF system handles a reactivation, whether it will ask you for the IMEI, or SIM number, or phone number.

    Test it by trying to redeem points for a time card and enter the (deactivated) phone number. You might discover something we didn't know.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by sillyette View Post
    So here's the situation -

    Tracfone BYOP AT&T phone number expired about a month ago. It had some airtime balance but not a lot.

    The number hasn't been ported out. The sim is sitting in a non-Tracfone GSM phone. From what I've read here, Tracfone gives you a grace period of 60 days to revive your phone number by adding airtime.

    1. Can I re-activate the number by adding airtime purchased with rewards points? Or does it need to be a credit-card purchase?

    2. Will a new AT&T sim card be required, or will the existing sim just get back into operation? I don't really need to use the phone or the airtime, I just want to have a number that can possibly be ported out.

    3. Will the re-activated number have any problems getting ported out?

    4. Will I be able to do the re-activation online on my own, or will Chat need to get involved? I hope I can do this without having to involve Chat.

    Thank you very much to anyone who can help!
    Does the line still show, WITH the phone #, in your TF online account?

    If the above answer is YES, all based on my personal experience, the answers are:

    1. Yes. Reward points can be used to add a plan and revive the line. Also, as an added bonus, prior remaining data/text/talk balances are also revived.

    2. No new SIM card is required.

    3. No.

    4. Yes. No CSR is required.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by hpham View Post
    Short answer: You can't (re)activate a line using reward points.

    Long answer: When you redeem points for a time card, TF site asks which phone number you want to apply it to. If a phone is not active, it doesn't have a working phone number. Therefore, you can't apply the time card (obtained using points) to it.
    Quote Originally Posted by sillyette View Post
    Thanks hpham.
    Is the phone number definitely lost? I ask because Tracfone has been sending me notifications telling me to activate that number by adding airtime. Which makes me think that they've still kept that number "alive", because how will I be able to add airtime to a number if it doesn't exist?
    This hasn't been my experience. See my answer above.

  8. #8
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    I read differently on reddit (that this used to work, but doesn't work now): https://old.reddit.com/r/TracFone/co...nts_new_rules/

    I'm not that thread, so will be curious if people have been able to reactivate old lines recently with reward points.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pitflyer View Post
    I read differently on reddit (that this used to work, but doesn't work now): https://old.reddit.com/r/TracFone/co...nts_new_rules/

    I'm not that thread, so will be curious if people have been able to reactivate old lines recently with reward points.
    I don't know what to say. What I reported above is how it worked for me. The last line I revived in early June had been deactivated since mid April, 2021. But as with so many things TF, YMMV.

  10. #10
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    sillyette, TracFone saves your airtime for 60 days, but your phone number won't be saved that long. You need to check with CS to see if you can still recover the number.

    Sent from my moto e5 play using HoFo mobile app

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    Quote Originally Posted by millept View Post
    sillyette, TracFone saves your airtime for 60 days, but your phone number won't be saved that long. You need to check with CS to see if you can still recover the number.
    This is why I asked if the phone # still shows in the online account.

    You're saying that TF WON'T save a # beyond 30 days, but could it instead be that the phone # is saved "up to" 60 days, depending on demand for phone #s in certain locales? Could it depend on the network the # is on?

    In my case, the phone # was an AT&T # and remained in my online account, under Inactive Devices, for very close to 60 days, until I added a new plan using Reward Points.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracfancier View Post
    If the number has been recycled and you "add" airtime, you would be adding airtime to someone elses phone.
    No, the number would be returned down to at&t and assigned to an at&t customer.
    That's what happens in every MVNO.
    Numbers on tracfone are not recycled within tracfone, they use the number pool inventory of their host tower carrier.

    ported numbers , when deactivated , are sent back to the previous company it was on.

  13. #13
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    sillyette, are you still around? Can you answer my question?

    "Does the line still show, WITH the phone #, in your TF online account?"

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    sillyette, are you still around? Can you answer my question?

    "Does the line still show, WITH the phone #, in your TF online account?"
    I got busy with other stuff. Checked today and no, my account doesn't list the phone number. I am almost sure that the number was showing up a few days ago, but I'm not completely sure about it. It also seems like I haven't gotten any notifications from Tracfone the last couple days.

    After what someone posted above - that maybe I'd end up adding airtime to someone else's account - I don't think I would have gone ahead even if the phone number was still listed. Hey, I can't just waste those rewards points I earned after millions of spin-the-wheel, try-again-tomorrow, and wow-all-prizes-are-gone!!

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