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Thread: Activate old GSM SIM?

  1. #1
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    Activate old GSM SIM?

    Hello,
    I acquired a decent Tracfone balance stored on TCL flip phone (CDMA SIM) but not a decent CDMA phone, currently using a GSM phone with another provider, about to expire. I still have some old Tracfone SIM cards (from the GSM days) laying around. Can I activate one of those cards and move my balance there so I can use the current GSM phone I have? I would prefer to do this myself, online, to avoid getting a TF rep involved that will probably prevent me from going back to GSM service.

    TIA for your opinions

  2. #2
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    You can still activate BYOP TF/AT&T and TF/T-mo SIMs, but if your area has Verizon coverage (determined by Verizon/Tracfone) then be ready for coercion efforts from TF to move your service to TF/Verizon. Coercion efforts include (but not limited to): offer of free SIM or cheap phone to switch to TF/Verizon, an audible message that tells you TF/Verizon service is available is played before connecting your outgoing calls, etc. I think Verizon agreed to keep TF/AT&T and TF/T-mo service for 2 (or 3) yrs after buying TF in Nov 2021. After that, service with AT&T and T-mo won't be available from TF.

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    Thanks for the reply. Actually in my area ATT has marginally better reception (not that VZW would acknowledge that) and that is the reason I'm still on GSM now and want to remain there. So I should still be able to self activate (and transfer) the GSM SIM online? And in case that SIM is too old, is there anywhere else I can still purchase a new(er) GSM TF SIM, hopefully for ATT?
    TIA

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    IMHO if you're in a Verizon service area I'd stay away from TF/ATT or TMO for new servcie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sorint View Post
    So I should still be able to self activate (and transfer) the GSM SIM online? And in case that SIM is too old, is there anywhere else I can still purchase a new(er) GSM TF SIM, hopefully for ATT?
    You should be able to self-activate a BYOP GSM SIM online.
    1. Go to TF web site (it looks different if you haven't been there for a while).
    2. Click on ACTIVATE near the top of the screen.
    3. Select Keep Your Own Phone (i.e. you're using a BYOP phone). Then follow the prompts.
    4. When it asks if you want a new phone number or Keep Your Number, select Keep Your Number. Enter your current TF number.
    5. It'll send a text with a security code to your current phone. Once you've confirmed that security code, it'll transfer service from your current phone to the BYOP GSM SIM.

    People have reported that TF had started removing 3-carrier SIM Kits from stores. You might be able to find old ones at some stores like Family Dollar, Dollar General, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpz1 View Post
    IMHO if you're in a Verizon service area I'd stay away from TF/ATT or TMO for new servcie.
    Any particular reason for that?
    Not only is VZW coverage worse then ATT But I'd also need a new CDMA phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sorint View Post
    Any particular reason for that?
    Not only is VZW coverage worse then ATT But I'd also need a new CDMA phone.
    Just because of the limited time left till it's gone and potential headaches (you never know with TF). Guess it depends on how much a balance you plan to transfer to it. Maybe you don't need a new phone to use Vzw on it. What model are you using on GSMA now?

    Also if I understood you correctly your ATT phone is on a different provider (not TF), in which case you'd be doing a new activation of the ATT sim first then later transfer the balance from your TF/Vzw Flip to it. I think in another thread someone mentioned they ran into something when trying to transfer a Vzw balance to an ATT sim.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpz1 View Post
    Just because of the limited time left till it's gone and potential headaches (you never know with TF). Guess it depends on how much a balance you plan to transfer to it. Maybe you don't need a new phone to use Vzw on it. What model are you using on GSMA now?
    I'm using a Moto Z2 Force (64GB storage, 4GB memory) now. To get something similar for Verizon I'd have to spend around $200, which I'd rather not. If I could get 1 more yr out of this would be nice. 2 more yrs would be perfect. By then I'd accumulate enough rewards to get a decent TF Verizon phone for free/cheap. My cell usage is minimal, 100 min/ 0 txt/0.5GB /mo

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    Quote Originally Posted by sorint View Post
    I'm using a Moto Z2 Force (64GB storage, 4GB memory) now. To get something similar for Verizon I'd have to spend around $200, which I'd rather not. If I could get 1 more yr out of this would be nice. 2 more yrs would be perfect. By then I'd accumulate enough rewards to get a decent TF Verizon phone for free/cheap. My cell usage is minimal, 100 min/ 0 txt/0.5GB /mo
    What model number is the Z2 ?

    Also, a edited my post to include transferring your Vzw balance to an ATT sim. (check my post you quoted again.) thx

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpz1 View Post
    What model number is the Z2 ?

    Also, a edited my post to include transferring your Vzw balance to an ATT sim. (check my post you quoted again.) thx
    Model is XT1789-04, original ATT but now unlocked. Yes, I would be transferring VZW balance to ATT SIM, that's my intention. I have an old TF ATT SIM card available

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    Quote Originally Posted by sorint View Post
    Model is XT1789-04, original ATT but now unlocked. Yes, I would be transferring VZW balance to ATT SIM, that's my intention. I have an old TF ATT SIM card available
    From what I can find that model lacks Verizon LTE band 13 and the old Verizon 3G (evdo/1x) which is dead anyway. https://www.phonemore.com/specs/moto...rce/xt1789-04/
    Keep in mind that the terms cdma and gsm to differentiate phones is dead. It's all about the bands the phone supports and being on a carriers whitelist. You could run it's imei through the Verizon or TF checker.

    As far as my mention of transferring a balance from Vzw to ATT/TMO on TF, here's the thread/post I mentioned. Could be a fluke. https://howardforums.com/showthread....on-eBay/page39 post #576

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpz1 View Post
    As far as my mention of transferring a balance from Vzw to ATT/TMO on TF, here's the thread/post I mentioned. Could be a fluke. https://howardforums.com/showthread....on-eBay/page39 post #576
    That was me, and it may have been a fluke. It was also a combine balance, not a transfer from one device to another. On my primary phone, I activated an AT&T SIM with a transfer of service from a Verizon SIM at the end of June without any problems. I just started getting a pop up in my online account to switch to Verizon about 2 weeks ago. No text messages or call interruptions yet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sorint View Post
    Model is XT1789-04, original ATT but now unlocked. Yes, I would be transferring VZW balance to ATT SIM, that's my intention. I have an old TF ATT SIM card available
    If Verizon`s Tracfone wants you on Verizon service you are potentially headed for headaches, with hours on chat and calls with CS. Verizon has made TF CSR even harder to deal with. They have been known to just shut off your service and to save the airtime and phone number you are forced to accept Verizon service. You are calling attention to yourself with the initial activation on AT&T, they are not going to overlook you like someone who has been on AT&T since before the buyout and remains flying under the radar.

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    If you want a new phone for Verizon, then you should buy the 2-for-1 priced HSN, QVC, or TF e-Bay store deals. Activate them as new lines, while adding them to an account that already has an active line and you will have 20,000 points in 61 days to trade for a $300 certificate used toward the purchase of any phone from the TF website. Search for any thread that contains "Tracfone AAL (add a line)" to learn the procedure.

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    FWIW, I tried to combine balances from Verizon A32 5G SIM (TF refurb device once unlocked) to my AT&T BYOP SIM last week and the rep also told me they got an error message. Again, this is another combine balances data point, and NOT a transfer service to a new device data point.

    Given I didn't want to lose the accumulated time (almost 4k T/T and 4GB data) on the A32 5G, I sucked it up and "upgraded" my AT&T line to a Verizon SIM and transferred the balances a few days later without incident.

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