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Thread: weird experience trying to transfer number to new phone on Total Wireless

  1. #1
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    Angry weird experience trying to transfer number to new phone on Total Wireless

    I've been a Tracfone/Total Wireless customer for a very long time, at least a decade on Verizon service at my house in a semi-rural area in Kansas. There's solid 4g LTE service here.

    Today I tried to transfer my number to a new phone (Moto G 2022 Stylus 5g unlocked). At first I tried online, but got an error message, something to the effect of needing a different zip code, but there was no place to enter a different zip. So I tried a chat, which was unsuccessful because the TW rep said there's no service in my zip code. I explained there's been solid Verizon service here for more than a decade, so he had someone from TW call me.

    I got the call immediately, but it took the TW rep an enormous amount to time to try to move service. He finally said there was no service in my area, could I give him a different zip code. I gave him the zip code of Topeka about 20 miles away where I work. It has solid 5g service. Again, the TW rep said the system was showing no service. He said there must be an error in the system, and said he'd put in a request to have it fixed and I should try again in 24 hours.

    But then he told me he'd deactivated my old phone, and couldn't reactivate it because, again, the system showed no service in my area. But, he said, I could the number to my new phone in 24 hours when the error was corrected.

    I'll admit that at that point I melted down, not only because I would be without phone service for 24 hours, it seemed likely that TW would lose my phone number. (That wouldn't be the first time I've had a Tracfone company lose a number.) I asked repeatedly to speak to a supervisor, but he insisted he was a supervisor and there was no one else to talk to. He was finally able to reactivate my old phone, again, after a great deal of time.

    Not sure what I'm going to do tomorrow. I think I'll probably just try online, and if I get the zip code message just wait several more days.

    I'd hoped that Verizon buying Tracfone would improve things, but apparently not.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by KSSteve View Post
    I gave him the zip code of Topeka about 20 miles away where I work. It has solid 5g service. Again, the TW rep said the system was showing no service.
    Well, my house is in Topeka and all 7 of my phones on TF/Verizon have good signal.

  3. #3
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    Online is probably the worst option, because it depends on the wonky website programming. It could make it worse.

    There might be a problem with recognizing that 5G is an acceptable thing. Tracfone seems to get memos last.

    You could try putting the new IMEI into a Verizon checker.

    Try Corporate and hang up call again if the rep disappoints.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisme View Post
    Online is probably the worst option, because it depends on the wonky website programming. It could make it worse.

    There might be a problem with recognizing that 5G is an acceptable thing. Tracfone seems to get memos last.

    You could try putting the new IMEI into a Verizon checker.

    Try Corporate and hang up call again if the rep disappoints.
    Verizon IMEI checker likes the phone.

  5. #5
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    This appears to be a "special" problem that requires a knowledgeable Corporate CSR. It may take several calls to get the right person.
    Tracfone corporate office
    305 640-2000 x 1029
    800 626-4883 x 3324

  6. #6
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    Yeah this sounds like it could be a "new unlocked/5G phone" problem.

    I assume this Moto phone is not TF branded/unlocked and instead new probably bought directly from Motorolla.

    I recall in the past people would get an IMEI not found error message when trying to activate new 5G phones online using the TF website.

    I have two unlocked bought from Apple iPhone SE 3s that took a long time to properly activate on TF/Verizon via a transfer because the chat reps and then TF corp office reps were unable to register the sim to the device IMEI. The system I believe would show the sim to be "invalid" because of this and so rep would ask for another sim card number and/or also a different zip code. After trying 4 or 5 sims, the issue was escalated to an offline network support specialst who manually paired the sim and IMEI and put the device in the account which made it possible for the phone to be activated with TF corp office help.

    I had to do this twice, at different times, once for each phone.

    During the course of trying to get this fixed I was also offered the option of using TF/T-mobile but I passed since that could be its own problem down the line and I wanted TF/Verizon.

    Don't know for sure if this is the issue but I mention it.

    You can try the Tracfone corporate office numbers that Tracfancier posted:

    305 640-2000 x 1029
    800 626-4883 x 3324

    Basically, this issue may be a "system error" that needs to be manually addressed by an offline support tech.

    Added: I don't know if TW, now known as Total by Verizon, (TBV) offers a different experience somehow regarding the above.
    I've never used Total by Verizon and my exp is only with Tracfone directly.

  7. #7
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    An intelligent, polite customer service rep figured it out. The sim kit I was attempting to use was too old. I got a new one at Dollar General and was able to transfer service myself online in minutes.

    Not sure why it was giving a zip code error.

  8. #8
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    I was firmly into "get a new SIM with a new phone" camp.
    Now, since Verizon acquisition and re-branding, I don't believe than anymore.

    And yes, old SIM cards will act weirdly. The first rep should have known that.

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