Keeping your number when switching mobile provider

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One of the things which might be putting you off switching mobile provider is whether you can keep your number.

The simple answer is YES you should be able to take the mobile number.

The reason I write ‘should’ is that in reality you don’t own the number but are custodian of the number and if you are the bill payer and account owner have first rights to keep it. When writing this I think of employees who have corporate phones. Here you will need to rely on the goodwill of your employer.

How does keeping your number work?

In the UK we have number ranges which are allocated to operators. The first time a number is registered on the network this is where it remains permanently from an administration perspective.  The number is transferred to another provider via PAC. This normally takes a few days. In the industry this is called number portability.

What is a PAC?

In short this stands for “port authorisation code” which you need to ask for from your existing provider which you are leaving. Once you have your new SIM or mobile phone package and then inform your new provider and they will do the rest.

To make it easier for you we have put together a two-step guide telling you how to get your PAC code from your current provider and then how to give it to your new network provider.

1) The network you are moving from

To transfer from your current network, you’ll need to get a PAC code from them. Find your current network below and we will tell you how to do this. Every network is legally obliged to give you a PAC code within 2 hours of your request.

Vodafone

If you are wanting to move from Vodafone the first thing you’ll need to do is to text PAC to 65075 from your Vodafone SIM to get your PAC code. If you are unable to text or would prefer to speak to someone just call Vodafone on 03333 040 191 and tell them you are wanting to leave and request your PAC code.

O2

If you are wanting to leave O2 text PAC to 65075 to get your PAC code. Or if you’d prefer to talk to someone call 034 4809 0202. Please note they are only available 8am-8pm weekdays and 8am-6pm on Sundays.

Tesco Mobile

If you are wanting to leave Tesco mobile, you’ll need to get a PAC code by texting PAC to 65075 on your Tesco Mobile SIM . If you’d prefer to speak to their customer service team call 0345 301 4455 and tell them you are wanting to leave and ask for your PAC code. Please note they only take calls 8am-9pm weekdays, 8am-8pm Saturdays and 10am-6pm Sundays.

ID Mobile

If you would like to leave ID Mobile text PAC to 65075 to get your PAC code. Alternatively, if you’d prefer to speak to someone call 7777 from your ID Mobile or you call 0333 003 7777 and request your PAC number as you want to leave. Please note their customer call centre is only open 8am-8pm every day of the week.

EE

If you are wanting to move from EE you’ll need to get your PAC code by texting PAC to 65075 from your EE SIM. If you’d prefer to talk to the customer service team call 0800 956 6000 telling them you want to leave and ask for your PAC code.

Smarty

If you are wanting to move from Smarty text PAC to 65075 from your Smarty SIM to get your PAC code. Unfortunately, Smarty does not have a customer service number however, if you’d prefer you can email them through their website here.

Giff Gaff

If you are wanting to leave Giff Gaff text PAC to 65075 to get your PAC code. Alternatively, you can log in to your Giff Gaff account and request one here.

Three

If you are wanting to leave Three you can text PAC to 65075 to get your PAC code. If you’d prefer to talk to someone call 333 from your Three SIM or call 0333 338 1001 and request a PAC code as you want to leave.

Plusnet

If you’re wanting to leave Plusnet text PAC to 65075 to get your PAC code. If you’d prefer to talk to someone call 500 from your Plusnet SIM, or call 0800 432 0220 and request your PAC code as you are wanting to leave them.

2) The network you’re moving to

Now that you have your PAC code you need to pass this code onto the network you are moving to so that you can keep that number. You should already have bought your contract or SIM from them. If not check out the deals we have on offer.

Vodafone

With your PAC code call Vodafone’s customer support team on 03333 040 191 to tell them this code.

O2

With your PAC code you’ll need to call O2 to give them it. Call O2’s customer support team on 034 4809 0202. Please note they are only available 8am-8pm weekdays and 8am-6pm on Sundays.

Tesco Mobile

With your PAC code call Tesco Mobile’s customer support team on 0345 301 4455 to give them your code. Please note they only take calls 8am-9pm weekdays, 8am-8pm Saturdays and 10am-6pm Sundays.

ID Mobile

With your PAC code you’ll need to call ID Mobile on 0345 6000 789. They are only available to call 8am-8pm every day.

EE

With your PAC code you’ll need to call EE to give them it. Call EE on 07953966250. Please note that their customer service team is only available 8am-8pm weekdays and 8am-6pm weekends.

Smarty

With your PAC code you need to contact Smarty. They don’t have a customer support phone number, so you need to log in to your Smarty account and give them your PAC code that way. Click here to log in to your Smarty account.

Giff Gaff

With your PAC code fill out Giff Gaffs number transfer form here.

Three

With your PAC code you’ll need to call Three to give them that code. Call Three on 0333 338 1001.

Plusnet

Now with your PAC code just contact Plusnet on 0800 079 1133 to tell them that code.

Important

Please note that PAC codes expire after 30 days so if you haven’t used it by then please repeat the relevant steps to receive a new PAC code. Phone numbers take time to transfer so please be patient. In the meantime, you will have the temporary number of your new SIM to use normally with your deal.

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