what does sim only mean

What Does SIM Only Mean & Should you Get One?

What does SIM Only mean? Gone are the days where our phones are not a necessity. Now, it’s almost impossible to leave our houses and work without it.

We use it to communicate with our loved ones and surf the internet. Thus, having an affordable mobile plan is essential.

However, there are several phone tariffs we can choose from. Whether you pick Pay As You Go, Pay Monthly, or SIM-Only plan, each has its unique benefits. Some may require long-term contracts, while others may not.

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Today, we will answer all your most asked questions. We will look into how a SIM-Only plan works, as well as its pros and cons.

We will also tell you whether this package is the right one for you.

What Does SIM Only Mean : Everything You Must Know

Plans from big network companies generally include Pay As You Go, Pay Monthly, and SIM Only. But choosing which one to get would depend on your needs and preferences.

So, let us dive into each of your must-know facts below.

What Is A SIM Only Plan?

what is a sim only plan

A SIM Only plan gives you monthly allowances for your texts, calls, and data for a fixed cost.

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But unlike the Pay Monthly package, this doesn’t come with a new handset. You will also save more pounds with this plan.

Generally, this plan works best if you already have a smartphone. It’s also excellent for those who don’t want any strings attached.

Since it doesn’t require a long-term contract, you can easily switch to another network without much of a fuss.

How Is This Different from Other Plans?

As we’ve said, most network providers offer other mobile plans like the Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go. But how does SIM Only differ from these two?

Pay Monthly is much like the said plan. However, you will need to sign up for a 12- or 24-month long contract.

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So, getting out this deal may involve early termination charges and much more effort. You also get a new handset from Apple, Samsung, or other big phone manufacturers.

On the other hand, the Pay As You Go deal requires a top-up for your calls, texts, and data allowance. Similarly, it only comes with the SIM card and without a new handset.

You also don’t need to worry about topping up regularly because it doesn’t involve any contracts.

Why Should I Get This Plan?

benefits of sim only plan

Getting the SIM Only plan will be a wise decision if you want flexibility. Not only will you get monthly allowances for a more affordable price, but you can also get out of it anytime.

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Here, let us discuss some of its pros and cons.

1. No Long-Term Contract

no long term contract

The first on our list of key advantages is that it doesn’t involve any long-term contract.

You won’t have to sign up for a minimum term of 12 or 24 months. Instead, you can switch providers more regularly or after 30 days.

For instance, signing up for Pay Monthly would require you to be in a contract for at least 12 months. So, getting out of it may involve more work.

You’ll also need to pay an early termination charge for every month you have left on your term.

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2. More Affordable and Accessible


Since this plan doesn’t come with a new handset, you’re going to pay less. You’re also free to choose any network provider by just looking at their tariffs.

On top of that, you won’t need to worry about credit checks because you can easily qualify for this.

For instance, Pay Monthly users usually undergo a background check. This step involves looking into your credit history to ensure that you’d be able to pay for your contract.

Thus, you’ll only pass this credit check if you have don’t have unmissed payments.

3. Available in Different Sizes

different sizes

There are various SIMs available in different network providers. You can pick among their nano, micro, or standard SIM card sizes.

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But choosing which one you should get would depend on your smartphone.

Generally, every network provider gives you their SIMs in three different cuts. Just insert each one into your phone to know which one works best.

Otherwise, you can ask your provider. But newer handsets would require the nano or micro-SIM cards.

4. Keep Your Current Phone

keep current phone

If you are happy with your current smartphone, then the SIM Only plan may be perfect for you. You can easily insert your new SIM card without stressing over your new handset.

You can also wait for new phone releases without any guilt and commitment.

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However, if you are not that content with your current smartphone, getting a new one may be quite expensive. You will have to use a few pounds from your savings to get a working phone.

So, signing up for the Pay Monthly deal may be better.

Furthermore, you may need to unlock your handset before you can insert your new SIM card. Don’t worry because this step is pretty straightforward.

All you will need to do is call your current network and ask for your Depersonalisation Control Key. Generally, this service won’t cause you any charges, but some networks may have.

Can I Transfer My Old Number?

With the SIM Only plan, you can transfer your existing number to your new SIM card. But you will need to get a Porting Authorisation Code (PAC) from your old network in such cases.

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This PAC is a 9-digit code that you can get within a few minutes.

Just text PAC to 65075. But for some network providers, you may need to put your date of birth.

sim only plan transfer

For instance, you will need to send PAC 120197 if you were born on January 12, 1997.

Should you Go for SIM only Plan?

Now that you know what is a SIM Only plan, you may be thinking whether this is the right deal for you. But only you can answer this question.

Ultimately, this would depend on your needs and budget.

If you don’t use your smartphone that much, you can opt for the Pay As You Go deal. It doesn’t have any strings attached, and you don’t need to regularly top-up.

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But if you are always on your phone, you may want to go for the Pay Monthly package. You can easily customise your plan, depending on whether you need unlimited calls, texts, or data.

However, the SIM Only plan can give you the best of both worlds. You’ll have pretty good text, call, and data allowance.

But at the same time, you can switch providers more easily and regularly. You can also keep your current phone and not stress over long-term contracts.

Let’s Wrap It Up!

Understanding what does SIM Only mean is essential, especially when picking a mobile tariff. You can sign up for other plans like Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go.

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But knowing which one you should get would depend much on your needs.

With the SIM Only plan, you will receive monthly allowances at a much affordable price.

So, if you are looking for a more flexible mobile deal, then this may be the one for you. You can check out Virgin Media, Three, Sky, BT, and other networks for their exclusive deals.

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