* Prices may differ from that shown
Tesco Mobile is one of the cheapest mobile network for pay as you go customers. I personally bought a phone from Tesco mobile so had Tesco mobile from the time I bought the phone which was a few years ago.
I love many features of Tesco mobile which the main bonus is that Tesco Mobile is based on the 02 network and since it's based on the O2 network, the network coverage is amazing as I get signal everywhere, there has never been a moment when I haven't received any signal but to be honest, I live in greater London so I cannot be sure how the signal is like in other parts of the country.
Another great benefit is that since I have had Tesco mobile for many years, I have a feature called "5 Favourite numbers" which enables people to get half price calls and texts to 5 favourite numbers which makes it even cheaper. This is great especially if you call and text them very frequently.
Another excellent benefit is that when you top up at Tesco, you get Triple the credit so for example if you top up £10, you get £20 for free!!! However, be warned as the £20 does expires after a month. However the free credit is really good as you can use the internet, call and text as much as you want without worrying about the cost as the free credits is used up first! If you top up in tesco, you earn Tesco clubcard points on every topup.
In terms of customer service, I only had to use this once as I have never had a problem with Tesco Mobile. The time when I had to use this was when I locked my phone by accident and had to get PUK code and it was very straightforward as when I called the number, I only had to dial my mobile phone number and they issued me a PUK code straight away.
I know that the 3 network has new PAYG rates where you only pay 1p per Mb, 2p per texts and 3p per minutes but I have found that I tend to loose signal which is why I have decided to stay with Tesco Mobile
Also, if you have a Tesco mobile Pay monthly contract, there is an offer where you get free Tesco Broadband for 12 months when you pay line rental
The title says it all, great network but then it is O2. My problem started when TESCO MOBILE blocked my phone. A week later and countless calls to their useless and ineffective customer service team and still no joy!I will be off to another provider ASAP even if it costs me more
A word of warning regarding Tesco Mobile. Following our recent experiences it is apparent that Tesco Mobile has neither the appropriate software nor operational policies to effectively manage a mobile network.
There is a "fair use policy" - apparently, as it cannot be shared with the customers. The unlimited texts are not unlimited. The system will send a warning text when an arbitrary number of texts is reached (I never found the number) and then within hours then block the SIM, even though no further SMS have been sent. The on-line billing is many days behind current usage so this can't be used to monitor usage. After the arbitrary limit has been reached, but before the SIM has been blocked the system will automatically bill for any "extra" SMS sent - again without warning until the bill notification comes through. The same system means that the customer services agents also can't tell you about your most recent usage.
Customer service agents will reassure you that this won't happen again - but it will as their systems are unchanged. Do have patience with the poor customer services agents - they have to use the same systems. These are systems that seem to crash once per call (the on-hold music could be considered a form of torture after the 10 minutes it takes to reboot the system!). The system that sends the automatic warning SMS then blocks the SIM is not available to the customer services agents.
The next level managers were, in my experience, unfailingly polite and tried to be helpful - though they may not actually get around to phoning you back as promised. However they are also working using the same systems so whatever they assure you will happen really won't.
It really isn't worth the hassle of spending a long time on the phone each month sorting out something that in effect won't be sorted at all.
I was recently looking for a pay as you go phone and had been comparing a lot of different companies and what they had to offer. That was when I came across the Tesco mobile network.
Tesco mobile offers some very competitive rates and offers. If you buy a mobile phone that is locked to the Tesco mobile network, you will receive a sim card with it. If you want to buy a Tesco mobile sim card, they are available online for free or instore I have seen them £1.
Once you have a Tesco mobile sim card you can make big savings. standard calls are 20p per minute and texts are 10p each. You can however choose 5 favourate numbers and your calls and texts to those numbers are all half price at just 10p per minute and 5 per text.
Tesco are also running a promotion at the moment where you can triple your credit. When you top up £10, they give you £20 or free credit making it up to £30! This offer is on a monthly basis and free credit only lasts for a month, but it's still a pretty good deal. In some of the leaflets it says that this offer ends in march, but it is still going.
Also when you top up with Tesco, either instore or online they will give you triple clubcard points. Again some leaflets say that this expires in March, but it is still working for me.
The coverage for Tesco mobile seems pretty good. I have been using it for a while, first with an older phone and recently with a new one and seems to be pretty good, with not too many problems. I get the odd place with no coverage, but my mum who had vodaphone had the exact same problem, so it's not just the tesco network.
You would think that in the current economic climate, companies would be doing all they could to hang on to the customers they have. After all, a Post Office advert a few years ago revealed that it takes 9 times more effort to gain new customers that it does to keep existing ones. Let's face it, we generally only leave an existing supplier if we experience poor service.
I had been with 3 on a Pay-as-you-Go contract since I had retired back in 2007, when I had to give up my company provided mobile phone. I chose PAYG as I didn't expect to be making large numbers of calls and at the time I could get a Nokia 6288 on a 12p for everything PAYG contract with 3 for £100, a price that seemed reasonable at the time, for the package.
I wrote a review some time ago about my experiences with 3. Initially I had some problems with them but overall, some now nearly three years later, my experiences have not been too bad. As it stood, I would have stayed with 3 for the foreseeable future had the phone not started playing up. Basically, the display stopped working properly. Sometimes it would work but more often than not the display would be blank. Although I could still use it as a phone, I wouldn't know what was going on and couldn't read text messages.
I suppose I could have tried to get it repaired but I guessed that the cost of repairs would be greater than simply buying a new phone and, after three years, it was probably about time for a new one. Initially I went to the local 3 store to see what they had on offer and spotted a Nokia 5230 that looked like it would fit the bill. 3's price for this phone on PAYG was just shy of £130. That seemed a bit OTT to me so I did some investigating.
Firstly I tried Carphone Warehouse and discovered that they would provide me with exactly the same package as 3 but at a more reasonable price of £110; more reasonable but still more than I really wanted to pay. Then I discovered that the same phone on Tesco Mobile PAYG would be just under £75 when bought online from the Tesco Direct website. That sounded much more like my sort of deal. So, would 3 be prepared to be more flexible in order to retain my business?
Basically, the answer is a resounding, "No". 3's attitude seems to be, "Take it or leave it!" I left it!
Initially I had thought of simply buying the phone from Tesco and then asking for the unlocking code and put my 3 SIM in I so as to carry on as before. Then I found out that although Tesco Mobile charge 20p for calls and 10p for texts, by nominating your 5 favourite numbers, calls to these numbers would only be 10p and texts only 5p. This would be cheaper than 3 since by and large these are the only numbers I call.
So, I decided to stay with Tesco Mobile and to get the PAC code from 3 that would enable me to transfer my old number to Tesco Mobile. Of course, when I contacted 3 and they discovered I was serious about kicking them into touch, then they started trying to persuade me to stay with them! "Too late", I said. "You should have taken me seriously when I offered you the opportunity to keep my custom."
Finally I got my PAC code and passed it on to Tesco Mobile, who indicated that it would take about 2 days to get the number transferred over. I was OK with that as I could still use my old phone in the meantime, even if I couldn't see anything on the screen; it still received calls OK. I was told which day the change would be made and asked to leave my Tesco phone switched off that day so that the update could be carried out. The switch over went very smoothly and before long I had my new phone up and running with my old number.
Tesco Mobile uses the O2 network which, in my area, offers better reception than 3. Calls have been very clear and reliable. The phone itself I am still getting used to. I will write a separate review of the Nokia 5230 once Dooyoo has added it to the website.
So, what has the Tesco experience been like so far? Well, not all positive. Customer Support has been good, with a UK based Help Desk, or so it would appear. Calls can be made from the phone itself at a flat rate of 20p, no matter how long the call takes. Alternatively you can call from a landline on an 0845 number, for which SayNoTo0870 doesn't seem to have an alternative.
Everyone to whom I've spoken has been polite, helpful and seemingly
knowledgeable although at times it does seem that they are reading from a script which, in addition to trying to solve your problems seeks to try to find additional opportunities for Tesco to get more money out of you! Their security questions for PAYG relate to the way you top up: how much; how (online, top-up card, voucher, phone...); and how much is still left. Fortunately you can find out the latter directly from the phone quite easily.
Be that as it may, issues have generally been minor ones. The first was in trying to set a PIN on the phone at start-up. The SIM seemed to expect me to know the existing PIN, even though this wasn't given anywhere in the documentation. I tried all the likely suspects but eventually I locked myself out. The Help Desk quickly provided me an unblocking code and I was able to enter a new PIN.
The next related to a problem whereby I didn't seem to be able to answer a call. The screen showed an "Answer" button but pressing the screen there did nothing! Strictly speaking this is a Nokia problem, not a Tesco one but they suggested backing up the phone (with Nokia Ovi Suite) and then resetting the phone back to factory settings and starting again, the Nokia equivalent of Ctrl+Alt+Del! That did seem to work and since then I've had no more similar problems.
The last related to Internet usage and this aspect of the service is probably the least satisfactory. If you simply access the Internet via the phone (there is no Wifi capability on the 5230) then the data charges are simply exorbitant. Unfortunately I hadn't realised that I would be charged at an astonishing £4/MB! A megabyte of data is absolutely nothing and, simply playing around with the install of new application, all my credit was wiped out in an instant! I was not happy!
Clearly Tesco only want you to sign up for their Internet "all you can eat" deal of £2 per week. This works Monday to Monday, so long as you have signed up prior to the previous Friday, when the £2 gets deducted from your credit. However, whenever you sign up, you will get access the first time of all, within 48 hours. It is up to you, though, to skip a week or end the deal if you don't want to continue.
That's really been the only down side of the Tesco Mobile service so far. I shall stay with them at least for the time being. Since my mishap with the Internet, I've only used up another 20p so I suppose I shouldn't complain.
Update - May 2010
Been experiencing a few problems with my Nokia 5230 and had a word with Tesco Mobile Customer Support. In the hopes that the latest release of Symbian S60 (R12) might solve the problem, (TM uses a customised version of S60 based on R11) I tried to find out when they might be updating their version to R12 base. Seems they are in no hurry to do so (!) so I asked for the unlocking code for the phone so I could install the kosher R12 version myself. They want £20 to provide the unlocking code if I want to unlock before 12 months is up!!!
I realise that they are trying to prevent people simply buying a cheap phone from them and then unlocking it and using it on a different network but in this case I just trying to solve a problem possibly of their making, which they seem under no pressure to resolve themselves!
Loses 1 star!
Update - Sep 2011
I don't top up very often as I really don't make many calls on the mobile. I had, however, noticed that the balance seemed to be reducing far quicker than I had been expecting for the number of calls I was making.
I discovered that Tesco's supposed "bonus" of an extra two time more for each topup (e.g. Topup £10, get an extra £20 to use, but only for one month) came with a very important caveat that they "forgot" to mention: if you accept the bonus then you get charged at a call rate about 3 times what you would otherwise pay!!! I have now changed to the "Lite" tariff, which charges at the rate I was expecting.
Loses another star!
Having been with another phone network for a year, the rewards were not great so changed my Sim package to that of Tesco. It is remarkable that you can double and triple your phone credit without even having to replace your mobile phone: just the actual Sim.
The only complication I encountered whilst attempting to become a Tesco mobile customer, was that I first had to contact my existing network provider to obtain a licence pin. This is called a 'Port Authorization Code' or (PAC) number to which you then give to Tesco who arrange a date to switch over networks with existing provider.
In addition, because my mobile phone was locked: I had to make arrangements to get this unlocked (either) through the network I was already using or through an alternative source. The fee for this service would have cost me £15.00 and taken 28 days if I had chosen to have my phone unbarred, for which I could have purchased a new 'Pay as you go' bargain mobile phone.
Instead, for a more affordable and speedier result: visiting my local market, there is a stall-hold that unlocks a wide variety of mobile phones for anything up to £10 depending upon model. Most 'Pay as you go' phones are always often the most inexpensive to buy and are not all subject to binding contracts that can easily make unbarring jobs very difficult. Fortunately my phone had nothing in the way of it being freed from ownership and so, only had to pay a very small charge.
However the complications of changing network: Tesco are most definitely worth their value in genuine customer care when they make unrivaled deals for new and existing customers. There is no monetary profit being made in the service they provide, which is a powerful indication that they are one of the most humanitarian as well as benevolent brand of sales professionals I've ever come across.
Moreover, it has taught me a sharp lesson about being too eager to sign up to a network provider whose interests lay elsewhere. The conditions attached to being a customer with many mobile service providers are usually restrictive as well as not all that rewarding, but with Tesco mobile, there is unparalleled brilliance when you consider that: "Their aim is to offer choice with a range of products to suit all pockets, with a friendly, reliable service" according to the Geek directory which is a legitimate, free business directory review site.
I am a massive fan of the Tesco mobile sim package. I've been using this network now for several years, on three different mobiles. I have never experienced any problems with the service and have only good things to say.
One of my favourite aspects of the sim is the fact that to begin with the prices are very fair, but to your three (or it may be five, I'm not 100%) you can gethalf price calls and texts. I actually only use a few numbers regularly, so for me this is very handy! As they are what eat up my redit otherwise. It means that I can get double my money's worth in texts and calls.
Tesco not long ago introduced a new scheme of tripling your credit. You can top up just ten pounds a month and Tesco will triple it to thirty pounds. The free credit if you don't use it up does end after a month, and I rarely use it all up, but it does mean you sitll have a very healthy balance left at the end of the month!
Tesco also used O2 signal masts. These give the best signal to mobiles out of all networks, so I can really rely on my phone. When I'vebeen with friends who are on other networks it has been quite common for none of them to have signal bu for my phone to be on almost full.
I'd definitely recommend this network to others and I regularly do, and I can't see myself changing anytime soon!
Tesco mobile, operate a remarkably simple set of phone tariffs, designed to give their customers the added value Tesco have always strived to provide. Simplicity!
First of all, this is not actually Tesco's own network, it is a joint venture with the Mobile Network O2. Anyone who has used O2 in the past will know that they have some of the best coverage, when benchmarked against their competitors, particularly when using your mobile indoors.
Tesco offer two ranges of sim only Tariffs, I have used both the PAYG and contract tariffs at different times throughout my life, depending upon how much call time I require.
The Contract Tariffs:
Key Facts - One Month Sim only ranges from £10 to £30 a month. The way these deals work, are quite simple. You pay the fee and get given a multiple of 4x the fee in credit, with exception to the top tariff, which I will explain later.
£10 gives £40 credit
£15 gives £60 credit
£20 gives £80 credit
£25 gives £100 credit
£30 gives yes unlimited (up to £500 credit!!!!!!!)
Texts cost 1.25p (in real terms 0.31p)
Calls start at 2.5p a minute (in real terms 0.65p)
Run over your credit and start paying the full rate which is charged to your bill.
So the above deals provide simplicity, with only a £5 increase to move up to the next tariff, should you require additional credit. Plus, with the added benefit of being on a one month contract! Go for the £30 tarrif and get 16.6 times the fee in credit! A bargain for mobile addicts!
The Pay as you go Tariffs:
Key Facts - A sim with no ties. Get 3 times the amount you top up ion credit. But with higher call charges than the monthly sim.
£10 gives you £30
£15 gives you £45
£20 gives you £60
You have 5 favourite numbers with costs of:
Texts costing 5p
Calls costs 10p
For all other calls 20p (in real terms 6.7p a min)
For all other texts 10p (in real terms 3.3p a text)
Comparison in costs (real terms - published cost/multiplication factor use for determining your credit)
PAYG Real Cost 3.3p a text
PAY v Contract (3.3 / 0.31) costs over 10 times more
PAYG Real Cost: 6.7p min
Contract: 0.65p (starting) min
PAY v Contract (6.7 / 0.65) costs over 10 times more
So as you can see, the so called free credit is simply, your first £x gives you a cheaper rate, than calls you make above the allowance for contracts only.
With Phone Tarrifs - Contracts/PAYG with a phone included. A great range of phones, but keep an eye on the prices. Cheaper phones, mean higher contract prices!
Customer Support - Fantastic. Always willing to help, and the sim arrived within 3 days of being ordered. Came recorded delivery, for which I was advise at the time of sale! Well done Tesco!
Summary - Overall Tesco mobile is far simpler, providing some of the best coverage and very simply price plans. If you choose to take a phone, then study the plan in detail. And for pay monthly customers, be very careful about running over your minutes. The real charges no longer apply, after the so called credit has been used. You start paying the full rate.
Tesco Mobile - PAYG
As with all these new mobile companies that crop up this is a fascade for what in principle is O2. When you sign up you can get triple credit, this like everything else is very easy to set up via their online portal. A good security feature is that everytime you go to the portal they send via sms a new entry pin.
Should add that the triple credit is only valid for one month but it is used first so for example you topup with £15, Tesco's kindly add £30 to your credit and you merrily use the £30 on text and calls, should you only spend £25 you would still have the balance of £15 at the start of the next month.
So far I have found coverage very good (better than my contracted Vodafone). The only negative is that they offer a £2 a week unlimited internet option which so far (7 weeks) has been unavailable with no advice on whether it ever will be.
I decided to go with Tesco Mobile as I don't use my mobile too much so didn't want a contract, I just wanted a cheap, easy to use pay as you go phone and tarriff and Tesco offered it. One big problem I always had with my phone providers was their appalling lack of competence in customer service as I am now on Pay as you go that is not really an issue but I did have to contact Tesco once about a problem with top-up and they were very friendly and efficient and it was sorted in one phone call - in my experience this is very unusual for a mobile phone company but the norm for any Tesco product.
They have a reasonable but not very extensive selection of phones available on the network and all of these can be ordered online, I have purchased a new phone since starting with them and I received £20 free credit with the phone which was a nice bonus. I renew bundles each month, these are a £2.50 text bundle giving me 50 texts which have to be used within 30 days and a £2.50 call bundle giving me 25 minutes of calls, once these are gone which doesn't normally happen for me I pay the full price of 10p per text or 20p per minute. These are the smallest bundles available, there are larger half-price bundles and you can change each month if you want to.
The coverage seems good and I don't normally have problems unless I'm out in the sticks where other people are struggling too.
We love Tesco mobile!
I know what you are thinking - how can Tesco be better than the likes of Orange, T-Mobile, Virgin etc. Well, they may not be. Having only ever been with 02 and Tesco I guess I am a little biased.
We purchased our sim cards for all the members of our family and its great as the telephone numbers are all exactly the same apart from the last digit so it is never a problem remembering the numbers!
At £2.49 the sim cards cost very little but you are also able to claim a couple of free sim cards from their website. Ours even came with £2.50 of free credit.
They have a few different tarriffs - we are on the one that is displayed in the picture above. You can register your five favourite telephone numbers - this can be either landline or mobile numbers - and this enables you to receive half price calls and text messages making a text just 5p and calls 10p. When you register these it takes around 24-48 hours to take effect. You can also change these as and when you want simply by calling their freephone number and following the instructions in the automated menus.
At the moment they are also offering a promotion where they give you free credit - if you top up by £10 then they give you £10 free credit and when when you top up by £15 they give you £30 free credit! This does however have to be used within 30 days otherwise you do lose it. If you top up twice in one month then your free credit will be given the following month. Free credit can be used on calls, texts, picture messaging and mobile internet browsing.
You can top up either by voucher purchased from Tesco or over the phone using your debit or credit card.
We find that this tariff really works for us however we are not heavy mobile users.
I've had a mobile for about 10 years now and have been with Tesco mobile for about the last 5 of those so think that says it all before I've even got to the end of the sentence!
Tesco Mobile launched in December 2003 and now has over 2 million customers and from experience it's easy to see why. A lot of people are still surprised when I tell them which mobile provider I'm with but I soon convince them and here's a brief overview of why!
SIM's ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
I had brought my new phone from Tesco originally so I got the SIM included but they are currently available in store and on line, both on the Tesco site and other sites such as Amazon.
At the moment if you go to www.tescomobile-freesim.co.uk you can register for 2 free SIM cards or on the Tesco direct website you can have a SIM with £10 credit for £5 which I think is really good value
TARRIF's ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
There is a flat rate PAYG charge of 20p per minute, 10p per text and 25p per MMS but you can allocate 5 favourite numbers that are half price. However there are also other tariffs available according to their website.
* PAYG Lite - 8p per min, 4p per text and 25p per MMS
* VALUE - 15p per min, 5p per text but no MMS or internet access
The next two tarrifs apply if you top up £15 a month or more:
* EXTRA - 10p per min, 5p per text and 25p per MMS
* STANDARD PLUS - You can choose from either 500 texts or 150 minutes then once these have been used you go back to the standard PAYG fee's, although your 5 favourite numbers still apply
The newest tariff Tesco has launched is the TRIPLE CREDIT tariff where the usual PAYG charges apply but you get extra for your top ups:
£10 you get £10 free = £20 total
£15 you get £30 free = £45 total
£20 you get £40 free = £60 total
Its worth noting that the 'free' credit is only valid for that month so you cant carry it over and it takes 48 hours to be added to your account.
From what I can see on the website there is a flat rate of 10p per minute for WAP services and there is a charge for listening to your voicemail which is around 8/10p per minute.
It can seem quite confusing but what I'm trying to show is that there really is a package for every one. Its best to go online and have a good read through all the options and charges so you can pick the one that will be best value for you. Something really good is hat you can swap between tariffs by phoning customer services from your mobile so you're not 'tied in' for a fixed contract.
I personally am on the standard plus tariff and have 500 free texts (I am a textaholic!) You get a message letting you know when these are used and when you need to top up by to receive the next lot. What I have found though is that I use the free texts then my remaining credit and so probably only top up every 6 weeks or so. When I've put my £15 on the free bundle starts within a few days.
COVERAGE ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Tesco mobile teamed up with O2 and so promise 99% UK population coverage. In my personal experience I have found the network coverage to be excellent. Almost everyone who comes to my house struggles to get a signal (unless they're sat on the loo!) however I can easily send and receive texts and make calls without a problem.
In all the years I've been with them I can count on one hand the times I haven't had a signal.
If you go to www.gadgetstylist.com you can use their service to check O2 coverage in your area
TOP UP ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
You can top up many ways so there's bound to be that's convenient for you
* ONLINE - This can be done via the Tesco mobile website and can be a one off or if you set up a regular top, the amount is debited from your account on a specific day of the month and you get a 10% discount
* PHONE - Just call 4444 from your mobile and follow the instructions to top up either via voucher or credit/debit card. Once you've used the card once you only have to enter the last 4 digits of the card
* RETAIL OUTLETS - Obviously you can top up in Tesco but more and more shops are adding Tesco to the list of tops ups they offer. In the last few days I have noticed that both my local Superdrug and Post Office offer this service.
* ATM - Any cash point at your local Tesco will allow you to top up but I have personally never tried this.
CLUBCARD POINTS ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
An added bonus is you can get club card points on your top ups so money for nothing! You do have to register your club card first and it takes a few days to process.
If you top up in store, on line or via your mobile you get triple club card points so 3 points for every £1 you spend.
You can use these vouchers in store or on the Tesco website on line and they are also covered in the double up scheme Tesco have recently introduced so if you get £5 worth of vouchers you can use them to get £10 worth of credit which is fantastic and has saved me a fortune!
CUSTOMER SERVICE ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
I haven't had to deal with customer services on many occasions as I haven't had any problems really!
When I first got the SIM I did ring them to transfer my old phone number and once when I had problems with receiving texts I rang them and on both occasions they answered quickly, were friendly and more importantly were helpful and efficient!
A lot of things you can do via your mobile through an automated service so things like topping up, changing tariffs and registering clubcards etc so this saves some time.
I did recently e-mail customer services with a query regarding my SIM because it was so old and they replied promptly and were really thorough in their suggestions, They offered to send me a free SIM upgrade and explained the best way to do it so I wasn't without my number for long.
WOULD I RECOMMEND THEM? ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
ABSOLUTELY! As I said at the start I think the fact I've stayed with them for this long is testimony to how good they are! I have never had any problems with their service, their network coverage and now they offer much more competitive PAYG packages so they're right up there with other leading mobile providers! Plus you get money back in kind through the club card points, especially now you ca double these up you can in effect get some credit for free!
If you're considering a change of provider - think Tesco!
All tariff information and prices correct according to the Tesco mobile website Aug 09
I've been a Tesco Mobile customer for about 2 years now, when it was slightly less popular and somewhat looked on quite negatively by some. I'm very glad I signed up with them, however, as I've found the service and tariff to be more than satisfactory!
... The Sim ...
Tesco Sim cards can be bought in-store and online. A Pay As You Go sim with £10 credit costs £10, however they're currently £5 on their website which is a bargain. Alternatively, they offer free sims without credit, which is also a great offer as most service providers charge for empty sims.
... The Tariffs ...
Tesco Mobile now has two main tariffs: a basic pay as you go or pay monthly. When I first signed up, I was on Tesco Value. I thought the value tariff may prove as lifeless as their value cardboard biscuits, however it was just as good as top brand services at a fraction of the price. Unfortunately, they no longer offer the Value Tariff, as I found out when I swapped from value to standard and was told I wouldn't be able to go back to value.
:: Pay Monthly :: - There are a few different options available with their flexible credit scheme, for example £10 a month will get you £40 'flexible' credit that month (the equivalent to 400 minutes talk time or 800 texts). If you pay £30 a month you with their 'unlimited' package, you get unlimited calls, texts and browsing.
:: Pay As You Go :: - This is what I'm now on. The cost charges are simple and straightforward: flat rate anytime calls are 20p and texts are 10p.
The great thing about their pay as you go is that you can select a 'top 5' of numbers you regularly use, and these are easy to set up via your phone or Tesco online mobile account. You then get half price calls and texts to all five of these numbers which is a bargain.
Currently, as a way of promoting Tesco Mobiile, they're offering free credit each time you top up per month: top up £10 and receive £10 free credit to use that month. Topping up £15 gives you £30 free credit and topping up £20 gives you a whopping £40 free credit!
It's important to note that free credit usually takes a day or two to register on your phone and wont show on your usual balance. There's a separate number to check your free credit, which will only last for that month so it's best to use it up rather than let it go to waste (says she who struggled to spend £10 in a month).
... Clubcard Points ...
Topping up, as well as purchasing Tesco Mobile Phones is a great way to add some extra points on your clubcard. There are frequently offers, such as getting triple clubcard points per top up, so it's a good additional bonus because 'every little helps'!
... Ease Of Use ...
I've found that setting up a sim, changing tariffs, finding information I need, checking credit etc is all made easy and simple with Tesco Mobile. Their website, tescomobile.com neatly lays out their price plans in plain English, so there's nothing to confuse you or small print to tie you up with.
... The Service Provider ...
I've not had any problems with Tesco Mobile so far, so there's nothing negative I have to say about them as a service provider. They're coverage over the UK seems very good; bearing in mind no reception will be perfect, Tesco Mobile are satisfactory and quite possibly better than Virgin Mobile who I was with previously.
... Customer Service ...
I've changed tariffs once or twice whilst being with Tesco Mobile, as well as changing my number over, and I'm pleased to say any changes have always been relatively hassle-free. The customer service on the phone and online have always been very helpful. Email responses are quick and informative, and so I feel they're very knowledgeable and helpful when it comes to queries or requests.
... Overall ...
I would definitely recommend Tesco Mobile, especially with some of their current offers which are an appealing bonus on top of an already reasonably-priced price plan. Whether you choose pay as you go or pay monthly, there is something to suit every need and price budget.
Tesco Mobile is brilliant because of it's simplicity and ease of use. The sims and tariffs are clear cut and do the job very well, so I would suggest looking into Tesco Mobile if you're thinking of changing because changing is easy and you have the option of transferring your current number without a fuss.
Following the many adverts Tesco Mobile have around about how good their network is, I researched it a bit and decided to change networks.
What I love about Tesco Mobile is that you get rewarded for topping up. I top up £15, and get £30 back in free, bonus credit. This expires after a month, but I usually use it up before then. This still leaves me with £15 to spend the next month, so my top up tends to last around 6 weeks.
Tesco Mobile's tariff is quite good too. 20p a minute to call, and 10p texts. I think this is pretty standard. However what sets them apart from their PAYG competition is that you can halve the price of calls and texts to 5 numbers. You can change these online and over the phone. This means that to 5 numbers you can call for 10p/min and text for 5p. This makes it a lot cheaper than any other networks out there, and I find that 5 numbers is just enough to have my mum, sister, boyfriend and friends in there.
Yet another advantage is that you get 30 clubcard points per £10 spent on top-up. If you use your points on meals, this means that you get £1.20 to spend in a restaurant per £10 topped up! I think this is great value, and it has really boosted my points (I'm collecting them for my boyfriend's birthday).
However, I have had a problem with Tesco Mobile. When trying to add my top 5 numbers, the automated phone call reassured me all my numbers had been saved. But when my balance was decreasing more rapidly than usual, I decided to check it out online. It turned out that only 1 number had saved, and the person's number who I was in touch with the most was not saved. This really annoyed me, but it was sorted out quite quickly by Tesco customer services through an email. They gave me back £8 in credit on my phone.
Another small annoyance is that Tesco Mobile haven't got a proper website like other networks do. Every time I want to log in a PIN gets sent to my phone. I don't understand why I can't just have login details to access my account.
Overall though, I would recommend Tesco Mobile to anybody who doesn't spend enough to warrant a contract, but spends too much to have a normal pay as you go phone.
I recently ordered a Tesco Mobile SIM to see if the rates really are as good as they say and I was pleasantly surprised to find that they are!
It costs a maximum of 20p to call per minute and a maximum of 10p to text, although to your five favorite numbers, it only costs 10p to call and 5p to text - a bargain in my opinion after being on a really expensive network which charged 35p to call and 15p to text before!
At the moment, they have a deal where you can top up with £10 and they'll give you another £10 for free, although it must be used by the end of the month. I think this deal is very good because you can use the free credit to call, text or use the internet and it's all free! If you top up with £15, they'll give you £30 of credit for free and so on.
The SIM is GPRS and 3G enabled, although internet connection is not particularly fast. I thinkt his may be more due to my phone not being up to it than the SIM being a bad SIM though. The SIM card is capable of using mobile boradbad, according to the booklet that came with it but again, my phone is not up to doing that.
I would definately recommend Tesco Mobile because their rates are very reasonable and the SIM is GPRS and 3G enabled!