Thursday, 19 January 2017

Mobile network rip-off

Life can be so frustrating at times! A little while ago I decided to treat myself to a new mobile 'phone and, when the time came, break away from my current mobile contract. So I shopped around and was lucky to get myself one of the new Wileyfox Swift 2 Plus handsets on a special deal from Amazon.

Wileyfox Swift 2 Plus
I have to say I'm very happy with the 'phone, especially given the price I paid and it's nice to think it's British as opposed to Chinese, Taiwanese, whatever.

So the time came to be getting myself a decent SIM only contract and leave my current mobile provider: ought to be easy didn't it? No, think again!

Because I'm retired, don't have a mortgage, don't have a car loan and haven't borrowed money from a bank, building society or money lender in over 30 years, I don't have a credit history and this means I don't qualify for the majority of deals you see advertised on the Internet for SIM only mobile deals. However if I wanted a new iPhone or Samsung Galaxy I could get one by return of post.

Just look at how crazy this is...

I tried to get a SIM only deal from Talk Mobile. It offered everything I wanted at a monthly cost of £2.99 (£5.00 before cashback). My application was refused because I failed their credit check. Talk Mobile didn't want me to be disappointed so they offered my an alternative: I could have an iPhone SE on a 24 month contract for just £35 pm. What? Do you think I'm stupid? Fuck you!

Disgusted I hunted around the net and tried a couple of other companies with much the same result. No I didn't qualify for a cheap SIM only deal, but I could have a new high cost handset on a 2 year deal.

Do you see a pattern was starting to form here? Yes, me too.

Mobile Phones Direct said they could help as long as I agreed to a free credit check with their partner company. This sounded okay until I looked at it in detail. You get one free credit check, but have to agree to future checks at a monthly cost. Thank you, but NO!

Then I found TPO Mobile and everything started to fall into place. Not only was I able to order a SIM on a reasonable basis, but 10% of the monthly fee is directed to a charity of my choice. I admit it's not the best deal available for minutes/texts/data, but it's adequate for my needs and since the contract is on a month-by-month basis I can leave at any time and while I'm there the RNLI get an 40p a month to help fill their coffers - I know it's not much, but hey every little helps and as an old sailor it makes me feel good. 😇