Where to buy a SIM card for 3 week UK trip?

Marvin16x

Active Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2012
Messages
206
Location
Stuttgart, Germany
Car
190 E 2.3
Hi all,

ordered a SIM card from giffgaff a few days ago, but hasn't arrived yet.
Since we'll be off to UK on Monday morning I have to find another way to get myself one.

My cousin told me she bought such a SIM card at some shop in Exmouth when she was there a couple of months ago ... she can't recall the details though :doh:

Do you know where I could get myself such a SIM, preferably down in Kent (or maybe Dover)? The only thing I need is internet, the more the better.

Thanks for your help :eek:
 

knighterrant

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 2, 2012
Messages
4,163
Location
Here
Car
Yes
I can't specifically answer your question, but I can provide a warning. My sister was over here from Australia a couple of months ago. She bought a SIM from a London PhoneShop but (and I don't understand this bit) was told that there was no guarantee that the SIM would work in her iPhone5. So she had to pay for it first. It didn't work when she put it in her phone in the shop. They wouldn't refund her money because the pack had been opened!!! Obviously she wasn't prepared to try other SIMs from the same shop. She tried the SIM in other people's iPhones and it still didn't work.

So my message is that it seems to be easy to buy SIMs from any high street phone shop, it just may not be that straightforward.
 

Stratman

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 15, 2003
Messages
4,762
Location
Sunbury
Car
W203 C200 CDI '04Estate
Any phone shop will sell you one. Just tell the sales droid what you want and hope for the best :D

Best of luck with your trip. Sadly the weather forecast doesn't look too good for Monday but the rest of the week looks OK.

Like many on here, I'm looking forward to your updates. Have fun :thumb:
 

Dieselman

Banned
Joined
Jul 13, 2003
Messages
34,206
Car
Peugeot 403 Convertible
Any phone shop or even most Supermarkets, should be able to supply a SIM that works. What do you intend to put it into?
 

jay1983

Active Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2011
Messages
372
Location
manchester
Car
mercedes ml270 cdi
Tesco do sims. £1 for a tesco mobile pay as you go. If you top up they also double or triple your credit (can't remember which lol).
My sister got 1 yesterday to turn into a capped contract. Worked straight away on her iPhone 4S which was on Vodafone.
 

DrFeelgood

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 10, 2005
Messages
9,771
Car
BMW 740Li
Any phone shop will sell you one. Just tell the sales droid what you want and hope for the best :D

Best of luck with your trip. Sadly the weather forecast doesn't look too good for Monday but the rest of the week looks OK.

Like many on here, I'm looking forward to your updates. Have fun :thumb:
Would you prefer a salesperson who was a free thinking Muppet who could deliver ****-all? :dk:
 

bob6600

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
5,930
Car
AUDI S8 V10, S210 E320 CDI (R.I.P.)
As said earlier SIMS are available for most networks at most supermarkets. Last time I was at Birmingham Airport there were people from Lyca Mobile giving them away for free.

In the past, some sims (if not all - maybe network dependent?) had an activation time of 3-6 months. If they were not activated by then, the sim was 'switched off' and would not activate. This was certainly true for the free sims sent out by o2 and I would imagine others too. Now if this shop had some sims lying around for a while, they could be past their date and unable to be activated. The shop owner would know they cannot sell it to anyone but obviously find the odd person to con.

I could be completely wrong but it's the logical reason that the sim didn't work in any other phone either. Things may have changed in the last few years but I'm sure these free sims still have activation dates
 

LTD

MB Enthusiast
SUPPORTER
Joined
May 21, 2009
Messages
5,587
Location
Planet Earth
Car
Yep, one of THOSE !!!
Personally, if your telephone has Internet capability then I wouldn't worry.

Every McDonald's offers free WIFI and a clean toilet. A welcome comfort break, a coffee and as much WIFI as you need.
 

Dryce

MB Enthusiast
Joined
May 17, 2006
Messages
7,715
Car
..
We normally recommend froemds coming in from abroad just pop into the nearest Tesco supermarket and pick up a SIM and top it up. And if they plan calling home then also get a Tesco calling card for cheap international calls.
 

npuk

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 12, 2009
Messages
4,239
Location
London
Car
A180 CDI Avantgarde SE (2008)
Marvin you will first need to make sure your phone is not network locked. If it is a UK simcard wont work in it. If you ring your mobile provider they will usually unlock it for a fee.

Australia uses GSM900 and GSM1800 so if you have a dual band phone any UK network sim will work apart from the '3' network.

You can buy a simcard at supermarkets, mobile phone shops, even newsagents but check the price plan. As you plan to mainly use it for data the cost varies considerably and the data allowance on standard pay as you go simcards is poor and the extra allowance expensive.

Giffgaff would have been perfect for a sim mainly being used for data.
 
OP
OP
Marvin16x

Marvin16x

Active Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2012
Messages
206
Location
Stuttgart, Germany
Car
190 E 2.3
Hi folks,

thanks for your replies!
According to Google Maps there are enough phone shops down in Dover.
I should find a proper one there :dk:

I wouldn't want to pay more than £15, max £20.

Maybe I'll be lucky this time ...

Thanks for your help. :thumb:
 

npuk

MB Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 12, 2009
Messages
4,239
Location
London
Car
A180 CDI Avantgarde SE (2008)
If you check out the websites of the main UK mobile networks, o2, T-Mobile / EE, Orange and Vodafone and check their pay as you go tariffs you can compare the data costs. Payasyou go sims are usually free. There are other smaller operators who will run on one of the above providers networks.

Tesco mobile as recommended by a few are cheap for data. http://phone-shop.tesco.com/tesco-mobile/help-and-support/bundles.aspx They run on the 02 network.
 
Last edited:

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Top Bottom